5 Things: A Local’s Guide to Savannah, Georgia

In “5 Things,” we ask some of our favorite insiders in cities all over the country to share insider travel tips on where to eat, shop, stay, and play in their neighborhoods (plus, what to pack to make the adventure complete). Today we celebrate May Day, and it seems fitting to celebrate with a beautiful springtime guide to luscious Savannah, Georgia! We are thrilled that Natalie Broulette, children’s book author, (and one of the first bloggers I connected with online, way back when we both were living in New York) joins us today with her top suggestions for anyone planning a visit to Savannah.

5 Things: Savannah, Georgia
Natalie Broulette

When I tell people I’m from Savannah, the most common reaction is: “It’s beautiful there.” But while this city has always had beauty and charm, it’s grown more vibrant and, dare I say, hip in recent years, with plenty to eat, experience, and enjoy.

Here are some of my favorite spots in the Hostess City…


When visiting Savannah, you’ll spend most of your time in the very walkable downtown historic district. Collins Quarter is right in the heart of it and is a great spot for an Instagram-worthy breakfast or brunch. There are some real winners on the menu like the gorgeous avocado toast and the decadent crab cake Benedict.

Worth noting: the historic district allows open containers, so live it up and get a to-go cup for your cocktail. There’s also a walk-up coffee window, so you can grab a flat white while wandering Savannah’s picturesque squares.

The Wyld is outside of downtown, but worth the drive for a relaxing, delicious lunch. Sit outside and enjoy the breeze surrounded by the water and marsh, which is such a distinct part of Savannah’s geography. Have a margarita, some crispy fish, and embrace vacation-mode.

For a memorable dinner, I always recommend The Grey. The dining room and more casual diner bar are housed in a renovated 1938 Greyhound Bus terminal that features stunning art deco details. James Beard-nominated chef Mashama Bailey puts an inspired spin on traditional dishes and regional ingredients to create something entirely original—for example, foie gras and grits.

I have to mention Savannah’s gem of a bakery, Back in the Day. If you’re in need of a morning or afternoon treat, the biscuits are a lesson in southern perfection, and the cupcakes are right up there with Magnolia Bakery. You can do no wrong here.

Some more favorite food options:
Atlantic / Big Bon Bodega / Bull Street Taco / Cotton & Rye / Fox & Fig (Vegan) / Husk / Leopold’s Ice Cream / Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room


Take a stroll down Broughton Street to hit some of the best shops in the city.

There’s an amazing chocolatier, Chocolat by Adam Turoni; the honey-filled flagship store Savannah Bee Company 24e Design Co., for modern furniture and home décor; and one of my favorite shops anywhere, The Paris Market & Brocante. You’ll find all sorts of treasures there: one-of-a-kind antiques, books, jewelry, paper goods and a sweetly-curated kids section. Be sure to grab a lavender iced-tea at the in-store café.

Some other great shops in or near downtown: Satchel for bags and leather goods; shopSCAD for art and gifts; Hygge for beautiful, sustainable goods; Alex Raskin Antiques; Red Clover for clothing; Emily McCarthy for gift items; and Urban Poppy for plants and home décor.


The beach is our go-to family activity six months out of the year. And Tybee Island—our nearest beach, just 20-minutes from downtown—is its own friendly, quirky, flip-flop-wearing community with plenty of great spots to eat and drink. The Deck, Salt Island Fish & Beer, and Sundae Café are a few favorites.

Forsyth Park is a hub for locals and visitors alike and a perfect place to take a breather. There are playgrounds, a beautiful fountain, grassy fields, a flower garden and a Saturday farmers’ market. Keep an eye out for Perc Coffee and King of Pops popsicles.

You’ll see Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) buildings and students all over downtown. The college has brought so many artists to our city, which means loads of galleries and some great museums.

The SCAD Museum of Art, the Jepson Center, which includes an interactive kids’ area, and the Telfair Academy are all beautifully done.

One spot we frequent as a family is Henny Penny, an adorable café and kids’ art space. Enjoy locally-roasted coffee, yummy kolaches and vegan doughnuts, while the kids paint or do the craft project of the day. There’s even a parents’ happy hour during the week with complimentary homemade animal crackers for the littles.


One of Savannah’s newest—and chicest—places to stay is the Perry Lane Hotel. The rooftop features a bar, pool and a fantastic view of downtown.

The recently renovated DeSoto is another great option with an excellent restaurant and bar in the lobby. Of course, Airbnbs abound, but The Park House has some especially charming rentals near Forsyth Park.


If you want to get the most out of Savannah, I’d avoid the peak of summer (unless you love the tropics). Spring is really a perfect time to visit. The azaleas are blooming, and the full-on humidity hasn’t yet taken hold. Pack something light that you can layer over and bring along a hat, bug repellent (just in case), sunscreen and your walking shoes.

We are so grateful to Natalie for this fantastic guide! Have you visited Savannah recently? What were your favorites to add to this list?

Natalie blogged for years at The SoHo before motherhood took over the last of her free time. She published her first children’s book, More Than Food?, which her mom illustrated, last fall. You can find the book on her site or through any online book retailer. Follow Natalie on Instagram for pictures of her kids and dessert. Thanks to Molly Coyne for her help with this series!

P.S. A local’s guide to Atlanta, and more 5 Things Guides

[All photos are courtesy of Natalie with exception of the Pack photo via Madewell]

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