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21715
South Carolina/Georgia

The Best of Charleston and Savannah: A Tale of Two Cities

Discover the charms of Charleston and Savannah with plenty of time on your own, and learn about basket weaving, explore plantations, visit Civil War forts and enjoy local cuisine.
Rating (5)
Program No. 21715RJ
Length
8 days
Starts at
2,499
South Carolina/Georgia

The Best of Charleston and Savannah: A Tale of Two Cities

Discover the charms of Charleston and Savannah with plenty of time on your own, and learn about basket weaving, explore plantations, visit Civil War forts and enjoy local cuisine.
Length
8 days
Starts at
2,499
Program No. 21715 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
Plan ahead.
What kind of weather can you expect? Take a look!
itinerary
Please Note:
The itinerary for this program is different on certain dates.
Select your type of room
Price will update based on selection
Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 2 - May 9, 2021
Small group
Starting at
2,899
May 16 - May 23, 2021
Starting at
2,499
May 30 - Jun 6, 2021
Starting at
2,499
Itinerary Note

On this week, participants will attend a Spoleto Festival USA event in Charleston, South Carolina. Event to be announced closer to date.

Oct 3 - Oct 10, 2021
Starting at
2,599
Oct 17 - Oct 24, 2021
Starting at
2,599
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 2 - May 9, 2021
Small group
Starting at
3,799
May 16 - May 23, 2021
Starting at
3,299
May 30 - Jun 6, 2021
Starting at
3,299
Itinerary Note

On this week, participants will attend a Spoleto Festival USA event in Charleston, South Carolina. Event to be announced closer to date.

Oct 3 - Oct 10, 2021
Starting at
3,349
Oct 17 - Oct 24, 2021
Starting at
3,349

At a Glance

Charleston and Savannah — the grand dames of the antebellum South. Journey from one to the other as you learn about Southern culture at plantations, Civil War forts, Lowcountry landmarks and landscaped gardens. Hear tales of centuries past and experience elegant architecture and culinary delights in these waterfront cities where cobblestone streets and historic homes spill over with history and charm.
Activity Level
On Your Feet
Walking up to three miles daily on a mix of concrete paths and uneven terrain; stairs at museums, historic houses, restaurants; getting on/off buses and trolley.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Walk the grounds of Charleston’s Middleton Place, an 18th-century plantation that has survived revolution and civil war, and hear the cannons firing at Savannah’s Old Fort Jackson.
  • Savor the diverse Lowcountry flavors of both cities.
  • Witness the art and learn the history of sweetgrass basket weaving as demonstrated by a local Charlestonian, and learn about the Gullah culture through music.

