What could be more eerie than exploring the Historic District's ghoulish side? Considered by many to be one of the most haunted cities in the US, Savannah is teeming with ghost tours and deciding which one you're brave enough to try might be a challenge. One of the best ghost tour companies in the city is Blue Orb, which offers bone-chilling tours, which are guaranteed to terrify you. Another favorite - Ghosts and Gravestones - will transport you into the macabre via the "Trolley of the Doomed. If you’ve ever had a yen to visit a cemetery after hours, book an evening tour with Shannon Scott, an expert storyteller who scares guests with stories about Bonaventure Cemetery's "dark side," after the gates close. Savannah Ghost Walks, Sixth Sense Savannah and Ghost Talk Ghost Walk offer tours, which are geared for families traveling with older children. If you’d like to fortify yourself with a few adult beverages along your spooky adventure, then check out Tara Haunted Tours’ Boos and Brews tour and Savannah Tours by Foot’s Creepy Crawl. For the ultimate terrifying adventure book a tour with Hearse Ghost Tours, where you’ll have the unique opportunity to tour the city aboard an actual hearse.
Ghost Talk Ghost Walk
One of Savannah's original ghost tours, this popular walking tour has been featured on the History Channel's show Haunted Savannah and takes a lighthearted look at the Historic District's most haunted spots. Drawing on tales from Margaret DeBolt's book "Savannah Spectres and Other Strange Tales," as well as incorporating studies from Duke University and actual interviews with Savannah residents, Ghost Talk Ghost Walk showcases the city's haunted history and offers proof from the great beyond. The tour departs at varying times nightly from the John Wesley's monument in Reynolds Square on Abercorn Street. Call ahead to find out times and reserve a spot. (912-233-3896, 800-563-3896)
Savannah Tours by Foot
Savannah Tours by Foot offers a Creepy Crawl walking tour of the city's most haunted pubs, adding a different kind of "spirit" to their itinerary. During the two-and-a-half-hour guided tour, guests visit between five and seven of the Historic District's most haunted bars and pubs, where they will be treated to invigorating libations as well as spooky ghost stories. The Creepy Stroll is a 90 minute family-oriented tour through Savannah's haunted streets. Along the way you may hear tales of eerie happenings at Hampton Lillibridge House, Kehoe House, the Pirate's House and about the ghost at Fort Pulaski. Reservations for both can be made online on the Savannah Tours by Foot's website. (912-238-3843)
Savannah Ghost Walks
Savannah Ghost Walks' Ghosts of Low Country Tour offers a multicultural approach to haunted Savannah, regaling guests with tales about African Hoodoo, Irish and Native American beliefs and practices along the way. This tour departs at 8:30 p.m. The Victorian Savannah Ghost Walks - for mature children and adults - leaves daily at 10:30 p.m. G.H.O.S.T and takes guests to hidden burial grounds and haunted back streets of the city. Savannah Ghost Walks is owned and operated by Chase Anderson, a ghost-hunting veteran and founding member of the Savannah Paranormal Foundation, who boasts more than 30 years of ghostly encounters and has done an extensive amount of historical and paranormal research. ((912) 508-1234)
Hearse Ghost Tours
There are many haunted tours offered in Savannah, but Hearse Ghost Tours takes it to a different level by transporting passengers through haunted history in an actual hearse. The nine hearses - said to have been in service for some 15 years - provide the perfect vehicle for this tour. The bodies and caskets are long gone, of course, and hearses have been converted into open-air vehicles, complete with canopies to protect tour-goers from the elements. As you cruise through town the hour-and-a-half tour, you will be taken past cemeteries and haunted buildings, learning about Savannah's grisly and eerie history along the way. It's a bumpy ride and not recommended for pregnant women or anyone weighing more than 250 lbs. Reservations are required Reservations are required and there are many pick-up locations throughout the city. (912-695-1578)
Southern Strolls Walking Tours
Southern Strolls Walking Tour's Savannah Ghost Stroll is a popular choice for anyone interested in exploring the city's haunted history. Conducted once every night Monday - Saturday, the tour covers Savannah's dark side and includes entertaining ghost stories, anecdotes about Savannah's bloody history and stops at some of the Historic District's most haunted spots. Spooky locales on the walking tour include Colonial Park Cemetery, final resting place of many local historical figures and a haunted house on West Oglethorpe Street, where many tour-goers have reported ghost sightings. Reservations are required. ((912) 480-4477)
