Jacksonville to Charleston and Savannah

May 13th, 2010, 01:10 PM
  #1  
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Jacksonville to Charleston and Savannah

We are flying into Jacksonville, renting a car and driving to Charleston for three nights and onto Savannah for three more nights before flying out of Jacksonville. Since we will have our vehicle we will stay outside the historical district in both Charleston and Savannah. On the day we travel from Charleston to Savannah we will visit Beaufort. Plans are to visit Boone Hall and either Middleton or Magnolia Plantations. The Charleston Cooks cooking classes also look very interesting. In both cities, we will do one historical city tour. Any other recommendations would be greatly appreciated.
cjml is offline  
May 13th, 2010, 04:26 PM
  #2  
 
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If you do a site search, you'll find that Charleston and Savannah are well-covered on this forum. I will say that you've got a good amount of time for both cities. When I visited, this was what I saw, if memory serves -- and note well that I'm an efficient sightseer and like full day itineraries, sometimes without a lunch stop:

Savannah (2 days):

-Day 1: (morning) Savannah History Museum, Telfair Mansion and Museum, Juliet Gordon Low's Birthplace. (afternoon) Davenport House, Owen-Thomas House, Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum. (evening) Dinner at The Lady and Sons (good, if not the best in town), then stroll Factor's Walk and Rivers Street.

-Day 2: (morning) Andrew Low House, Lunch at Mrs. Wilkes (excellent, best meal I had here). (afternoon) Green-Meldrim House, First African Baptist Church tour, Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum.

Charleston:

-Day 1: (morning) Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon, Heyward-Washington House, Nathaniel Russell House. (afternoon) Edmondston-Alston House, Gibbes Museum of Art, Old City Market walk-through, Ft. Sumter. (evening) Walk around Battery area, Dinner at SNOB (excellent, best meal I had here).

-Day 2. (morning) South Carolina Aquarium, Aiken-Rhett House. (afternoon) Lunch at Jestine's (didn't like them much), Joseph Manigault House, Charleston Museum, city bus to The Citadel Campus. (evening) Dinner at 82 Queen (not bad, but not best meal had here).

-Day 3: (morning) Drayton Hall. (morning into afternoon) Middleton Place (and lunch there). (afternoon) Magnolia Plantation. (evening) Dinner at Bessinger's BBQ (pretty good, got here via city bus).
bachslunch is offline  
May 14th, 2010, 02:48 AM
  #3  
 
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When are you coming? If you are here in the heat of the summer you'll need to add in breaks. I always recommend first time Charleston visitors stay in the HD, but if you stay outside the HD I'd recommend the Hampton in W. Ashley. And while I know bachslunch is knowledgable and efficient, never ever skip lunch in Charleston!
suewoo is offline  
May 14th, 2010, 06:42 AM
  #4  
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Thank you both for your comments. We are going to be there the middle of June. It is not my first time in either city, however, it is for part of our group. We are considering Residence Inn in Charleston and driving into the City. In Savannah, we are looking at the new Hampton. We do plan on SNOB and Magnolias in Charleston and The Lady and Wiley's BBQ in Savannah. Also a trip to Tybee in Savannah. Really appreciate all your wonderful suggestions.
cjml is offline  
May 14th, 2010, 07:43 AM
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I would at LEAST stay in the Hampton Inn on the edge of the historic district and across from the visitor's bureau where you can get a tram to the district. Parking and driving in will be a royal pain.
Skip Lady and Sons. REally overrated and overdone now.
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May 14th, 2010, 09:31 AM
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Several years ago ago we flew to Jacksonville and drove to Savannah. We stayed at the beautiful Ballastone Inn, right in the historic district with parking in the rear of the hotel. I kept a file on Savannah when planning our trip and if you would like a copy, e-mail me at [email protected]

Last September we visited Charleston and stayed at a wonderful hotel, the King Charles Inn http://www.kingcharlesinn.com/ It's in the historic district and has free parking. The Gibbe's Art Museum has been suggested above. After our tour we enjoyed lunch next door at Joseph's. We had a pleasant dinner at Hominy Grill with patio seating one evening, where I was introduced to Shrimp & Grits (you should try it). Both Jestine's and Fig are very close to the hotel.
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May 15th, 2010, 08:16 AM
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It saddens me to hear that the Lady and Sons has gone downhill. Enjoyed our dinner there five years ago. But things do change and I will skip that. Gretchen, could you recommend other restaurants. Wiley's was put on our list because of the high Tripadvisor rating. Truly appreciate all of your help and wonderful ideas. Giovanna, I emailed you a request.
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May 15th, 2010, 08:46 AM
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If the idea is to skip Mrs. Wilkes' in favor of The Lady and Sons, I wouldn't recommend it. Food at the latter was pretty good, but amazingly excellent at the former. Just note that Mrs. Wilkes' is only open for lunch M-F from 11am-2pm. It's also wise to get there ca. half an hour early, as a line usually starts forming about that time and just gets longer until the place opens.