General Notes

Select dates are designated for small groups and are limited to 24 participants or less. Program includes independent time to explore the city and several meals on your own. Group Leaders will provide directions for self-directed excursions. Suggestions for free-time activities provided in preparatory materials.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Tom Murray
Tom Murray is a graduate of San Jose State University but is a Southerner by choice, having spent more than 45 years in the South absorbing the culture, customs and history of the region. Tom specializes in coastal history with an emphasis on the sea islands of Georgia. Few people know and love beautiful Cumberland and Amelia islands better than Tom. He has spent 25 years lecturing and leading Road Scholar groups to sites from the mountains to the sea.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Al Miller
Al Miller received a bachelor’s degree in English, speech and drama from Baptist College — now Charleston Southern University. He is a recognized historian specializing in local, black history with emphasis on the Gullah-Geechee culture. He brings his musical talent to his lectures for a unique perspective. Al enjoys leading educational excursions, is a licensed real estate agent, as well as a historian and lecturer on black history. He is also a member of numerous organizations, including the Choraliers Music Club of Charleston, Alpha Phi Fraternity and St. James A.M.E. Church.
Profile Image of Darryl Stoneworth
Darryl Stoneworth View biography
Darryl Stoneworth, along with wife Angela, has been selling home-crafted sweetgrass baskets in the Charleston City Market since May 2009. If you happen by his stand, you'll know Darryl by his omnipresent smile. The couple is also constructing their first roadside basket stand along Highway 17N in Mount Pleasant, N.C. The town has renamed and dedicated this stretch of the highway in tribute to the hamlet's sweetgrass basket makers.
Profile Image of Georgia Murphy
Georgia Murphy View biography
Georgia Murphy grew up in a small middle Georgia town, but has called Charleston home for the past 37 years. She has been a licensed excursion leader for the City of Charleston for 28 years, and considers sharing the beauty and history of Charleston and the Carolina Low Country as one of her greatest joys.
Profile Image of Katherine Owens
Katherine Owens View biography
Katherine Owens was born in Baton Rouge, La., and graduated from Louisiana State University. She moved to Savannah, Ga., in 1986 and has led groups on city explorations of Savannah since 2001. Katherine is also a docent at the Isaiah Davenport House, an 1820 home that marked the beginning of Savannah’s historic preservation movement.
Profile Image of Ruth Miller
Ruth Miller View biography
Ruth Miller, a graduate of Duke University, has lived all over America and journeyed throughout the world. As a Charleston historian and excursion leader, she enjoys tying local history into the American story and worldwide events. Ruth is the author and co-author of numerous books, including “Charleston Charlie — A Family Activity Book for Kids of All Ages,” “Touring the Tombstones,” and “The Angel Oak Story.” She is a member of the South Carolina Historical Society and the National Trust.
Profile Image of Tom Murray
Tom Murray View biography
Tom Murray is a graduate of San Jose State University but is a Southerner by choice, having spent more than 45 years in the South absorbing the culture, customs and history of the region. Tom specializes in coastal history with an emphasis on the sea islands of Georgia. Few people know and love beautiful Cumberland and Amelia islands better than Tom. He has spent 25 years lecturing and leading Road Scholar groups to sites from the mountains to the sea.
Profile Image of Jamie Keena, Period Music
Jamie Keena, Period Music View biography
Jamie Keena loves to sing old songs, including folk songs of America and the British Isles, patriotic airs, and “songs written to order” by Tin Pan Alley composers. With a bachelor’s in music from the College of William and Mary, Jamie accompanies his singing with guitar, banjo and ukulele, and also plays the fife, hammered dulcimer and concertina.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Allegiance: Fort Sumter, Charleston, and the Beginning of the Civil War
by David Detzer
An original and deeply human portrait of soldiers and civilians caught in the vortex of war. So vividly does Allegiance re-create the events leading to the firing of the first shot of the Civil War on April 12, 1861, that we can feel the fabric of the Union tearing apart. It is a tense and surprising story, filled with indecisive bureaucrats, uninformed leaders, hotheaded politicians, and dedicated and honorable soldiers on both sides. The six-month-long agony that began with Lincoln's election in November sputtered from one crisis to the next until Lincoln's inauguration, and finally exploded as the soldiers at Sumter neared starvation. At the center of this dramatic narrative is the heroic figure of Major Robert Anderson, a soldier whose experience had taught him above all that war is the poorest form of policy. With little help from Washington, D.C., Anderson almost single-handedly forestalled the beginning of the war until he finally had no choice but to fight. David Detzer's decade-long research illuminates the passions that led to the fighting, the sober reflections of the man who restrained its outbreak, and individuals on both sides who changed American history. No other historian has given us a clearer or more intimate picture of the human drama of Fort Sumter.
The Complete Stories: Flannery O'Conner
by Flannery O'Conner
Native Savannian who won the 1971 National Book Award for Fiction. Thirty-one tales depicting the humorous, of near tragic conditions of life in the Deep South during the fifties.
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
by John Berendt
Referred to in Savannah as "The Book"-non-fiction, adult language-account of a local antique dealer, Jim Williams', four (!) trials for the same murder in the 1980's-also a Clint Eastwood movie released in 1997.
Touring the Tombstones
by Ruth Miller
A series of guide books to Charleston's 18th century graveyards.
A Black Woman's Civil War Memories
by Susie King Taylor Weiner
Reissue of a 1902 book by a nurse/teacher/former slave-memoirs of a black woman around the time of the Civil War.
South of Broad
by Pat Conroy
Against the sumptuous backdrop of Charleston, South Carolina, South of Broad gathers a unique cast of sinners and saints. Leopold Bloom King, our narrator, is the son of an amiable, loving father who teaches science at the local high school. His mother, an ex-nun, is the high school principal and a well-known Joyce scholar. After Leo's older brother commits suicide at the age of thirteen, the family struggles with the shattering effects of his death, and Leo, lonely and isolated, searches for something to sustain him. Eventually, he finds his answer when he becomes part of a tightly knit group of high school seniors that includes friends Sheba and Trevor Poe, glamorous twins with an alcoholic mother and a prison-escapee father; hardscrabble mountain runaways Niles and Starla Whitehead; socialite Molly Huger and her boyfriend, Chadworth Rutledge X; and an ever-widening circle whose liaisons will ripple across two decades-from 1960s counterculture through the dawn of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. The ties among them endure for years, surviving marriages happy and troubled, unrequited loves and unspoken longings, hard-won successes and devastating breakdowns, and Charleston's dark legacy of racism and class divisions. But the final test of friendship that brings them to San Francisco is something no one is prepared for. South of Broad is Pat Conroy at his finest; a long-awaited work from a great American writer whose passion for life and language knows no bounds.
The Angel Oak Story
by Ruth Miller and Linda Lennon
The Angel Oak is a Southern live oak tree located in Angel Oak Park, in Charleston, South Carolina, on Johns Island, one of South Carolina's Sea Islands. It is estimated to be 300-400 years old, stands 65 ft (20 m) tall, measures 28 ft (8.5 m) in circumference, and shades with its crown an area of 17,000 square feet. This book goes in depth regarding the history of this mighty tree.
A Short History of Charleston
by Robert N. Rosen
A concise small history of Charleston that is easy to read and enjoyable.
Civil War Savannah
by Derek Smith
Glimpse into the lives of the men and women who forever will be associated with Savannah through the wartime deeds.
A Witness to History: Charleston's Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon
by Ruth Miller and Ann Taylor Andrus
The Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon in Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the great buildings of Colonial America. Serving as city hall, customs house, post office and prison; as the British Headquarters during the occupation of Charles Towne and then host to a great ball honoring George Washington, the Exchange has been an eyewitness to America’s history. This stoic building-—designated a National Historic Landmark in 1975—-has been described as the best example of the dignity and ornament of the traditional English “exchange-town hall” design of the eighteenth century built in the United States. From within its Great Hall to deep below in the Provost Dungeon, the Exchange has played a vital role in American history. Andrus’ and Miller’s fast-paced and readable survey of the history and significance of the Old Exchange Building will appeal to visitor and serious historian alike.
19 Reviews
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5 Average
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

