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Median RentMedian Sqft
Studio$1,320713 sqft
1 Bed$1,535750 sqft
2 Beds$1,7581,055 sqft
3+ Beds$2,0001,371 sqft

About

Savannah, Georgia’s first planned city and the last of the 13 British colonies to form prior to America’s birth in 1776, has as much history as it does beauty. With streets lined with period antebellum mansions, live oak trees draped in hanging Spanish moss, monuments, and Southern-style restaurants that have made many a “best restaurant” list, this Lowcountry destination is where old meets new. And when we say “old,” we mean it. Considered one of America’s most haunted cities, Savannah is rumored to be filled with ghosts — take one of its many guided ghost tours, and you’ll find out who’s still “there.”

As of writing this guide, Savannah has a population of 147,000+ residents. This cultural destination attracts people from all over the world, boasting a demographic of 35% White, 54% Black or African American, 6% Latino or Hispanic, and 3% Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI).

Overall, the weather in Savannah is milder compared to other southeastern US cities, with temperatures averaging at a low of 39°F in January and peaking at a high of 92°F in July. That said, given its subtropical climate and nearby coast, Savannah does have to worry about hurricane season, which runs from June 1st through November 30th. August is the rainiest month in Savannah, but even at other times of the year, it’s smart to have an umbrella or raincoat nearby. On a beautiful day, expect to find locals out walking their dogs, having picnics in the city’s many manicured squares or out by the riverfront, grabbing a drink as boats sail past on the Savannah River.

Savannah has houses for every price point, but in general, life there is more affordable than other trendy cities. Rentals in Savannah range from modern single-family homes and low-rise apartment buildings to historic houses and antebellum mansions that are two or three hundred years old. Most of the action happens in Downtown Savannah, so move there if you want to be able to walk to some of the best bars, restaurants, and entertainment venues in town. Savannah College of Art & Design students and creative professionals will love the art-driven Thomas/Starland Square Streetcar District, while families might choose to settle into the cute Craftsman homes and bungalows of the Ardsley Park neighborhood. As friendly and welcoming as it is beautiful, Savannah can make anyone feel right at home.

Getting Around

Part of the joy of being Georgia’s first planned city is that it didn’t have to compete with other cities for space. Streets here are wide, flat, and lined with sidewalks, making them extremely pedestrian- and bike-friendly. The League of American Bicyclists named Savannah a “Bronze Level Bicycle-Friendly Community,” and Chatham Area Transit (CAT) put bike racks all over town and implemented a “Bike & Ride” program with bike racks on county buses. It’s not uncommon to see locals riding their bikes or walking to work or play, especially in Downtown Savannah.

Less historic parts of the city are spread out enough to require driving, so most Savannah residents do still own a car. Street parking is common, and there are 3,000 metered parking spaces in Downtown Savannah, plus five public parking garages, and six public lots all run by the City of Savannah. For those who don’t have a car, rideshare services are typically readily available.

If public transportation makes your life easier, CAT has you covered. There’s a free trolley-shuttle called dot that takes residents and visitors alike to 18 stops on two loops, the Forsythe loop and Downtown loop, through Savannah’s Historic Landmark District. These 18 stops cover everything from hotels and shopping areas to visitor centers, parking facilities, and landmarks and parks Downtown Savannah is known for. The dot operates seven days a week, from 7 am to 7 pm on weekdays, 10 am to 7 pm on Saturdays, and 10 am to 6 pm on Sundays. Another free transportation option is the Savannah Belles Ferry, which sails across the Savannah River (between the riverwalk and Hutchinson Island), from 7 am to 10 pm daily.

Serving both Savannah and its surrounding Chatham County, CAT also has 16 permanent bus routes that go to and from Oglethorpe Mall, the Savannah Mall, various Walmarts, apartment buildings, and other necessities. CAT buses operate out of the city’s main bus station, Joe Murray Rivers, Jr Intermodal Transit Center, in Downtown Savannah.

