Travel to Savannah, Georgia – Episode 329

categories: USA Travel


The Amateur Traveler talks to Neil Kristianson about one of his favorite travel destinations Savannah, Georgia.

Neil and his wife were drawn to Savannah originally because of the movie and the book “Midnight In the Garden of Good and Evil”. They fell in love with the Antebellum architecture, the many public squares, the Southern hospitality and pace, and, strangely enough, with the cemeteries. Savannah is rich in history and has been a destination for travelers even before Sherman’s March to the sea. Learn where to eat and what restaurant is overrated. Stay in a local historic inn on one of the city squares in the walkable historic downtown.

Day trips from Savannah can include beaches like Tybee Island and Hilton Head as well as the wildlife sanctuaries and alligators of the tidewater area.

right click here to download (mp3)
right click here to download (iTunes version with pictures)

Show Notes

Savannah, Georgia
Visit Savannah
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (film)
Forsyth Park Inn
Forsyth Park
Circa 1875
Savannah Tours
LaFayette Square
Mercer House
Owens Thomas House
Green-Meldrim House
Historic Green-Meldrim House
Bonaventure Cemetery
Johnny Mercer
Trivial Pursuit
Savannah College of Art and Design
Savannah City Market
Beaches of Tybee Island
Crab Shack
Crab Shack on Yelp
Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
Little St. Simons Island
Amateur Traveler – Photo Tour, Egypt
Lady and Son’s Restaurant
Olde Pink House Restaurant
Mansion on Forsyth Park


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Rebecca comments on the friendly people of the Philippines Travel to the Philippines – Episode 201

on Travel to Quebec, Canada – Episode 300:

Dear Sir,

I just wanted to congratulate you on the podcast episode about the province of Quebec (episode 300). Indeed, as a Montrealer, let me just express my excitement that you covered us at all!

Of course, your guest covered more touristy areas which is to be expected. And indeed, Pak from Montreal who left a comment on your website does mention more interesting, local insights.

No matter, attractions aside, most fascinating is how accurately Mr. Bernstein captured in a nutshell, much of the spirit of Quebec, its history, as well as the differences between the cities of Montreal and Quebec.

Mr. Bernstein’s understanding of language issues, the duality of French vs. English, the ability of many to switch seamlessly from one to the other, the complex felt by monolingual Francophones… Not to mention, the place held by hockey in our life, the significance of hockey figures (Béliveau vs. Richard), our losing hockey team in the past 20 years, the rise of soccer in Montreal due to our multi-ethnicity, the dual Jewish community in Montreal, down to the bad quality of our wines… compensated by our finer beers.

Though this podcast is not exactly comprehensive and there is plenty more to say, I did feel, as a Montrealer, the gentleman’s grasp of much of Montreal’s cultural reality (especially the history and language issues). It’s great that your guest appreciates the province… In return, we are grateful for his visit, his time and his curiosity.

Thank you for your great work, I’m a fan of your podcast and listening to it is a ‘must’ whenever travel planning.

Kindest regards,

Montreal, Canada

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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

5 Responses to “Travel to Savannah, Georgia – Episode 329”



I believe the name of the spice the guest couldn’t remember is called “Old Bay Seasoning.” When I lived in Maryland, I went to a restaurant with a similar menu as the Low Country Boil, and you couldn’t get away from the stuff: it was in everything. 🙂 The tables were covered in butcher paper, we were given bibs to “protect” our clothes, wooden mallets to crack the shells, and a bucket for keeping the table somewhat clear. Sadly, it’s no longer there. Thanks for the name of the dish, I found plenty of recipes online, and they’re a lot simpler than I thought!

Jeremy Ashton



Thanks to you and Neil for an excellent episode on one of my favorite places!

My wife and I have made several visits to Savannah, most recently Presidents’ Day weekend last year. Each time we go, we fall in love with the city all over again.

Neil really captured what makes Savannah a special place. Whenever I describe it to someone who’s never been, I always start by saying that it’s the ideal of what a Southern city should look and feel like. That came across in this episode.

I agree with just about everything Neil said about where to go and what to see and do, although I would add a few quick things:

– No trip to Savannah is complete for me and my wife without a visit to River Street. You’ll find a variety of restaurants, shops and art stores there, all with a view of the Savannah River. I’d especially recommend stopping by River Street Sweets if you’ve got a sweet tooth.

– While “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” is the movie/book most associated with Savannah, it’s not the city’s only cinematic connection. The park bench scenes in “Forrest Gump” — where Tom Hanks gives the famous “Life is like a box of chocolates” line — were filmed in Chippewa Square, and several other parts of the movie were shot around the area.

– March is a great time to visit weather-wise, but if you decide to go that month, another consideration should be that Savannah has the second-largest St. Patrick’s Day festival in the United States.

(Quick historical note: Irish immigrants played a large role in Savannah from its earliest days. The Irish influence is still very much felt in the city’s culture today.)

My first experience in Savannah was during St. Patrick’s Day weekend as a college student on spring break more than 10 years ago. The city goes all out for the festival. Everything is green, and River Street is filled with people throughout the weekend.

It’s a fun party, but if big crowds aren’t your thing, you probably want to pick a different time to go.

– As Neil said, you need to bring your walking shoes. But if you want to get a good overview of the city and save your legs a bit, I’d recommend a horse-drawn carriage tour. There are at least a couple of different companies that run carriage tours of the historic area starting from City Market. The guides/drivers are very knowledgable, and there’s just something about riding in a carriage that fits perfectly with the atmosphere of the city.

– Finally, as far as Southern cuisine goes, you can never go wrong with shrimp and grits.

Thanks again for featuring Savannah, and keep up the great work on the podcast.

Sam Oppenheim


Savannah is one of the best cities in America. It is truly a gem and I loved the podcast episode and hope to return someday soon! When I went I was on a roadtrip and spent only 24 hours in Savannah and 12 on a day trip to Charleston, SC. I do recommend people spend more time, but in my mind the two southern cities are inextricably linked as charming places to visit and amble among historic and beautiful parks and buildings.

Deborah Gaffney


Hi Chris,
We are planning strip to Savannah and Charleston so this podcast was very helpful. We especially like the the photos that go along with the enhanced podcasts. I was attempting to give your podcasts a rating on iTunes but couldn’t find a way to do it. If you can give me some directions, I’ll try again. Just love the podcasts….Thanks

Chris (Amateur Traveler)


Deborah, when you go to the iTunes page if you scroll down you should see a “Click to rate” option just to the right of the number of stars of the average rating.

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