Savannah, GeorgiaFor our 2016 road trip, we considered heading up through the Midwest to pick up the states we have not been to in that direction. We also thought about heading Northeast up to Maine, picking up all the Northeastern states we haven't been to yet. But both of those trips would have entailed a whole lot of driving and not so much relaxing, so we decided to postpone them.
Instead, we decided to do a trip over to the East Coast and visit some of the historical sites in Savannah, Georgia. Not only did we visit Savannah this year, we also went to the Ark Encounter in Kentucky. You can read about that trip on this page. Anyway, for the Savannah trip, we left the house on a Wednesday morning at 4:45am. We were so excited about the road trip that we didn't sleep much that night, so we figured we might as well get up and hit the road. It was a leisurely 7 hour drive from Centreville, Alabama over to Savannah, Georgia. We took the scenic route and only got the Interstate when it was necessary.
We arrived in Savannah and went straight to the Visitor Center. We picked up a city map, studied the location of all the things we wanted to see while there, then we headed out. We drove over to Forsyth Square and took a stroll all around it. This is a beautiful park and we can see why it is such a popular attraction. The only downside to it was all the homeless people laying around and the signs telling you to call 911 if someone asks you for money or food. We knew in advance that Savannah has a higher than normal crime rate, so we were prepared. We knew we would be wandering around the city streets by ourselves, so we made use of our concealed carry permits. Thankfully, we did not have any problems but there were a few times we were nervous.
The image above is the famous fountain in Forsyth Square. We bought a new camera right before this trip so all the images you see were taken with it. It is a Nikon P900. We chose this camera because it had excellent reviews, but the main reason we chose it was for the 83x zoom! Since Jerry cannot walk far, we often cannot get close to things and this camera will let us get good close up pictures even if we are half a mile away. To give you an idea of the zoom, we saw a helicopter flying in the distance so we zoomed in and took a picture of it.
After leaving Forsyth Square, we headed over to the Bonaventure Cemetery. We were able to drive through the cemetery which was nice. We took some pictures of the old tombs and graves and you can see those below as well. We noticed on one of the graves that the fellow drowned at Tybee Island... and it was in the 1800s! Most of the graves were from the 1700s and 1800s, and we saw a few from the early 1900s as well.
After spending about 20 minutes in the cemetery, we drove over to the Wormsloe Historical Site. All we knew about the site was the famous row of oak trees and that is what we wanted to see. We did take a picture of the sign and the entrance gate but once inside the gate, there was a sign and a guy telling you that you had to pay before going any further. It also said you had to pay to take a picture of the row of oak trees that was right there! We didn't care about going in the site, so as we were turning around we simply snapped a picture of the oaks.
After leaving Wormsloe, we headed over to Skidaway Island State Park where we would be camping. We had already reserved a site online, so we checked in at the gate the set about finding a campsite. When you register, you save a site but not a particular site. When you arrive, you look for one that is empty and choose the one you like best. We found a great spot near the back of the park and close to a bath house. The site was nice and level but we still need to raise our front tires a bit as the van sits higher in the back. We put up our chairs, set up the "kitchen" on the picnic table and Cynthia prepared supper. We strolled around the park to see all the other campers then sat and enjoyed the sounds of nature. As it started getting dark, we took our showers at the nearby bath house then went to bed in the van. The portable A/C worked great and kept the van at 72° even though it was in the 90s outside.
The next morning we set out to visit all the "squares" in Savannah. We parked the van at the Visitor Center parking lot because it was convenient for us, and only $1 per hour. Using the city map we got the day before, we headed out. We went to every square and took at least one picture at each park. We also stopped at many of the historical sites along the way and took pictures of them as well. We spent 6 hours walking all around the city and covered so many miles, we had to stop and recharge the wheelchair! We loved the old buildings and the awesome detail in the building architecture.
We are different than most travelers. We do not care about touristy things, we do not care to eat at this or that famous restaurant, and we don't care to shop in touristy stores. Many of the attractions in Savannah are just that... places to eat and stores to shop in. We walked right on by all of them. When it came time for lunch, we stopped at the local McDonald's and enjoyed a Big Mac combo meal. We could have eaten at the Pirate House or the Pink House, but we just don't see the big deal in that. Food is food, McDonald's is cheap and we don't have to tip the person who took our order. We know most people like that sort of thing, we just happen to be different.
Exhausted from all that walking in 90° heat, we headed back to the campground, ate a quick supper, took our showers and crawled into bed. And it wasn't even dark yet! Oh well, we were tired and needed the rest. We woke up the next morning, ate our breakfast and headed off to Fort Polaski, Tybee Island and Hilton Head Island. We gave those places the once over then headed back to the campground. We got a good night's rest and woke the next morning at around 4:00am Alabama time. We had packed up the night before, so all we had to do was unplug the van, put away the Lynx Levelers and take our sign down. We headed back to Alabama and arrived home a little after noon. All in all, it was a great trip but after visiting Savannah, it is not somewhere we would ever want to live.
We visited here in 06/2016.
Below is the route we took there and back, give or take a few minor variations.