The closest airport is the Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport. While the airport is small, it services a number of direct flights from the east coast, southern, and midwestern US. The airport is just 12 miles from Downtown Savannah and can be easily accessed by CAT’s 100x Airport Express, which offers daily runs between the airport, various downtown Savannah hotels, and the Joe Murray Rivers, Jr Intermodal Transit Center.

Food & Drink

The “Hostess City of the South” is nothing if not decadent, and people far and wide head to this Georgia gem for a mix of incredible international cuisine, indulgent Lowcountry flavors, soul food, fresh-caught seafood, boozy brunches, and a “New South” style of cooking that puts a modern spin on the good ol’ Southern classics. Menus at everything from hole-in-the-wall eateries to fancy fine dining boast area favorites like fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, Georgia peach pie, and fried fish. In line with its nickname, the vibe of Savannah restaurants and bars is nothing if not welcoming, with relaxed, friendly dining experiences that cater to all.

Savannah definitely has its don’t-miss restaurants, and topping that list is none other than Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room. Since opening in 1946, it’s been serving family-style plates of classic Southern comfort food like fried chicken, biscuits, sweet potato soufflé, butter beans, collards, peach pie, and more. The experience is just as memorable as the food — it’s first come, first served and, like any Southern grandma’s house, you have to take your own dirty dishes to the kitchen. Crystal Beer Parlor (which serves more than 80 beers, many of which are local) is famous for being one of the first restaurants in the US to start serving alcohol after Prohibition. Go today and pair one of those beers with its mammoth half-pound burger and onion rings. Brunch is a popular weekend activity in Savannah, and The Collins Quarter is a favorite place for locals to get it. From two locations, one on Forsythe and another on Bull Street, this eatery offers a mouthwatering menu of Bananas Foster French toast, braised short rib hash with a fried egg, and Israeli-style “shakshouka” grits with feta, poached eggs, and a Persian flatbread.

For a special occasion, make a reservation at Elizabeth’s on 37th, which occupies a Victorian mansion and pairs five-star “southern coastal” food with an excellent wine list. The Grey, helmed by James Beard Award-winning chef Mashama Bailey, is another standout. Sit in a renovated Greyhound bus and enjoy small plates of fish croquettes or fried chicken with pickles and spicy honey, or book a table in the main dining room and enjoy seasonal, multi-course dinners with dishes like smoked lamb with fennel or duck confit with cabbage and hibiscus — all of which are made with local ingredients. Of course, few restaurants in Savannah are as famous as The Olde Pink House (it’s actually in a pink, 18th-century Georgian mansion). Go here for refined Southern cuisine like crispy fried lobster tails with sweet chili Dijon, grilled pork tenderloin with bourbon molasses, or goat cheese-stuffed artichoke fritters with a red pepper sauce.

Downtown Savannah has no open container laws, so pedestrians can buy a drink and sip and stroll. Like the city itself, Savannah’s bar scene is packed with history. The Original Pinkie Masters first opened in 1951 — its old-school jukebox is a dead giveaway — and has since been a favorite of Jimmy Carter, Al Gore, and other A-list names. Hidden in a cellar under the Olde Pink House, Planters Tavern still has the original exposed brick walls and fireplaces from the 1700s.

Join the tourists wandering in and out of the bars on River Street, or see it from above when you grab a glass of wine and a small plate at Rocks on the Roof. If you love a good martini, Jen’s & Friends in Downtown Savannah has a menu of over 300. For a more hipster, industrial haunt, go to the open-air Starland Yard and order from different restaurants, food trucks, and bars occupying old storage units. If standing around to eat and drink isn’t your thing, head to the nightclubs on Congress Street and dance like no one’s watching.

When it’s time to restock your kitchen, there are plenty of grocery stores in Savannah, from Kroger, Walmart, and Whole Foods to The Fresh Market, Publix, Target, and ALDI.

