Bonaventure Cemetery

Cemetery in East Savannah & the Islands

Image by Joseph Shields Getty Images

If you do a Google image search of the term 'Southern Gothic,' the Bonaventure Cemetery pops right up. That should give you an idea of what to expect at this municipal cemetery, plunked on a bluff overlooking the Wilmington River. Forlorn statues and gaunt sculptures in burial shrouds are perched over tombs and mausoleums arranged into a Spanish-moss-drenched necropolis. Bonaventure most famously figured in the novel and film Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt (1994).

The cemetery sprawls over 100 fecund acres located about 4 miles east of downtown Savannah. You can explore the grounds on your own, or take a free guided tour (2pm Saturday, 2pm, 2:30pm and 3pm Sunday). Be on the lookout for family, some 500 Confederate graves, and a Jewish section, which dates to 1909.