Savannah First-Timer's Guide

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Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

  • PHOTOGRAPHY , THINGS TO DO
  • 15 Comments
  • by Erin Clarkson

Two cemetery photos with text overlay that reads A Local's Guide to Bonaventure Cemetery

Wondering which Bonaventure Cemetery Tour is the best — or if you should even tour it at all?

Whenever friends and family come for a visit, I always insist that Bonaventure is one of Savannah’s must-see spots . It’s easily one of the most beautiful cemeteries in Savannah .

Today I’m going to show you what makes it so special and give you some insider tips to help with your planning.

As usual, I’ll include plenty of my favorite photos of Bonaventure! That way, even if you aren’t able to travel to Savannah anytime soon, you can still enjoy a virtual visit.

Two cemetery photos with text overlay that reads Photos That'll Make You Want to Visit Bonaventure Cemetery

Note: This guide contains affiliate links to my trusted travel partners.

If you’re new around here, first of all…allow me to extend a warm welcome!

My name is Erin, and I authored the  Savannah First-Timer’s Guide . It contains everything you need to plan the perfect trip to Savannah.

You might also be interested in: 🎟️ A Local’s Take on the Best Things To Do in Savannah

Table of Contents (Skip to a Section)

Things to Know Before You Go

Bonaventure is located three miles from the Historic District.

Even if you enjoy walking long distances, the main road to get there is very busy and many areas don’t have sidewalks. Therefore, I think it’s best to go by car.

  • There ARE public restrooms on the grounds at Bonaventure. They’re located just inside the entry gates, to the right. You can find a couple porta-potties scattered throughout the grounds, too.
  • If you visit anytime between April and September, it’s likely to be hot and humid with a strong possibility of mosquitos and/or gnats. Bring bug repellant and plenty of water to stay hydrated!
  • There are a few dedicated parking spaces within the cemetery grounds. If you enter the cemetery and hug the right-hand side of the road all the way down until you see the water, you’ll find a small parking lot just as the water comes into view. (When viewing Google maps, the lot is where Greenwich Road has a sharp bend in it along the waterfront.) There are three or four spaces near Little Gracie’s grave, too.
  • If you’d like, you can pay and download the Bonaventure Historical Society app prior to your visit. Proceeds benefit preservation efforts at the cemetery. Apple | Google Play
  • Cemetery hours are 8 am to 5 p.m. daily.
The thing that every stranger in Savannah goes to see, as a matter of course, is Bonaventure.” Harriet Beecher Stowe, Palmetto-Leaves, Printed by Rand, Avery, & Co., 1873

Bonaventure Cemetery | 330 Bonaventure Road, Thunderbolt, GA 31404

Brick and marble sign with the words Bonaventure Cemetery etched into a marble slab

Bonaventure Cemetery Etiquette

Before I venture too far into this post, I want to cover a few important do’s and don’ts for the cemetery.

I say this because I’m truly grateful for the opportunity to visit Bonaventure, and I hope I’ll always be able to do so. In order for that to happen, we all need to be respectful when we visit!

  • Be sympathetic. Please remember that it’s an active cemetery, and respect anyone who is there to grieve a family member or friend.
  • I don’t know of any specific rule that prohibits visitors from parking on the side of the road, but the designated parking lots are a better option to ensure you don’t accidentally damage the landscaping or any plots.
  • Please don’t litter!
  • It’s common cemetery etiquette to at least try to avoid walking atop a grave.
  • Dogs are welcome at Bonaventure, but please keep them leashed and pick up after them.

You’re welcome to explore Bonaventure Cemetery on your own, either on foot or by car.

However, you’ll have a far more enjoyable experience if you go with an experienced guide!

These are the two I recommend…

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Bonaventure Don

This popular tour is led by Don Teuton, who was previously the Vice-Chairman of the Bonaventure Historical Society. He still volunteers with them regularly.

His parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents are all buried at Bonaventure, so he has a deep connection to the place.

Mr. Teuton is very respectful of the cemetery’s history, so you won’t hear ghost stories and rumors during his tour. He focuses on the facts, which I appreciate.

As I say in the introduction of my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide , this city is interesting enough on its own; there’s no need to tell tales!

His tour is ultimately a history tour of Savannah and the many special people who built this city.

Aside from his wealth of knowledge, the biggest perk of Mr. Teuton’s tour is that it’s on a “name your price” basis — which means he has good incentive to make sure you love your time spent in Bonaventure!

Bonaventure Don Tour Details

  • One tour daily, offered six days a week (no tours on Monday)
  • Time to Allot: Plan to spend two and a half to three hours (You’ll wish this tour was longer, too!)
  • Cost: Name your price
Don was awesome! He knows his stuff! The cool thing about him is that he has a long line of relatives that are laid to rest there. He is real and has an answer to every question. He comes prepared with water bottles, umbrellas, and pop up chairs, if you’d like. You pay him what you think he is worth for the tour, and if I could give him a million dollars I definitely would. You wont be disappointed. Ana G. (via my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide private Facebook Group)

Reservations Required! Book your Bonaventure Cemetery tour with Bonaventure Don here

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Bonaventure Dash

The owner of Bonaventure Dash , Tim Rowell, has lived in Savannah his entire life.

In fact, he’s a sixth generation Savannahian — which is something few can claim. (Savannah is a surprisingly transient city; people come and go, but few put down long-term roots.)

Tim has a history degree and a lengthy background in the hospitality industry, both of which make him an ideal host for a stroll around Bonaventure.

He’ll tell you all about the local legends who are buried in the cemetery, and you’ll receive a mini Savannah history lesson from a trained historian!

One of the biggest perks of his tour is that Tim will pick you up at your hotel and provide round-trip, air-conditioned transportation (a huge plus during Savannah’s sweltering summer heat!) to Bonaventure and back.

His is a one-man show, so he keeps the tours small. That means you get a highly personalized experience.

Bonaventure Dash Tour Details

  • Daily tours at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (2 p.m. only during the winter months)
  • Plan to allot two and a half to three hours total (that’s including the stops at hotels for pickups)…and you’ll probably end up wishing it was longer!
  • Cost: Approximately $35 and that includes transportation!
Just finished the Bonaventure Cemetery tour with Tim from Bonaventure Dash. He was fantastic! Wasn’t so much like a structured tour, as it was a friend showing you around. Would 100% recommend! Krista H.R. (via my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide private Facebook Group)
My family and I have taken Tim’s tour twice, and it’s been a pleasurable experience both times. First off, him picking you up and dropping you back off at your hotel is a really nice deal. (He also plays music from Savannah’s own Johnny Mercer on the trips.) The tour itself runs two hours or so and is done at a very smooth and manageable pace, and he’ll pause to let stragglers get done taking pictures. He’s a sixth generation Savannahian and a trained historian, so he knows of what he speaks. He presents stories about the cemetery, the city, and the area in a very detailed but understandable fashion, and he’s one of the friendliest folks you’ll ever meet, to boot. Highest possible recommendation. Greg B. (via my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide private Facebook Group)

Reservations Required! Book your Bonaventure Cemetery Tour with Bonaventure Dash here

Bonaventure Cemetery Photos

As much as I’d like to, I can’t keep the beauty of this place to myself. Here are some of the photos I’ve taken during my many visits to Bonaventure.

As you can see, it’s incredibly beautiful.

Bonaventure Cemetery scene with pink azaleas, three crosses and an angel with a broken wing headstone, and beautiful trees with Spanish moss as the backdrop

Landscaping at Bonaventure Cemetery

Much of what makes Bonaventure so beautiful is the land it sits upon.

The cemetery faces the Wilmington River, and it’s quite a sight to behold when a soft coastal breeze stirs the Spanish moss dripping from those massive Southern oaks.

Sometimes I get chills even on the hottest of Savannah days when I’m out there!

Peering through pink azaleas at a couple sitting on a bench looking out over the Wilmington River

American author Harriet Beecher Stowe describes the scene much better than I ever could in her book, Palmetto-Leaves…

How shall we give a person who has never seen live-oaks or gray moss an idea of it? Solemn avenues of these gigantic trees, with their narrow evergreen leaves, their gnarled, contorted branches feathered with ferns and parasitic plants, and draped with long swaying draperies of this gray, fairy-like moss, impress one singularly. The effect is solemn and unearthly; and the distant tombs, urns, and obelisks gleaming here and there among the shadows make it more impressive. Harriet Beecher Stowe, Palmetto-Leaves, printed by Rand, Avery, & Co., 1873

A dirt road surrounded by pink azaleas, white dogwoods, and oaks covered in Spanish Moss

Bonaventure Don’s tour is a good one to take if you want to learn more about the landscaping and how the cemetery has evolved over time.

He has been described as a walking encyclopedia on the topic!

Azaleas in Savannah

Of course, the most incredible time of year to visit Bonaventure Cemetery is when the azaleas are in full bloom. (It’s also one of the best times of year to visit Savannah in general.)

The azaleas start blooming as early as late February and sometimes stretch into the first week in April.

Mid-March is usually peak azalea season in Savannah.

An aged cross headstone with pink azaleas backlit behind it

When people say the cemetery looks like a sea of pink during azalea season, they aren’t kidding.

Hot pink azaleas dominate the grounds, and many of them grow six feet high — or taller.

I’ve spoken to older Savannah residents who have told me the azaleas used to grow as high as a house!

These days the landscapers keep them trimmed to a more respectable level.

In addition to the azaleas, you’ll also find camellias, dogwoods, and magnolias throughout the grounds.

Related Reading: When is the Best Time of Year to Visit Savannah?

Famous Statues in Bonaventure Cemetery

Plenty of famous people have been buried in Savannah, and a tour of Bonaventure Cemetery will give you a behind-the-scenes peek into many of their lives.

Here are a few of the cemetery’s more well-known residents…

Little Gracie Watson Grave

Gracie Watson, or “Little Gracie,” as she’s affectionately known, has become more famous in death than she was in life.

That’s thanks to the local ghost tour guides who often include her story when weaving tales about Savannah.

According to them, Little Gracie was quite popular with guests at the Pulaski House hotel, which her dad managed.

The hotel faced Johnson Square and was considered one of the best hotels in all the land. (Do I sound like a tour guide yet?)

Gracie was said to be a friendly little child who often sang and danced in the hotel lobby to entertain guests.

She was beloved by locals, visitors, and her parents…right up until her untimely death.

Sadly, Little Gracie died of pneumonia when she was only six years old.

Peering through a sea of hot pink azaleas towards a Gracie Section E wooden sign

When she passed away, her father sunk into a deep depression.

He gave a photograph of Little Gracie to a sculptor who had just arrived in Savannah, and that sculptor created a rather life-like monument based off of it.

Statue of Little Gracie Watson in Bonaventure Cemetery with pink blooming flowers and greenery behind her

Eventually, Gracie’s parents moved back to their hometown in New England, leaving Gracie all alone at her plot in Bonaventure Cemetery.

Tour guides claim Gracie’s spirit still dances around Johnson Square.

Sometime shortly after the stories of Gracie became commonplace, a tradition began of visitors leaving presents at her gravesite to comfort her.

These days, there’s a fence around her plot, but people still leave gifts just inside the iron gate.

Related Reading: Discover the 11 Most Haunted Places in Savannah

Johnny Mercer Grave

Johnny Mercer was born in Savannah in 1909 and went on to become a famous singer, songwriter, and composer.

He won multiple Academy Awards, Oscars, and Grammys before his death in 1976.

My favorite song of his is “Moon River”, which was made famous by the Audrey Hepburn movie, Breakfast at Tiffany’s .

I also love “In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening” (the Bing Crosby version).

It makes me happy that so many of his lyrics are so cheerful.

Moon River is located south of Savannah, near Pin Point Heritage Museum and Butter Bean Beach.

Those just happen to be two of my favorite places in Savannah to catch a sunset!

Side Note: Pin Point is also one of the top tours I recommend in my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide ebook. It’s a fantastic place to learn about the Gullah-Geechee people.

Entrance to the Mercer Family Plot in Bonaventure Cemetery with "MERCER" and "perpetual care" carved in stone

Mercer is credited with writing or co-writing approximately 1500 songs during his lengthy career.

I’m a big proponent of positive thinking, so I’ve always appreciated the lyrics to his song, “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive”.

You’ve got to accentuate the positive Eliminate the negative Latch on to the affirmative Don’t mess with Mister In-Between John “Johnny” Herndon Mercer – Lyrics from “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positiv e” , 1944

The Johnny Mercer bench at Bonaventure Cemetery

Historic Marker: You can find the historic marker for Johnny’s childhood home in Savannah’s Historic District at 226 E. Gwinnett Street — kitty corner from the Kroger.

Conrad Aiken Grave

Conrad Aiken was perhaps best-known for his poetry; he served as U.S. Poet Laureate from 1950 to 1952.

Aiken was born in Savannah in 1899, but had to move up north to live with relatives when his father tragically killed his mother and then committed suicide.

Instead of a traditional headstone, his grave is marked by a bench which visitors can use to rest and take in the beauty of Bonaventure.

Like many of Savannah’s most well-known destinations, his final resting place reached notoriety after a mention in John Berendt’s bestseller, “ Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil “.

Conrad Aiken sign carved in wood at the entrance to a Bonaventure Cemetery plot surrounded by hot pink azaleas

The poignant inscription on it reads, “Cosmos Mariner – Destination Unknown | Give My Love to the World.”

He shares his tombstone with his third wife, Mary Hoover Aiken, who was an artist. The Metropolitan Museum of Art currently owns two of her pieces.

The Bird Girl Statue

The Bird Girl Statue, aka: “Little Wendy”, became famous in 1993 when Jack Leigh photographed her as dusk enveloped one of the family plots at Bonaventure.

His photograph ended up gracing the cover of John Berendt’s book, “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”.

After the book became a New York Times Best Seller, people visited Bonaventure Cemetery in droves to see The Bird Girl statue.

The family donated the statue to Telfair Museum, and it currently resides at Jepson Center of the Arts.

Bonaventure Cemetery FAQs

Bonaventure Cemetery is open from 8 am – 5 pm daily. The gates close at exactly 5 pm, so make sure you head towards the exit at least 15 minutes before closing.

Bonaventure is located three miles from downtown Savannah. While you could walk or bike to get there, driving is by far the easiest method. The neighborhoods closest to the cemetery don’t have sidewalks, so they aren’t very pedestrian-friendly.

You don’t need a ticket to enter Bonaventure Cemetery. It is free to enter and drive or walk around on your own. You only need to purchase a ticket in advance if you want to go on a guided tour.

When people talk about Little Gracie, they’re referring to Gracie Watson, who is buried in Bonaventure Cemetery. Her plot is one of the most visited in the cemetery, thanks to the many ghost tour guides who like share her story. She was born in 1883 and died in 1889, and it’s often said her spirit can still be found roaming Johnson Square.

Wooden sign with "Gracie Section E" etched into it in the foreground and the grave of Little Gracie Watson in the background

The Bird Girl Statue, which was made famous by the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, is long gone from Bonaventure Cemetery. It was removed after the book became wildly popular and drove massive numbers of tourists to the cemetery. It now resides at the Jepson Center.

Related Reading: Discover the Most Authentic Black History Tours in Savannah

Final Reminders When Visiting Bonaventure Cemetery

Don’t forget to book your tours in advance, and don’t forget bug repellant and water, unless your tour guide provides them.

  • Bonaventure Dash Tickets
  • Bonaventure Don Tickets
  • Savannah Cruzers [best for the mobility impaired]

If you want to download the app, do that before you head out to the cemetery. Finally, don’t forget your camera! You’re going to want to take lots of photos.

Savannah Travel Guide

Want more photo inspiration for your trip to Savannah? Check out these popular posts…

  • 11 Photos That Will Make You Fall in Love with River Street
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  • 21 Photos That Will Make You Want to Stroll Through Forsyth Park
  • Is Jones Street Really the Prettiest Street in Savannah?

Finally, don’t forget to purchase a copy of my Savannah First-Timer’s Guide ebook. It has all the information you need to plan your trip.

You’ll also gain access to my private Facebook group for first-time visitors, where you can pick my brain and read reviews from other recent travelers.

Love this post? Pin it now to save for later!

Headstone of a woman resting with her head on her hand with text overlay that reads 21 Spectacular Photos of Bonaventure Cemetery

15 Comments on Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

Bonaventure Cemetery is so beautiful! I wish I saw it during my time in Savannah. When I go back, i’ll definitely make time for it. I love all the blooms. Very helpful guide. 🙂

Ooh, yes…definitely check it out next time. I can’t wait to see your pics when you do!

Beautiful post. I recently moved to Savannah and this is now at the top of my list of hidden gems. Thank you!

Well, hi there, new neighbor. 🙂 Welcome to Savannah! Bonaventure is definitely worth a visit.

This sounds really interesting; very useful for anyone visiting the area!

I love the history of cemeteries. There’s a nice one near where I live with some quite old graves, one lady who died in 1696 has a massive ornate tombstone with engravings all over – I think you’d like it!

This looks like such a peaceful place to spend a few hours. I loved learning about some of Savannah’s past residents. Thanks for sharing!

What a beautiful location! The blooms are such a stark contrast to the dark and moody statues and tombstones. Plus, I love how thorough your guide is!

This is the best guide I’ve seen to Bonaventure! Great details and absolutely beautiful photos!

Thank you! I tried to be detailed. (I’d much rather just post photos of it, though! It’s such a pretty spot.)

What a beautiful cemetery! I’ve not been to Savannah but I know I’d like to take a tour when I do make it. That angel statue is so serene and lovely especially with the pink flowers around her. Great tips and insights into visiting!

This is such a helpful guide. All the photos are incredible.

What a beautiful place! It looks so peaceful. Savannah has been on my bucket list for a long time, and now Bonaventure Cemetery is too! Thanks for sharing!

Wonderful post!!!!! Great job, Erin!

Shannon Scott offered a GREAT tour as well. We did it last month and thought he was great. We did the daytime tour – he also offers “ghost tour” on weekend and we wish we were there for that one too! We were on a group tour which honestly my family doesn’t usually go for – we are much more of private tour people – but Shannon did a good job with the group of 15. I didn’t mind TOO much not being on a private tour. You get so much more out of private in my opinion…

It feels strange to say but this cemetery looks really pretty with flowers around.

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No tour necessary - you can do this on... - Bonaventure Cemetery

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No tour necessary - you can do this on your own but you have to get there first!

This is a very cool place if you are into cemetaries. Problem is that there aren't alot of tours that take you there so if you don't have a car, you'll have to take a taxi there. I think it was around $35-40 round trip. The place is huge, but you'll want to focus on the oldest part which is close to the water. If you go, grab a map/brochure from the visitor's office. About 90 minutes to 2 hours is plenty of time. Wear comfortable shoes and take some bug spray. The coolest areas to view are: Gracie Watson - cute little statue of 6 y/o that is known to haunt the area, Corrine Lawton - one of the most beautiful lots in the cemetary overlooking the water; some funky Egyptian looking vault across from the Lawton family plot.

It was very interesting and the little man that gives you the map is soo adorable. The history there is amazing... I suggest you dont miss it when in Savannah.

can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

I couldnt believe the size of this place when we first arrived! We were vacationing for the weekend in Savannah and I had to go see Gracies(famous ghost story) grave. They had maps so it was really easy to figure out exactly where to go. I believe the cemetary is a must see!!

My husband and I went to Bonaventure Cemetary twice last week while vacationing in Savannah. Its a beautiful and eerie cemetary with the old trees and spanish moss hanging down. We took friends with us the second time and they enjoyed it as well.

can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

A trip to Bonaventure Cemetary is a must see while visiting Savannah. The live oaks and spanish moss among the magnificent tomb stones was just awesome. We found Johnne Mercers grave and little gracie among just a few. We rode our bicycles from the River Street Inn and found bikes to be an excellant way to tour the cemetary. It is 70 acres so walking it would take the best part of the day. We were still there for 2 hours. words really can't describe so make it a stop on your tour of Savannah

You do not want to leave Savannah without going to this place. It is great. You need at least a half a day to fully appreciate it. It was so beautiful and peaceful. This place is well worth the extra effort since it is a little ways outside of the city center.

