In 1733, General James Oglethorpe, founder of the
British colony of Georgia, directed the design and settlement of the new town of Savannah,
high on a bluff overlooking the Savannah river. Today, Savannah is still famous for its
English grid design with green areas regularly interspersed throughout the downtown. Much
of Savannah's outstanding 18th and 19th century architecture also survives. The Savannah
Historic District, a National Historic Landmark, encompasses much of Oglethorpes's town
plan based on divisions of wards, squares, and "trustee lots."
Most of the original squares remain and are surrounded by fine examples of buildings in
a variety of architectural styles and types, ranging from Gothic Revival mansions to Greek
Revival rowhouses. Notable buildings include the Federal style Davenport House built c.
1820 (East State Street), the Owens-Thomas House built in 1818 (Oglethorpe Square), the
Beaux-Arts style Edmund Molyneux Mansion circa 1917 (Bull Street), the Spencer Woodbridge
House built in 1795 (Habersham Street), and the 1853 Gothic Revival Greene House (Madison
Square). Important sites associated with the African American community in the district
include the Beach Institute (East Harris St.), constructed in 1865 as the city's first
black school, the First African and First Bryan Baptist Churches,
and the King-Tisdell Cottage, the 1896 home of a working-class
African American family.
The boundaries of the Savannah Historic District are the Savannah River, E. Broad
Street, Gwinnett Street, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.
(912) 944-0455 Savannah Visitors Center
1 (800) 444-CHARM Savannah Convention and Visitor's Bureau
CLIMATE, RECOMMENDED CLOTHING
Summers are hot and humid. Winters are mild and normally pleasant. Recommend light
clothing April to November. Inspect repellent recommended in spring, summer and fall. Good
From I-95, exit onto I-16 east. Downtown Savannah is 10 miles ahead off of I-16.
This map was created using MapQuest
Bus: Greyhound Bus Lines serve Savannah. Taxi Service is available from the bus station
to downtown Savannah.
Air: Large airlines carriers operate in Savannah. Car rental is available at the
Savannah offers a wide range of tours and related activities. As a result, fees vary.
Information is available from the Savannah Visitors Center, in the restored Central of
Georgia railroad station at 301 Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, at the end of
Interstate 16.. The visitor center is open Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. and
Saturday-Sunday 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Educational and entertaining tours are available, and the Visitors Center provides
cassette tapes in several languages for walking and driving tours. Tape players are also
available. In addition to the tours listed below, professionally guided bus tours are
available from the Visitors Center on a daily basis. For more information, visit or call
the Visitors Center at (912) 944-0460 or consult sightseeing tours in the yellow pages.
Walking Tours - Four map tours are available of the Historic District including the
squares and various restoration areas (1 - 2 hours).
Driving Tours - Four map tours are available including Old Savannah and nearby
Thunderbolt and Tybee Island (1 - 4 hours).
Carriage Tours - Horse-drawn carriages provide an overview tour of the Historic
District. Two carriage companies are available for group or individual tours. Call the
Visitors Center for more information.
Cruises - Several tours are available for the Savannah River (including dinner
cruises), the Low Country coast, and surrounding bodies of water. Call the Visitors Center
for more information.
FACILITIES AND OPPORTUNITIES
Savannah has a wide range of restaurants and other visitor attractions. A popular
tourist destination is River Street, a cobblestone street along Savannah's Historic
Waterfront. River Street has numerous shops, galleries, and restaurants
ADJACENT VISITOR ACTIVITIES
First Bryan and First African Churches
On the World Wide Web, more information on historic sites and other attractions
can be found at Savannah