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“If you love cemeteries, this is the one to visit!”

Bonaventure Cemetery
Ranked #10 of 166 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 28 June 2018

My husband, teenage son and I got up early one morning in June (before it got too hot) and headed to the cemetery. I see now that tour maps are available if you go inside the building at the entrance but we didn't know that. We initially parked and then realized it would be best to drive through so we did. There is plenty of room to pull over and park to look and take photos. The cemetery is beautiful with the elaborate stones, hanging moss and beautiful trees. If you love cemeteries and elaborate headstones I would highly recommend a visit.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank T-Scout_and_Mom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"spanish moss"
in 478 reviews
"johnny mercer"
in 286 reviews
"wilmington river"
in 68 reviews
"jewish section"
in 65 reviews
"midnight in the garden"
in 360 reviews
"resting place"
in 78 reviews
"buried here"
in 157 reviews
"beautiful statues"
in 65 reviews
"guided tour"
in 208 reviews
"historical society"
in 72 reviews
"peaceful place"
in 62 reviews
"live oaks"
in 142 reviews
"bug spray"
in 87 reviews
"shannon scott"
in 118 reviews
"worth the trip"
in 79 reviews
"lots of history"
in 129 reviews
"oak trees"
in 77 reviews

295 - 299 of 5 928 reviews

Reviewed 27 June 2018

We didn't have time for a tour, but stopped by the office to pick up a map. Staff was very helpful in pointing out the historical section. Plenty of nice photo opportunities. Be sure to stop by and see Gracie will in the historical section. Take bug spray.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Michelle G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2018

We drove around for hours reading the history and headstones!
Very interesting cemetery! We didn't even realize the cemetery had closed and had to be found by the groundskeeper. Uh oh...

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Cwelty9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2018

This was one place I wanted to go to. I have always liked walking through old cemetery's. Didn't have but an hour or so to go through. Definitely will be back!

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank Hylite49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 26 June 2018 via mobile

We visited the Bonaventure ('good fortune' in Italian) Cemetery on a hot South Carolina morning. It was our third visit to the cemetery; we are amazed at the size and intricacy of the graves. If you are visiting for the first time, be sure to stop by the office at the entrance and pick up a brochure. A donation is requested for a comprehensive brochure explaining the history of the cemetery (once a plantation), a helpful map, and listing of famous people buried on the grounds. A white paper map is available for no charge but it is not as helpful as the larger brochure. A small restroom is available near the office; a port-a-john is stationed in the middle of the cemetery. Use this one in case you get diverted on your exploration. Bring water and wear a hat since much of the grounds are not shaded.

The cemetery is promoted as "one of the most beautiful sculpture gardens in the southeastern US. Stroll through 100 acres of azaleas, camellias, boxwoods, live oak trees and more."

Unless you have a specific grave to find, head toward the 'historic section' of Bonaventure. Here, you will find the graves of Conrad Aiken and his family, Johnny Mercer (American songwriter); and little Gracie Watson, a 6-year old from Boston, who contracted pneumonia in Savannah and died. Hers is among the most visited in the cemetery.

Other impressive areas of the cemetery include a Jewish area dedicated to those who lost their lives in the Holocaust; veterans of world wars; order of railroad conductors; and veterans from the Spanish-American War of 1898.

We also discovered many graves of those who served in the CSA (Confederate States of America/Civil War); American Legion and DAR as well as many who contributed to the history of Georgia.

The cemetery is a huge area to maintain. We have visited in different seasons; this was our first when plants and flowers were in bloom. While employees were working to maintain the graves by trimming and blowing, the cemetery could use much more maintenance. Many of the graves need a good power washing to erase the effects of the weather and to restore the epitaphs. Others are marked with a “Do Not Service” marker and those have fallen into disrepair. We always find the epitaphs to be interesting and poignant.

You could easily spend a day in the cemetery of 'good fortune.'

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank MarnetteS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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