Guide to the Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah

TripSavvy / Ivey Redding

Bonaventure Cemetery  sits upon a bluff above the Wilmington River east of  Savannah , Georgia. When the land was owned by Colonel John Mullryne, beginning in 1762, and later by his son-in-law, it was an elegant plantation.

A historically popular destination for visitors because of its folklore, moss-draped oak trees, and hauntingly beautiful sculpture, Bonaventure Cemetery's tourism activity increased dramatically with the success of the bestselling novel, "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil ."  The statue featured on the cover of the book, known as  Bird Girl, had to be moved from the cemetery for safekeeping and is now at the Telfair Museums' Telfair Academy in Savannah.

How to Get There

Bonaventure Cemetery is located on 330 Bonaventure Road, on the eastern margins of the city. It's about a 15 to 20-minute drive from the Historic District of Savannah , and by car is the easiest way to get there.

From the Historic District, you can also take bus line 10 and get off at Bonaventure Road. From there, it's about a 10-minute walk to the cemetery entrance.

Take a Tour

Bonaventure Cemetery is very large and visitors who have limited time may wish to consider a  guided tour , which is a good way to see the most famous gravesites and learn about Savannah's history. The Bonaventure Historical Society offers free guided tours on the second weekend of each month. If you aren't in town on those dates, you can purchase their mobile app or pick up a map and take a self-guided tour.

Several private tour companies also include visits to Bonaventure Cemetery in their itineraries.

Most Visited Grave Sites

The cemetery is filled with graves of well-known people. Some of the most visited graves are:

Little Gracie Watson:  A stone memorial marker, located at the gravesite of the child known as Little Gracie Watson, offers a brief description of her short life, the circumstances of her death, and information about the creation of the beautiful memorial sculpture.

Because the sculpture has attracted the attention of so many visitors to Bonaventure Cemetery, an iron fence encloses the gravesite for safekeeping. The Gracie Watson Burial Site is located at Lot 99 in Section E, off of Mullryne Way.

John Herndon "Johnny" Mercer: The Mercer family plot, which includes the gravesite of popular singer, songwriter, and lyricist Johnny Mercer, is one of the most visited sites at Bonaventure Cemetery. Born and raised in Savannah, Johnny Mercer was one of America's most prolific songwriters, producing many of the top hits from the 1930s to the mid-1960s, including four Academy Award winners for Best Original Song. The Johnny Mercer Burial Site is located at Lot 48 in Section H, along Johnny Mercer Lane.

Conrad Potter Aiken:  Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner, Conrad Aiken was an American poet; a writer of novels, short stories, and essays; and a literary critic. Born in Savannah, Georgia in 1889, he moved at the age of 11 to Cambridge, Massachusetts, to live with an aunt, following the tragic murder-suicide of his parents, when his father, without warning, shot his wife and then himself. In his later years, Conrad Aiken returned to Savannah, where he lived next door to his childhood home.

A bench placed by Aiken in the Bonaventure Cemetery family plot takes the place of a headstone. It is inscribed with the words: "Cosmos Mariner / Destination Unknown." The Conrad Aiken Burial Site is located at Lot 78 in Section H, where Johnny Mercer Lane meets Aiken Lane.

Alexander Robert Lawton:  Overlooking the picturesque Wilmington River, the Lawton family plot includes a sculpture of Jesus standing beside a grand arched gateway. Alexander R. Lawton was an important figure in Savannah's history, having held the positions of ​a lawyer, President of the Augusta and Savannah Railroad, Brigadier General in the Army of the Confederacy, politician, and President of the American Bar Association.

Another lovely sculpture depicts his eldest daughter, Corinne Elliott Lawton (born September 21, 1846, died January 24, 1877), sitting gracefully beside a cross. The pedestal is inscribed with the words: "Allured to brighter worlds, and led the way." This gravesite is located on the bluff beside the Wilmington River at Lot 168 in Section H.

Sculptures and Mausoleums

There is a multitude of sculptures placed throughout the cemetery, including a statue with a sorrowful expression that changes depending on the viewing angle. In addition to all of the wonderful funerary sculpture, there are many small mausoleums or tombs located in Bonaventure Cemetery. Many of these memorial structures feature symbolic and ornate details, such as stained glass windows and decorative metal doors.

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Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery: Savannah’s Beautiful Garden Graveyard

By: Author Rob Taylor

Posted on Published: August 31, 2023  - Last updated: January 19, 2024

Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery: Savannah’s Beautiful Garden Graveyard

When people are playing tourist with us in Savannah , we always bring them to Bonaventure Cemetery. It’s one of the great icons of Savannah and in general, it’s a quiet and beautiful place to visit. We’ve wandered the graveyard many times, in all kinds of weather and have some helpful tips for exploring Bonaventure Cemetery.

So, is Bonaventure Cemetery worth visiting? Is it good for kids? I’ve got all of those answers and more; everything you need to plan a visit to one of the most beautiful cemeteries in the South. This is one of the best historic sites to visit in Savannah , so be sure to add it to your plans.

If you have any additional questions or more to share, please leave a comment or send us a note . We’re happy to add to what we’ve got here and love hearing from others about their experiences!

Visiting Bonaventure Cemetery is a must when you are in Savannah. See what to expect, when to go and even find a historic tour of Bonaventure. FAQ and photography tips as well.

What is so Special About Bonaventure Cemetery?

Bonaventure Cemetery is a historic cemetery located just outside of the main town area of Savannah, Georgia. It was originally a private plantation before it became a public cemetery in 1907. The cemetery is known for its beautiful dripping Spanish moss scenery and unique gravestone sculptures, aka funerary art, including intricate statues, mausoleums, and gravestones.

It is also famous for being the final resting place of several notable Savannah figures, including poets, politicians, and soldiers. Bonaventure Cemetery has been featured in numerous books, movies, and TV shows, and is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. We always bring people here when they visit Savannah with us.

Bonaventure is quite iconic and is one of the best historic sites in Savannah to visit. It is the most famous example, and one of the first, of what came to be known as a garden cemetery. It really is a special place, and if you’re into ghosts and spiritualism, you’ll love it for a variety of reasons…

Taylor Family at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 3

Is Bonaventure a Confederate Cemetery?

NO. Bonaventure Cemetery is NOT a Confederate cemetery, although there are a lot of Confederate grave markers among the plots. Being such an old and historic place, you’ll find a wide variety of people that were laid to rest here, including some recently deceased who still had active family plots.

As you wander through Bonaventure, pay attention to the details of different graves. You will find Confederate graves, that’s true and they are marked with a metal Southern Cross, but you’ll also find Jewish and Muslim graves in the mix. Savannah has a very diverse history, although it’s most known for its Southern/Civil War elements.

Old Muslim Graves at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 1

Where is Bonaventure Cemetery Located

Bonaventure Cemetery is located in Savannah, Georgia, United States. Specifically, it is situated on a bluff overlooking the Wilmington River, at 330 Bonaventure Road, just east of the city center and kinds on the way out to Tybee Island . The neighborhood is actually called Thunderbolt and there are some pretty cool homes out there.

You can walk all around the grounds and get some good exercise. The cemetery covers approximately 160 acres and is open to visitors daily from 8:00am to 5:00pm.

If you drive through the cemetery to the east end, you’ll find a small parking lot. Leave your car here and walk up into the cemetery. This will minimize traffic on the dirt roads and allow people to walk freely and take photos WITHOUT cars in them. We never park in the middle of Bonaventure Cemetery.

Driving into Bonaventure Cemetery in the Rain Savannah Georgia 2

Where to Stay Near Bonaventure

Most famous graves in bonaventure.

Bonaventure Cemetery is most famous for its beauty and it was made a Savannah icon with the publication and then production of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil , but it’s been a part of Savannah history for much longer. There are graves here dating to the late 1700s and early 1800s, even though it didn’t become a full-fledged burial ground until later. The most famous graves in Bonaventure Cemetery aren’t even the oldest, but each is notable in its own way. ( get the book here! )

I’ll admit, I don’t seek out the famous graves in Bonaventure when I visit, but for many people, they want to see them and hear or read the stories about the people or the funerary art. I tend to just wander through the rows and rows of graves, but any guide to Bonaventure Cemetery will tell you to visit these sites.

Funerary Statue at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 12

Johnny Mercer

Johnny Mercer was a famous American songwriter, singer, and composer who was born and raised in Savannah, Georgia. He is known for writing numerous popular songs, including “Moon River,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” and “That Old Black Magic.” Mercer’s grave is located in Bonaventure Cemetery’s northern section, close to the river.

Conrad Aiken

Conrad Aiken was an American novelist, poet, and critic who won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1930 (I’m not familiar with his work though). He was born in Savannah, and spent his childhood there. Aiken’s grave is located in the center aisle of Bonaventure Cemetery, close to the river. The grave is a simple bench-style headstone with Aiken’s name and dates of birth and death. Aiken’s most famous work is his autobiographical novel, “Ushant,” which he wrote after the suicide of his father (nope, I haven’t read it).

Little Gracie Watson

Gracie Watson was the daughter of a wealthy Savannah businessman who died of pneumonia at the age of six in 1889. Her grave is located in the northeast corner of Bonaventure Cemetery, and it is one of the most visited graves in the cemetery. The grave features a life-size statue of Gracie, dressed in a white dress and holding a small bouquet of flowers. The statue was created by sculptor John Walz, and it is said to be a replica of a photograph of Gracie taken shortly before her death. Legend has it that Gracie’s ghost haunts the cemetery, and many visitors leave toys and gifts at her grave as offerings. We’ve seen Pokémon cards and little plastic toys left both inside and out of the grave gate.

Grave of Little Gracie Watson in Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 1

Where is the Bird Girl Statue in Bonaventure Cemetery?

Whomp whom whaaaaa. Bird Girl is no longer located in Bonaventure Cemetery. Originally cast in bronze in the 1930s, the famous Bird Girl statue was initially installed at the Trosdal family plot, but after the movie Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil came out, people were starting to get out of hand at the gravesite, so the Bird Girl was entrusted to the Telfair Museums to take care of and display in a safe environment.

Read our article all about Bird Girl here!

Bird Girl Sculpture at Telfair Academy Art Museum Savannah Georgia 3

How to Visit Bonaventure Cemetery

“So if Bonaventure isn’t directly in Savannah, how do I actually visit the cemetery?” Good news is there are several ways to get there if you don’t have a vehicle while you’re in Savannah. You could rent bikes in Savannah and then ride out to Bonaventure. It’s about a 25 minute bike ride from Bull Street and the Historic District to the Thunderbolt neighborhood.

You can also take the bus to Bonaventure. The Chatham Area Transit Number 10 bus goes from the historic district to just a block away from the cemetery entrance. This is a great, inexpensive option for getting to Bonaventure Cemetery from downtown. This, as well as Old Fort Jackson and Fort Pulaski National Monument make a great LONG day of exploring historic sites around Savannah (if you’re looking to do a lot in one day).

Grimm Tomb at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 1

When to Visit Bonaventure Cemetery

The cemetery is open year round and everyday of the year. The gates open at 8:00 am daily and lock at 5:00 pm. Visiting early any time of year is the best, but if you’re able to be in Bonaventure Cemetery as late as possible during the winter months when the sun is the lowest, that’s when you’ll get some of the best light for photos.

BIG TIP: the absolute best time to visit Bonaventure Cemetery is immediately after a rainstorm. I mean, within minutes before the skies clear up. Being in Bonaventure when the Spanish moss is dripping, when the resurrection ferns are opening and turning green before your eyes, and when the graves and sculptures are wet and dark, it’s amazing. Also, if you’re able to be in the cemetery during a summer rain, the moisture in the air creates the most amazing atmospheric distortion for photos.

Graves at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 23

Tours of Bonaventure Cemetery

Bonaventure Cemetery offers a range of tours for visitors who want to explore the cemetery’s rich history and unique funerary art. These tours are led by knowledgeable guides who share fascinating stories and insights about the cemetery and its famous residents. Here are three different tour guides that visitors can choose from:

Bonaventure Historical Society – The Bonaventure Historical Society offers a variety of guided tours that explore the cemetery’s history and architecture. The tours are led by knowledgeable volunteers who are passionate about Savannah’s rich cultural heritage. Visitors can choose from several tour options, including a walking tour of the cemetery’s most famous graves, a tour of the Bonaventure Chapel and its stained-glass windows, and a tour that explores the cemetery’s role in Savannah’s history.

Dash Tours – Dash Tours offers a unique way to explore Bonaventure Cemetery: by electric car. The eco-friendly tours are led by knowledgeable guides who provide interesting commentary about the cemetery’s history and notable residents. Visitors can choose from several tour options, including a standard tour that covers the cemetery’s most famous graves and landmarks, and a ghost tour that explores the cemetery’s haunted history. Book it here!

Savannah Dan Walking Tours or Ghost City Tours – Savannah Dan Walking Tours offers a personalized and interactive way to explore Bonaventure Cemetery. Dan, the tour guide, is a passionate and knowledgeable Savannah native who shares fascinating stories and insights about the cemetery’s history and unique features. Visitors can choose from several tour options, including a general walking tour that covers the cemetery’s most famous graves and monuments, a photography tour that focuses on capturing the cemetery’s beauty and atmosphere, and a custom tour that can be tailored to specific interests and preferences. Book it here!

In addition to these tour guides, visitors can also opt for self-guided tours of the cemetery. Bonaventure Cemetery provides a map and brochure that highlights some of the cemetery’s most famous graves and landmarks, and visitors can explore the cemetery at their own pace. However, for those who want a more in-depth and immersive experience, the guided tours offered by the Bonaventure Historical Society, Dash Tours, and Savannah Dan Walking Tours are highly recommended. These tours provide a wealth of information and insights about the cemetery’s fascinating history and notable residents, and they offer a unique perspective on one of Savannah’s most iconic landmarks.

BONUS: if you don’t have a car and want to see both Bonaventure Cemetery AND Wormsloe Historic Site, you can book a tour from downtown that takes you to BOTH! Book it here!

FYI, there are NOT ghost tours of Bonaventure and you cannot enter the cemetery after 5:00 pm.

Taylor Family on Tour at Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah Georgia 1

FAQ about Bonaventure Cemetery

I’ve answered most of these questions above, but just in case you’re a skimmer and not a reader, here are the most frequently asked questions about Bonaventure Cemetery:

Where is Bonaventure Cemetery located?

Bonaventure Cemetery is located in the Thunderbolt neighborhood of Savannah, just east of town.

What are the visiting hours for Bonaventure Cemetery?

The gates to the cemetery open at 8:00 am and close at 5:00 pm. No, you cannot enter and wander through the cemetery in the dark by yourself, so just stop thinking that now. And no, there aren’t ghost tours at night.

What is the history of Bonaventure Cemetery?

This was initially a private plantation with a few graves, but it became the first major garden cemetery in the mid 1800s.

Who are the famous people buried in Bonaventure Cemetery?

Johnny Mercer and Conrad Aiken are the two most famous people buried in Bonaventure Cemetery, but the real attraction of visiting is seeing all of the other graves and funerary art throughout the whole area with the live oaks, myrtles and Spanish moss.

Is there a fee to visit Bonaventure Cemetery?

No, Bonaventure is open to the public, free of charge. It’s a cemetery, and it’s still active.

Can you take a guided tour of Bonaventure Cemetery?

Yes, there are quite a few guided tours of Bonaventure. We have several listed above including links to book them. No, there are NOT ghost tours or nighttime tours of Bonaventure.

What is the best time of year to visit Bonaventure Cemetery?

My favorite time of year at Bonaventure is late spring when there are still flowers and the summer rains are becoming more frequent.

What is the significance of the statue of the “Bird Girl” in Bonaventure Cemetery?

Bird Girl used to be in Bonaventure and was featured as the cover image for the book and movie of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil , but she is no longer in the cemetery. Read all about Bird Girl here!

Is photography allowed in Bonaventure Cemetery?

Yes! Photography is encouraged when you visit Bonaventure, but be respectful of the graves and stay within the walking paths.

How long does it take to explore Bonaventure Cemetery?

When we visit with kids (yes, it’s a very good place to visit with children) we spend no more than an hour. If you intend to walk the entire cemetery, allow yourself two hours (but you’ll get cemetery fatigue).

I think you’ll enjoy visiting Bonaventure Cemetery. It really is a wonderfully unique place to explore, and despite it being a place to bury people, it’s really beautiful. If you have any questions about visiting the cemetery, exploring Savannah or anything else road trip related, please leave a comment or send us a note . We’re always happy to share more!

Visiting Bonaventure Cemetery is a must when you are in Savannah. See what to expect, when to go and even find a historic tour of Bonaventure. FAQ and photography tips as well.

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Walk Through History: Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, GA

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Bonaventure Cemetery is a serene and beautiful final resting place on a picturesque bluff overlooking the Wilmington River east of Savannah, Georgia.

With a total area of 160 acres, it is the largest of the city’s municipal cemeteries. Bonaventure Cemetery has a rich history and cultural significance, making it a popular destination for tourists and locals.

Many first learned of Bonaventure Cemetery through the novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt in 1994. The novel brought the cemetery to the world’s attention and has since been featured in a film adaptation directed by Clint Eastwood.

The book and the movie showcase the cemetery’s fascinating history, intricate sculptures, and beautifully landscaped gardens.

The entrance to Bonaventure Cemetery is located at 330 Bonaventure Road. As visitors enter through the gates, they are immediately greeted by the grand and elaborate tomb of William Gaston.

Gaston was a well-known merchant from Savannah, and his tomb is a testament to his importance in the city’s history.

Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah GA

Bonaventure Cemetery is important for Savannah’s residents, visitors, and history enthusiasts. In addition, its stunning monuments, unique sculptures, and tranquil atmosphere make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the city’s rich cultural heritage.

Bonaventure Cemetery has been a solemn resting place for residents of Savannah since 1846. Originally known as Evergreen Cemetery , it was established on 70 acres of land from the Bonaventure Plantation.

At the time, the city’s existing cemeteries were nearing their maximum capacity, making it necessary to establish a new burial ground.

Evergreen Cemetery was designed in the traditional Victorian style, featuring winding paths, beautiful trees, and ample green spaces. Despite being a cemetery, it was not uncommon for families to gather for picnics in peaceful surroundings while still providing comfort and solace to the bereaved.

In 1907, the City of Savannah purchased Evergreen Cemetery and made it the fourth of the five cemeteries that the city currently owns. The cemetery has since expanded to nearly 160 acres and has undergone redesigning to provide more burial sites and more efficient maintenance than the original Evergreen design could offer.

Bonaventure Cemetery has evolved over the years, but its significance remains unchanged. It is a place of remembrance, reflection, and tranquility for the loved ones of those buried there.

In addition, the cemetery’s rich history and beautiful architecture make it a popular tourist destination and a significant cultural site for Savannah.

Bonaventure Cemetery Savannah GA

Bonaventure Cemetery is a place of great historical and cultural significance. To make the most of your visit, the Bonaventure Historical Society offers free guided tours on the second weekend of every month. The tours start at 2 pm on Saturday and Sunday and last about an hour.

The BHS-trained guides will take you through the cemetery, providing detailed information on the monuments, the history of the cemetery, and the people buried there.

Please note that there is a limit of 30 visitors per guide, and if there are more people, the attendees will be divided into smaller groups to ensure everyone can hear the guide.

