Savannah- What to say when--

Mar 20th, 2006, 08:31 AM
  #1  
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Savannah- What to say when--

What do you say to someone that says they want to come to Savannah, (or any other tourist mecca)but they want to avoid tourists. They want to hang out where the locals go, BUT, at the same time, they want see what makes the city special?

Is this one of those oxymoron things? I am always tempted to tell them to just stay home.
aileen679 is offline  
Mar 20th, 2006, 08:41 AM
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Tell them to go to San Francisco instead and hang out with Stu.
El_Swainer is offline  
Mar 20th, 2006, 01:02 PM
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Savannah Midtown - not really a midtown area, but on a 4-lane highway with a big mall, big box stores, supermarkets, gas stations, pawn shops, dry cleaners, etc.

These are the kinds of places locals go when they are not working - they are just like everyone else, even if they live in a tourist destination. They go to work, go home, eat dinner and shop for stuff they need.

But that is not usually what I find interesting on vacation.
gail is offline  
Mar 20th, 2006, 04:19 PM
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You are only reading the literal words of the question, and not the meaning.

Generally when people say that, they want to learn about places that:

1) Were not put in place primarily for the purpose of entertaining tourists and

2) Are known to locals but not likely to turn up in most guidebooks.

They want that really good neighborhood restaurant, instead of the cheesy one that serves whatever stereotypical local meals are and caters to tourists, where locals would generally not bother going because the food isn't very good and you pay too much for it.

They want to go to the clubs and bars that real people enjoy, instead of someplace only unknowing tourists wander into.

They want to shop in real, local shops instead of junky t-shirt stands and places selling "I heart Savannah" bumper stickers and baby spoons.

They want to see the real beauty of the city instead of being carted around by a tour bus and told to stare at the house featured in "Midnight and the Garden of Good and Evil".

No, of course they don't want to see dry cleaners and convenience stores, but they also don't want to see something fake put in place just to take tourists' money. It seems like a simple concept to me, yet so many people have trouble getting it.
jlm_mi is offline  
Mar 20th, 2006, 06:10 PM
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I'd like to think of a nice way to put this, but I just can't. People who go to a tourist destination and say they don't want to do things other toursits do SHOULD stay home. The truth is they do want to do the touristy things, because that's invariably the best the city has to offer, but no one wants to admit they do what others do. People who avoid the tourist things, misses the best of most cities in my opinion.

Let's be honest here, today's guide books and tourists are too savvy to have ignored the places that many locals know about. How on earth do you think they would keep it secret?

jlm mi's post seems to make sense except for one thing. Many, many travelers do just those things he mentions, so they are in fact just as "touristy" as other things are. The top jazz club or restaurant or shop in any city that the locals have loved for years is not going to be "undiscovered" by hundreds of tourists. It is that simple!


 
Mar 21st, 2006, 05:27 AM
  #6  
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I tell people that businesses cannot stay in business if they cater soley to tourists or soley to locals.

The good places are frequented by both.

Tell your friends however that you can't get them in the Hibernian Lodge.
 
Mar 21st, 2006, 04:39 PM
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If I wanted to see what the locals were doing I would not even travel for vacation. I would just spend the time walking around my neighborhood.
IamBooth is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2006, 03:44 AM
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In a less snippy vein than my last post to this question - the many Squares in Savannah are frequented by locals - walking home from work walking their dogs, etc.

A problem with Savannah is that outside the historic district it has many areas that are basically unsafe. Some people live on outskirts of historic district, but even locals do not stroll around in most places alone after dark. It has a crime rate far higher than one would expect in a city of that size - not a reason not to visit, because same could be said about many other cities (pre-Katrina New Orleans comes to mind).

There does not seem to be muchy of a middle ground in Savannah from the sameness of strip malls and the historic district - sure they must exist somewhere, but not as apparent as other cities I am somewhat familiar with (son has been a student there for 2 years and lives in community)
gail is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2006, 05:10 AM
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Gail, that's sort of the way I feel too. If they don't want to go where the tourists are, how on earth do they plan to see what makes any place unique? I can't imagine someone going to Niagra Falls or the Grand Canyon and not wanting to go where the tourist are.

And what do they mean by "The Locals?" There are Mr. and Mrs. Gotamillion and their friends, and Bubba, who works swing shift at the paper plant. Some of the very best restaurants are where the tourists go. But Bubba, and a lot of the locals, can't afford those places. They stay home and grill in the back yard.

I think that too often, people think of Savannah as some sort of Williamsburg. A recreation of the past with a lot of make believe. They don't understand that it is an Historic District where many "Locals" live and work. They are usually pleasantly surprised. It's not artificial.

There is a "middle area." I think it would be out in the Islands like Wilmington and The Isle of Hope, Rose Dru and Coffee Bluff. Lots of wonderful places, but let's face it, that's private property and visitors to the area don't get invited to gawk.
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