21 Unmissable Things to Do in Savannah with Kids

Last updated on May 17, 2023

Victoria and Otis walking around the Starland District in Savannah

Savannah, with its atmospheric Spanish moss and stately historic squares, is one of those cities that has it all – a gorgeous place to simply walk around and also filled with things to do for all ages. We fell in love with the place, and it’s somewhere we could easily live.

We’ve already written a Savannah travel guide, but this post is all about the best things to do in Savannah with kids. Otis was quite little (2) when we went, but we still managed to fit in lots of fun Savannah kids activities, which we enjoyed as much as (or perhaps even more than) him. From the famous Forsyth Park to the brilliant Savannah Children’s Museum, we had an incredible stay and have put this list together with help from locals who made personal recommendations.

So whether it be things to do, places to eat, or where to stay, we have you covered when it comes to planning a Savannah family vacation.

Also see our guide to the where to stay in Savannah with kids. And our epic guide to bucket list family vacations.

Things to do in Savannah, GA, with kids

Our top picks for creative families in Savannah

These were some of our favourite things to do in Savannah. They’re an ideal pick for creative families visiting the city, helping the grown-ups to get their creative fix while also keeping the kids happy.

  • Make sure to visit the trendy Starland District where you’ll find lots of cool murals and creative local businesses. It’s home to or favourite Bakery, Back in the Day.
  • One of the joys of Savannah is simply walking around the tree-lined streets ad visiting all the galleries. Let your kids pick a few to wander.
  • Byrd’s Cookies or Leopold’s Ice Cream are the perfect fuel for long days exploring the city.
  • Artzeum is an amazing hands-on gallery where kids can create their own art works.
  • And we loved the Children’s Museum, which we wish existed in our own city!

21 best things to do in Savannah with kids

Savannah Children's Museum

Visit the Savannah Children’s Museum

The Savannah Children’s Museum in Tricentennial Park is definitely one of the top things to do with kids in Savannah. It’s entirely outdoors and includes over a dozen exhibits including a maze, reading nook, water play and sensory garden. I would absolutely love to have one of these in Bristol. Otis loved it and it’s an ideal place to keep kids around 2-12 years-old entertained. Plus it’s a nice place for adults to hang out too, especially on sunny days.

Check their programme for all sorts of kids activities and events, but even just visiting on a normal day is worth it. It’s a good one to combine with the neighbouring Georgia State Railroad Museum.

Hang out in Forsyth Park

Forsyth Park is one of the most iconic Savannah sights, and has plenty for keeping kids entertained. There are two amazing kids’ playgrounds, which we found really useful for keeping Otis happy in-between long days exploring the city. Plus there are sprinklers to run through and keep cool on hot summer days.

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It’s unmissable when it comes to family activities in Savannah – or indeed for for anyone visiting Savannah. It was definitely one of the highlights of our trip there and is a gorgeous place to simply hang out

The 30-acre park is one of the best places to see the moss-laden trees that help characterise the city. And don’t miss the fountain – the most photographed spot in the city.

Farmers Market at Forsyth Park, Savannah

There’s a farmers’ market on Saturdays, which is perfect for grabbing a picnic to eat in the park – another must on the things to do in Savannah, GA, list. We picked up some excellent pastries and coffee for a little picnic in the park.

Hop on a trolley tour

One of the best ways to explore Savannah is on one of the trolley tours. We did the Old Town Trolley Tour, but another option is Old Savannah Tours. Both are great things to do with kids as even the trolley itself is entertainment.

The Old Town Trolley has 15 stops and you can choose between a one or two-day pass, which allows you to hop on and off as much as you like. The driver explains the history and culture of the city during the tour, which is a relaxing way to learn more about Savannah and its history.

If you’re not interested in the guided tour part of the trolley service, an alternative is to simply take the free Dot trolley, which goes to 18 stops around the historic district completely free of charge. The Dort is one of the best free things to do in Savannah with kids.

Buy tickets for the Old Town Trolley Tour here.

Visit Savannah’s Candy Kitchen

Ah, I love a good old fashioned sweet shop, and this one is a winner. The name alone – Savannah’s Candy Kitchen – tells you why this is a classic kid-friendly thing to do in Savannah. It’s filled with the sweet smell of freshly prepared candies and you can taste free samples of the city’s famous praline. There’s also a little train that runs around the ceiling, which is a particular hit with young kids (Otis loved it!).

There’s one branch in City Market and another on River Street, which themselves are two of the most popular places to visit in Savannah.