Bonaventure Cemetery

If you can’t make it to the scheduled guided tour days, you can still tour the cemetery by yourself using the mobile tour app for Apple and Android devices . The app is easy to use, and you can explore the cemetery at your own pace while still learning about its rich history.

It is essential to check the Bonaventure Historical Society’s Facebook page for any changes or updates regarding the guided tours. The Facebook page also has information on upcoming events and other resources related to the cemetery.

Whether you take a guided tour or explore the cemetery on your own with the mobile app, Bonaventure Cemetery is a must-see destination for anyone interested in history, culture, and art.

Bonaventure Cemetery

Bonaventure Cemetery is breathtaking, with its beautiful trees, winding lanes, and stunning monuments. While it is a tourist destination, it is essential to remember that it is also an active cemetery. Here are some guidelines for cemetery etiquette to follow during your visit.

Firstly, if you see a group of people with a hearse and other vehicles parked nearby, please assume that a funeral is occurring. It is essential to keep your voice low and be respectful as you pass by the area.

It is also crucial to teach children about the need for respect while visiting the cemetery. For example, pets are welcome in the cemetery but must be kept on a leash, and pet owners are expected to clean up after them.

Bonaventure Cemetery

Visitors should refrain from littering or leaving cigarette butts on the ground. Trash cans are available throughout the cemetery for disposal.

It is essential to note that all cemetery plots are considered private property. While the City of Savannah owns the land, plot owners have the right to authorize who can access the grave property. In most cases, permission has not been granted for public access to a gravesite.

Regardless of how tempting it may be to take photos or examine the monuments up close, trying to get too close to a grave without permission is considered trespassing.

Bonaventure Cemetery is a place of beauty, history, and reflection. Following these guidelines, visitors can respect the cemetery, the departed, and their families while enjoying the peaceful surroundings.

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can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

Close-up detail of lichen encrusted stone flower found on tomb at Bonaventue Cemetery near Savannah, Georgia, USA.

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Bonaventure Cemetery

Top choice in Savannah

Less than a 10-minute drive east of Savannah’s Historic District you’ll find one of the most peaceful, quiet, green escapes tucked away next to the Wilmington River. A massive graveyard might not seem like the kind of place you want to spend your day, but one visit to Bonaventure Cemetery is bound to change your mind.

No visit to Savannah is complete without a stroll through this serene and beautiful outdoor setting. Take a picnic (plus some sunscreen and insect repellant in the summer months) and find a shady spot to enjoy it amongst larger-than-life oak trees decked out in Spanish moss. The soundtrack here is straight out of a meditation playlist, but even better because the birds chirping and the bugs buzzing are the real deal.

What started as a colonial plantation owned by English Colonel John Mullryne and his family is now a public cemetery, where locals can purchase their own plots. In 1846, Bonaventure was opened as Evergreen Cemetery on 70 acres of the original Bonaventure Plantation, at a time when the city’s other cemeteries were quickly filling up. Designed as a traditional Victorian cemetery, Evergreen was bought by the City of Savannah in the early 1900s, expanded on, and then later renamed.

Southern folklore says the only way to be buried at Bonaventure Cemetery is if you die there, but we were able to confirm that that creepy tidbit of information isn’t true. At Bonaventure, you can even get married for a fee if an outdoor wedding amongst the dead is your thing (all weddings must be registered within the Department of Cemeteries).

Famous residents

When it comes to celebrity tombs, there are a few scattered throughout Bonaventure. Namely, Johnny Mercer — a lyricist known for the song “Moon River” and a co-founder of Capitol Records.

Although he died in Hollywood, Mercer was born in Savannah and so he was buried at Bonaventure in 1976. The cemetery was also featured in John Berendt’s famed 1994 novel, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, and then again in the namesake film directed by Clint Eastwood.

The Bonaventure Historical Society started in 1992, the idea conceived by a retired Savannah teacher and his friends. The Society’s mission is to maintain the preservation and conservation of the cemetery with volunteers working at the Visitors’ Center and giving free guided tours on the weekends.

A road lined with live oaks and azaleas in Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah

Best time to visit Bonaventure Cemetery

Admission to Bonaventure is free as are the guided tours of the 100-acre property. The rainy season in Savannah lasts from the end of May to mid-September, peaking in early August, so if you’re visiting in the summer plan accordingly; an umbrella, rain boots, and maybe a light jacket will do the trick.

And let’s not forget that coastal Southern heat – the hottest day of the year in Savannah is July 22 with an average high of 91F. Make sure you drink lots of water (and maybe even bring a cooler!) if you plan to spend extended periods of time outdoors in the warmer months.

Ready to learn? You can download the site’s mobile app on your phone for a self-guided tour and visit the graves of Mercer and poet Conrad Aiken at your leisure. You can also buy an illustrated map for just $8.

It might be surprising that one of the most visited gravesites at Bonaventure is that of Little Gracie Watson, the daughter of Wales J. and Frances Watson. The family, originally from Massachusetts, managed the Pulaski Hotel downtown in Johnson Square and Little Gracie was often seen playing at the property. She died a couple of days before Easter at just six years old.

People flock to visit her grave and it’s said that sometimes, late at night, her ghost is spotted skipping through the plants at Johnson Square near where the Pulaski Hotel once stood.

Private tours of Bonaventure are available for non-profits as well as school groups with a minimum of 10 people. Local tour companies offer tours for smaller groups, as well.

Getting there

From Savannah’s Historic District, you can get to Bonaventure by car, ride service, bus (take Line 10 at Oglethorpe & Abercorn EB and get off at Georgia & Bonaventure SB; it’s a 15-minute walk from the dropoff point so the journey would be about 36 minutes total) or on foot. The walk is long, though, and will take approximately an hour and 20 minutes.

Nearby hotels/restaurants

If you’re visiting Savannah for the first time, your best bet is to stay in a hotel in the Historic District, which is roughly three miles away. The Kimpton Brice Hotel is a great dog-friendly option. Mansion on Forsyth Park and Perry Lane Hotel are both a bit more luxurious.

After a long day of exploring, settle in for a magical sunset at The Wyld Dock Bar . Just 10 minutes from Bonaventure Cemetery, the Wyld is outdoors and on the water. Toast with a local beer to the living (or the dead) as you watch the sun disappear into the marsh.

330 Bonaventure Rd

Get In Touch

912-651-6843

https://​www​.bonaventurehistorical​.org​/

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Home › Things To Do › Tours › Bonaventure Cemetery Tours

Bonaventure Cemetery Tours

Close up of statue of a female angel in Bonaventure Cemetery.

Bonaventure Cemetery, one of Savannah’s most popular tourist attractions, is open free of charge to the public every day. Most people are content to make an independent visit to the cemetery at their leisure (this is also the best option if you have pets), but there are also several guided tours available if you want a more in-depth experience.

A guide can tell you about the history of the cemetery and the people buried there. Some tours of Bonaventure can also be taken as part of a more general introduction to the history of Savannah and its culture, particularly to the city’s (and Bonaventure’s) role in the well-known non-fiction book and movie, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil .

Guided ghost tours within this (and Savannah’s other) cemeteries, however, are prohibited by the city. If you are primarily interested in hearing ghost stories, consider a ghost tour of Savannah’s Historic District instead.

Most tours include round-trip transportation to the cemetery, which can make this a convenient way to get there if you don’t have a car for your visit (a taxi, however, will usually be cheaper – read more about options for getting to Bonaventure ).

Please note that advance reservations are usually required, and that prices listed below are exclusive of sales tax and gratuity.

Note about pets Although leashed dogs are allowed in Bonaventure Cemetery, most guided tours do not accommodate non-service animals.

See also: – Savannah’s must-see sights – Historic house museums – History and location of the Bird Girl statue – Dolphin tours and boat charters in Savannah and Tybee Island

! Tours may be withdrawn and itineraries or cost changed at short notice. Please check all details directly with the provider before planning your trip.

6th Sense World

$30 per person. Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery, its history and the people buried there.

Adventure Tours In Motion

$75 per person Segway tour of Bonaventure Cemetery.

Adults $59, children $15 Van tour of Laurel Grove North and Bonaventure Cemeteries.

All About Savannah Tours

$150 per person. Private half-day driving tour of Savannah's Historic District, Bonaventure Cemetery and Isle of Hope, with stops to walk around if desired.

$95 per person Private driving tour combining an overview of the Historic District's architecture and a tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Walking stops are optional.

Bonaventure Don

COST Pay-what-you-want walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery.

Bonaventure Historical Society

Free Guided walking tour of Bonaventure offered on the second weekend of each month.

Adults $30, children $20 Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery, with transportation from downtown Savannah included.

COST Private walking or driving tour of the aspects of Savannah and vicinity's history and culture of your choice.

Kelly Tours/Gray Line Savannah

Adults $55, children $25 Full day tour including a walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery, time for lunch, a visit to Wormsloe Historic Site, returning to Savannah via Isle of Hope for a tour at Byrd Cookie Company.

Savannah Walking History Tours

From $100 for up to 4 people. Private tour of Bonaventure Cemetery.

Free Bonaventure Cemetery Tours

Bonaventure Historical Society Tour, 1hr The Bonaventure Historical Society offers free walking tours of the cemetery on the weekend of the second Sunday of each month.

Reservations are not required; tours begin at the cemetery. A self-guided tour app is also available for download. More details

Bonaventure Cemetery Tours With Transportation

If you don’t have a car, the cheapest convenient way of getting to Bonaventure Cemetery is to use a taxi or equivalent rideshare service. If the added benefits of a narrated tour of Bonaventure appeal, however, many commercial tour operators include transport to and from the cemetery in their prices.

All bus tours to Bonaventure offer round-trip transportation, but it is also possible to book a walking, bike or segway tour with transport included.

Pick-up is usually either from a pre-determined location or sometimes from your hotel. Inquire with individual providers for details, or if you have any specific requirements.

Dedicated Bonaventure Tours

Bonaventure Tour, 2hrs . With Timothy Rowell, Dash Tours. Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery, includes free door-to-door shuttle transportation to the cemetery. Available daily. Adults $30, military/seniors $27, children (6-16) $15. Reservations required. Call 912-401-2897 or book online. More details

“Bonaventure Cemetery Tour” 1hr45 . With Savannah Heritage Tours. Bus tour of Bonaventure with some walking. Available Monday-Saturday. Adults $28, children (6-11) $13, young children (0-5) free. Call 912-224-8365 for reservations or book online. More details

“Segway Bonaventure” (pet-sitting available, ages 16+ only, weight restrictions apply) 1hr30 . With Adventure Tours in Motion. Segway or electric bicycle tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Available daily. $75 per person, or $119 for a tandem e-bike. Reservations required. Call 912-495-5556 or book online. More details

Bonaventure Cemetery Private Car Tour, 2hrs . With 21 Tours of Savannah. Private driving tour of Bonaventure, including transportation from downtown. Daily, morning or afternoon. $49 per person. 2-person minimum Call 888-218-6877 for reservations or book online. More details

Savannah & Bonaventure Tours

The following tours include a visit to Bonaventure as part of a wider itinerary exploring other aspects of Savannah’s history and culture.

“ Midnight Book and Movie Tour” 2hrs30 . With Savannah Heritage Tours. This bus tour mostly focuses on Jim Williams and The Book but includes a tour of Bonaventure. Available daily, 10am. Adults $45, children (6-11) $19, young children (0-5) free. Call 912-224-8365 for reservations or book online. More details

“Grand Midnight Tour” 3hrs-3hrs45 . With Savannah Heritage Tours. Bus tour, as above but also including a tour of the Mercer-Williams House. Friday-Sunday, 9:30am. Adults $68, children (6-11) $30, young children (0-5) free. Call 912-224-8365 for reservations or book online. More details

“History/Architecture and Bonaventure Cemetery Tour” 2hrs30 . With Kathy Moore, All About Savannah Tours. Private historical driving tour of Savannah’s architecture that includes a side-trip to Bonaventure. $75 per person, 2-person minimum. Call 912-663-8310 for reservations. More details

Other Bonaventure Tours

Most tours of Bonaventure that do not include transportation meet at or near the main cemetery entrance, but inquire directly with the provider for the exact departure point.

“Bonaventure Cemetery Tour” (ages 15+ only, weight restrictions apply) 1hr30 . With Segway of Savannah. Segway tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. $75 per person, off-season discount sometimes available. Reservations required. Call 912-233-3554 or book online. More details

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour (no pets) 2hrs . With 6th Sense Tours. Walking tour of Bonaventure. Adults $25, seniors (60+)/military/students/educators $23, children (4-12) $15, young children (0-3) free. Reservations required. Book online or call 912-292-0960. More details

“Bonaventure Cemetery Journeys with Shannon Scott” (no pets) 2hrs . Walking history tour with TV paranormal researcher Shannon Scott; some tours are given by other guides. Adults $25, children (0-15) $15. After hours tours also available, 3hrs, $44.95 per person. Reservations required. More details

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour . With Harriet Meyerhoff, Personalized Tours of Savannah. Private tour of Bonaventure's history, burials and statuary. Call 912-234-0014 for inquiries and reservations. More details

Bonaventure Tour (14 max) 2hrs30 . With Don Teuton, Bonaventure Don. Name-your-own-price walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Available Tuesday to Sunday. Text 912-658-1748 for reservations or book online. More details

The Bonaventure Cemetery Tour, 2hrs . With Grand Savannah Tours. Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Daily, morning or afternoon. Adults $25, children $ (6-12) $12, young children (0-5) free. Call 912-445-5027 for reservations or book online. More details

Bonaventure Cemetery, 1hr30 . With Historic Savannah Pub Crawl. Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. From $30 per person. Call 912-429-2440 for reservations. More details

More Savannah Tours

– Architecture tours – Black history tours – Boat tours – Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil tours – Carriage tours – Civil War tours – Food tours – Ghost tours – Haunted pub crawls – Helicopter tours – Trolley, bike and Segway tours – Walking tours

See also: – Savannah museums – Historic house museums – State parks and wildlife refuges near Savannah – Kayak tours near Savannah – Savannah events

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Bonaventure cemetery, attractions details, find it on google maps.

5 stars 4 stars 3 stars 2 stars 1 star 0.00/5 - (0 Votes) Colm Local tour guide "Make sure to visit Bonaventure Cemetery near dusk, when the setting sun casts beautiful shadows through the Spanish moss, providing an ethereal atmosphere unique to this historic site. Also, while there, look for the secret garden area adjacent to the Johnny Mercer plot; it's a less frequented spot that offers a tranquil space to reflect away from the main paths."

What is Bonaventure Cemetery?

Bonaventure Cemetery is more than just a final resting place for the dearly departed. It's an outdoor museum whispering stories of Savannah's past through its elaborate tombstones, statues, and winding pathways. Situated on a scenic bluff overlooking the Wilmington River, this 100-acre cemetery is famed for its haunting beauty, historic significance, and the Southern Gothic atmosphere that pervades its extensive grounds.

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can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

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As a burial ground, Bonaventure isn't just a collection of graves; it's a verdant sanctuary of live oaks and Spanish moss that seems suspended in time. Enveloped by such natural splendor, it has captivated visitors for generations. It came into the spotlight with the publication of John Berendt’s book "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil," where it played a significant role and has since earned a spot in the heart of many who’ve wandered its paths.

History of Bonaventure Cemetery

Bonaventure’s history stretches back over 150 years, but it began not as a cemetery but as the plantation of John Mullryne. Ever since it was established as a public cemetery in 1846, Bonaventure has borne witness to the ebb and flow of Savannah's history, enshrining the lives of notable figures including poets, politicians, and generals.

During the plantation era, the site was already steeped in legend and social gathering before transitioning to a more solemn purpose. A little-known fact is that during the American Civil War, no battles occurred at Bonaventure, but it did house a blockader named the USS Water Witch, captured by the Confederates in 1864. The transition from private estate to public cemetery marked a significant turn, transforming the landscape into a storied tableau of remembrance.

Why is Bonaventure Cemetery Important?

Delving into its importance, Bonaventure Cemetery is significant not only for its art and architecture but also as a cultural and historical touchstone of the South. The cemetery encapsulates a peculiar blend of beauty and melancholy, reflecting the Victorian era's attitude towards death and remembrance. Each headstone tells not only a story but also illustrates the social and artistic movements of the time.

Additionally, Bonaventure's allure transcends history to have considerable influence on literature and art. It plays muse to photographers and writers seeking inspiration among its stately monuments and has been featured in cinema. Serving as a pivotal setting in "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil," Bonaventure has become somewhat of a character in its own right, attracting throngs of visitors who want to experience the atmosphere that played such a central role in the narrative.

Things to Do & See at Bonaventure Cemetery

At Bonaventure, it's not just about paying respects; it’s about exploration and discovery. Visitors often embark on self-guided tours, following maps to graves of notable people such as Johnny Mercer, the famous lyricist, and Conrad Aiken, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet. I'd suggest taking it slow, allowing the stories etched in stone to unfold as you meander.

Don't miss the iconic "Bird Girl" statue, although it now resides in the Telfair Museum for preservation due to its fame from the cover of "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." Nonetheless, there are plenty of other evocative statues and mausoleums to admire. For those a bit more adventurous, guided tours offer hidden anecdotes and historical insights that you wouldn't stumble upon on your own.

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And, if photography is a passion of yours, the cemetery provides a rich canvas of contrasts and textures, especially during the golden hours of sunrise and sunset when the light plays through branches and moss to create an ethereal setting. Remember, Bonaventure isn’t just a place to visit; it’s a place to experience—a living story where each visit adds a layer to your understanding of Savannah and its storied past.

Frequently asked questions

Bonaventure Cemetery is a public cemetery located on a scenic bluff of the Wilmington River, east of Savannah, Georgia. It became famous when it was featured in the novel 'Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil'.

Bonaventure Cemetery can be visited by the public, and it's open every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are guided tours available, or you can explore on your own.

No, there is no admission fee to visit Bonaventure Cemetery. It is free and open to the public.

Notable features of Bonaventure Cemetery include the historical statues and tombstones, the ornate mausoleums, and the peaceful, picturesque landscaping. It is also the final resting place of notable figures such as Johnny Mercer and Conrad Aiken.

Yes, visitors should respect the quiet nature of the site as it is a place of rest. There is no littering, and pets must be on leashes. It's recommended to stay on the paths and avoid touching or leaning on the headstones and monuments.

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Bonaventure Cemetery Tours

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Chevron down Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?

Yes, tickets must be purchased in advance. Our Bonaventure Cemetery tours often sell out so we suggest purchasing your tickets early to guarantee your desired tour day. Tickets may be booked online through FareHarbor with a Visa, MasterCard, or American Express, or by calling our office.

  • Chevron down Is the tour suitable for children, and what type of ticket should I purchase for a very young child?

The 10 a.m. or 2 p.m. tours are appropriate for all ages. Individual tickets are $25 each, and we also offer a military discount. Children three and under are free of charge.

  • Chevron down What if it rains?

Our tours go out rain or shine, so please dress accordingly!

  • Chevron down What is the difference between all of the 6th Sense World tours and events?

The Bonaventure Cemetery tours focus on history and symbolism, rather than scary/ghost stories. The Sixth Sense Savannah Ghost Tours, and The Midnight Tours cover different sections of the south side of the Historic District. The America’s Most Haunted City Tour visits the north side of the Historic District. The south side is more residential than the north side, which is somewhat more industrial.

Ultimately, each residence or property has its own unique story, so each tour – which stops at different locations – has different ghost stories. None of the walking tours in town will take you inside the properties, except our Friday night paranormal investigation event, Inside the Harper Fowlkes House Museum. We are one of the original tour companies in Savannah, being in business for more than 20 years now. We are responsible for the research and investigations that put many of the now famous places on the map! Truly, not just a tour, a Savannah Experience.

  • Chevron down How much walking is involved and what is the pace?