But given that seating protocols at The Lady are very restrictive (I think needlessly so), you likely won't run into any less "protocol" here.
bachslunch is offline  
May 15th, 2010, 09:22 AM
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I disagree that Lady and Sons "has gone downhill".
I like it very much and it remains very popular. Some people like it, some people don't. Put me in the camp of fans.

I do love Mrs. Wilkes too. A completely different experience and unique. Boarding style serving has to be grandfathered in and there are very few left nowadays. The only other one in the state that I can think of is the Smith House (in Dahlonega) now that LaPrades has burned to the ground (at Lake Burton).

There are great new hotel options in the historic district so look again before you finalize your decision not to stay in town.

If you drive in, take advantage of the visitor daypass for parking -
http://www.savannahga.gov/cityweb/mo...a?OpenDocument
starrs is offline  
May 15th, 2010, 03:07 PM
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Reconsidering our hotel selection. What about the Hampton Inn on Bay?
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May 15th, 2010, 03:21 PM
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Hampton Inn on Bay is THE best choice!
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May 16th, 2010, 01:13 PM
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Starrs, I have read some of your trip reviews and you are a delightful writer. Do you have any recommendations for Charleston?
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May 16th, 2010, 05:37 PM
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Thank you! How sweet

There are Charleston experts and it's been a few years since I spent a lot of time in Charleston. These are favorites from the days I worked there a lot, so I defer to others who may have more recent information to share -

The Mills House - a Holiday Inn property but not your normal Holiday Inn. (similar to the Mulberry Inn in Savannah)
http://www.millshouse.com/

The Frances Marion - very nice hotel
http://www.francismarionhotel.com/

My favorite for romance and location - The Planters Inn
They used to serve breakfast in the room on silver trays. I don't know if they still do that
http://www.plantersinn.com/

Close runnerup for location and winner for rooftop bar and restaurant - The Vendue Inn
http://www.vendueinn.com/

I've never had a bad meal in Charleston. Having said that, the first restaurant I'd return to would be Magnolia's -
http://www.magnolias-blossom-cypress.com/

And, for basic good seafood my mom wanted to eat here...and it was perfect for good seafood in a casual setting

http://www.bubbagump.com/locations/charleston.html

Be sure to take a carriage ride. You won't know what route you're on, until the ride starts but all are good. I love the carriage rides in Charleston.

Have fun! Enjoy! And be sure to read what others have written about Charleston. I like Charleston, but I'm not a Charleston expert. The last few restaurants I've gone to were chosen by a college student
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May 17th, 2010, 09:16 AM
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Here are some websites I found when planning our trip to Charleston:

http://tinyurl.com/2fd34md

http://tinyurl.com/2czae88

http://tinyurl.com/243xpkz

http://tinyurl.com/2akkf9s
Giovanna is offline  
May 18th, 2010, 10:06 AM
  #15  
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Starrs and Giovanna, Thank you both for your wonderful suggestions. This really helps in making our plans. We are also doing Beaufort as we drive from Charleston to Savannah. Again, thank you both for all your assistance.
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May 19th, 2010, 09:59 AM
  #16  
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Also a big thank you to everyone who contributed on this thread. You have made our trip much more eventful and yes we are staying in the historic district in both cities.
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May 19th, 2010, 10:12 AM
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GREAT decision!
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May 19th, 2010, 12:10 PM
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I think you'll be glad you did. Have a great time.
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Feb 14th, 2019, 02:03 PM
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I'm bookmarking for good info. Thanks.
volcanogirl is offline  
Feb 14th, 2019, 02:34 PM
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I've been to Charleston multiple times to visit some friends of mine and I liked it a lot! The city is beautiful and the beaches are breathtaking! I always stay at the Luxury Simplified Retreats and they've treated me amazing so far, so I became a returning customer for them. Make sure to check out Folly beach. They have great restaurants along the shore.
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