Shopping

Savannah’s inherent creativity and penchant for art makes it great for shopping. Wander down cobblestone River Street and find souvenir and candy stores selling everything from t-shirts and keychains to locally-made taffy and Savannah’s famous pralines. The four-block City Market is filled with art galleries and live music, Whitaker Street is lined with trendy fashion and accessories boutiques, and Broughton Street mixes consignment shops with big-name retailers like Free People, H&M, J. Crew, and Banana Republic. If it’s a mall you’re looking for, head to Oglethorpe Mall or Savannah Mall for department stores like Belk, JCPenney, Macy’s, Dillard’s, Target, and Burlington Coat Factory. To get your favorite designer goods at a steal, there’s a Tanger Outlets just 15 minutes from Downtown Savannah.

In 2020, Plant Riverside District transformed a 1912-built power plant into Savannah’s newest entertainment district, bringing 670,000 square feet of luxury hotel rooms, dining, wine tasting, and high-end shopping to the city’s riverfront. Fashion aficionados can go here to find the best Southern fashions at J. Parker’s luxury boutique, Southern Tide Savannah, or September’s Closet. Jewelry and art lovers will fall in love with 13 Secrets Jewelry Gallery, where owner Chad Crawford has collected “jewelry art” made by designers he discovered during his travels around the world. At Grand Bohemian Gallery, you’ll find thoughtful, eclectic paintings, sculptures, art installations, and more from both local and international artists. Urban Poppy, a botanical boutique, has flowers and unique home decor, while District Boutique sells a little bit of everything from Plant Riverside.

Things to Do

Nicknamed the “Creative Coast,” Savannah is a hub of arts and culture. Grab the family and head to the Historic Savannah Theatre, one of America’s oldest continually-operating theaters, and catch one of its seasonal shows. Don’t miss annual events like the Savannah Film Festival and Savannah Music Festival or performances by the Savannah Philharmonic at Lucas Theatre for the Arts. When it comes to art exhibits, check out the modern and contemporary art at the Jepson Center and the SCAD Museum of Art, see the Telfair Academy’s 19th- and 20th-century American and European art, or peruse the displays of 18th- and 19th-century home decor at the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters.

For a deeper dive into the city’s history, take a trolley tour of Savannah’s Historic Landmark District and see its Hollywood-worthy squares, restored 18th-century mansions, and historic sites like the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace, First African Baptist Church (the oldest Black church in America), and Confederate War Memorial. Just nearby, Old Fort Jackson, which was first used during the War of 1812, has daily cannon firings. If you’re a movie buff, walk through the Southern Gothic architecture of the 18th-century Bonaventure Cemetery and picture John Cusack there — it was the backdrop of “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.” Speaking of cemeteries, for a frightfully-delightful look at the city’s history, hop on one of Savannah’s famous ghost tours and see if you can spot a spirit from centuries ago.

If you love being outside, you’ll love Savannah. With its 22 city squares, outdoor fountains, lush gardens, salt marshes, swamps, barrier islands, and the Savannah River, the city practically beckons you to take in the views. When you’re there, go canoeing, kayaking, or fishing. Relax on the sandy shores of Tybee Island, then clean up for a tour of the Tybee Island Light Station and Museum and the Tybee Island Marine Science Center. Go on a hike through the lush forests and salt marshes of Skidaway Island State Park, and if you can’t get enough of it, reserve one of its camper cabins and stay for a few nights. Take a picture by the live oaks at Wormsloe State Historic Site — it’s one of Georgia’s most photographed spots — and see its Colonial ruins, the oldest standing structure in Savannah. If you want to get off the beaten path, wander down one of the city’s nature trails, like the Sandpiper Trail Loop at Skidaway Island State Park or McQueen’s Island Trail, or hit the trails along the Savannah and Ogeechee Canal.

Finally, Savannah is nothing if not festive. Go during St. Paddy’s Day, when the river is dyed green and locals wander around Downtown Savannah drinking green beer, and you’ll see what we mean.

Colleges & Universities

Abundant in history, culture, interesting architecture, and so much to do, Savannah is a real draw for college-age students — especially art students. The city is home to one of the best art schools in the nation, the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), which offers more degrees and areas of study than any other art and design school across the globe. Other colleges and universities in the area include Savannah Technical College, South University, and Savannah State University, which is the oldest Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in Georgia.

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