Tara Haunted Tours
For visitors who'd like some "liquid spirits" to go along with any other-worldly spirits you may encounter along the way, Tara's Haunted Tours' signature Boos and Brews Walking Ghost Tour will fit the bill. The popular tour is a favorite with tour-goers because for its spooky yet lighthearted stories and pit stops at the city's most haunted pubs. The adults-only walking tour departs nightly at 8 p.m., and drinks must be purchased separately at each stop. A scary guided Scenic Haunted Savannah Tour for groups of 10 or more is also a winner. Customized walking tours are another option for birthdays, family-friendly outings or "haunted" wedding events. Owner and operator Tara Ryan - whose family history in Savannah dates back to the 1840s - is the seventh generation in her family to experience ghostly encounters. (912-897-1973)
Sixth Sense Savannah
One of city's most popular ghost tours - Sixth Sense Savannah - has been terrifying tour-goers since 1995 with several options throughout the city. Among the most popular are tours of Savannah's haunted Historic District, a family-friendly tour departing at 7 p.m. and an 18-and-older tour beginning at 9:30 p.m. During the two-hour walking tour, participants cover about half a mile, exploring the city's haunted history and learning about poltergeists, shadow people, orbs, exorcisms, tunnels, root doctors, voodoo and more. Sixth Sense also offers a tour of Savannah's renowned Bonaventure Cemetery. Advanced reservations are required, and tickets can be purchased online via the Sixth Sense website or by phone. Tours depart from Clary's Café on 404 Abercorn Street. (912-292-0960, 866-666-3323)
Shannon Scott Journeys
A tour of legendary Bonaventure Cemetery is always worth a visit, but one of the best ways of learning about the cemetery's haunted past is by signing up for a tour with Shannon Scott. Scott's Journeys tours include a Bonaventure By Day tour and a Bonaventure: After Hours tour. The evening tour is a unique experience, which allows participants a rare peek into the cemetery when the gates are locked. Scott's engaging storytelling and detailed knowledge of Bonaventure and Savannah's colorful history lend another dimension to the spooky tour. For another one-of-a-kind experience, check out Scott's Paranormalist Tour, a customized haunted tour of the city. Reservations for all tours are required. (912-604-4423)
Blue Orb Ghost Tours
Blue Orb is touted as one of the most credible and bone chilling ghost tours in town, thanks in part to owner and guide Tobias McGriff's authentic documentation and captivating delivery. Their newest, Modern Hauntings Tour, delivers is quickly becoming one of the most popular ghost tours in Savannah and is already spawning imitators. This unique adventure features homes and stories never before talked about and obtained from real estate agents, caretakers, renovation crews, past and current tenants and the property owners who have been willing to go on record with their chilling encounters. This is an 18 and older tour. This tour leaves rain or shine and participants are advised to bring bug spray and bottled water during the summer months. Reservations are recommended for all tours. (912-665-4258)
Ghosts and Gravestones
Ghoulies, ghosties and all things creepy are showcased on Ghosts and Gravestones popular tours through Savannah. The sinister voyage takes you through the Historic District, onboard the "Trolley of the Doomed," focusing on the city's most haunted sites with expert storytelling along the way. You'll travel past antebellum mansions, ancient cemeteries and some of the bloodiest battlegrounds in history where you may just hear echoes from the past. Stops include exclusive nighttime entry to Juliette Gordon Lowe's (founder of the Girls Scouts of America) birthplace and Perkins and Sons Chandlery. Tours run daily from 7 - 10:45 p.m. Reservations are recommended. ((866) 955-1674)
About Michelle da Silva Richmond
Michelle da Silva Richmond is an award-winning travel editor and member of the Society of American Travel Writers and other journalism organizations.
She has written hundreds of articles for newspapers, consumer and trade magazines and in-flight publications. In addition, she has co- authored and contributed to many guide books and was a weekly travel columnist for a metropolitan Connecticut daily newspaper.
Growing up abroad, combined with a colorful career as a Pan Am flight attendant fueled her wanderlust and passion for travel.
She lived in Mexico City for nearly 20 years and has visited nearly 100 countries. Her bags are always packed.
Read more about Michelle da Silva Richmond here.
Connect with Michelle via: Blog | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Google+ | Pinterest