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“Must-see if you enjoy history”

Bonaventure Cemetery
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Bonaventure Cemetery Segway Tour
Ranked #4 of 218 things to do in Savannah
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Bonaventure Cemetery was developed on the historically-significant site of Bonaventure Plantation. The peaceful setting rests on a scenic bluff of the Wilmington River, east of Savannah. The site was purchased for a private cemetery in 1846 and became a public cemetery in 1907. Citizens and others can still purchase interment rights in Bonaventure. This charming site has been a world famous tourist destination for more than 150 years due to the old tree-lined roadways, the many notable persons interred, the unique cemetery sculpture and architecture, and the folklore associated with the site and the people. The entrance to the cemetery is located at 330 Bonaventure Road and is the largest of the municipal cemeteries containing nearly 100 acres. The cemetery is open to the public daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. . The main office of the Department of Cemeteries is located in the Bonaventure Administrative Building at the entrance.
Reviewed February 1, 2010

We took the 10am guided tour on 1/31/10. The grounds are beautiful. The monuments are amazing in detail and give insights into who these people were as well as the times they lived in. Definately go with a guide because it is bigger than you would expect. Plus you won't miss out on some of the more humble plots of important historical figures. If the guides check this...i found out why the angels are bare-foot. Exodus 3:5

2  Thank wileen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,121 - 5,125 of 5,245 reviews

Reviewed January 5, 2010

Bonaventure Cemetery is a truly amazing place with fabulous sculpture, wonderful trees, and an abundance of natural beauty. The Bonaventure Historical Society was wonderfully helpful in arranging a tour and provides fabulous information. You really must visit this historic treasure.

Thank AugustaHistoryBuff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2009

Bonaventure is an amazing place. It must be one of the most interesting, if not THE most interesting, cemetery in America. It is a short drive from historic Savannah and a pleasant one at that. When you pull through the gates, park and go into the office. They have a map. The woman there was very helpful in telling us where to go to see the most interesting things. You can drive from there back to the far end of the cemetery in the direction of the river. They have more parking so you can get out and start walking.
If you start near Plantation Square (which is clearly marked on the map that they hand out), work your way around that and then east. Johnny Mercer as well as Hugh Mercer who built the Mercer House (of "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" fame) are there. There are also many war heroes and figures of historical note laid to rest here. Of those that are of the most interest, they are well and clearly marked. With the help of the map and signs, they are very easy to find. They have done an excellent job of organizing this cemetery. The booklet also has brief details of each of the most famous people laid here, which helps if you're fuzzy on Savannah history and figures.
It is a beautiful place, quiet, peaceful, solemn. The monuments erected are a testament to those that they mark and those artisans that have created them. Be on the lookout for those by John Walz, a nineteenth century sculptor who is responsible for a number of them. We found "J. Walz" inprinted on a number of the monuments and stones. He is also buried at Bonaventure. You must walk slowly and look every way at once to make sure that you do not miss every amazing detail. What would stand out as an incredible monument in today's graveyard can easily get lost in the collection that covers this place.
Be on the lookout for all of the metal crosses with the confederate flags in the middle and CSA on the points - they mark Confederate soliders and there are A LOT of them.
If you only have a short time to visit, if you see nothing else, see the grave of Gracie Watson. This was the most poignant resting place I have ever seen anywhere. It is in section E-96, she is listed in the visitor's guide and map as well. If you haven't got one, it is directly south of Plantation Square, the round section in the middle of the older part of the cemetery.
Gracie was six years old when she died of pneumonia. Her grave is marked by a life-size statue of her carved from her photograph by the aforementioned J. Walz. It is haunting, beautiful, and tragic all at once. It us surrounded by a green hedge and grass with a wrought-iron fence around with a stone in front to tell her story. The gravesite does so much more than words ever could to convey the utter heartbreak of her parents.
Plan to spend at least a few hours when you go. It is worth every minute and if we could, we would have stayed longer.

15  Thank TrueFlavor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 22, 2009

The cemetery is a great stop on a trip to Savannah. It's got a historical section which will prove interesting to most anyone. And of course after the Garden of Good and Evil movie, it's become quite a popular attraction. I recommend stopping at the groundkeeper's house on the way in and getting a map. He will also give you a brief overview of the cemetery and where to see what. A donation is recommended.

Thank FreqWorldTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2009

I think this was one of the highlights of the trip for me. The cemetery is gorgeous, the tombstones are extravagent, the atmosphere is peaceful. We took a taxi from downtown (approx $15) and were very glad we did. Make it a point to see this place during your visit to Savannah.

1  Thank TIA1966
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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