Savannah is a city full of history and in order to really see it, I think you need to go by foot. I actually started my tour of Savannah by taking a 90-minute trolley tour, in order to get a look at what the city had to offer. That was a great introduction, but I got a real feel for the city by walking around and seeing it up close.
Savannah, founded in 1733 is known as the first planned city as it was laid out in a series of grids with squares and parks. There were originally 24 squares and 22 are still around today. These squares make the city very unique and different than any other city we have visited. Each of the squares have a name, such as Monterey Square above built in 1847. The squares are named in remembrance of an important individual or event. This square has been used in several films including the movie, “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,” a film I have never seen.
We started out visiting Forsyth Park, the largest of Savannah’s parks with a beautiful fountain and huge oaks with hanging moss. This is a park where people love to hang out – playing music, painting nature scenes, napping in hammocks, walking their dogs and even tightrope walking. When we came upon this large park I was delighted as the azaleas were in bloom and there was a riot of color where ever I looked. We continued to see blooming azaleas not just in Forsyth Park but all over the downtown. I don’t think I have seen that many azalea bushes in bloom in any other town or city, it was wonderful.
It was fun to walk around and try to see as many of the 22 squares as possible. I probably did not make it to all of them, but I saw most of them. Some had a monument, statue or fountain in the center but some were quite plain, with no ornamentation other than a few park benches. Most had the large oak trees that Savannah is known for. One square was used in the filming of Forrest Gump when Forrest was sitting and waiting for the bus before visiting Jenny toward the end of the movie.
Above is a picture of Wright Square, one of the original four squares laid out in 1733. It was hard for me to imagine that this shady brick square has been around for 285 years. It was the square situated next to the court house and named for one of the royal governors. I thought it was one of the most attractive of the squares.
Another square I enjoyed seeing was Reynolds Square pictured above. It was completed in 1734 and was the sixth square laid out. It has a statue of John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist religion who came to Savannah in 1735 on a mission trip, staying for several years. The statue marks the spot where his house was supposedly located.
Thanks for coming along on my exploration of Savannah. In this post I am talking about our current travel location as we were exploring here today. This is the first post that uses our new photo editing system (just a little start).
In my next post, I plan to talk more about exploring this city.