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Help w/ 20th Aniv Itinerary Savannah/Charleston

Help w/ 20th Aniv Itinerary Savannah/Charleston

Old Sep 2nd, 2002, 09:59 AM
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Help w/ 20th Aniv Itinerary Savannah/Charleston

We are a Dallas suburbs couple, age 40, celebrating our 20th anniversary with first time visit to Savannah/Charleston. As native Texans with deep south ancestry many generations back, we love southern culture. Looking for a romantic trip with relaxing yet steady pace with ample time for strolling, shopping, sightseeing. PLEASE HELP WITH ITINERARY/ LOGISTICS FOR BOTH CITIES. We’ll be 2 nights at Foley House (courtyard room) in Savannah, 3 nights in Charleston – 2 at Governor’s Inn (St. Michaels Rm) , and last night at Two Meeting St. (Granite Room).

Fly in to Savannah on Friday Sept. 6 at 4:00 pm, depart Savannah Wed. Sept. 11 at 4:40 pm. Don’t plan to rent a car until we leave Savannah to drive to Charleston.

As for eating out, are reservations really necessary at this time of year? We are interested in seafood, fried okra, the best southern bbq, and can’t go wrong places in either city. We prefer casual but tasteful over formal and stuffy. Although we want the food to be good, we are more interested in atmosphere than we are particular about the food.

In Savannah, we are most interested in the following:

Visitors Center & Sav History Museum
Carriage Ride
Trolley or Bus Tour
Our own walking tour?
Interesting Architecture & pretty places
Historical Home Tours (Owens-Thomas & ???. Which ones are best?)
Walking Tours (which one?)
Possibly Ghost Talk, Ghost Walk Tour or Trolley Haunted History Tour, and maybe one on “The Book” or do the carriage, trolly, or bus tour point out points of interest regarding this? I saw the movie and am somewhat interested in what is where, but not enough to spend extensive time on it.
Beaches- We would like to see if it’s good, but don’t need to spend lots of time there on this trip.
Dining - I understand Mrs. Wilkes’ is closed on the week-end. Other Savannah dining recommended that may appeal to us is Lady & Sons & Sapphire Grill.

We would like to skim the surface of Hilton Head and Beaufort to see if we would like include in a return trip if it doesn’t take up too much time on the way to Charleston.

In Charleston, we are interested in the following:

Dining – Same criteria as for Savannah. Possibly, Peninsula Grill, Ansons, Carolinas, Hymans, Hominy Grill, Wild Wing Café, Kaminsky’s for dessert, and ????

Beaches – same as above
Historical Area/Downtown
Visitors Center
Carriage Ride
Ghost Tour at night
Waterfront Park just sitting on waterfront swings watching and resting
Plantations Tours – Drayton, Middleton, and possibly Magnolia (should we?)
Historical Home Tours – Edmonston Alston, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and any others?
Walking Tours – Architecture tour (starts in front of our inn and is from 2-4 daily. Historical Chas City Walk Tour, Chas Walk Civil War?

Old Sep 2nd, 2002, 01:24 PM
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I don't think you will have time for more than one plantation tour. I would suggest Middleton.
Restaurants-Slightly North of Broad, Peninsula, seafood over on Shem Creek in Mt. Pleasant.
In Charleston you might want to consider a tour guide--Sara Ragsdale is apparently really splendid.
Be sure to look for a piece of china to commemorate your 20th anniversary.
Old Sep 2nd, 2002, 02:07 PM
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I'd vote against the plantation tours. I was quite disappointed in them especially with the time involved. There's so many more interesting and beautiful things to do and see. The Magnolia restaurant in Charleston (a couple of years ago) was wonderful!!
Old Sep 2nd, 2002, 02:14 PM
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Wow!! I'm so impressed. You have done your homework and then some. Sounds like a terrific trip and anniversary. Congrats on 20 years.

We lived in Dallas (Plano) for 17 years then were transferred to Savannah. Really worried about the transition initially, but it was a terrific move and we instantly fell in love with our new home and were accepted so warmly.

