The Savannah National Historic Landmark District is one of the largest of its kind in the United States. The district has a wide range of architectural designs across a wide range of uses, including commercial, residential and even industrial. As Georgia’s first city and its first capital, the area has a vast amount of history lying behind its past as an influential center of commerce. The Port of Savannah is still bustling with activity. But the tourism industry of the city is also hopping. Visitors come from all over the place to experience the Savannah’s many sights, including the architecture and beauty of its many parks.
If you’re visiting Savannah, you’ve got to head down to historic River Street. To the north, on the Savannah River, it’s a great place to shop, eat and drink and just watch life go by. The heart of River Street is Rousakis Riverfront Plaza in Savannah.
River Street is the riverside of buildings built on Bay Street as part of warehouses and shipping companies along Bay Street. The Cotton Exchange (a Romanesque architectural gem designed by William G. Preston in 1886) was the center of shipping activity when cotton was king, and the area was known as the “Wall Street of the South.”
While the Cotton Exchange and its adjacent buildings face south into the city, River Street faces the Savannah River and is actually a few stories down from the city. To get to River Street from Savannah, you can use the public access elevator near the City Hall, or carefully use one of the many steep stairs along the interchange.
Rousakis Riverfront Plaza is named after John P. Rousakis, mayor of Savannah for an unprecedented four terms. From 1970 to 1990, Rousakis ruled the city and it was dedicated to him in 1997.
As mayor, he was instrumental in the revitalisation of River Street and the unpolluting of the Savannah River. Rousakis died in December 2000. In June 1997, the City of Savannah unveiled a new development on the waterfront that Rousakis helped to develop. Over 80,000 SF of empty warehouses and offices had been renovated to stores, restaurants, bars and art galleries for over $7 million.
The beautiful Savannah, Georgia features these must-see historical sites:
- Savannah Historic District
- Savannah Victorian Historic District
- Forsyth Park
- Juliette Gordon Low Historic District
- Central of Georgia Railroad: Savannah Shops and Terminal Facilities
- Central of Georgia Depot and Trainshed
- John P. Rousakis Riverfront Plaza and Factors Walk
- City Market
- Savannah State University
- Wormsloe Plantation
And after your visit make sure to stop by the best CBD Store in Savannah, Mary Jane’s CBD Dispensary, on West Victory Drive!