“All the trees have beards!”
– My best friend Lydia, on Savannah, GA
Let’s start with Forsyth Park. Forsyth Park was probably my favorite part of the city. Steve liked it too.
There are indeed beards (okay, fine, chunks of Spanish moss) on nearly all of the trees in Savannah. It makes for a beautiful, atmospheric, and even slightly spooky feel. (Which seems apt, with all the discussion of ghosts that happened on this trip. More on that in a bit!)
There are war memorials (mostly relating to the Confederacy, sigh) everywhere.
And lots of trees. Did I mention the trees? (I took a lot of pictures of trees). Steve, of course, appreciated the trees as he usually does.
Oh, also buildings. Pretty buildings. Not quite as amazing as New Orleans (though in New Orleans the pretty buildings are almost obscene) but there’s a real feeling of history.
As we learned on our tour, the Masons played a pretty big role in the construction of the city. Steve, as a Mason-o-phile, was ecstatic about this and spent a lot of time trying to explain the various symbols on this sign to me.
Savannah is quite hot in August (shocking, right?) so a siesta is recommended. After relaxing for a bit, we went to City Market, and got some peach sangria (Georgia peaches)! Surprising no one else, I immediately pronounced mine too sweet (despite having gotten it with fizzy water instead of Sprite). I have learned the hard way that me+booze+sugar don’t mix (and I say that with the highest respect for sugar, one of my favorite things). Fortunately Steve got the job done with both.
Steve and I had been having a slightly trying day and then when we were in this courtyard, enjoying Savannah’s absence of open container laws, listening to music… the guy started playing James Taylor!
I HATE JAMES TAYLOR!
It’s actually really helpful when I’m having a tough day and hear James Taylor because then I start laughing at the Murphy’s Law-ness of it all and feel better.
Fortified, we then went to Moon River Brewing, which has the loveliest of courtyards.
The boy enjoyed a brew. I really miss out on a lot of activities because of my distaste for all things hops.
The boy chowed down on a bacon-involving sandwich and sweet potato fries (don’t worry I borrowed some of those).
And I opted for a trio of little things.
1. Deviled eggs (smoky and spicy!) with a tuna sashimi ish sort of topper.
2. BOSS black eyed peas. This was a server recommendation and it was great! Crunchy and tangy.
3. And another side, the smoked gouda scalloped potatoes. Obviously great.
Fun fact: apparently our fun dinner spot is considered one of the most haunted spots in Savannah! (Though, of course, basically everywhere worth noting in Savannah seems to be haunted. Which brings me nicely to our next outing)
That night, we went on a ghost tour! It was the Ghost City Tours Beyond Good and Evil tour. It was lots of fun! Our guide, Nicodemus (I think it’s a safe guess that was not his actual name) was both funny and informative. Vaguely Jack Sparrow esque, in retrospect (he also had an Australian accent).
We learned about voodoo (spooky!) and saw some old haunted houses, the scariest of which was this one (photographed in daylight so as not to alarm you too much).
It has a certain look of evil, doesn’t it?
432 Abercorn. Read all about its grim history here. Though apparently some of that is probably untrue. But, uh, that debunking article is published at the website for the ghost tour company that we used… and our guide happily told us all of those stories… so… who knows. What’s undisputed is that they built this square, Calhoun Square, on a slave burial ground. As far as I’m concerned that is basically an invitation for haunting!
After a surprisingly good night’s sleep (despite the previous night’s subject matter!0, the next day involved more exploring, including a trip to the museum at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Saw an awesome installation with LASERS! Lots of fun. Interactive.
Plus, museums are such a fun vacation luxury. Which is silly- it’s good to be a lifelong learner, and what better way than to go to a museum?!
Post-museum, more walking and then lunch on a rooftop.
Since it was unspeakably hot, all I wanted was some ice water and iced tea, and this watermelon salad.
But oh, this awesome watermelon salad. Peppery greens (heavy on the arugula), lots of fresh mint, perfect sweet watermelon, creamy goat cheese, and sweet-tangy balsamic reduction. It was the best salad I have had in quite some time.
Then, just to make sure I wasn’t dying of being too healthy, I demanded a trip to the ice cream parlor. It’s owned by a Hollywood bigwig, and contains posters of various productions with which he’s been involved.
Almond ice cream in a sugar cone. Yum!
A tour of Saint John the Baptist cathedral was next. It was very very pretty.
Then a fancy shmancy dinner, which I’ll chronicle later in an effort to keep this post at a vaguely reasonable length.
After dinner drinks at a swanky bar in a swanky hotel next to Forsyth Park. It was full of vaguely nightmarish paintings. Fun!
And now a brief discussion of our bed and breakfast.
Look at the beautiful outside!
We were on Gaston Street, just two blocks or so from Forsyth Park and an easy walk uptown to the river. I loved staying where we were- I found it a bit tourist-trap-y closer to the river.
Our B+B also boasted an adorable fountain and lush garden!
The mysterious looking door!
Great location, good food, welcoming owner. Crazy welcoming- greet you at the door with a hug and a piece of coca cola cake. The South is so great! (Though actually, Kathleen is a Bostonian!)
The only thing I wasn’t wild about was that our room didn’t have natural light. I know a lot of people don’t care about that, but I’d love if they’d mention it on the website for those of us who do.
Anyway, it was BOGO (there were a ton of deals on TripAdvisor because August is a slow month in the South… for obvious, obvious reasons) so we got to have a pretty fancy shmancy experience.
This is the beautiful breakfast room. Breakfast always involved candlelight and relaxing music (classical or Sinatra-esque).
Fancily laid tables. Fruit cups waiting for us (what makes eating fruit so much more exciting when it’s in a fancy cup?! Though I will say on the second day the watermelon had turned and was… pretty terrifying).
View out on the cute back porch. In general, Savannah had an abundance of adorable courtyards and porches and balconies.
Beagle observing the breakfast proceedings 😀 His name was Mr. Cooper and whoo he had a bark on him (as beagles tend to) and he was super cute. See him yawning there?
Breakfast always included a french press for the table, orange juice, and bacon and snausage. I dispatched the coffee, Steve was on oj and meat duty.
The first day we were there, the owner, Kathleen, made aaaawesome omelets with grilled corn, eggplant, tomatoes, and feta. The second day Kathleen was leaving town and her son was in charge, and he served these outrageously decadent waffles.
I love ice cream, and this was homemade, but even for me 9am is a bit early 😀 So I shoved that to the side and inhaled much of this delicious waffle with those great strawberries.
But wait, there’s more, in the next installment of Southern Road Trip Summer 2014!