A few comments on your plans. First, yes, if you plan on dining at Sapphire Grill, you should try to get reservations. Another good, and VERY casual restaurant is the Crab Shack on the way to Tybee Island. Estril Hammock Rd. We've been transferred again but were back there last year. It's grown tremendously and lost a bit of it's charm in the process, but still a super place. The one drawback is...you'll need a car to get there, as you will if you want to see the beach (Tybee Island). Actually, as long as you plan on seeing some of Hilton Head, I'd just skip Tybee. You have plenty to do to keep you busy. Word of caution...Savannah dining doesn't begin to hold a candle to what's available in Dallas. That was always somewhat of a disappointment. Don't expect the sky there. Charleston has better choices.

I don't know that you'll want to do both a carriage tour (maybe for the atmosphere of it) and a trolley or bus tour. They cover much the same things, but trolley obviously can cover more in less time. They will include some of the sites from "The Book" as well. Jim Williams house on Monterey Square is always but always in any tour. Foley House is only a couple of blocks away from it. We did the Haunted history tour one Haloween. I could take it or leave it, but that driver was a bit on the surly side so that probably colors my recollections of it! gt;

I enjoyed the Owens Thos tour the most, but because the rennovation was only partially completed while we lived there and it was as interesting to me to see what could become of a home aging in that heat and humidty as it was to see a pristinely finished product. You won't go wrong with that though, or Green Meldrim. Davenport was probably my least favorite and in the 4 years we lived there...we never saw the Juliette Gordon Low house (founder of Girl Scouts). The number of troops that seemed to be constantly touring it sort of put us off.

Savannah is a terrific walking city and fun to just explore on foot on your own. My husband ran the Hyatt and we lived in it...so I ran daily down Bull St, through those squares, and into Forsyth Park and never got tired of rubber necking (and spotting something new) on my way. Bull St's squares are some of the prettiest, but the squares and neighborhoods change character east to west too, and visiting the outlying squares along the northern most side of historic district is as enjoyable, though they aren't quite as elaborate as Bull's squares.

Charleston has GREAT shopping (well, again, I need to keep in mind where you are coming from...Dallas has greater shopping, in fact, I kept returning there for clothes shopping) and Savannah has little. I especially enjoy the antique shops along King St, (Charleston) and some of the clothing stores as well. King is sort of the Dallas' Quadrangle area for antique shopping. The Market there, and City Market in Savannah are interesting to browse through...for a little while anyway, before moving on to why you are there...the beautiful architecture of both cities. Our favorite restaurant in Charleston was Magnolia Grill. It was a part of every trip we made there. We went for lunch, never with reservations.

Have a terrific trip and again congrats on 20 years...AND your terrific job of planning this trip out. Very impressive. We fly out the same day you do...9-11 for Newport RI and our own touring...then Friday the 13th move down to Mystic for a wedding. Is there a death wish here?? gt;
Old Sep 3rd, 2002, 07:26 AM
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Thanks so much to everyone for all of your suggestions with Sav/Chas. I will certainly be able to tweak my plans. Leaving soon but more suggestions welcome!
Old Sep 5th, 2002, 10:37 PM
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Thanks again for all the further comments. All are really helpful.I'll do a short trip report upon return. Just a few pre-travel notes that may be useful for someone on my experience so far: In spite of the glowing reputation I've gathered on Foley House Inn of Savannah, I had a less than pleasant experience when they released the hold on my room after only 5 hrs in the wee hrs of the AM, and gave it to someone else - by orders of the innkeeper herself. Later, her words were polite but her tone was otherwise. Meeting St. Inn caused confusion on 2 occassions by piggy-backing on 2 Meeting St.s name. By contrast, the lady at the Governor's House Inn was about the nicest, most hospitable person I've ever spoken to in my life! She represented Southern charm in a way that others only strive to. I'm sure I'll have many good experiences to share from Foley House that will overshadow my first less than favorable impression. Let's hope so! As far as that OTHER Meeting St. Inn, be careful you are talking to the RIGHT one - even if asking the 800# operator for the number!
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