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Location, Location, Location for your Vacation

January 7, 2011

Location. They say that it’s one of the three most important things to consider when finding a place to live (the others being location and location). I think it’s equally important to consider when planning a trip. This week I’d like to share with you some questions that you should ask YOURSELF while planning any trip.

What brings you to _____________(place you are visiting)? What do you hope to see?

Visitors to Savannah come for a number of reasons, but most wish to see the Forsyth Park fountain, Spanish moss hanging from Live Oak trees, the cobblestone streets, restored row houses from the 1800s, the Mercer-Williams House (or the Juliet Gordon Low House, the Andrew Low House, the Owens-Thomas House, the Green-Meldrim House, or any number of other house museums), the historic churches and synagogues, the squares, and to find a quiet spot to soak up that “southern charm” they keep hearing about.

You will not find all of these along the riverfront. To see these sites (and most importantly, soak up the “southern charm”) you must get off of the river, and in fact go south of City Market. You’ll find these attractions throughout the entire 1.5 square mile historic district. The river has its advantages as a home base, and perhaps I am a bit biased, but I believe that the neighborhoods around Forsyth Park have even more to offer to tourists as a home base for their visit than the riverfront/City Market area.

Follow the jump for my top 5 reasons to stay near Forsyth Park when visiting Savannah

1. Opportunity to see the entire historic district without really “trying.” The location of Forsyth Park at the south end of the historic district means that, in order to get to a destination on or near the river you must travel through the district. If you take one route on your way to the destination and another on the way back, you’ve just seen twice as much of the city than you had planned on.

2. Proximity to major attractions. In terms of minutes, it takes less time to walk to a number of major attractions from accommodations near Forsyth Park than it does from the river. For example: Forsyth Fountain – 1-4 minutes. Mercer Williams House – 3-6 minutes. Cathedral – 3-8 minutes. Juliet Gordon Low House 8-15 minutes. Andrew Low House 3-8 minutes. SCAD’s flagship building – 6-9 minutes. The Forrest Gump Square (Chippewa Square) – 7-15 minutes. Jones Street – 3-8 minutes. Downtown Design District – 5-10 minutes. (For more ideas of things within minutes of the Forsyth Park neighborhoods, check out our ongoing “15 minutes away” series.)

3. Exercise Potential. Savannah residents frequent Forsyth Park, making it the city’s premier exercise location. The park features public basketball and tennis courts, and its perimeter is exactly 1 mile around. Couple that with the south end of the park being 1 mile from Bay Street, there is an easy 3 mile circuit that can be created by taking a lap around the park and going to and from the river area.

4. Residential Neighborhoods. Let’s face it; Savannah’s main charm lies in its people and architecture. The neighborhoods around Forsyth Park are primarily composed of residential properties. How better to soak up the charm of city residents and SCAD students than to stay where they call home?  ***Also, trucks, including semis, travel extensively along Bay Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, and near City Market. Not quite that relaxing southern city you envisioned.***

5. Prime Pet Location. If you’re traveling with your dog, remember that you’re not the only one who wants to see green grass and majestic Live Oak trees dripping with Spanish moss. Forsyth Park and the Savannah Squares are great places to stroll with your pooch. The Forsyth Park neighborhoods also have a number of dining options for those who wish to take their dog with them to lunch or dinner.

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