Although it was neglected throughout much of its history, like most of the city's eastern side, Columbia Square has now enjoyed a thorough restoration to become one of Savannah's loveliest spots.
The Pirate's House, on the northeastern corner of Savannah, is thought to be Georgia's oldest building, and is certainly one of its most famous. Captain Flint, from Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island, is said to have died here after drinking too much rum.
Found on on the eastern side of Telfair Square, the Telfair Academy of Arts and Sciences occupies a Regency style mansion built in 1818. It's been a public art museum since 1886, which makes it the oldest in the South.
Alright, Savannah, what's going on here? The obelisk in honor of Nathanial Greene isn't in Greene Square, as might be assumed, but Johnson. The statue of James Oglethorpe isn't Oglethorpe Square, but in the middle of Chippewa Square! And Chippewa Square is named after the Battle of Chippawa, but the name is misspelled ever-so-slightly. Are you trying to confuse us? Or are you just confused yourself?
When we chose Savannah as our next destination, it was partly because of the weather. In December, the average is supposed to be between 40 and 63°F. So, I never expected to encounter a frozen fountain in Forsyth Park. It's a beautiful sight, and one that's relatively rare, so we're happy to have seen it. But we're done, now. Could someone please give us back the warm weather we had been promised?
I'll admit it. I was already partial to Captain Mike's Dolphin Adventure, out on Tybee Island, because I like anything featuring my own name. Mike & Ike's? Delicious. Michael Jackson? The greatest ever. Mike the Headless Chicken? Best headless chicken ever. Mikes rule, and so it was no surprise to discover that Captain Mike's Dolphin Adventure was totally awesome.
Just a short half-hour drive from Savannah, Tybee Island is the region's top recreational destination, with a beach, surf and kayak shops, nature trails, cool restaurants, dolphin tours and bunch of hotels.
We had 24 squares to explore during our time in Savannah, and decided to start with the oldest and largest. Johnson Square was established in 1733, and named in honor of South Carolina's colonial governor Robert Johnson.
Our first full day in Savannah was warm and overcast. Luckily, the rain held off and we were able to spend the afternoon getting familiar with the city that would be our home for the next few months.
At 3pm on a brisk November afternoon, Jürgen and I parked a smashed-up car in front of our new Savannah home, and pulled our exhausted bodies up the front steps. We had arrived after a whirlwind trip that had brought us from Oviedo, Spain, to Madrid, Chicago, Denver, Ohio, Kentucky and finally southeastern Georgia.