Things to do in Savannah - Byrd's Cookies

Buy some cookies at Byrd’s

As you know, I have a sweet tooth, especially for baked kids, so this was high on my list of things to do in Savannah! Perhaps the most famous cookies in the South, Byrd’s Cookies is an easy hit with children (and me!), especially as they offer free tasters. The rainbow cupcake cookies are a particular hit with children. 

There are several Byrd’s stores in the city including on River Street and in City Market. The cookies make an ideal gift too – we brought some back fro Steve’s parents.

Leopold's Ice Cream - Savannah

Get an ice cream from Leopold’s

Don’t leave Savannah without trying an ice cream from Leopold’s Ice Cream – one of the USA’s oldest ice cream parlours. The lines are long but worth it (I was in line for about 15 minutes). Grab a cone or dine in for one of their famous sundaes.

It’s one of our top picks for things for kids to do in Savannah, GA – although I also highly recommend it even if you don’t have kids. The ice cream is among the best I’ve ever had.

Savannah National Wildlife Refuge

Just a few miles from downtown is the The Savannah National Wildlife Refuge, which is made up of over 30,000 acres of freshawater marshes, tidals and creeks. You can do the 4-mile self-guided Laurel Hill Wildlife Drive, which takes you past freshwater pools and hardwood hammocks where you can spot wildlife such as gators, bobcats and birds.

There are also plenty of walks to do, which you can find out more about at the visitor centre. Cell phone coverage is patchy so make sure you know where you’re going and how to get back.

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Explore the street art in the Starland District

Kids will love the colourful murals in the trendy Starland District. Some walls here have been designated specifically for street art and the quality is top notch. If you’re lucky, you might see the artists at work. We were lucky to meet one of the artists and Otis loved watching him paint.

What to do in Savannah - Shop SCAD

Explore the city’s art scene

Savannah is known for its art scene, partly because it’s home to SCAD, one of the USA’s best art schools. As such, it’s a great place to visit galleries and let your kids be immersed in art. Free options include Shop SCAD (pictured above), which exhibits the artwork of current and historic alumni. Plus there are lots of little galleries around the city. This was one of the things we loved about Savannah the most – just wondering around and exploring the art. Places that we particularly enjoyed were Gallery 209Roots Up Gallery and Kobo.

A paid option the SCAD Museum of Art, which has an impressive permanent collection as well as regularly rotating exhibitions. It’s definitely worth a visit. Admission is $10 and children under 13 go free.  

Plus the Artzeum deserves a point of its own…

Visit the Artzeum

The Artzeum is a fantastic hands-on interactive children’s art museum, which is part of the Telfair Museums, the South’s oldest public art museum, spread over three buildings and covering 200 years of art history.

It’s such a brilliant concept, and the perfect option for creative families. Children get the chance to build and create their own artworks while exploring ideas about art and life – it’s a fun and educational pick for what to do in Savannah with kids.

Things to do in Savannaj - River Street

Take a riverboat cruise

A cruise along the river in Savannah isn’t the most picturesque journey (it’s a working port after all), but kids will likely enjoy the novelty of riding a paddle steamer with its giant paddle wheels. We enjoyed it too and Otis was at the age where all vehicles are a novelty.

Kids will love it even more if they’re into machines (like Otis) and can enjoy viewing all the port’s cranes and big boats. Also look out for the waving girl statue on River Street and give her a wave right back!

Fun things to do in Savannah - Savannah Theatre

Catch a show at the historic Savannah Theatre

The Savannah Theatre is one of the USA’s oldest theatres and hosts a fun programme of live music, including family shows for children over six. It’s a good way to break up days in the sun and give the kids a bit of downtime amid all the walking about.

Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace

Visit Juliette Gordon Low’s Birthplace

Are your children Girl Guides? I didn’t make it past Brownies, but the founder of the Girl Guide movement, Juliette Gordon Low, was born in Savannah. You can visit her home to take a child-friendly tour and learn more about the movement. Guided tours run six days a week and last around 40 minutes. It’s popular, so be sure to book in advance.

Photo by Geoff L Johnson for Visit Savannah

Hit the beach at Tybee Island

For a bit of beach time, head to Tybee Island, just a 30-minute drive from the city. Kids will love the beach and you can also dolphin and manatee spotting cruises. Recommended companies include Tybee Island Dolphin Adventure Tours and Captain Mike’s Dolphin Tours.  We didn’t get to do this one, but it was recommended by many people.

