Made famous by the novel and film Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, Bonaventure Cemetery (a former plantation) sits on a bluff overlooking the Wilmington River in historic Savannah. The Southern Gothic cemetery comprises 160 acres (65 hectares) of sculptures, mausoleums, marble headstones, and oak trees dripping with Spanish moss.
Bonaventure Cemetery is the largest municipal cemetery in Savannah and one of the most beautiful in the world. No trip to the “Hostess City of the South” would be complete without a stroll through this eerily beautiful place. The Bonaventure Historical Society offers free guided tours one weekend per month, but visitors are also free to explore on their own. Among those interred in the cemetery are American songwriter Johnny Mercer, poet Conrad Aiken, and Georgia’s first governor John Treutlen.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Bonaventure Cemetery is a must-visit for all first-time visitors to Savannah.
- Wear comfortable shoes suitable for walking over uneven surfaces.
- Don’t forget to bring sunscreen during the summer months and insect repellent throughout the year.
- The cemetery is wheelchair accessible, though some areas are gravelly and sandy.
How to Get There
The cemetery is located 5 miles (8 kilometers) outside Savannah’s historic city center on the eastern edge of the city. The easiest way to get there is to drive (15 to 20 minutes) or hire a taxi. Parking areas are located on both sides of the entry gate.
When to Get There
The cemetery is open daily throughout the year. While the grounds are stunning throughout the year, they’re at their most beautiful in springtime when the azaleas and camellias are in bloom.
Bonaventure Cemetery Tour App
If you can’t visit during the weekend when guided tours are offered, consider downloading the app from the Bonaventure Historical Society. This mobile guide to the cemetery grounds recreates the tour experience on your mobile device, complete with information at 31 stops throughout the grounds.