Bonaventure Cemetery is massive at over 150 acres. The two-hour duration of the tour takes you approximately a mile in distance. We walk at a leisurely pace and stop frequently to discuss interesting points along the way. We do recommend wearing comfortable walking shoes. We are the only tour company to offer lightweight, portable walking cane/seating upon request.

  • Chevron down Where does the tour take place?

The tour takes place at Bonaventure Cemetery, located at 330 Bonaventure Road, Savannah, GA 31404.

  • Chevron down Does the tour start and end at the same place?

Yes. The tour meets inside the Jewish Entrance near the concrete picnic tables with green umbrellas at the very front of the cemetery.

  • Chevron down Is transportation provided for the tour?

Guests are responsible for self-transportation to and from all tours.

  • Chevron down Are there bathrooms along the way?

Bathrooms are not available along the way. We heavily advise refreshing before your tour, however, an outdoor facility is on site and also available at our Welcome Center & Gift Shop at 415 Bonaventure Rd, just a half-block from the entrance of the Cemetery.

  • Chevron down Will locals enjoy the tour as well or is it mostly for tourists?

Absolutely! This tour not only provides more historical context and information about the city you live in, it’s also great entertainment. Additionally, the tour is an excellent way to entertain out-of-town guests, celebrate a special occasion, or encourage professional team building.

  • Chevron down Are the tours conducted in English only?

Yes, at the moment we can only offer tours in English, but you are welcome to arrange for an interpreter. Please note that if you are accompanied by an interpreter, they will need a full priced ticket.

  • Chevron down Is there anywhere to buy food or drinks along the way, and can I bring my own?

Bottled water is recommended to bring. We do offer simple refreshments (drinks/snacks) at our Welcome Center & Gift Shop at 415 Bonaventure Road, just a half-block from the Cemetery entrance.

  • Chevron down Can I bring alcohol on the tour?

Alcohol is not permitted on Cemetery property.

  • Chevron down Are cameras allowed on the tour?

Yes, cameras are permitted and we encourage you to take photos. However, video filming is prohibited without express prior permission of Bonaventure Cemetery.

  • Chevron down Does the tour guide accept gratuities?

Gratuities are not included in the ticket price, and are always appreciated for a job well done.

  • Chevron down Is the tour wheelchair and stroller accessible?

The tour is available for those with wheelchairs or strollers, however, some areas are gravel and sandy.

  • Chevron down Is there public parking available nearby?

Free parking is available at the Cemetery.

  • Chevron down Are dogs/pets allowed on the tour?

All pets, with the exception of trained service dogs, are prohibited on the tour.

  • Chevron down Is smoking allowed on the tour?

No, smoking is not permitted on the tour.

  • Chevron down Do you offer gift certificates?

Yes! Gift cards are available for purchase and make great gifts for family and friends. If you have any questions about purchasing or redeeming gift certificates, please contact us !

  • Chevron down Do you offer private tours?

Yes, private tours are available. To inquire about booking a private tour, please contact us !

  • Chevron down Proud Winners of TripAdvisor’s 2022 Travelers’ Choice Award!

This means we’re in the Top 10% of Attractions Worldwide! Thank you for your support and trust!

can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

Bonaventure Cemetery & Wormsloe Historic Site

Quick Details

  • Hour Glass Duration: 6 Hours
  • Users Ages: 3+ y/o

Tour of Historic Wormsloe Plantation & Bonaventure Cemetery before stopping at the famous Byrd Cookie Company!

Your day begins with a tour of Bonaventure Cemetery to learn about the lives of notable inhabitants like Academy Award-winning songwriter Johnny Mercer, Georgia’s first governor Edward Telfair, philanthropist Mary Telfair, as well as the tragic tales of poet Conrad Aiken and Gracie Watson. The Cemetery walking tour meanders under moss draped oaks and along the bluff of the Wilmington River. Bonaventure Cemetery, dating back to 1846, is one of the most beautiful cemeteries.

Following the cemetery tour, you will have lunch on your own at one of our favorite local restaurants.

Your visit to Wormsloe includes a breathtaking drive down the famous live oak tree lined drive. You will take a short walk to see the Plantation Tabby Ruins that date to the 18th Century and visit the museum of the Georgia State Park Historic Site. Finally, a stop is scheduled at the Famous Savannah Byrd Cookie Company headquarters for shopping and tastings of Byrd’s Famous Cookies. Key Lime, Bennie Bits and Cheddar Cheese are just of few of the favorites.

  • Chevron down Highlights
  • Tour of Byrd Cookie company
  • Tour of Bonaventure Cemetery
  • Lunch at Eric Davis Lowcountry Restaurant on your own
  • Visit to Wormsloe Plantation
  • Chevron down What’s Included
  • Mini-Bus Transfers to and from Savannah’s Historic District for the Wormsloe Historic Site & Bonaventure Cemetery
  • Admission into the Georgia State Park Wormsloe Historic Site and Bonaventure Cemetery
  • Chevron down What’s NOT Included
  • Cost of Lunch.
  • Gratuities for guides and driver.
  • Parking fees at Savannah Visitors Center *(FREE 1st hour & $2.00 each hour following)
  • Chevron down Know Before You Go
  • Part of this tour includes a walking tour
  • Minimum numbers apply. There is a possibility of cancellation after confirmation if there are not enough passengers to meet requirements. In the event of this occurring, you will be offered an alternative or full refund
  • Times are subject to change due to local traffic conditions.
  • Departs from both the Gray Line office at 223 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd

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The Savannah Underground: An Immersive Ghost Hunt

Prepare to experience a ghost tour like no other! Dive into the city’s dark past and end the tour in the exclusive Savannah Underground for a 40 minute immersive adventure that surrounds you with some of Savannah’s scariest history.

Bonaventure Historical Society

  • Spring Membership Drive
  • Special Events
  • You Should Know
  • Find A Plot
  • Volunteer Portal
  • Mobile Tour App

BEFORE YOU VISIT

What are the rules for visiting.

  • Stay in the pathways.  Plots are private areas and should be respected.  Zoom on your camera is a great way to see the monuments more closely.
  • Do not add or remove anything from a monument.  That’s easy when you’re respecting Rule 1.  Please DO NOT PUT ROCKS on any stone.  That is a beautiful Jewish tradition by Jewish families on loved-ones monuments.  It is very damaging and not appropriate outside that context.
  • It is illegal to bring alcohol or firearms into any of the city owned cemeteries.  Sorry, but it is not permissible to sit on Conrad Aiken’s bench with a bottle of wine.  Take a picture from the pathway as a memento.
  • Well-behaved children are welcome in Bonaventure.  This is still a cemetery and resting place for many families here in Savannah.  Please teach your children respect and reverence for cemeteries.  There should be no running, playing or loud noises.  Please show respect in space and volume to funerals that might be in progress during your visit.
  • Keep pets on a leash.  They should stay on the pathways and out of burial plots.  And of course, clean up after them.  Trash cans are scattered around the cemetery for easy bag disposal.
  • Do not litter.  This includes cigarette butts.  Trash cans can be found throughout the cemetery.  Do not interfere with plants or wildlife you may encounter.
  • Please park your car in designated areas.  If you must drive, please keep in mind that idling engines can be harmful to historical structures and turn your motor off when sitting.  Do not block pathways or park in a plot.  Do not park on heavily-traveled roads, especially Mullryne Way or Gracie’s lane.

Are there TOURS of Bonaventure Cemetery?

Yes.  There are paid walking, golf cart and Segway tours available through private tour operators.  You can find information for these through a web search.

Bonaventure Historical Society offers free tours to the public on the Second Weekend of every month.  Click HERE for the schedule.

With advanced reservations, Bonaventure Historical Society offers tours for non-profit groups and schools only with a minimum of 10 people.  All other guests can take advantage of the local tour companies for hire or download our app.  If you want to contact us to make a reservation for your non-profit group, click HERE .

Can I bring my DOG?

Yes.  Dogs must be on a leash and stay on the pathways with you.  And, unless your dog poops Miracle Grow, you must clean up after your dog.  There are trash cans throughout the cemetery for bag disposal.

Are there RESTROOMS at the cemetery?

Yes.  There are restrooms at the front by the entry gates.  There are no restrooms in the cemetery, so plan accordingly.

Is there PARKING at the cemetery?

Yes.  Parking is free.  There are a few small lots on the inside and outside of the small brick bathroom building.  Visitors are encouraged to park in the large parking lot by the river at the end of Mullryne Way.  Do not park on heavily-traveled roads, especially Mullryne Way or Gracie’s lane.

Are there BIKE RACKS at the cemetery?

Yes.  There is a bike rack about a quarter mile from the entrance down Mullryne Way.

Can we DRIVE through the cemetery?

Most of Bonaventure is accessible by car, but there are some sections or parts of sections that are explorable by foot only.  Please keep in mind that exhaust from cars is damaging to the stonework, so parking in a lot and walking is the healthiest way to help us maintain these priceless monuments.

Can we take PICTURES?

Yes, for personal use.  You are welcome to take all the pictures you like from the pathways.  The plots, iron work and stone work are privately owned and should be respected.

Professional shoots and filming for commercial use require registration with the Department of Cemeteries.  Click HERE for more information.

Can we make RUBBINGS?

No.  Rubbings are only allowed with written consent from the family that owns the monument.  You can see the rules and regulations for rubbings HERE .

Is Bonaventure WHEEL CHAIR accessible?

Some major roads are paved and there are sidewalks in a few places.  Most of the cemetery paths are dirt and gravel and may be difficult to navigate with wheel chairs.  We suggest exploring the tour options available that might maximize your visit with ease.

Is there a FEE to visit Bonaventure Cemetery?

No.  It is free to visit Bonaventure Cemetery.  The gates open at 8 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.

What are the visitation HOURS for Bonaventure?

The gates open at 8 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.

Bonaventure Cemetery is open 365 days a year.

Is there a GIFT SHOP?

Bonaventure Historical Society has maps for sale, but there is no actual gift shop.

Where is the BIRD GIRL?

“Little Wendy”, the Bird Girl statue made famous as the cover image of  Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil , resides at the Telfair Museum in Historic Savannah.

The statue was removed from Bonaventure shortly after the book was published in 1994 to protect Wendy from the throngs of visitors causing damage to her and the rest of the family’s plot.

We encourage you to visit the Telfair museums .

BHS & CEMETERY BUSINESS

Who do i contact about burials.

All cemetery business is managed by the City of Savannah’s Department of Cemeteries.

You can call the Cemetery office at 912-651-6843 for any cemetery questions or needs.

You can find more information on the department’s website at Cemeteries | Savannah, GA – Official Website (savannahga.gov) .

Who do I contact about MAINTENANCE of a plot?

Who do i contact about burial records, how can i find a grave site.

A grave finder kiosk is on the side porch of the big brick office building.

You can also find the same information at the City’s grave finder site at  savannah.cemsites.com .

How can I become a MEMBER of BHS?

Quite easily.  Just go to our Membership page HERE or call us at 912-412-4687 .

How can I DONATE to BHS?

Donations are so important to Bonaventure Historical Society.  We are a non-profit that raises funds to help preserve, repair and maintain priceless monuments so current and future generations can enjoy them while they are still standing.

We currently accept Paypal donations via our website HERE .  You can also call us 912-412-4687 for alternate ways to donate.

Where do the BHS TOURS start?

The free Second Weekend tours begin inside the cemetery at Colonial Garden about a quarter mile from the office at the intersection of Mullryne Way and Wiltberger Way.  But we’ve made it easy for you…just follow the blue signs.

Non-profit and school group tours will meet at the pre-arranged location per group.

The private tour companies meet at different places.  Call your tour company to ask where you should meet your guide.

Why do people leave ROCKS on the monuments?

It is a very old Jewish tradition of showing visitation.  HOWEVER…it is only appropriate on a Jewish stone.

Rocks are very abrasive and damaging, to old marble especially.  No one is allowed in the plots but family.  People THINK they’re doing something respectful, but they don’t realize that they are trespassing and causing damage to other families’ property.

Take a picture and leave nothing behind but good thoughts.

How do we schedule a WEDDING at Bonaventure?

Bonaventure and her sister cemetery, Greenwich, are popular places for weddings with the ancient oaks, Spanish moss and abundance of colorful flowers.

If you are interested in having your wedding at one of our cemeteries, contact the Department of Cemeteries at 912-651-6843 .

How do we schedule a PHOTO SHOOT or other event?

What does bhs mean.

Bonaventure Historical Society

If this page has not answered your question, please CONTACT US .

Savannah Segway

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour

Quick Details

  • Hour Glass Duration: 90 Minutes

Explore a Stunning Piece of Savannah History

Your eyes are sure to gravitate to the romantic influences of the Victorian era and be fascinated by the Southern Gothic representation. As you glide through the fabulous live oaks and wonderfully dangling Spanish moss, listen closely. You might just hear Johnny Mercer’s “Moon River” traveling through the breeze. The Segways and electric bikes provide an intimate way to connect to the character of this heavenly place.

What was once an 18th-century plantation owned by Savannah’s influential Tattnall family is now a beautiful Victorian garden that we all know as Savannah, Georgia’s Bonaventure Cemetery. Resting peacefully along the beautiful Wilmington River and surrounded by centuries-old live oaks you can find some of Savannah’s most amazing sculptures, stonework, and cast iron art. Touring Bonaventure Cemetery with one of our skilled tour guides gives you a special insight into the symbolism of this grand Victorian garden and place of eternal rest.

  • Chevron down Cancellation Policy

Customers will receive a full refund with 48 hours’ notice of cancellation. Customers will also receive a full refund in case of operator cancellation due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. Contact us by phone to cancel or inquire about a cancellation. No-shows will be charged the full price.

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Discover The Best Way To Explore The East Coast Of America

  • Last updated May 24, 2024
  • Difficulty Beginner

Duke Trotter

  • Category Travel

how to travel the east coast of america

Are you ready to embark on an unforgettable journey along the captivating East Coast of America? From the bustling streets of New York City to the historical landmarks of Washington D.C., and the sun-soaked beaches of Miami, the East Coast offers an incredible array of sights, sounds, and experiences. Whether you're a culture enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking adventure, the East Coast will exceed all of your expectations. Join us as we uncover the best way to explore this extraordinary stretch of coastline, immersing ourselves in the rich history, vibrant cities, and stunning landscapes that define the East Coast of America. So, fasten your seatbelts and get ready for an unforgettable adventure of a lifetime!

What You'll Learn

Introduction to traveling the east coast of america, must-see cities and attractions along the east coast, tips for planning your itinerary and navigating transportation options, hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path experiences along the east coast.

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The East Coast of the United States offers a diverse array of experiences for travelers, from bustling cities to serene beaches and stunning national parks. Whether you're a history buff, a nature lover, or a food connoisseur, there are endless opportunities to explore and immerse yourself in the culture of this vibrant region. In this guide, we'll provide you with an introduction to traveling the East Coast of America, including tips for planning your trip, must-visit destinations, and some hidden gems along the way.

Before setting off on your East Coast adventure, it's essential to do some research and plan your itinerary. The East Coast stretches over 2,000 miles, so it's wise to focus on specific regions or states to make the most of your time. Here are some popular destinations to consider:

  • New York City: Start your journey in the Big Apple, where you can soak in the energy of Times Square, stroll through Central Park, and visit world-famous attractions like the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building.
  • Boston: Immerse yourself in American history in the birthplace of the American Revolution. Walk the Freedom Trail, visit Fenway Park, and indulge in some clam chowder at Quincy Market.
  • Philadelphia: Explore this historic city and see the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, famous for its "Rocky Steps."
  • Washington, D.C.: Discover the heart of American politics and visit iconic landmarks like the White House, the United States Capitol, and the Smithsonian museums.
  • Charleston: Experience southern charm in this historic city, where you can wander through picturesque streets lined with colorful antebellum houses and sample traditional Lowcountry cuisine.
  • Miami: Enjoy the vibrant nightlife, stunning beaches, and diverse cultural scene of the Magic City. Don't forget to explore the Art Deco architecture in the iconic South Beach neighborhood.

As you plan your itinerary, consider incorporating some hidden gems along the East Coast. For example:

  • Asheville, North Carolina: Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville offers a unique blend of art, culture, and outdoor experiences. Explore the Biltmore Estate, hike through the Pisgah National Forest, and sample craft beer at the city's many breweries.
  • Savannah, Georgia: Known for its oak-lined streets, charming squares, and historic architecture, Savannah is the epitome of Southern hospitality. Take a stroll along River Street, visit the Bonaventure Cemetery, and indulge in traditional Southern cuisine.
  • Acadia National Park, Maine: For nature enthusiasts, a visit to Acadia National Park is a must. Hike to the top of Cadillac Mountain, bike along the scenic carriage roads, and explore the picturesque coastal villages.

Once you have finalized your itinerary, it's time to consider transportation options. The East Coast is well-connected by air, with several major airports serving the region. If you prefer a more leisurely approach, consider renting a car or taking advantage of the extensive train and bus networks.

Accommodation options abound along the East Coast, ranging from luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels and cozy bed and breakfasts. Consider staying in city centers to maximize your time exploring, or venture out to smaller towns and countryside for a more relaxed experience.

Lastly, make sure to pack accordingly for your East Coast adventure. The climate varies along the coast, so it's wise to pack layers and be prepared for both warm and cool temperatures. Don't forget essentials like comfortable shoes, sunscreen, and a camera to capture all the memorable moments.

Whether you're traveling for a week or a month, exploring the East Coast of America promises to be an unforgettable experience. From the iconic sights of New York City to the pristine beaches of the Outer Banks, each destination offers something unique. So get ready to hit the road, immerse yourself in history and culture, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

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Are you planning a trip to the East Coast of America? With its rich history, diverse culture, and stunning natural beauty, there's no shortage of must-see cities and attractions to explore. Whether you're a history buff, a beach lover, or a city slicker, there's something for everyone along this vibrant coast. Here are a few destinations that you absolutely can't miss:

  • Boston, Massachusetts: Start your East Coast adventure in the charming city of Boston. Explore the historic Freedom Trail, visit the renowned Harvard University, and catch a ballgame at Fenway Park. Don't forget to indulge in some delicious seafood at the famous Quincy Market.
  • New York City, New York: No trip to the East Coast is complete without a visit to the Big Apple. Take a stroll through Central Park, visit iconic landmarks like the Statue of Liberty and Times Square, and immerse yourself in the city's vibrant arts and culture scene.
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Immerse yourself in American history in Philadelphia, the birthplace of the United States. Explore Independence National Historical Park, home to the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed. Don't forget to try a mouthwatering Philly cheesesteak while you're in town.
  • Washington, D.C.: Take a trip to the nation's capital and marvel at iconic landmarks like the White House, the Capitol Building, and the Lincoln Memorial. Explore the world-class museums on the National Mall, including the Smithsonian Institution, and take a scenic boat ride along the Potomac River.
  • Charleston, South Carolina: Experience Southern charm at its finest in Charleston. Stroll through the historic district, visit stunning plantations like Boone Hall, and indulge in delicious Lowcountry cuisine. Don't miss the breathtaking views from the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.
  • Miami, Florida: For a taste of the tropics, head down to Miami. Relax on the beautiful beaches of South Beach, explore the vibrant Art Deco District, and sample delicious Cuban cuisine in Little Havana. Make sure to check out the colorful street art in the Wynwood Walls neighborhood.
  • Savannah, Georgia: Step back in time in the enchanting city of Savannah. Take a guided tour through the city's historic squares, visit the hauntingly beautiful Bonaventure Cemetery, and indulge in some delicious Southern comfort food. Don't miss the breathtaking views from the iconic Tybee Island Light Station.
  • Outer Banks, North Carolina: For a beach getaway like no other, head to the Outer Banks. Explore the beautiful Cape Hatteras National Seashore, visit the iconic Bodie Island Lighthouse, and try your hand at water sports like surfing and kayaking. Don't forget to sample some fresh local seafood.

