Travel Guide: Savannah + Sewanee

Posted on May 24, 2018 8:46:30 AM

Shout out to all my G.R.I.T.S.

Every mile is a memory when you’re in God's country (the south). This May, Deb and I have been compiling our own savory, southern narratives during our respective trips to Savannah, Georgia, and Sewanee, Tennessee. While Deb was on a midnight train to Georgia for a wedding, I headed to my Southern comfort zone and alma mater, the University of the South, for my little brother’s graduation. Lord, we were born ramblin’ women and are back in the District with a southern state of mind (and a little bit chicken fried). So, why don’t y’all giddy up, giddy up and get gone with the wind with us!

"Most of Oglethorpe's city (Savannah) has passed on to the ghostly realm, too, but his urban-planning legacy remains: a walkable, bikeable, town, one of the loveliest haunts in the South" -Chris Dixon, The New York Times.

There’s no sweeter southern treasure than biscuits, pies, cinnamon buns, and pop tarts made in-house. I couldn’t be more proud of Lil’ Debbie’s order: a biscuit with house-made jam, sausage, and a fried egg. What a way to start the day.

As Deb so accurately phrased it, “You know you’re in the south when the hotel robes are terry cloth lined seersucker.” From a secret garden, Italian cafe, to the hallway of butterflies, this Kimpton property jewel is a prime example of contemporary swagger meets southern hospitality.

Experience-driven shopping comes to fruition at Paris Market and Brocante. Find new and old French gems for your home and wardrobe in this cache made complete with a coffee and candy bar.

Foxy Loxy is much more than a piping hot cup of the best coffee in Savannah. With a hip atmosphere, outdoor garden, and live music, the Tex-Mex cantina and coffee bar evades the slightest trace of a dull moment (or flavor).

What the New York Times calls the “Ikea antidote,” Alex Raskin Antiques is truly Savannah’s “most interesting shop.” This decadent manor is inundated with art, ephemera, secretaries, mirrors, rugs, chests, and tables (so...just about any funky, southern relic you can imagine). Alex Raskin brings a magical and meridional flair to the streets of Savannah.

Formerly a Greyhound bus terminal, this retro diner and oyster bar takes the traditional Sunday supper to the next level. Once you’ve polished off some pickled oysters, chicken liver mousse, slow-roasted leeks, ribeye, hibiscus lemon meringue, and beignets, make sure to grab a tootsie roll to sweeten the deal on your way out.

This airstream-chic eatery offers friendly indoor service and alfresco dining in the backyard. LD suggests ordering the fried avocado, homemade chips, and the “Triple P” (pepper jack, grilled pineapple, and prosciutto). A sloppy joe and apple pie sandwich are also on the menu. I’m hoping this is what Pappy Johns ordered because it sounds like it’d be up his alley.

“It’s a long way away, even from Chattanooga, in the middle of woods, on top of a bastion of mountains crenelated with blue coves. It is so beautiful that people who have once been there always, one way or another, come back.” - William Alexander Percy

If you’re on a $5 budget and want an awesome bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit, cup of coffee, and a pleasant spot to speed an entire book before class, head straight to the Blue Chair Cafe and Tavern. It's highly likely there'll be a town meeting being called to order at the picnic benches. Your waitress will probably take one look at you and be able to guess your order like some sort of biscuit reader. Basically, you're going to feel like you’re in an episode of the Andy Griffith Show (and you’ll LOVE it). Hit up the Tavern next door for earth-shattering chicken tenders, wings, and Jackalope Brewery pitchers on tap. BUT beware of Wednesday night BOGO, because we all know two Thunder Ann’s turns into four, turns into six, turns into...You get the idea.

Stocked with mountain treasures as charming as its name, the Lemon Fair is just the place to find uniquely Sewanee gifts, art, and accessories. Protected by the Legend of the Sewanee Angel and local SCOUT retailer, the Lemon Fair is full of gems that will make you want to click your red slippers and give you that "there’s no place like home, there's no place like home" feeling.

Pick any road in Sewanee, drive to the end, and you’ll be greeted by a view by of the valley spanning as far as the eye can see. With unlimited access to the Perimeter Trail covering the expanse of the Cumberland Plateau, you’ll have plenty of swimming holes, caves, waterfalls, and lookouts to explore.

We take celebrations seriously on the “Domain,” especially graduation parties. The University upholds a strict policy that requires a bar, a band, and plenty of barbecue at said event. Invites aren’t necessary. As long as you’ve got a good attitude and your dancing shoes, you can saunter into any yard, frat, or house party you like.

The stained glass in All Saints Chapel is truly a sight to be seen, making the pomp and circumstance of graduating especially sentimental. With diplomas in hand, students can proudly step on the University’s seel as they exit the chapel.

Get a pitcher, fried pickles, and group of friends together on the porch of Shenanigans, and you’ll never want to leave. On the night of graduation, it’s a tradition for the senior class to go to Shenanigans and celebrate for one last time on the mountain.

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