I had a wonderful time on this trip. I enjoyed learning about the two cities and their unique history. The trip leaders were entertaining and energetic, always helpful and friendly. The other participants added an extra ingredient to the program and helped make the experience special. The hotels and restaurants were top notch and although we had a bit of soggy weather, the whole trip was extremely rewarding. Hope our current situation improves so I can begin planning another Road Scholar adventure.

(5)

Excellent program! The tale of these two cities was fascinating!

(5)

This trip was amazing. Our leaders, Carol and Bill were the epitome of Southern hospitality! The various lectures, guides and field trips were taught by expert guides that were fascinating and enthusiastic! Oh, and the food...unbelievable! We had a real taste of low country cooking at its finest! I highly recommend this adventure!

(5)

Fun trip and our leader Carol and Bill are the best!!

(5)

Excellent experience with fabulous guides, Carol and Bill Burton

(5)

If you have an interest in history of the south, good food, beautiful homes and grounds and like meeting people from around the country, then don't hesitate to sign up for this trip.

(5)

This program combines a deep dive into the history and culture of the Southeast, with enjoyable food and entertainment.

(5)

Great program and we look forward to doing another Road Scholar tour. Took all the apprehension away from doing the tour on our own. We learned a lot, not only from the tour and guides but the rest of our group. Really nice pleasant people

(5)

A fascinating look at two beautiful Southern cities and the influences of the history of the region, especially the Civil War and its aftermath.

(5)

Charleston and Savannah are beautiful cites abounding in history and culture. Best of all, they are walking cites that allows you to freely roam on your own in your free time. The tour is outstanding. I'm certain that you will have a memorable and knowledgeable experience.

(5)

The Best of Charleston and Savannah Tour was filled with many exciting southern experiences such as Plantation and Antabellam house tours.The tour guides were exceptional and the offerings amazing. One really got the feel of southern life before the civil war period. Thanks Road Scholar!

(5)

My recent trip to Charleston and Savannah was filled with information in a variety of items unique to the areas - history, culture, food, music were all part of this amazing opportunity. I look forward to experiencing other Road Scholar opportunities in the future. Thank you for the experience!

(5)

A Tale of Two Cities, Charleston and Savannah, presents an overview of the history, culture and food of these diverse environments. You will participate in a variety of activities which will enhance your understanding of the complicated pasts, the interesting historical figures, the architecture, the music, and best of all the food!

(5)

Having never been to the South this program was a great introduction to the region and the people there. It was also great to have some flex time and revisit places we had been or places not on the itinerary. Just the right length of time

(5)

My sister's first 'bus tour' with Road Scholar was a pleasant surprise for her, and she has agreed that we should go on more of their tours.

This reviewer did not give a star rating.

Connie was a great guide: informed, organized, friendly, helpful. Enjoyed all the activities. Good blend of planned activities and free time. Local instructors and guides were great. Would not have liked a group size larger than the 24 on my trip. Would have liked to have had a full day to explore Beaufort, perhaps stay overnight. Two fascinating cities with much to do and friendly locals. Five stars!

(5)

Tales of Two Cities was a great trip. Just the right mixture of everything

(5)

Great trip!

(5)

Wonderful warm relaxing escape from bitter New York winter! Our director Kathy was excellent, with the perfect blend of organizational skills and genuine warmth and friendliness. Both cities and nearby plantations were very charming, and I loved being in the midst of beautiful English colonial architecture and lush green subtropical vegetation. The history and culture lectures and demonstrations were informative and entertaining. Every single hotel and restaurant meal I had was absolutely delicious and the settings so atmospheric! New favorite dishes: shrimp with grits and gravy, fried green tomatoes, and key lime pie!






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