No matter where your interests lie, the East Coast of America has something to offer. From historic cities to stunning beaches, you're sure to create unforgettable memories along this diverse and vibrant coast. So pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready to explore the best of the East Coast.

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Planning a trip to the East Coast of America? You're in for an amazing adventure! From bustling cities to picturesque beaches and historical landmarks, this region has something for everyone. To make the most of your journey, it's important to plan your itinerary and navigate transportation options wisely. Here are our top tips to help you along the way:

  • Research and prioritize your destinations: With so many amazing places to visit, it's crucial to research and prioritize your must-see destinations. Whether you want to explore the concrete jungle of New York City, relax on the beaches of Miami, or soak in the history of Boston, make a list of your top choices and plan your itinerary accordingly.
  • Consider the duration of your trip: The East Coast stretches over 2,000 miles, so keep in mind the duration of your trip when planning your itinerary. If you have limited time, focus on exploring a few key cities or states rather than trying to cover the entire coast.
  • Plan your transportation: The East Coast offers several transportation options to help you navigate the long distances between cities. Depending on your preference and budget, you can choose between flying, driving, or using public transportation.
  • Flying: If you're short on time or prefer to cover longer distances quickly, flying is a convenient option. The major cities along the East Coast have well-connected airports, making it easy to hop from one destination to another.
  • Driving: Renting a car gives you the freedom to explore at your own pace and venture off the beaten path. Just keep in mind that traffic can be heavy in urban areas, so plan your driving routes accordingly.
  • Public transportation: The East Coast has a well-established public transportation network, including trains, buses, and subways. Amtrak is a popular train service that connects major cities, while Greyhound buses offer affordable and convenient transportation options.
  • Take advantage of regional transportation passes: If you plan to use public transportation extensively, consider purchasing regional transportation passes. For example, the Northeast Regional Pass from Amtrak allows you to travel to multiple cities in the Northeast region at a discounted rate.
  • Pack comfortable walking shoes: Exploring the East Coast often involves a lot of walking, especially in cities like New York and Boston. Make sure to pack comfortable walking shoes to keep your feet happy as you explore the streets.
  • Check the weather and pack accordingly: The East Coast experiences distinct seasons, so it's important to check the weather forecast for your travel dates and pack accordingly. Summers can be hot and humid, while winters can be cold and snowy. Be prepared for varying weather conditions by packing layers and appropriate clothing.
  • Allow for flexibility in your itinerary: While it's important to have a planned itinerary, allow for some flexibility in case you come across unexpected detours or find hidden gems along the way. Leave room for spontaneous adventures and don't be afraid to deviate from your original plan.
  • Research and book accommodations in advance: The East Coast is a popular tourist destination, so it's wise to research and book accommodations in advance, especially during peak travel seasons. Consider options like hotels, vacation rentals, or even camping depending on your preferences and budget.

By following these tips, you'll be well-prepared to plan your itinerary and navigate transportation options for your East Coast adventure. Get ready to create unforgettable memories as you explore the vibrant cities, stunning beaches, and rich history of this diverse region. Happy travels!

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The East Coast of America is filled with well-known tourist destinations such as New York City, Washington D.C., and Miami. While these cities have their own charm, there are also plenty of hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path experiences to discover along the East Coast. If you're looking to explore beyond the typical tourist spots, here are some hidden gems you won't want to miss:

Assateague Island, Maryland/Virginia

Located on the coasts of Maryland and Virginia, Assateague Island is a hidden gem known for its wild ponies and pristine beaches. Spend a day exploring the island's trails, where you can catch glimpses of herons, ospreys, and other wildlife. Don't forget to relax on the secluded beaches and swim in the clear waters. Camping is also available on the island, allowing you to experience the island's true beauty.

Savannah, Georgia

While Savannah is not necessarily unknown, it offers a unique Southern charm that is often overlooked by tourists flocking to larger cities. Take a stroll through the city's historic district, lined with beautiful oak trees and grand Southern mansions. Make sure to visit the Bonaventure Cemetery, made famous by the novel "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." You can also explore the River Street area, filled with shops, restaurants, and picturesque views of the Savannah River.

Cape May, New Jersey

Known for its Victorian architecture and beautiful beaches, Cape May is a hidden gem on the New Jersey coastline. Take a guided tour of the historic Victorian homes or rent a bike to explore the city at your own pace. Spend a day lounging on the pristine beaches and enjoy the calmness that Cape May offers compared to the crowded beaches of other East Coast destinations.

Beaufort, South Carolina

Nestled on the coast of South Carolina, Beaufort is a charming town steeped in history and Southern hospitality. Take a leisurely stroll along its historic streets and admire the well-preserved antebellum homes. Visit the Penn Center, one of the nation's first schools for freed slaves, and learn about the town's deep roots in African-American history. You can also take a boat tour to explore the nearby Sea Islands and their unique Gullah culture.

Block Island, Rhode Island

Located just off the coast of Rhode Island, Block Island is a hidden gem known for its untouched natural beauty. Explore the island's walking trails and take in the stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. Don't miss the iconic Southeast Lighthouse, perched on the island's bluffs, offering panoramic views. Relax on the island's secluded beaches and enjoy the peacefulness of this hidden gem.

These are just a few examples of the hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path experiences you can discover along the East Coast of America. Whether you're seeking beautiful beaches, historical sites, or unique cultural experiences, there is something for everyone to enjoy. So next time you plan a trip along the East Coast, don't forget to venture off the well-trodden path and discover these hidden gems for yourself.

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Frequently asked questions.

When planning your itinerary for the East Coast of America, it's important to consider your interests, the time you have available, and the distance between cities and attractions. Start by researching the major cities and landmarks along the coast, such as New York City, Washington D.C., Boston, and Miami. Make a list of the places you'd like to see and allocate an appropriate amount of time for each location. Consider the transportation options available, such as renting a car, taking a train, or utilizing public transportation. It's also essential to account for travel time and any necessary reservations or tickets for specific attractions.

The East Coast of America boasts numerous must-see attractions. Some popular options include Times Square and Central Park in New York City, the National Mall and museums in Washington D.C., the historical sites in Boston, the beaches and nightlife in Miami, and the theme parks in Orlando. Other notable attractions include the historic districts in Charleston, the colonial Williamsburg in Virginia, the lighthouses along the coast of Maine, and the beautiful beaches of the Outer Banks in North Carolina. These are just a few examples, and there are many more attractions to explore along the East Coast.

Traveling the East Coast of America can be expensive, but there are ways to save money. Start by researching and comparing prices for accommodations, flights, and transportation options. Consider staying in budget-friendly accommodations such as hostels, budget hotels, or vacation rentals. Look for deals and discounts on attractions, museums, and activities, and consider visiting during the off-peak season when prices are typically lower. Save on food expenses by eating at local eateries or markets instead of expensive restaurants, and consider packing some snacks for long travel days. Lastly, consider using public transportation or walking instead of expensive taxis or car rentals when exploring cities.

It is generally recommended to book accommodations in advance when traveling the East Coast of America. This is especially true during peak tourist seasons, major holidays, or when there are special events happening in the cities you plan to visit. Booking in advance allows you to secure the best prices and ensures that you have a place to stay. However, if you prefer flexibility or are traveling during the off-peak season, you may be able to find last-minute deals or book accommodations on the go. Keep in mind that this approach may limit your options, particularly in popular tourist destinations.

The best time to travel the East Coast of America depends on personal preferences and the activities you plan to engage in. Summers (June to August) are popular due to warm weather, but they can also be crowded and more expensive. Spring (March to May) and fall (September to November) offer milder temperatures, fewer tourists, and lower prices. Winter (December to February) is a quieter time to visit, but some attractions, especially outdoor sites, may have reduced hours or be closed. When deciding on the best time, consider your desired activities, budget, and tolerance for crowds, and research seasonal events or festivals that may interest you.

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Wealth of Geeks

Wealth of Geeks

The Best Things To Do in Savannah, GA

Posted: February 20, 2024 | Last updated: February 20, 2024

<p>Stepping into Savannah is like walking through the pages of history. It is touted as America’s first planned city, masterminded by General James Oglethorpe in 1733. It sets the stage for an enchanting vacation filled with public squares, a mix of historic buildings of different bygone eras, manicured parks, and horse-drawn carriages. It’s where every cobblestone whispers stories of the past, making it not just Georgia’s oldest city but also one of the most alluring destinations in the South. If you’re looking for things to do in Savannah, you have plenty of options.</p>

Stepping into Savannah is like walking through the pages of history. It is touted as America’s first planned city, masterminded by General James Oglethorpe in 1733. It sets the stage for an enchanting vacation filled with public squares, a mix of historic buildings of different bygone eras, manicured parks, and horse-drawn carriages. It’s where every cobblestone whispers stories of the past, making it not just Georgia’s oldest city but also one of the most alluring destinations in the South. If you’re looking for things to do in Savannah, you have plenty of options.

<p><span>The best way to get a feel for the <a href="https://wealthofgeeks.com/trend-alert-the-14-cities-drawing-millennials-like-a-magnet/">city</a> is to book a walking tour of the Historic District. This area is known for its beautiful 18th and 19th-century architecture, cobblestone streets, and lush squares. Savannah holds one of the largest National Historic Landmark Districts in the US. </span><span>Most often, your guide will be a resident and knowledgeable about the area, being able to share stories about past residents and historical events. Guides can also recommend places to eat and what to see next. </span></p><p><span>If you’d rather have a more leisurely pace, try one of the trolley tours, which offer hop-on and hop-off service, and the driver acts as your tour guide. </span><span>Expect to pay around $30 per person for each of these tours.</span></p>

Take a Historic District Tour

The best way to get a feel for the city is to book a walking tour of the Historic District. This area is known for its beautiful 18th and 19th-century architecture, cobblestone streets, and lush squares. Savannah holds one of the largest National Historic Landmark Districts in the US. Most often, your guide will be a resident and knowledgeable about the area, being able to share stories about past residents and historical events. Guides can also recommend places to eat and what to see next.

If you’d rather have a more leisurely pace, try one of the trolley tours, which offer hop-on and hop-off service, and the driver acts as your tour guide.  Expect to pay around $30 per person for each of these tours.

<p>Savannah is home to plenty of international cuisines and local favorites. However, if you are here for the Southern cooking, you’re in for a treat. Must-tries are local shrimp and grits, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken and waffles, and Savannah Red Rice. If you want to combine history, beer, and food in one location, check out <a href="https://www.crystalbeerparlor.com/index.html">The Crystal Beer Parlour.</a> It has locally brewed beer, tasty Southern and American treats, and a restaurant operating since the early 1930s. </p><p>For homestyle Southern cooking and hospitality, try <a href="https://mrswilkes.com/">Mrs Wilkes Dining Room</a>. This eatery features large tables where guests can make new friends while dining with strangers. This is great for solo travelers who may feel awkward dining alone. The menu changes daily, but you can expect staples like fried chicken, okra and tomatoes, butter beans, and collard greens. </p>

Try Some Southern Cooking

Savannah is home to plenty of international cuisines and local favorites. However, if you are here for the Southern cooking, you’re in for a treat. Must-tries are local shrimp and grits, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken and waffles, and Savannah Red Rice. If you want to combine history, beer, and food in one location, check out The Crystal Beer Parlour. It has locally brewed beer, tasty Southern and American treats, and a restaurant operating since the early 1930s. 

For homestyle Southern cooking and hospitality, try Mrs Wilkes Dining Room . This eatery features large tables where guests can make new friends while dining with strangers. This is great for solo travelers who may feel awkward dining alone. The menu changes daily, but you can expect staples like fried chicken, okra and tomatoes, butter beans, and collard greens. 

<p><span>Savannah has numerous beautiful squares, but this one stands out for a few unique reasons. Notably, it served as a backdrop in the 1997 film </span><em><span>Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil</span></em><span>, starring Kevin Spacey and John Cusack, an adaptation of John Berendt’s novel. Encircling the monument dedicated to Casimir Pulaski, the square features meticulously maintained gardens and serene oak trees adorned with Spanish moss. Additionally, the surrounding structures are among Savannah’s oldest, dating back to the 1800s, adding a historical charm to the area.</span></p><p><span>Mercer House, built in 1868, is now heavily associated with Berendt’s work. However, the strange stories surrounding the historic home are not fictional. This location has witnessed at least three premature deaths. These include the tragic incident in 1969 when 11-year-old Tommy Downs fell from the roof, the 1981 incident where Jim Williams—the current owner at the time—allegedly shot Danny Hansford, his employee, and the death of Williams himself of pneumonia and heart failure, a year after he was acquitted of the crime. Visitors can tour the house, and it’s the subject of many ghost tours in the area.</span></p>

Visit Mercer Williams House Museum and Monterey Square

Savannah has numerous beautiful squares, but this one stands out for a few unique reasons. Notably, it served as a backdrop in the 1997 film  Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil , starring Kevin Spacey and John Cusack, an adaptation of John Berendt’s novel. Encircling the monument dedicated to Casimir Pulaski, the square features meticulously maintained gardens and serene oak trees adorned with Spanish moss. Additionally, the surrounding structures are among Savannah’s oldest, dating back to the 1800s, adding a historical charm to the area.

Mercer House, built in 1868, is now heavily associated with Berendt’s work. However, the strange stories surrounding the historic home are not fictional. This location has witnessed at least three premature deaths. These include the tragic incident in 1969 when 11-year-old Tommy Downs fell from the roof, the 1981 incident where Jim Williams—the current owner at the time—allegedly shot Danny Hansford, his employee, and the death of Williams himself of pneumonia and heart failure, a year after he was acquitted of the crime. Visitors can tour the house, and it’s the subject of many ghost tours in the area.

<p><span>When it comes to Gothic Southern beauty and charm, the Bonaventure Cemetery is the epitome of the aesthetic. Its captivating beauty and elaborate tombstones provide a glimpse into the historical heart of Savannah. Located three miles from the Savannah, it’s well worth the trip. Admission is free. </span></p><p><span>The </span><a class="editor-rtfLink" href="https://www.bonaventurehistorical.org/" rel="noopener"><span>Bonaventure Historical Society</span></a><span> offers free tours on the second Saturday of the month. You can also use the mobile app to tour by yourself. There is also a daily paid guided </span><a class="editor-rtfLink" href="https://bonaventurecemeterytours.com/" rel="noopener"><span>tour</span></a><span> by an experienced guide where you can learn about the history of the 170-year-old cemetery and listen to associated haunted tales. It runs at 10 am and 2 pm daily and costs $30.</span></p>

Walk Through Bonaventure Cemetery

When it comes to Gothic Southern beauty and charm, the Bonaventure Cemetery is the epitome of the aesthetic. Its captivating beauty and elaborate tombstones provide a glimpse into the historical heart of Savannah. Located three miles from the Savannah, it’s well worth the trip. Admission is free. 

The  Bonaventure Historical Society  offers free tours on the second Saturday of the month. You can also use the mobile app to tour by yourself. There is also a daily paid guided  tour  by an experienced guide where you can learn about the history of the 170-year-old cemetery and listen to associated haunted tales. It runs at 10 am and 2 pm daily and costs $30.

<p>Collectively, we brand those aged 25 to 44 as millennials and often assign this group a set of characteristics as if they were a monolith. While the millennial generation is, in fact, a group of distinct, independent-minded individuals, many of them share common traits and values. This is important when we consider that millennials are moving to certain cities in large numbers.</p> <p>A group of SmartAsset researchers determined the percentage of millennials that represent new arrivals in certain cities. Here are the top cities drawing millennials.</p>

See Forsyth Park

For nature lovers, Forsyth Park is one of the top things to do in Savannah. This large city park covers 30 acres. It is famous for its winding walking paths, shady spots perfect for picnics beneath the majestic oaks, and the iconic fountain built in 1858. The fountain is meant to imitate the fountains at the Place de la Concorde in Paris. You’ll also find two children’s playgrounds and a fragrant garden created for blind people.

<p>Summer in the south can be swelteringly hot, so one of the best ways to do things in Savannah is via the water. You have several choices. <a href="https://savannahriverboat.com/">Savannah Riverboat Cruises</a> offers two historic paddle steamers with various tour options, including traditional Southern fare at their brunch or dinner cruises, plus Gospel and sunset cruises. For a more modern option, Savannah Harbor Cruises offers a Dolphin Eco Tour and a Port Tour.</p>

Try One of Its Water Tours

Summer in the south can be swelteringly hot, so one of the best ways to do things in Savannah is via the water. You have several choices. Savannah Riverboat Cruises offers two historic paddle steamers with various tour options, including traditional Southern fare at their brunch or dinner cruises, plus Gospel and sunset cruises. For a more modern option, Savannah Harbor Cruises offers a Dolphin Eco Tour and a Port Tour.

<p>Over a century ago, you would have seen cotton warehouses forming the vista of River Street. Today, these buildings have been converted into a fun mix of boutiques, antique stores, art galleries, breweries, and restaurants, creating a vibrant hub for locals and visitors.</p><p>Sitting in one of the eateries here, you can look out over the river on the warm summer nights and marvel at the paddle steamers or people-watch with a glass of cool iced tea.</p>

Walk Down River Street

Over a century ago, you would have seen cotton warehouses forming the vista of River Street. Today, these buildings have been converted into a fun mix of boutiques, antique stores, art galleries, breweries, and restaurants, creating a vibrant hub for locals and visitors.

Sitting in one of the eateries here, you can look out over the river on the warm summer nights and marvel at the paddle steamers or people-watch with a glass of cool iced tea.

<p>City Market spans four blocks and comprises nineteen refurbished warehouses. It is a unique center for social and commercial interactions in the core of Savannah’s Historic District. It embodies the Savannah experience, serving as downtown’s vibrant and historic hub, where commerce, creativity, and community converge.</p>

Visit Savannah City Market

City Market spans four blocks and comprises nineteen refurbished warehouses. It is a unique center for social and commercial interactions in the core of Savannah’s Historic District. It embodies the Savannah experience, serving as downtown’s vibrant and historic hub, where commerce, creativity, and community converge.

<p>Like <a href="https://wealthofgeeks.com/things-to-do-with-friends-in-new-orleans/">New Orleans</a>, Savannah is one of the top haunted cities in the US. You can expect to hear the history and stories of the inhabitants who once lived here. You’ll find ghost tours in just about every city and town the world over, but in places steeped in history like Savannah, you can expect a lot of options. Therefore, it depends on what sort of tour you prefer.</p><p>Walking tours offer a more personal approach, but if you’re not a fan of walking or are limited on time, there’s the Haunted Hearse Tour and Haunted Trolley tours. The pros of the latter are that your group size is limited and you don’t have to crowd on pavements to hear someone speak. Some of the walking tours allow very large groups and will hand out earphones for you to listen to the guide. If you’d rather have a more personalized experience, try <a href="https://travelcurious.com/united-states/savannah/">Travel Curious</a> or <a href="https://savannahtoursandtales.com/">Savannah Tours and Tales</a>.</p>

Attend Some Ghost Tours

Like New Orleans , Savannah is one of the top haunted cities in the US. You can expect to hear the history and stories of the inhabitants who once lived here. You’ll find ghost tours in just about every city and town the world over, but in places steeped in history like Savannah, you can expect a lot of options. Therefore, it depends on what sort of tour you prefer.

Walking tours offer a more personal approach, but if you’re not a fan of walking or are limited on time, there’s the Haunted Hearse Tour and Haunted Trolley tours. The pros of the latter are that your group size is limited and you don’t have to crowd on pavements to hear someone speak. Some of the walking tours allow very large groups and will hand out earphones for you to listen to the guide. If you’d rather have a more personalized experience, try Travel Curious or Savannah Tours and Tales .