Go to Cumberland Island

Another place for a beachside day trip from Savannah is Cumberland Island, the largest of Georgia’s barrier islands. It has 17 miles of white, sandy beaches and 9,800 acres of wilderness. It’s also good for history buffs due to the ruins of Dungeness (a mansion built by Thomas Carnegie). Look out for the wild horses!

Visit the Savannah History Museum

As well as the Savannah Children’s Museum, Tricentennial Park also houses the Savannah History Museum and the Georgia State Railroad Museum.

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The History Museum is small and not what I’d call a “must-do”, but there are some interesting exhibits including Forrest Gump’s bench and a section on Juliette Gordon Low.

Photo by Casey Jones for Visit Savannah

Visit the Georgia State Railroad Museum

Next door to the history museum is the Georgia State Railroad Museum, which is a good option for any train-loving kids. It includes a big collection of steam and diesel trains, model railroads and all sorts of train machinery. The big model railway of Savannah is a favourite, plus an operating turntable in the roundhouse. Combine this with a trip to the neighbouring children’s museum (number one on this list).

Catch a baseball game

Sports lovers should head to the historic Grayson Stadium, home to the Savannah Bananas, where they can catch a classic American baseball game. Even those not into the game will likely find the whole spectacle and vibe entertaining with lots of music and dancing as well as the game itself. Buy your tickets here.

Photo by Casey Jones for Visit Savannah

Visit Ellis Square

Savannah is filled with lots of pretty squares where you can let the kids have a run around during a busy day of sightseeing. But we think the best one is Ellis Square, near City Market.

There are fountains for the kids to cool down in, a giant chess set and space to run around. Plus they have light shows in the evenings and a regular programme of live music events. It’s close to lots of kid-friendly restaurants such as Vinnie Van GoGo’s where we loved the pizza and enjoyed a spit of people watching.

Go to the UGA Marine Education Center and Aquarium

The UGA Marine Education Center and Aquarium is just outside of Savannah on Skidaway Island (about 25 mins drive from downtown). The saltwater aquarium includes an outdoor nature trail, plus a petting tank where kids can hold sea snails and crabs.

Road Trip Southern US - Savannah

Walk the Avenue of Oaks at Wormsloe

One of Savannah’s most photographed sights is the impressive avenue of oaks at Wormsloe Historic Site. Somewhat misleadingly named, Wormsloe is actually an old plantation with a troubled history, which isn’t sufficiently acknowledged in its tours. It’s therefore a somewhat complicated place to visit, but there’s no denying the 1.5-mile avenue of oaks is impressive and it’s a good spot for a family walk.

Where to stay in Savannah, GA with kids

Sonder Apartments Savannah

Savannah is an easily walkable city so it’s worth staying around the centre, so you can forego the need for a car. That said, there are also some great options in the trendy Starland District, a little north of Forsyth Park (a 45 minute walk from River Street).

These are a few of our favourite apartment rentals and hotels in Savannah and we also have a guide to the best places to stay in Savannah GA with kids.

Road Trip Southern US - Sonder Savannah

Sonder Apartments

We stayed in a Sonder Apartment, which are essentially a cross between an apartment rental and a boutique hotel – you get the benefits of both, with the style of a hotel but the space of an apartment (and cheaper than a hotel too). Sonder have a few different apartment blocks in Savannah and we stayed at the one on Broughton Street, which is ideally located for all the main sights. Book your stay here.

The Thunderbird Inn

The Thunderbird Inn is a renovated roadside motel, voted one of the top ten best retro hotels in the USA. The hip, colourful hotel comes with lots of little bonuses, including complimentary doughnuts, coffee, lemonade and hot popcorn. We absolutely loved the look of this place but it was fully booked during our stay. Book your stay now.

More USA family travel guides

We’ve put together family travel guides for lots of our favourite destinations in the USA. And we also have family travel guides for destinations worldwide.

See our USA family travel guides here: California family road tripCharleston with kids | Los Angeles with kids | New York with a baby |Sacramento with kidsSan Diego with kids | San Francisco with kids | Seattle with kids

7 thoughts on “21 Unmissable Things to Do in Savannah with Kids”

  1. I really appreciate you mentioning that Wormsloe was a plantation and at least hinting at why that deserves respect and thought vs. just a pretty place to take pictures.

    Reply
  2. Don’t take the river boat trip. Not handicap friendly and sites to see are cranes and and earth moving equipment. Waste of time and money.

    Reply
  3. Great reviews, but mention that the Artzeum kids party of the art museum did not open until July 8, 2023… not sure how you’re reviewing it.

    Reply

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