This tourist favorite of the South has no shortage of photo-worthy buildings, parks, and charming attractions. Around every corner is something uniquely “Savannah” – and photographers, both amateur and professional – can’t get enough of the city’s alluring features. On your next visit, be sure to fill your camera card with images of these must-see Savannah sites.
The 30-acre Forsyth Park is the city’s largest, and a gathering place for adults, children, and families. Originally created in the 1840s, the park is home to the Confederate Memorial Statue, which was donated to commemorate those who died fighting. At the end of the park is the perfect photo spot – the beautiful and famous Forsyth Park fountain, added in 1858. Fun fact: the water in the fountain is turned green for St. Patrick’s Day in celebration of Savannah’s Irish heritage.
Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
Located on Harris Street, this majestic structure is a major tourist attraction because of its age, beauty, and architectural features. It’s open to the public, but respectful observance and care are requested, as Mass and private prayer are oftentimes occurring. The detailed décor is stunning, from the depictions of Jesus’ life lining the side walls (the Stations of the Cross), to the gorgeous arches and structural detail throughout. According to the cathedral’s website, after its reconstruction following a fire in 1898, it took 13 years for the decoration and interior artwork to be completed.
Waving Girl Statue
This statue, situated on the eastern end of River Street on the Savannah River, depicts Florence Martus, known as “the waving girl” and responsible for making Savannah known as the friendliest city in the South. About.com tells the story of Martus, who lived in a cottage on the river near the entrance of the harbor: “As the story goes, life at the remote cottage was lonely for Florence, whose closest companion was her devoted collie. At an early age, she developed a close affinity with the passing ships and welcomed each one with a wave of her handkerchief. Sailors began returning her greeting by waving back or with a blast of the ship’s horn. Eventually, Florence started greeting the ships arriving in the dark by waving a lantern.
Florence Martus continued her waving tradition for 44 years and it is estimated that she welcomed more than 50,000 ships during her lifetime. There is a lot of unsubstantiated speculation about Florence having fallen in love with a sailor who never returned to Savannah. The facts, however, about why she started and continued the waving tradition for so many years remain a mystery.
In any event, Florence Martus grew into a Savannah legend, known far and wide. On September 27, 1943, the SS Florence Martus, a Liberty ship, was christened in her honor. The Waving Girl Statue by renowned sculptor Felix De Weldon, the sculptor of the United States Marine Corps Memorial in Arlington, Virginia (also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial) depicts Florence with her loyal collie.”
The Lady & Sons Restaurant
A treat for any Paula Deen fan, the famous Lady & Sons restaurant on West Congress Street attracts lines of hungry tourists each day for lunch and dinner. Browse Paula’s shop next door, where you can find seasonings, kitchen goodies, home décor, and lots of gifts with the friendly phrase “Hey Y’all” on them. Dinner, which is served late into the night, can include The Lady’s Southern Buffet, a delicious spread of Southern, flavorful favorites such as fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, rice, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, and yams. Included are salad and one of three yummy Dean desserts: banana pudding, gooey butter cake, or peach cobbler. The friendly, attentive staff treats you right, and of course, don’t forget to snap a picture of the restaurant’s corner sign, which is lit up at night.
This beautiful mansion on Oglethorpe Avenue, built in the early 1800s, was the birthplace of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts. Low founded the organization in 1912, and scouts from all over the world flock to Savannah to see where their leader started it all. The home, listed as a National Historic Landmark in 1965, is featured in public tours for individuals or groups daily.
Catie Fry is a travel enthusiast and writer for myprotectionlink.com, a provider of home security in Savannah, Georgia.
Jerry Nelson is a freelance photojournalist from America. His latest book of photography, Suenitos tells the story of the only daycare inside the dangerous Hidden City. Now based in Argentina, he continues to turn his lens on social justice issues around the globe. Connect with Jerry on MosaicHub, Facebook or LinkedIn today. Follow this link to read more of his work on Huffington Post and Examiner. Have a story that needs to reach national media? Email him today.