<p>The Savannah Theatre dates to 1818 and lays claim to some famous performers, including Oscar Wilde and W. C. Fields.  In the ’50s, it was turned into a movie theater. Today, it still operates as a working theatre with stage productions such as <em>Jersey Boys</em> and <em>Fiddler on the Roof. </em>Recently, it was featured on The Travel Channel’s paranormal show compliments of the ghostly activity in the building.  </p><p>The Lucas Theatre was built as a movie house in the 1920s. The exterior of the building is Spanish Baroque Revival, while the interior is a combination of Art Deco and Greek Revival. It was one of the first public buildings in the US to have air conditioning in 1926<span>—</span>something that is very welcome in Savannah summers. In the ’70s, it was set to be demolished, but it was finally saved and restored in the ’80s by the newly formed Lucas Theatre for the Arts. Today, it is home to movies and many live performances. </p><p><strong>More Travel from Wealth of Geeks</strong></p><ul> <li><a href="https://wealthofgeeks.com/every-national-park-in-the-united-states/">Every National Park in the US</a></li> <li><a href="https://wealthofgeeks.com/beautiful-places-in-west-virginia/">The Most Beautiful Places in West Virginia</a></li> </ul>

Check Out Savannah Theatre and Lucas Theatre

The Savannah Theatre dates to 1818 and lays claim to some famous performers, including Oscar Wilde and W. C. Fields.  In the ’50s, it was turned into a movie theater. Today, it still operates as a working theatre with stage productions such as Jersey Boys and Fiddler on the Roof.  Recently, it was featured on The Travel Channel’s paranormal show compliments of the ghostly activity in the building.  

The Lucas Theatre was built as a movie house in the 1920s. The exterior of the building is Spanish Baroque Revival, while the interior is a combination of Art Deco and Greek Revival. It was one of the first public buildings in the US to have air conditioning in 1926 — something that is very welcome in Savannah summers. In the ’70s, it was set to be demolished, but it was finally saved and restored in the ’80s by the newly formed Lucas Theatre for the Arts. Today, it is home to movies and many live performances. 

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<p>Discussions about places to visit in Montenegro tend to begin with Kotor, and it is easy to see why. Kotor packs plenty into its relatively small borders, with a proud maritime history allied to modern cafes, restaurants, and bars, plus some of the most alluring churches in this part of the world. Stop for a romantic courtyard lunch at Pržun before taking the arduous walk up to the fortress walls, where the ultimate view of the Bay of Kotor awaits.</p>

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25 Best Spring Break Destinations For Families: Let’s Create Lasting Memories

Spring break is the perfect time for families to escape everyday routines and spend quality time together in a new setting. However, choosing a destination that keeps kids and parents happy can be challenging. 

This article explores the best spring break destinations for families , highlighting activities and things to see for a fun and memorable getaway. Let’s dive into the details!

  • Orlando, Florida
  • San Diego, California
  • Washington D.C
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina/Tennessee
  • Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
  • Sequoia National Park, California
  • Maui, Hawaii
  • Virgin Beach, Virginia
  • The Bahamas
  • Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
  • Outer Banks, North Carolina
  • San Antonio, Texas
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Sedona, Arizona
  • Coronado, California
  • Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  •  Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • Miami, Florida
  • Nashville, Tennessee
  • San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Lake Tahoe, Nevada
  • Deer Valley, Park City, Utah

1. Orlando, Florida

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Orlando offers several world-class theme parks, including Walt Disney World Resort. Photo by Quick PS on Unsplash

The first candidate in the spring break destinations for families in Orlando. The city delivers non-stop entertainment from famous theme parks that every kid dreams of. 

Most notable is the Walt Disney World , which offers four massive parks - Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. Meanwhile, Universal Studios keeps kids engaged with rides based on Harry Potter and Marvel superheroes. Over at SeaWorld , families can see killer whale shows and learn about marine life. 

When you need a break, explore interactive science or art museums beyond theme parks and water parks. Don't miss the diverse restaurants serving dishes like beignets or pineapple whips (pro tip: book ahead for characters' dining). 

After a day on their feet, kids will sleep soundly at Orlando's Sunshine Resort, a welcome respite from winter's chill. The luxury resorts offer activities galore: fishing, boating, and mini golf.

2. San Diego, California

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

San Diego is perfect for beach bums. Photo by Sean Mullowney on Unsplash

San Diego does have miles of coastline and is great for beach lovers. Some of the best beaches include La Jolla Shores, Coronado Central Beach, and Mission Beach. La Jolla Shores is perfect for families with its gentle waves, lifeguards, and amenities.

Moreover, La Jolla's tide pools are popular for seeing sea stars, anemones and other marine life when the tide goes out. Good walking shoes are recommended when exploring the tide pools.

3. Washington D.C

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The bustling Washington D.C. is one of the favourite family spring break destinations. Photo by Jorge Alcala on Unsplash

Washington D.C. bursts with family-friendly adventures during spring break. An unmissable event is the National Cherry Blossom Festival , held annually from late March to mid-April. Families can enjoy a picnic lunch beneath the blossoming canopies, and take scenic boat rides on the Tidal Basin. 

Interactive museums like the National Air, Space Museum , and the National Museum of American History make for a fun and educational experience.

Families with older children may opt for after-hours flashlight tours and scavenger hunts at historic sites like the Library of Congress . Iconic sites like the Lincoln Memorial , the Washington Monument , and the U.S. Capitol Building are also within walking distance.

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

4. Charleston, South Carolina

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Such a unique place to come, right? Photo by Leonel Heisenberg on Unsplash

You are going to love Charleston - from the moment you come here, you'll feel the Southern hospitality. It easily earns a place among the top Spring Break destinations for families. Spring in Charleston boasts pleasant temperatures, typically ranging from the low 70s to mid-80s Fahrenheit.

The kids will have a blast at Middleton Place Gardens . In the afternoon, head to their stableyard for hands-on activities like grooming and feeding the horses.

As the weather warms up, nothing beats spending the day at Isle of Palms or Sullivan's Island . The soft white sand and ocean views are so relaxing. Keep an eye out for sea turtles nesting, too - it's just the best way to unwind.

5. Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina/Tennessee

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Will you try to go fishing at a waterfall? Photo by Delaney Van on Unsplash

If you admire the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains , visit the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. With more than 800 miles of winding trails and noisy waterfalls, you can completely relax and observe the movements of nature.

Cades Cove Loop with historic structures and grazing deer, or conquer the more challenging Clingmans Dome for panoramic views. Nearby cities like Gatlinburg have family-friendly resorts and activities like riverboat rides.

Of course, the best time to come here is always spring, when the leaves of the lush green forest surround you while your feet are dotted with wildflowers and birds returning from their migration towards the North.

6. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

A scene of the iconic Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park. Photo by Mark Lotterhand on stock.adobe.com

We have the perfect national park adventure for you! Yellowstone is simply breathtaking in the early spring months. You'll get to experience the geothermal wonders with far fewer crowds.

Geyser watching is a must - keep an eye out for Old Faithful 's regular eruptions. And don't miss the beautiful rainbow colours of places like Grand Prismatic Spring . Wildlife may be harder to spot since it's calving season, but you have a good chance of seeing newborn baby bison with their mothers on the plains.

When you need a break from all the natural beauty, you can try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing through the lightly powdered forests. Afterwards, cosy lodges nearby provide a warm retreat with hot drinks by the fire.

The weather can be cold and icy this time of year, so bundling up is key. But it's worth it for amazing sights like Mammoth Hot Springs ' mineral terraces. You'll have Yellowstone mostly to yourselves in the spring shoulder season, too.

7. Sequoia National Park, California

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The park is renowned for its towering giant sequoias, some of the largest and oldest trees on Earth. Photo by Vitto Sommella on Unsplash

If you're looking for a fantastic place to spend your spring break with some day hiking , Sequoia National Park should be at the top of your list. The giant sequoia trees there are awe-inspiring - some are over 2,000 years old.

In the springtime, the landscape comes alive with colours. Daffodils and poppies line the beautiful Generals Highway between Giant Forest and Lodgepole Village . It's such a scenic drive. Be sure to stop frequently to take pictures of the scenery.

A highlight of any visit is hiking the Congress Trail through the giant sequoia grove. Ranger-guided walks are a great way for families to learn about the forests and Ferns. The kids will love seeing nature up close. 

8. Maui, Hawaii

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

With its welcoming culture, vibrant nature and year-round warm weather, Maui rejuvenates mind and soul. Photo by Kenneth Oh on Unsplash

With its volcanic landscapes and over 80 miles of coastline, Maui gives the best spring break trips for families . Spring offers dry weather perfect for exploring stunning beaches like Waianapanapa.

But that’s not all; there’s also an old-fashioned sugar plantation tour or the Road to Hana that offers amazing ocean views. In the evenings, enjoy hula dances and luaus with traditional Hawaiian cuisine. Luxury resorts like the Four Seasons provide lagoon-style pools and activities like outrigger canoeing.

9. Virgin Beach, Virginia

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Families find fun and relaxation along Virginia Beach’s coastline. kansasphoto , CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

If you want to take your parents or relatives to a peaceful place to reduce stress and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere, plan your Spring Break trip to Virgin Beach.

True to its name, Virgin Beach has a natural beauty with white sand and a clear blue sea. The calm waters are perfect for swimming, while experienced surfers can catch waves at the First Landing State Park . Head to the Oceanfront and 3-mile boardwalk to find where the action is.

The best event to attend during this time is the Virginia Beach Neptune Festival . Families will have a lot of fun with the Grand Parade, Volleyball Tournament, magnificent sand sculptures, and more.

10. The Bahamas

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Let’s prepare a carefree and authentic Caribbean trip to the Bahamas. Photo by Ievgen Skrypko on stock.adobe.com

Situated just 50 miles from Florida, The Bahamas offer a tropical escape without the long flights. What’s more, American tourists don’t need a passport to cruise to this family-friendly Spring Break destination.

You'll be amazed by the Pink Sands Beach - the vibrant colour is unlike anything you've seen before. And the crystal clear, shallow waters are perfect for snorkelling with the fish. Some places even offer the chance to swim with friendly dolphins.

Families will love exploring shipwreck caves or taking boat tours to see other scenic islands. Back in Nassau , be sure to visit the lively straw markets and walk through historic Fort Fincastle , too.

Many resorts also offer excellent aquatic amenities like waterslides, sandy lagoons and pools on the beach. You simply can't beat relaxing in the warm weather with an island breeze.

11. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Hilton Head charms at a relaxed pace. Photo by Amber Faust on Unsplash

Springtime on Hilton Head Island - what a wonderful place for families to take in nature's wonders. You can spend your days soaking up the easygoing coastal island vibes with over 50 miles of designated bike paths and trails . Or take a boat ride through tidal creeks to spot herons, egrets and other wildlife up close.

As afternoon rolls around, there's lots of fun to be had. Harbour Town Golf Links has a cute mini-golf course perfect for little players. Or head to Shelter Cove Harbour & Marina to splash around the fountain and playground.

Luxurious resorts make it easy to spend quality time together, too. They balance adult amenities with lagoon pools, water slides, and nature programs just for the kids.

12. Outer Banks, North Carolina

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The small-town Outer Banks refreshes the whole family. Photo by Bonnie Kittle on Unsplash

Stretching along North Carolina’s northern coast, the Outer Banks welcomes families to a boundless shoreline dotted with lighthouses . The kids will love spending lazy days doing activities like kite flying, sandcastle building and fishing. It's the perfect way for them to unwind.

You should also check out workshops at the NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island - your little ones will be fascinated by learning about sea turtles, dolphins, and birds.

Be sure to explore the charming historic towns , too. They're filled with treats like fudge shops, fun kites to fly, and little gifts to bring home. Then, in the afternoons, you can catch live music around town, grab fresh seafood, and take in shows together as a family at the outdoor theatres or carnivals. 

13. San Antonio, Texas

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Get ready to enjoy a river walk boat in San Antonio. Roman Eugeniusz , CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons. Image resized.

As one of the best spring break destinations for families , San Antonio engages families with interactive history, culture and sights around every corner.

The lush green Riverwalk flows beneath bridges lined with colourful flourishes. Stroll its tree-sheltered banks past restaurants, art installations and public performances - like mariachi musicians serenading patrons. 

You picked a great time to visit - the city will be celebrating Fiesta , their annual spring festival. It's the perfect way to experience the local celebrations. And for panoramic views, ride to the top of the Tower of the Americas .

14. Savannah, Georgia

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Savannah's blend of history, culture, and Southern charm make it a popular destination for tourists. Photo by Benjamin Disinger on Unsplash

In springtime, vibrant azaleas blossom among Savannah's Spanish moss-draped oaks along historic cobblestone streets. Explore Bonaventure Cemetery ’s tranquil trails and tombs, or learn local haunts on spooky gaslamp-lit tours. 

Visit Fort Pulaski for a Civil War history experience, a picnic by Forsyth Park 's fountains, or tour opulent plantations like Hyde Hall . Observe wildlife along the riverfront trail or take a relaxing boat cruise. Don’t forget to stop into quirky shops and cosy tea rooms for Southern specialities. 

15. Sedona, Arizona

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Sedona's stunning red rock landscapes are simply breathtaking Photo by Barbara on stock.adobe.com

The scenic drives around Sedona, such as the Red Rock Scenic Byway (State Route 179) , offer panoramic views of the red rock formations and surrounding landscapes. While it’s not full of theme parks, water parks, or similar entertainment options, nature and outdoor activities more than make up for it.

Hiking to the famous vortex sites like Cathedral Rock for those spiritual canyon views is a must. And when it gets toasty, hop in Slide Rock 's cooling waters to refresh yourself. Nearby, Oak Creek meanders through Slide Rock State Natural Areas shady trails—such a relaxing respite on a warm day.

Ranger-led walks are a wonderful way for families to discover the fragrant ferns and birds. Who knows, you may even spot some wild bighorn sheep. Back in town, the galleries hold art beautifully inspired by the natural scenery.

16. Coronado, California

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The city is renowned for its beautiful beaches, most notably Coronado Beach. Photo by Nathaniel Villaire on Unsplash

The beaches and charming historic town of Coronado really offer the perfect California Spring Break getaway for families. Located right across from bustling San Diego but feeling a world apart, Coronado Island is connected to the mainland by The Strand , which is just begging to be strolled or biked along while taking in stunning ocean views. Keep an eye out for beautiful seashells washing up, too.

A visit to the lavish Hotel del Coronado is an experience in itself, or you can spread out a picnic blanket right on the beach and watch kites dancing across the cloudless blue sky. When you're ready for some activity, hop on a kayak or stand-up paddleboard to explore the glass-like waters. You may even spot some whales breaching on a tour boat.

After working up an appetite checking out Coronado's aquatic attractions, nothing hits the spot like an ice cream cone or a fresh fish taco enjoyed with toes in the sand as the sun goes down.

17. Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The area is named after the Dells of the Wisconsin River, a scenic gorge with unique sandstone formations and rock cliffs. Photo by S Quintans - stock.adobe.com

The Wisconsin Dells are such a fun place to visit, no matter what the weather's like. Nestled along the Wisconsin River, you'll find all kinds of indoor and outdoor water parks just begging for you to try out their slides, rivers, and other thrill rides. Some attractions like Mt. Olympus , Noah's Ark , and Wilderness Territory have towering slides that will get your blood pumping.

Families can also spend some time wandering around the charming historic downtown area . You'll find little shops selling delicious handmade fudge, miniature golf courses for the whole family to enjoy, and even escape rooms if you're looking for an interactive experience. 

Evenings are lovely, too. You can check out an entertaining dinner show, listen to live music under the stars or catch a theatre performance. It's all also very affordable, making the Dells a wonderful destination for families year-round.

18. Turks and Caicos Islands

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

A bird-eye view of the islands. Photo by Jay Cee on Unsplash

Over powdery white-sand beaches lapping turquoise waters, Caicos' limestone cliffs create a Caribbean paradise. Families unwind in luxury resorts with lagoon pools overlooking uninhabited cays. And, of course, it’s a crime to not pay a visit to Grace Bay , consistently ranked among the world’s best beaches . 

19. Riviera Maya, Mexico

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The area boasts a wide range of resorts, hotels, and all-inclusive accommodations. Photo by Dayana Brooke on Unsplash

Along a lush coastline and near one of the world's longest coral reefs, Riviera Maya is a destination for breathtaking natural scenery. There is nothing more wonderful than the peaceful feeling of clear blue sea water with gentle dolphins, and taking a beautiful family photo to save the memories!

And in the evening, enjoying dinner under the sparkling stars, with views stretching out to the Caribbean Sea, will make your vacation more special than ever. The whole family can also visit eco-parks like Xcaret, where you can not only enjoy the fun atmosphere but also have the opportunity to interact with the cultural heritage and traditions of the ancient Mayans.

20. Costa Rica

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Costa Rica is a popular destination for ecotourism. Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash

Costa Rica offers a unique and meaningful family experience when the whole family learns about the diversity of nature together. You'll love watching playful monkeys swing through the treetops or spot colourful toucans among the vibrant foliage. Keep your eyes peeled above - you never know when a curious sloth or a brightly coloured frog might surprise you.

Guided hikes through protected areas such as Manuel Antonio are a highlight. They help you spot all kinds of amazing creatures in their natural habitats, like iguanas, crocodiles, and even the rare scarlet macaw. Relaxing beaches like Esterillos Oeste are always a treat, too - keep an eye out for whales swimming offshore - or snorkelling through live coral reefs teeming with marine life.

21. Miami, Florida

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Miami always has the top rank in the best family spring break destinations. Photo by Irina Schmidt - stock.adobe.com

Beneath palm trees along sunny beaches, families explore Miami's vibrant culture. Besides hitting the famous shores like South Beach or North Beach Oceanside Park ( remember to pack accordingly ), there are plenty of things to see and do.

At attractions like Jungle Island , you can see exotic birds and reptiles up close in natural habitats. Neighbourhoods like Little Havana are a heaven for exploring Cuban and Caribbean flavours. Take a day trip to Key West , known for its pastel-coloured houses, charming shops, and laid-back island vibes.

22. Nashville, Tennessee

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

The city is home to the Grand Ole Opry, a famous country music venue, and the Country Music Hall of Fame. Photo by Matthew Jungling on Unsplash

In Music City, USA, families step into the bustling heart of country music culture. Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame to explore exhibits on iconic artists and interactive studios, then check out live music along Broadway's honky-tonks . 

Wander through Centennial Park along streams past fountains and public art installations. After touring the Tennessee State Capitol , explore the outdoors at Radnor Lake State Park for hiking trails alongside forests and ponds. Top off evenings indulging in classic Southern fare like barbecue and music everywhere. Nashville balances old South charm with vivacious creative spirit.

23. San Juan, Puerto Rico

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

San Juan offers memorable spring break trips for families. Photo by dennisvdwater on stock.adobe.com

The best family holiday during spring break can not miss San Juan, Puerto Rico. San Juan has a variety of beaches to choose from, all with their own unique charm. Condado Beach is a popular choice for families, with calm waters and plenty of amenities. For a more secluded and natural experience, check out Ocean Park Beach or Barceloneta Beach . 

Beyond the beaches, San Juan is steeped in rich history and culture, with influences from Spain, Africa, and the Caribbean. Immerse yourselves in the colourful architecture of Old San Juan , wander through Castillo San Felipe del Morro , a historic fort dating back to the 16th century, or learn about the island's indigenous culture at the Museo de las Americas . 

24. Lake Tahoe, Nevada

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

Lake Tahoe straddles the border between California and Nevada. Photo by Jeremy Doddridge on Unsplash

Sparkling sapphire waters rimmed by forests and granite peaks make Lake Tahoe one of the best family spring break destinations. You should explore award-winning state parks, hiking rugged cliffs past cascading streams and emerald woodlands.

