Top things to do in Savannah on a budget

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Strolling down tree-lined boulevards in Savannah with a friend, we wondered if the city would be fun with kids. We toured historic homes, enjoyed a city trolley tour, and ate at some of the best restaurants in Savannah. But we wondered if Savannah is an expensive destination. Or, are there things to do in Savannah on a budget?

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We were quite surprised to discover that there are lots of things to do in Savannah on a budget. And, added bonus, the family friendly attractions seem to be the most affordable attractions in Savannah!

If you want to explore Savannah on a budget, we highly recommend these attractions! You won’t be disappointed.

Savannah History Museum

The Savannah History Museum opened in 1990 in the old train depot. With more than 10,000 artifacts, the museum highlights local historical interests: early agriculture in the area, railroad and transportation, historical pieces from the early days of the Girl Scouts and colonial American arts like quilting. Perhaps the most famous piece in the museum is the bench made famous in the movie Forrest Gump. The museum offers a few hands-on exhibits for kids, but mostly, this is a look and see but don’t touch museum.

Collage of images at the Savannah History Museum, including quilts, the bench from Forrest Gump and kids' areas.
Top Left: quilt patterns on display. Bottom Left: The Forrest Gump bench. Center: Part of the interactive children’s area — a study of hats. Right: Me, pretending to “chat” with the hatted silhouettes!
  • Address: 303 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Savannah.
  • Admission:  $9 for adults and $5 for kids age 2-12.
  • Closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Georgia State Railroad Museum

The Georgia State Railroad Museum is spectacular! The largest Antebellum railroad repair facility in the world, this museum has railroad cars, cabooses, engines and other railroad related artifacts from the heyday of railroad transportation and travel.

I visited with a friend, and we had a blast. Kids would LOVE it!

Every day, the museum offers train rides to guests, included in the price of admission (sadly, we missed it). The Railroad Museum offers other tours as well. We took the train engine tour and learned some interesting facts about train engines through the years. AND, we got to climb on the engines too!

Photo collage of train engines at the Georgia State Railroad Museum in Savannah.
Left: climbing the caboose. Center: that engine is enormous. Right: close up of a wheel.
  • Address: 655 Louisville Rd., Savannah, GA
  • Admission: $15 for adults and $8 for kids (ages 2-12)
  • Planning Tip: Plan your visit so you don’t miss the train ride. Here’s the schedule!

Savannah Children’s Museum

Savannah Children’s Museum is an outdoor museum next door to the Georgia State Railroad Museum. The museum’s interactive exhibits encourage kids and families to learn through play. Exhibits change seasonally, but expect an exploration maze, a reading nook, a sensory garden, and a nature kitchen. Museum staff lead art and STEM activities daily as part of the museum experience.

  • Address: 655 Louisville Rd., Savannah, GA
  • Admission: $10 per person over age 18 months.
  • Dates: Open Wednesday-Sunday weekly. Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

More ways to see Savannah on a budget

There are lots of ways to stretch your vacation travel budget in Savannah.

Get a See 3 Pass which offers big savings and allows you three days to see up to three participating museums. Museums included are: Georgia State Railroad Museum, Savannah Children’s Museum, Savannah History Museum and Revolutionary Battlefield Memorial Park, Old Fort Jackson, Pin Point Heritage Museum, and Harper Fowlkes House. Learn more from the Coastal Heritage Society.

Use a Savannah TourPass for admission to 30 of the most popular attractions and tours in Savannah. The one day pass includes two featured tours and unlimited admission to other attractions. The two day pass includes three featured tours, and the three day pass includes four featured tours. Purchase the one day pass and upgrade to include as many additional days as you would like. This is an entirely digital pass, very easy to use!

Check out all the free things to do in Savannah that are totally worth it! Honestly, some of the best things to do in Savannah for families are completely free!

And, if you have never been to Savannah before, these Savannah travel tips are a great way to prepare before you travel.

FAQ: Visiting Savannah on a Budget

When is the cheapest time to visit Savannah?

See Savannah on a budget by visiting in the off season. January and February offer the best prices on lodging. Save more with free activities and money saving museum passes any time of year.

Is Savannah fun for families on a budget?

Family friendly attractions in Savannah like the Georgia State Railroad Museum, the Savannah History Museum and the Savannah Children’s Museum offer money saving admission tickets. And, there’s lots to do in Savannah for free, like the seasonal splash fountain at Ellis Square. It is fun for families on a budget.

Are there any beaches near Savannah?

The closest beach to Savannah is Tybee Island, about 18 miles away. There is no fee to access Tybee Island, but parking is $3.50/hour at all public parking spots. Hilton Head Island beaches are about 40 miles away and the island offers free off-beach parking with shuttles.