You'll love visiting cute mountain towns like Truckee , to learn about the history and culture. At night, nothing beats making a campfire and watching the stars come out while the kids play. It is also a lovely place for couples to connect, too. 

25. Deer Valley, Park City, Utah

spring break destinations for families - CabinZero

This ski resort is invigorated with scenery and activities the whole family can enjoy together. Photo by Sixties Photography on Unsplash

Deer Valley is just amazingly beautiful, surrounded by those stunning red rock mesas. In the winter, it really feels like your own private snowy playground with the slopes groomed so nicely. There's something there for skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels - beginners will love the gentle green runs, while more experienced folks can tackle the challenging blacks.

When summer rolls around, spending a day hiking through the forest is a must. The trails at nearby Sundance Resort are just gorgeous, running alongside babbling brooks with pine and aspen trees scenting the air. It's so peaceful and refreshing.

And you can't go wrong basing yourself at one of the luxury lodges - equipped with pools, hot tubs and spa treatments after a day playing outside. 

CabinZero Bags: A Thoughtful Option for Family Travel

Planning to go to spring break destinations for families ? CabinZero carry-on bags could be a convenient choice for travelling with kids . Our cabin bags and backpacks are purposefully designed with families in mind.

Portability is key. CabinZero bags are lightweight yet robust. The comfortable backpack styling makes navigating airports and destinations much simpler compared to rolling suitcases. Tired kids can rest their arms as parents effortlessly carry essentials.

Furthermore, the sizes suit carry-on needs superbly. Adhering to airline limits precludes checked bag fees, sparing family budgets. At 28 and 44 litres, CabinZero bags accommodate vacation necessities without excess weight or bulk hindering travel days.

Final Thoughts

So whether you crave stimulating city culture, beachside play or mountain majesty, these top spring break destinations for families offer educational entertainment alongside quality family time. 

Where will your spring escape take you? Don’t hesitate to tell us via the comment section. Now, start preparing your packing list and wait to have a blast. Finally, please share this article with your fellow travellers as well.

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Sun & Fun in the 7 Best Spring Break Destinations for Families

Posted on Published: December 24, 2023

Categories Family , Travel

Sun & Fun in the 7 Best Spring Break Destinations for Families

Unforgettable Family Spring Break Adventures

Spring break is the perfect time to step out of the daily routine and embark on an adventure with your family. As you search for the best spring break family vacations, think about creating memories during the eighteen short years your kids live under your roof.

You get just eighteen Spring Breaks before your kids go off to college or out on their own to work a grown up job. They are little for just a blink of an eye. Don’t let your Spring Break ideas get pushed back to next year over and over until it’s too late. Do it this year, even if it’s a stretch financially or time wise.

Why Choose These Hidden Gems?

In this guide, we’re not just talking about any family vacation, we’re exploring the best spring break destinations that promise a great time for the entire family. These places aren’t your typical tourist traps, they’re unique destinations where your family can create lasting memories . Whether it’s a road trip or a short flight, every location is a perfect place for family spring break vacations.

Tailoring the Perfect Spring Break for Every Family

We understand that the best family spring break destinations are those that offer something special for every member of your family. That’s why each destination in our list is carefully chosen to provide a mix of activities. From the thrill of amusement parks in Lake Tahoe to the serene beauty of Mackinac Island, we’ve got your spring break covered.

So, let’s get ready to explore the best spring break family vacations that offer more than just a getaway—they offer a journey into new experiences, bonding, and unforgettable moments.

  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Joshua Tree, California
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Asheville, North Carolina
  • Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Lake Tahoe, Nevada/California
  • Mackinac Island, Michigan
  • Spring Break Travel Trips

best spring break family vacations destinations

Unique Destinations for Family Spring Break Vacations

Venture into the unfamiliar.

Seeking out uncharted territories for the best spring break family vacations can lead to extraordinary discoveries. These lesser-known destinations offer a diverse array of experiences, from the white sand beaches of lesser-known coastal towns to the historic charm of small cities. Embrace the adventure of exploring new places, and you might just find your family’s new favorite spring break destination.

A World of Undiscovered Treasures

Embark on a journey to places where the best things aren’t always the most famous ones. Think of a spring break where you can enjoy horseback riding on quiet trails, explore beautiful beaches away from the crowds, or discover hidden natural wonders like smaller versions of the Grand Canyon or Yosemite Valley.

Tailor-Made for Curious Explorers

What makes these lesser-known spots some of the best spring break destinations? It’s their ability to offer unique, unspoiled experiences. Take a leisurely stroll in a quiet downtown area, enjoy easy hikes in scenic parks, or relax in a hot tub at a cozy resort. These destinations offer a blend of relaxation and adventure, perfect for families looking to explore beyond the typical theme parks and water parks.

Seasonal Wonders Awaiting Discovery

Timing is everything, and visiting these uncharted places during early spring can unveil seasonal wonders. Imagine seeing cherry blossoms in a quaint East Coast town or enjoying warm water at a secluded beach. These destinations offer a refreshing change from the usual crowded spots frequented by college students on spring break.

Beyond the Beaten Path

So, are you ready to explore the road less traveled? These cities offer a great way to experience fun activities, live music, and natural beauty, all while avoiding the typical spring break crowds.

explore the road less traveled

1.Savannah, Georgia

A blend of history and southern charm.

Savannah, Georgia , renowned for its historic districts and Southern hospitality, stands as a top spring break destination, especially in the early spring when the city is in full bloom. This East Coast gem, with its cobblestone streets and lush green squares, is a perfect place for families seeking a mix of history, culture, and outdoor fun.

A Journey Through Time and Nature

Forsyth park.

Famous for its iconic fountain and expansive green space, Forsyth Park is ideal for family picnics and leisurely walks, especially when the cherry blossoms are in bloom.

Savannah Historic District

Stroll through history along streets lined with antebellum homes, offering a glimpse into the past, reminiscent of walks in Washington D.C.’s National Mall area.

Tybee Island

Just a short drive from the city, this beach paradise offers sandy fun and a chance to spot dolphins. See, you don’t have to pay premium prices in the Florida Keys for beach time.

Bonaventure Cemetery

Explore this serene and hauntingly beautiful cemetery that captures the essence of Savannah’s history, akin to visiting the Lincoln Memorial for its historical significance.

Bonaventure Cemetery

Wormsloe Historic Site

Step back in time at this colonial estate, offering a glimpse into early American life. Our family is big on incorporating  history lessons into our travels . 

Family-Friendly Activities Abound

While Savannah’s historical allure is undeniable, the city also offers a plethora of family-oriented activities:

Carriage Tours

A great way to see the city and learn about its history.

Ghost Tours for Older Kids

Add a little thrill to your trip with a ghost tour, revealing the city’s spookier side.

Horseback Riding

Several stables around Savannah offer horseback riding, a favorite activity for families seeking a unique way to explore the natural beauty of the region.

Horseback Riding

Water Sports on Tybee Island

Just a short drive from Savannah, Tybee Island’s beautiful beaches are perfect for water sports, from kayaking to paddle boarding.

Live Music in the Downtown Area

Savannah’s vibrant downtown area is not only rich in history but also alive with live music and performances, providing entertainment for the whole family.

Natural Beauty and Outdoor Excursions

Savannah’s coastal location.

Take advantage of Savannah’s coastal location with day trips to nearby Hilton Head or other white sand beaches along the Georgia coast.

Easy Hikes and Nature Walks

The city and its surroundings offer several easy hiking trails, great for families looking to enjoy nature without venturing as far as locations like Zion National Park or Yosemite Valley.

Why Savannah is a Great Spring Break Destination

Savannah, with its blend of historical sites, beautiful parks, and family-friendly activities, is one of the best spring break destinations for a family vacation. It’s a city where history comes alive, nature is bountiful, and there’s always something new to explore, making it a great place for families to create lasting memories.

family-friendly activities for best spring break family vacations

2. Joshua Tree, California

Embrace the magic of the desert.

Joshua Tree, California , is a breathtaking destination, standing out among the best spring break family vacations. Unlike bustling theme parks or the sandy beaches of Myrtle Beach, Joshua Tree offers a serene desert landscape that’s perfect for families seeking peace and adventure in nature.

Uncover the Secrets of Joshua Tree

Joshua tree national park.

A haven for nature lovers, this park features unique flora and rock formations. It’s an ideal spot for those looking to explore the natural wonders with the unique charm of the Californian desert.

Cholla Cactus Garden

This surreal landscape is perfect for family photography and gentle exploration, offering a stark contrast to the water parks and crowded tourist spots in other cities.

Experience breathtaking panoramic views, making it a favorite thing for many families during this time of year.

best spring break family vacations with a breathtaking panoramic views

A natural marvel that sparks imagination, perfect for a family hike and exploration, offering a different experience compared to popular urban parks like Central Park or the Washington Monument area.

Hidden Valley

Known for its serene beauty, it’s a wonderful spot for a picnic, much like the peaceful areas one might find in less frequented parts of parks.

Adventures Under the Desert Sun

Joshua Tree offers an array of activities that are both fun and awe-inspiring, perfect for a family looking for the best spring break destinations:

The clear desert skies provide a spectacular view, rivaling the night experiences at a space museum or observatories, allowing families to gaze at the stars in a tranquil environment.

stargazing

Rock Climbing for Beginners

The park offers numerous beginner-friendly climbing spots, a great way to introduce adventure to the family in a safe and controlled environment.

Nature Walks

Explore the diverse landscapes and wildlife of the park through guided or self-led walks.

Visiting the Joshua Tree Visitor Center

Learn about the desert ecosystem, an educational experience akin to visiting a museum, offering insights into the desert’s unique environment and wildlife.

Desert Photography

Capture the unique beauty of the desert, making your trip memorable. Hiring a local photographer to capture family photos is one of our favorite things to do on vacations. 

A Desert Dream for Families

Joshua Tree offers an escape from the ordinary, making it one of the best destinations for families during spring break and perfect place for those who yearn for outdoor activities. It’s a place where adventure and tranquility meet, providing a perfect setting for family fun and exploration, far removed from the typical vacation spots but offering experiences just as enriching and memorable.

Joshua Tree as part of your best spring break family vacations

3. St. Louis, Missouri

A gateway to family adventures.

St. Louis, Missouri, presents a vibrant mix of historical landmarks and modern-day attractions, making it a standout among the best spring break family vacations. This city, rich in culture and entertainment, promises a perfect spring break destination for families seeking a blend of education and fun.

Discover St. Louis’s Iconic Attractions

Missouri botanical garden.

A place of natural beauty, ideal for a relaxing family day amidst flowers in full bloom.

St. Louis Zoo

Known for its impressive array of wildlife and engaging exhibits, perfect for young children and older kids alike. Similar to the San Diego zoo, the  St. Louis Zoo  has set up live webcams on animals to keep your kids engaged both before and after your Spring Break adventure. 

Gateway Arch

A symbol of the city, offering tram rides to the top for a stunning view of St. Louis.

Gateway Arch St Louis Missouri

City Museum

An interactive wonderland that combines art, playgrounds, and surreal architecture.

Forest Park

One of the largest urban parks in the United States, offering a plethora of outdoor activities. Try paddle boating if it’s sunny.

Visiting the Science Center

A great way to spark curiosity in young minds about the world around them.

Experience the Heart of America in St. Louis

St. Louis, with its perfect mix of historical sites and modern-day attractions, firmly holds its place as one of the best spring break destinations for families. It’s a city that invites families to immerse themselves in new experiences and make lasting memories.

St Louis Missouri is one of the best spring break family vacations destinations

4. Asheville, North Carolina

Discover asheville’s enchanting mountainscape.

Asheville, North Carolina is a mountain charm for the family, nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It is a hidden jewel in the list of the best spring break family vacations. This charming mountain town blends natural beauty with a rich cultural tapestry, making it a perfect place for a family getaway.

Asheville’s Alluring Attractions

Biltmore estate.

Explore the grandeur of America’s largest home. Its stunning architecture and sprawling gardens are among the best things to see in Asheville.

Blue Ridge Parkway

Known as America’s favorite drive, it’s perfect for scenic family road trips with numerous picturesque stops.

Asheville Pinball Museum

A fun and unique experience, combining nostalgia and amusement, making it a favorite thing for families.

Pinball for kids

The North Carolina Arboretum

A serene spot offering educational and interactive exhibits, ideal for nature lovers.

Pisgah National Forest

A haven for outdoor enthusiasts, with hiking trails, waterfalls, and abundant wildlife, making it one of the great things Asheville has to offer.

A Mountain Getaway for Every Family

Asheville offers the best of both worlds – the serenity of the mountains and a plethora of activities for a fun-filled family vacation. It stands out as a great destination for those seeking a mix of outdoor adventures and cultural experiences, making it one of the best family spring break destinations.

5. Santa Fe, New Mexico

Immerse in the richness of santa fe’s heritage.

Santa Fe, New Mexico is a cultural mosaic for families. It offers a unique cultural tapestry, making it an outstanding pick among the best spring break family vacations. Renowned for its Pueblo-style architecture and vibrant arts scene, Santa Fe is a perfect spot for families looking for a blend of history, art, and natural beauty.

Santa Fe New Mexico

Santa Fe’s Must-Visit Family Attractions

Santa fe plaza.

The heart of the city, filled with historic buildings, local artisans, and lively festivals.

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi

A stunning architectural marvel offering a peek into the city’s religious heritage.

Loretto Chapel

Known for its miraculous spiral staircase, captivating visitors with its mystery and beauty.

An immersive and interactive art experience that captivates both children and adults.

Bandelier National Monument

Explore ancient cave dwellings and beautiful hiking trails.

Ancient cave

Cultural Exploration for the Whole Family

Santa Fe goes beyond sightseeing, it is engaging with the local culture and environment:

Exploring Art Galleries

Discover the rich art scene, with galleries showcasing both contemporary and traditional works.

Learning About Native American History

Gain insights into the local history and culture through museums and historical sites.

Sampling Local Cuisine

Introduce your family to the flavors of New Mexican cuisine, a delicious and educational experience.

A Journey Through Culture and Time

Santa Fe offers a unique blend of cultural richness and natural beauty, making it one of the best spring break destinations for families. It’s a city where every corner tells a story, ready to be part of your family’s travel memories.

cultural exploration

6. Lake Tahoe, Nevada/California

Discover the splendor of lake tahoe.

Straddling the border of Nevada and California, Lake Tahoe is a spectacular choice for the best spring break family vacations. It is a lakeside retreat for the family. Famous for its crystal-clear waters and stunning mountain backdrop, Lake Tahoe offers a serene yet adventurous escape for families.

Lake Tahoe’s Family-Friendly Highlights

Emerald bay state park.

Known for its breathtaking beauty and the iconic Fannette Island. Enjoy the lakes natural beauty by hopping in a kayak and getting some paddling in.

Squaw Valley

A world-renowned ski resort offering a variety of winter sports activities. There are skiing and snowboarding lessons for all skill levels available.

Sand Harbor

Boasts some of the clearest waters in Lake Tahoe, perfect for swimming and kayaking.

Tahoe Rim Trail

Offers miles of hiking trails with incredible views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

Lake Tahoe, Nevada

Vikingsholm

A historic castle that gives a glimpse into the Scandinavian architecture and Tahoe’s past.

A Haven of Natural Beauty

As one of the best spring break destinations, Lake Tahoe offers families a chance to unwind in nature’s lap. Whether seeking adventure or relaxation, this lakeside retreat provides a perfect backdrop for creating lasting family memories.

7. Mackinac Island, Michigan

Step back in time on mackinac island.

Mackinac Island, Michigan, offers a unique experience for those seeking the best spring break family vacations. Known for its car-free streets and Victorian charm, this island is a perfect spot for families looking to step away from the hustle and bustle of modern life.

Exploring Mackinac Island’s Charms

Fort mackinac.

An 18th-century fortress offering historical reenactments and stunning views of the island.

A natural limestone arch that provides breathtaking views and a great photo opportunity .

Mackinac Island, Michigan

Mackinac Island State Park

Over 80% of the island is a state park, featuring beautiful trails and scenic spots.

Historic Downtown

Filled with quaint shops, fudge factories, and local eateries, perfect for a leisurely family stroll.

Butterfly House & Insect World

A delightful attraction for young kids, offering close-up encounters with butterflies and insects.

A Haven of Relaxation and Adventure

Mackinac Island is about historic sights and it offers a range of activities for a memorable family vacation:

Butterfly House

Horse-drawn Carriage Tours

A charming way to explore the island and learn about its history.

Biking Around the Island

Rent bicycles for a fun and active way to see the sights.

Fudge Tasting in Downtown Shops

Treat your family to the island’s famous fudge, a sweet part of its heritage.

A Perfect Family Getaway in Mackinac Island

As one of the best spring break destinations, Mackinac Island invites families to enjoy its timeless charm. Whether it’s through its historical sites, scenic beauty, or leisurely activities, the island offers a peaceful retreat from the everyday, making it a perfect place for a family spring break vacation.

Perfect Family Gateway in Island

Travel Tips for a Memorable Spring Break

1. pack smart for family adventures.

A great family spring break vacation starts with  smart packing . Remember, the best spring break destinations often involve a mix of indoor and outdoor activities. Pack comfortable clothing suitable for various weather conditions, especially if you’re heading to places like Lake Tahoe or Asheville. Don’t forget essentials like sunscreen, hats, and good walking shoes – key items for destinations like Joshua Tree or Savannah.

2. Planning is the Key to a Stress-Free Vacation

Advance planning  can turn a good family vacation into the best spring break family vacation. Research the best places to visit and eat, especially in culturally rich destinations like Santa Fe or historic spots like St. Louis. Consider booking tours or tickets in advance for popular attractions at destinations like Orlando or the Biltmore Estate in Asheville.

3. Stay Flexible and Embrace Local Experiences

While planning is essential, being flexible can lead to some of the best family spring break vacations. Spontaneous decisions, like trying a new activity or exploring a hidden trail in Pisgah National Forest, can become favorite family memories. Embrace local experiences, whether it’s sampling regional cuisine in New Orleans or taking a carriage ride in Savannah.

4. Keeping Kids Engaged and Happy

Keeping young children and older kids engaged is key to the best family spring break destinations. Involve them in planning by letting them pick a few activities. Our kids always have a good time if they are the one who picked that days activity.

memorable and best spring break for family vacations

5. Safety First is a Priority for Family Travel

Safety should always be a priority. This means staying aware of your surroundings, especially in busy destinations during Spring Break. In outdoor settings like national parks or beaches, keep an eye on weather conditions and follow local guidelines.

With these travel tips, you’re ready to embark on one of the best spring break family vacations. Remember, the perfect family spring break trip is about exploring new places, trying new things, and most importantly, creating lasting memories together.

Cherishing Family Moments

As we wrap up our journey through the best spring break family vacations, it’s important to remember that these destinations offer much more than a mere escape from the daily grind. 

In these special places, each moment spent together as a family becomes more meaningful. Think of your children’s laughter as they explore the wonders of the natural world, the shared sense of awe in discovering new sights and experiences, and the joy of spending quality time together. 

These experiences forge bonds that last a lifetime, turning a simple vacation into a tapestry of moments that will be looked back on with fondness for years to come. So, as you consider your next family getaway, think of it not just as a break, but as an invaluable opportunity to grow closer, to learn, and to create stories that will be part of your family’s legacy.

Your Next Adventure Awaits!

Now, choose your family’s next adventure. The best family spring break vacations are about discovering new places, experiencing new activities, and, most importantly, spending quality time together. So, pack your bags, gather your loved ones, and set off on a journey that your family will treasure for years to come.

FAQ: Best Spring Break Family Vacations

What are the best spring break destinations for families.

Ideal family spring break destinations include Savannah, Georgia for its historical charm, Joshua Tree, California for desert adventures, St. Louis, Missouri for cultural experiences, Asheville, North Carolina for mountain adventures, Santa Fe, New Mexico for its cultural mosaic, Lake Tahoe for lakeside fun, and Mackinac Island, Michigan for a historic retreat.

Are these destinations suitable for young children?

Absolutely! Each destination offers a variety of kid-friendly activities, from the interactive exhibits at the City Museum in St. Louis to the engaging nature trails in Pisgah National Forest, Asheville, ensuring a great time for young children.

What activities can older kids enjoy in these locations?

Older children can enjoy a range of activities like exploring the historic streets of Savannah, rock climbing in Joshua Tree, experiencing interactive art at Meow Wolf in Santa Fe, or skiing in Lake Tahoe, making these destinations perfect for families with older kids.

How can I make a spring break vacation educational?

Many of these destinations offer educational experiences, such as visiting historical sites in St. Louis, exploring the natural wonders in national parks like Joshua Tree, or learning about different cultures in Santa Fe, blending fun with learning.

What should we pack for a spring break family vacation?

Pack according to your destination’s activities and weather. Essentials include comfortable clothes, walking shoes, sunscreen, hats, and any specific gear like swimsuits for beach destinations or hiking gear for mountain locations.

Are these destinations budget-friendly for families?

Many of these destinations offer a range of activities that are free or low-cost, like exploring national parks or historical sites. Planning and booking in advance can also help manage costs effectively.

What is the best time to visit these spring break destinations?

Spring break, typically in late March to early April, is an ideal time. However, it’s best to check each destination’s specific weather and peak tourist seasons to plan your trip accordingly.

How long should a spring break vacation last?

A typical spring break vacation lasts about a week, but the duration can vary based on your family’s interests and the activities you plan to enjoy at your chosen destination.

Can these destinations accommodate special dietary needs?

Yes, most of these destinations have diverse dining options that can accommodate various dietary needs, from vegan options in Asheville to gluten-free choices in Santa Fe.

Are there activities for families who enjoy the outdoors?

Absolutely! Destinations like Joshua Tree and Lake Tahoe are perfect for families who love the outdoors, offering activities like hiking, kayaking, and skiing.

What are some safety tips for family spring break trips?

Safety tips include staying hydrated, especially in warmer destinations like Joshua Tree, always having a first-aid kit, supervising children closely, particularly in crowded places like theme parks, and being aware of local wildlife and natural conditions in outdoor areas like national parks.

How can we ensure a budget-friendly spring break vacation?

To ensure a budget-friendly vacation, consider booking accommodations and activities in advance, traveling during off-peak times if possible, choosing destinations with free or low-cost attractions like national parks, and preparing some meals to save on dining costs.

Can these destinations offer unique experiences for families?

Yes, each destination offers unique experiences, from the horse-drawn carriage rides on Mackinac Island to the immersive art installations at Meow Wolf in Santa Fe, ensuring a memorable vacation for families.

Are there indoor activities available in these destinations in case of bad weather?

These destinations offer various indoor activities for days with inclement weather. For instance, Asheville has museums and art galleries, while St. Louis boasts the City Museum and science centers, providing fun and educational alternatives.

How accessible are these destinations for families with special needs?

Many of these destinations are equipped to accommodate families with special needs. Key attractions in cities offer accessibility features such as wheelchair ramps and sensory-friendly experiences.

What are some tips for first-time visitors to these destinations?

For first-time visitors, it’s recommended to research and plan your itinerary in advance, check local tourism websites for any discounts or special events, and be open to exploring both popular and off-the-beaten-path attractions to fully experience the destination.

Veronica Hanson

Veronica Hanson blogs from whatever country she happens to be in at the time, currently she's hanging out in Japan. She's been living as a nomad remote entrepreneur with her family since 2020.

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Memorial Day and the Spirit of Sacrifice and Generosity

LOGO

I was raised in small town America, where Memorial Day meant parades, flag waving, flowers at the cemetery, and honoring of those who died in service to our nation. It was the Eisenhower era and we were patriotic, but not jingoistic. We loved our nation, but we recognized that others loved their nations as well. We waved the flag and affirmed that America was at its best when we worked together for a common cause that transcended our race and religion. We were “cold warriors” but wanted to prevent war. Our politicians were fallible, but we expected dignity and decency, and fair-mindedness, from our leaders. We recognized that often there were two sides to every issue, and prized civility over bluster and bullying. Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, referred to one another as the “loyal opposition.”

Our elders reminded us of the sacrifices of two World Wars and Korea and knew that citizenship meant sacrifice as well as freedom. Building on their sacrifices, we were challenged to sacrifice for the realization of “liberty and justice for all.” While the extent of liberty was often limited and there was racism, both in Jim Crow America and in housing and the GI Bill, there was also a spirit of generosity to immigrants and refugees.

In considering Memorial Day, I reflect on the significant characteristics of those upon whom we depend – parents, grandparents, peacemakers, and peacekeepers. I would go so far as to say that sacrifice is one of primary characteristics of caregivers and protectors and that sacrifice is built into the nature of reality, or at least what it means to live a good life. We let go of certain things, so that greater things may come to pass. We defer gratification, so that others might flourish. We live simply so that others might simply live. We give up our time – and maybe even our lives – to protect the innocent and vulnerable.  We grow beyond self-interest and individualism to care for the community and embrace world loyalty.

Essential to healthy community, sacrifice is built into the graceful interdependence of life. Contrary to Ayn Rand’s rugged and metaphysically implausible individualism or the radical individualism privileged by white nationalists and the Church of Trump, every achievement an individual makes is grounded in the sacrifices of others; some are sacrifices freely chosen, while others are tragically forced (for example, sweat shops and slavery).

In the Christian vision, sacrifice is essential to the wellbeing of the “body of Christ,” described in I Corinthians 12. The various parts consciously – and I want to underline the word “consciously” or “willingly” – choose to place their own wellbeing in relationship to the wellbeing of the whole body. The various parts find their wholeness in supporting the wholeness of the totality, which in turn nurtures each individual part. Here we are not talking about co-dependence or masochistic behavior but willingness to expand (and sometimes sacrifice) our vision of our wellbeing to include the wellbeing of the wider world, whether it is our family, congregation, country, or the planet.

Jesus proclaimed that there is no greater love than giving one’s life for another. This isn’t a matter of seeing Jesus or ourselves as being scapegoats, although there is much wisdom in the work of Girard and his followers; but a deeper recognition of one’s responsibility to sacrifice so that others may experience safety, joy, growth, and abundant life. Jesus followed the way of the cross, when other alternatives were possible, I believe, as a working out of his vocation and choice to affirm his calling so that we might have abundant life. Jesus’ sacrifice was neither compelled by God nor predestined but emerged from the alignment of his vision and will with God’s vision for abundant life for all creation.

Memorial Day has traditionally been about sacrificial living. Beginning first in the years following the Civil War, Memorial Day commemorated those who died in this tragic conflict. After World War I, Memorial Day was expanded to include all who died in service to their country. Initially, just military graves were decorated with flowers. However, over the years, many people have chosen to decorate the graves of loved ones – fathers, mothers, children, brothers, and friends – on Memorial Day. This was an acknowledgement that “greater love” has many dimensions that go beyond military sacrifice.

While Memorial Day is a national holiday, it has profound spiritual lessons for us and invites us to deeper loyalties, even beyond nation and family. It is about sacrifice and love of family and nation, not chauvinism and violence. If Memorial Day has a place in the liturgies or worship services of the church, its place is to inspire gratitude and remembrance for those who have sacrificed life and labor, and time, talent, and treasure, for the greater good.

Regardless of your political and religious views of military service and just warfare, I believe that it is appropriate to remember fallen soldiers and first responders in Christian worship on Memorial Day weekend. The spiritual dimension of their sacrifice is that they looked beyond their own self-interest, even as they climbed the steps of the World Trade Center, protected our Capitol on January 6 from misguided and anti-democratic insurrectionists, or guard our nation’s coastline or skies. In saying “yes” to their vocation, they knew it might place them in harm’s way. In fact, the heroes of January 6 are still suffering the after effect of violence and abuse. We also affirm the sacrifice of civil rights marchers, advocates for hospitality to refugees, and doctors and nurses who place themselves in harm’s way that people in war-torn lands receive medical care.

Memorial Day affirms the impact of our “good ancestors” on our lives and challenge to be “good ancestors in the making.” The sacrificial love remembered on Memorial Day is about vocation and choice, rather than co-dependence or aggrandizement. As we look at the vocation of those who sacrifice on our behalf, we are challenged to go beyond our individualism, narcissism, consumerism, and self-interest – and this may even include “American exceptionalism” or “America first” ideologies as well as Christian nationalism and capitalistic individualism – to embrace the wellbeing of others, including the planet. We can celebrate our nation’s fallen heroes without being nationalistic. In fact, we must go beyond nation to balance patriotism with world loyalty and sacrifice largess and convenience for the healing of the planet.

Memorial Day is about remembering, and then dedicating our own lives to a larger, greater good for those we love, our nation – and this may mean protesting against military action, injustice, and enmity to immigrants – and the planet as a whole. Shouting “drill, drill, drill” and rolling back environmental standards for the sake of profit and tax reform that favors the wealthy demeans the sacrifices of those who went before us and threatens the future of our children and grandchildren. Restrictions on voting and election disinformation destroy the foundations of democracy.  Demonizing immigrants, documented or undocumented, threatens the soul of our nation. Sacrifice, not self-interest, is the heart of Memorial Day.  Hospitality and not hate is the pathway to greatness for persons and nations.

As you ponder Memorial Day, take time to ask the following questions: What sacrifices are you called to make for the greater good – in your family, among your circle of friends, and in your congregation, community, and nation? What sacrifices are you called to make for the vulnerable people in our land and across the globe? What sacrifices are you called to make for this good earth? How will you look beyond your own well-being to ensure the well-being of other peoples’ children, persons with medical risks, law-abiding immigrants, refugees and the flora and fauna of our planet?  How will you commit yourself to preserving the gifts of democracy and diversity? This is the meaning of Memorial Day.

Bruce Epperly is a pastor, professor, and author of over eighty books, “Jesus: Mystic, Healer, and Prophet,” “Process and Politics,” Spirituality, Simplicity, and Service: The Timeless Wisdom of Francis, Clare, and Bonaventure,” and “The Elephant is Running: Process and Open and Relational Theology and Religious Pluralism.” His most recent book is “The God of Tomorrow: Whitehead and Teilhard on Metaphysics, Mysticism, and Mission” and “Head, Heart, and Hands: An Introduction to St. Bonaventure.”

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can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

IMAGES

  1. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

  2. Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

  3. Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

  4. Bonaventure Cemetery Tours: Triphobo

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

  5. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

  6. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

    can you tour bonaventure cemetery on your own

VIDEO

  1. CRUISE EMBARKATION DAY ON VENTURA

  2. Round 3 of the Viewers Special (The Taphophile Trilogy)

  3. FAMOUS CEMETERY: Bonaventure and Greenwich Cemetery

  4. Bonaventure Brewing Company Sky Tour

COMMENTS

  1. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour: Top Tips & Must-See Spots

    Bonaventure Dash Tour Details. Daily tours at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (2 p.m. only during the winter months) Plan to allot two and a half to three hours total (that's including the stops at hotels for pickups)…and you'll probably end up wishing it was longer! Cost: Approximately $35 and that includes transportation!

  2. Planning to Visit Bonaventure Cemetery? Here are a Few Things You

    by Leslie Alwiel. Updated: 6/11/2022. Bonaventure Cemetery is one of the most popular places to visit here in Savannah, we have been recognized by Trip Advisor . with a Travelers' Choice award. It is a serene and sublime experience to walk about this Victorian Era cemetery filled with beautiful statues, oak trees with Spanish moss, and to learn about the history of those who built our fair city.

  3. No tour necessary

    Bonaventure Cemetery: No tour necessary - you can do this on your own but you have to get there first! - See 6,787 traveler reviews, 4,159 candid photos, and great deals for Savannah, GA, at Tripadvisor. ... No tour necessary - you can do this on your own but you have to get there first! Review of Bonaventure Cemetery. Reviewed September 16, 2010 .

  4. A Traveler's Guide to the Bonaventure Cemetery

    Bonaventure Cemetery is located on 330 Bonaventure Road, on the eastern margins of the city. It's about a 15 to 20-minute drive from the Historic District of Savannah, and by car is the easiest way to get there. From the Historic District, you can also take bus line 10 and get off at Bonaventure Road. From there, it's about a 10-minute walk to ...

  5. Visit

    Visit. We said it before and we'll say it again: If Savannah is your destination, Bonaventure should be on your bucket list of must-see sites. The cemetery is only three miles from the lovely downtown Savannah, GA. Bonaventure Cemetery is recognized as one of the most beautiful cemeteries in the world. There is never an admission charge.

  6. Bonaventure Cemetery App Update

    Now you can download the guide and take the tour on your own. The Bonaventure Cemetery Tour contains 31 stops and is narrated by some of Savannah's most notable citizens! Take a leisurely stroll and learn about Bonaventure before it was a cemetery, the stories of the many families buried here and the many interesting ways folks celebrated ...

  7. Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery: Savannah's Beautiful Garden Graveyard

    Bonaventure Cemetery provides a map and brochure that highlights some of the cemetery's most famous graves and landmarks, and visitors can explore the cemetery at their own pace. However, for those who want a more in-depth and immersive experience, the guided tours offered by the Bonaventure Historical Society, Dash Tours, and Savannah Dan ...

  8. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour

    6th Sense World's original Bonaventure Cemetery Tours includes one of our Master Storytellers to guide you through her 100+ acres. They reveal old Savannah places and things that just can't be understood or experienced by simply going there on your own, or spending your time exploring on a sightseeing tour bus.

  9. Walk Through History: Exploring Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, GA

    Whether you take a guided tour or explore the cemetery on your own with the mobile app, Bonaventure Cemetery is a must-see destination for anyone interested in history, culture, and art. " Bonaventure Cemetery " by tabounds is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

  10. Bonaventure Cemetery Tours

    Bonaventure Cemetery Tours is a guided walking tour through Savannah's world-famous Bonaventure Cemetery, a treasured American landmark preserving over 170 years of history. Immerse yourself in its picturesque landscape, rich legacy, and timeless symbolism, and learn about the captivating lives of its famous inhabitants. More than meets the eye, it truly is a place where death and beauty meet.

  11. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour

    Before it was a cemetery, Bonaventure was a plantation; the enslaved people on it produced timber and bricks. Some of these bricks were used in the 22 squares in the downtown core of Savannah. You can also see some bricks which line the plots of land around some grave sites. These bricks have the tic-tac-toe pattern.

  12. Bonaventure Cemetery

    What started as a colonial plantation owned by English Colonel John Mullryne and his family is now a public cemetery, where locals can purchase their own plots. In 1846, Bonaventure was opened as Evergreen Cemetery on 70 acres of the original Bonaventure Plantation, at a time when the city's other cemeteries were quickly filling up.

  13. Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah

    2-Hour Bonaventure Cemetery Walking Tour. 952. Experience the haunting beauty and history of stunning Savannah on this Bonaventure Cemetery tour. Follow your expert guide just beyond the limits of the historic district and wander through the tombstones and gardens of this 170-year-old location.

  14. Bonaventure Cemetery Tours, Savannah GA

    Bonaventure Tour (14 max) 2hrs30. With Don Teuton, Bonaventure Don. Name-your-own-price walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Available Tuesday to Sunday. Text 912-658-1748 for reservations or book online. More details. The Bonaventure Cemetery Tour, 2hrs. With Grand Savannah Tours. Walking tour of Bonaventure Cemetery. Daily, morning or afternoon.

  15. Bonaventure Cemetery

    Bonaventure Cemetery can be visited by the public, and it's open every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are guided tours available, or you can explore on your own. Is there an admission fee for Bonaventure Cemetery? No, there is no admission fee to visit Bonaventure Cemetery. It is free and open to the public. What are some notable features of ...

  16. FAQ

    The Bonaventure Cemetery tours focus on history and symbolism, rather than scary/ghost stories. The Sixth Sense Savannah Ghost Tours, and The Midnight Tours cover different sections of the south side of the Historic District. ... Ultimately, each residence or property has its own unique story, so each tour - which stops at different locations ...

  17. Tickets for Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah

    Our Bonaventure Cemetery Tours are very popular, often selling out days or weeks in advance. For this reason, we require all of our guests to purchase tickets in advance. You can purchase tickets online or by calling us at 855-999-9026.

  18. The BEST Bonaventure Cemetery Tours 2023

    The Cemetery walking tour meanders under moss-draped oaks and along the bluff of the Wilmington River. Bonaventure Cemetery, dating back to 1846, is one of the most beautiful cemeteries. Following the cemetery tour, you will have lunch on your own at a favorite local restaurant. After lunch, the day continues to Wormsloe Historic site.

  19. Wormsloe Plantation & Bonaventure Cemetery

    The Cemetery walking tour meanders under moss draped oaks and along the bluff of the Wilmington River. Bonaventure Cemetery, dating back to 1846, is one of the most beautiful cemeteries. Following the cemetery tour, you will have lunch on your own at one of our favorite local restaurants. Your visit to Wormsloe includes a breathtaking drive ...

  20. FAQ

    With advanced reservations, Bonaventure Historical Society offers tours for non-profit groups and schools only with a minimum of 10 people. All other guests can take advantage of the local tour companies for hire or download our app. ... You can call the Cemetery office at 912-651-6843 for any cemetery questions or needs. You can find more ...

  21. Walking Tours of Historic Bonaventure Cemetery

    When you reserve your tour you'll get an email with all the details, but, short story, Bonaventure Cemetery is located at 330 Bonaventure Road, 31404 and we will meet just inside the Jewish Gate, pictured below. Reservations are required, and well-behaved pets are always welcome. Y'all come see me, we'll have fun.

  22. Bonaventure Cemetery Tour

    The Segways and electric bikes provide an intimate way to connect to the character of this heavenly place. What was once an 18th-century plantation owned by Savannah's influential Tattnall family is now a beautiful Victorian garden that we all know as Savannah, Georgia's Bonaventure Cemetery. Resting peacefully along the beautiful ...

  23. Wormsloe Plantation & Isle of Hope Tour

    Wormsloe Plantation & Bonaventure Cemetery Tour. Your day begins with a tour of Bonaventure Cemetery to learn about the lives of notable inhabitants like Academy Award-winning songwriter Johnny Mercer and Georgia's first governor Edward Telfair. Following the cemetery tour, you will have lunch on your own at Driftaway Cafe on Mondays and ...

  24. Discover The Best Way To Explore The East Coast Of America

    Take a stroll through the city's historic district, lined with beautiful oak trees and grand Southern mansions. Make sure to visit the Bonaventure Cemetery, made famous by the novel "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." You can also explore the River Street area, filled with shops, restaurants, and picturesque views of the Savannah River.

  25. The Best Things To Do in Savannah, GA

    There is also a daily paid guided tour by an experienced guide where you can learn about the history of the 170-year-old cemetery and listen to associated haunted tales. It runs at 10 am and 2 pm ...

  26. 25 Spring Break Destinations For Families To Have Fun

    Explore Bonaventure Cemetery's tranquil trails and tombs, or learn local haunts on spooky gaslamp-lit tours. ... In the winter, it really feels like your own private snowy playground with the slopes groomed so nicely. There's something there for skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels - beginners will love the gentle green runs, while ...

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    1.Savannah, Georgia A Blend of History and Southern Charm. Savannah, Georgia, renowned for its historic districts and Southern hospitality, stands as a top spring break destination, especially in the early spring when the city is in full bloom.This East Coast gem, with its cobblestone streets and lush green squares, is a perfect place for families seeking a mix of history, culture, and outdoor ...

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    As you ponder Memorial Day, take time to ask the following questions: What sacrifices are you called to make for the greater good - in your family, among your circle of friends, and in your ...