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South Carolina & Georgia: Charleston to Savannah

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Coast your way into the genteel South. Among Charleston and Savannah bike tours, VBT’s immerses you most fully in rich culture and breathtaking beauty.
Former tour name: Charleston to Savannah: A Southern Reel

Guided Biking

  • Duration: 7 Days|
  • Daily Mileage: 4 - 50|
  • Biking: 2 - 5 hr|
  • Group Size: 20
4.7 out of 5 stars.
Activity Easy
Easy
E-Bikes Available
E-Bikes Available
People
Guided Group Tour

Starting From

Bike Vacation Only

$2,395

(per person, double occupancy)

South Carolina & Georgia: Charleston to Savannah

Coast your way into the genteel South. Among Charleston and Savannah bike tours, VBT’s immerses you most fully in rich culture and breathtaking beauty. Kick up your feet during a traditional Beaufort social. Discover the fascinating ways of the Gullah people on the Sea Islands. Trace the Intracoastal Waterway on tranquil island routes and explore an estuarine ecosystem by kayak. Ride beneath Spanish moss dripping from live oaks. And marvel at historic architecture and endless antebellum charms. You’re sure to fall under the spell of the South during this captivating ride.

What to Expect

This tour offers options for easy rides throughout the trip. Our VBT van support shuttle is always available for those who would like assistance. This vacation is ideal for beginning and casual cyclists.

  • Duration: 7 Days|
  • Daily Mileage: 4 - 50|
  • Biking: 2 - 5 hr|
  • Group Size: 20
Activity Easy Easy
Cycling
Bar Graph Beginner - Experienced
Cyclists
Vehicle Support Vehicle
Support

Tour Highlights

  • Cycle by the pastel-hued houses of Charleston, marveling at views of sailboats and historic Fort Sumter
  • Traverse the beautiful coastal islands of the Intracoastal Waterway by bike
  • Visit Fort Moultrie and summon the spirit of Edgar Allan Poe, who once served here
  • Paddle among the marshes, cypress swamps, and forests of an estuarine landscape during a kayak excursion
  • Explore the many charms of Beaufort, named “the South’s Best Small Town” by Southern Living in 2017
  • Immerse yourself in the legacy of the Gullah people when you visit the culture-rich Penn Center
  • Stroll past the antebellum architectural beauties of Beaufort with a local guide
  • Step back in time among the charming streets of Savannah during a guided tour
  • Ride beneath a magnificent avenue flanked by live oaks as you approach historic Wormsloe Plantation
  • Take in the eerie beauty of the famed Bonaventure Cemetery with its moss-hung gardens

Climate Information

Temperatures

Average High /
Low Temperature (°F):

Mar68º/48º

Apr76º/55º

May83º/64º

Sep85º/69º

Oct77º/58º

Nov69º/48º

Average
Precipitation:

Mar3.6 in

Apr3.1 in

May3.0 in

Sep5.1 in

Oct3.1 in

Nov2.5 in

What's Included

Bike Vacation Only

6 nights in distinctive Southern inns in the heart of town Check
12 meals: 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners Check

Tour Bikes

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Road Bicycle (Carbon frame)

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Step-Through Hybrid/Comfort Bicycle

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Step-Over Hybrid/Comfort Bicycle

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Electric-Assisted Bicycle (E-bike)

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Biking Packages Include:

Custom VBT Bike and Helmet

Two Local, Bilingual Trip Leaders

Vehicle Support

Luggage Transfers

Ride with GPS and Daily Route Notes

Welcome Reception

Facilitated Cultural Experiences

Your Choice of VBT Branded Gear for Your Adventure

Itinerary

Sun, Mar 15 to Sun, Mar 22 - 2020

Show Itinerary:

Travel to Charleston and gather at the Ansonborough Inn, the first hotel on our itinerary. If you’re flying in, you can arrange to meet VBT’s complimentary shuttle after your arrival at Charleston International Airport. The shuttle leaves the airport at 2:00 p.m. Please call Mount Pleasant Shuttle at 843-971-4901 (or toll-free 866-223-7226) to make a reservation, clearly stating you are a VBT guest. Reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance. Mount Pleasant must have your names and your airline and flight number.

If you are arriving after this shuttle departs or if your flight is delayed, you must make your own arrangements to reach the inn. For guests who are driving to the tour, parking will be available at the Ansonborough Inn for the week at a daily charge of $15 plus tax. Parking is also available at the Charleston airport for $8 per day. At tour’s end, a complimentary shuttle will bring guests back to the airport. And if you leave your car at the Ansonborough Inn, you can take a taxi there from the airport at a cost of approximately $30.

Please contact the Ansonborough Inn to advise of any travel delays or changes; they will pass your message along to your VBT Trip Leaders.

Meet your VBT Trip Leaders at 3:00 p.m. for a safety briefing and bike-fitting session, followed by a warm-up ride. You wind your way through historic “South of Broad,” taking in wide views of the harbor and Fort Sumter. Then continue riding through the historic market. You also ride past St. Philip’s Church, one of Charleston’s oldest, located on appropriately named Church Street.

Tonight, get to know your fellow travelers during a welcome reception at the inn, followed by dinner at a local restaurant.

Hotel: Ansonborough Inn
Meals: Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Afternoon:
Charleston Warm-Up: 4 miles

What to Expect: Cycling south, you pass the large fountain at the Waterfront Park entrance. It’s a wonderful place to stroll in the evening and watch the sailboats on the harbor or the sunset at Ravenel Bridge. On East Bay Street, pass “Rainbow Row,” the historic neighborhood of pastel-colored houses. Biking along the Battery, you see Fort Sumter, which guards the harbor entrance where the first shots of the Civil War were fired in 1861.

In a city defined by its steeples, St. Philip’s Church boasts one of the oldest. You ride past it during your warm-up ride, then head to the historic City Market, where sweetgrass baskets are still handcrafted with local pride. Mind the horse carriages as you pass the stables on Anson Street back to the Ansonborough Inn.

After breakfast, you cycle along a dedicated bike/pedestrian lane on the dramatic Arthur Ravenel Bridge over the Cooper River. Traverse Sullivan’s Island, then cross another bridge to the Isle of Palms. Our route follows the scenic shores of the Intracoastal Waterway passing by some of the area’s most sought-after homes. As you ride, enjoy soothing vistas the beach. During your lunch stop, you have the opportunity to change into swim clothes and go for a swim.

After lunch at a local restaurant on the Isle of Palms, continue cycling to Fort Moultrie. Edgar Allan Poe was stationed here from 1827 to 1828 while serving in the U.S. Army. The fortress played a key role in both the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. After your visit, return to the Ansonborough Inn, where there’ll be time to explore Charleston on your own. Perhaps enjoy a stroll along the Battery, the promenade flanking the city’s scenic harbor.

Dinner is on your own tonight.

Hotel: Ansonborough Inn
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Today’s Ride Choice:
Morning:
Sullivan’s Island: 30 miles

What to Expect: Cycle from the Ansonborough Inn over the Arthur Ravenel Bridge, enjoying expansive views of downtown, Charleston Harbor, and the Atlantic. When you arrive at Coconut Joe’s for lunch, you will have time to visit the beach with boardwalk access, changing rooms, and showers.

After lunch, ride back through Sullivan’s Island to Fort Moultrie. Explore this National Monument and then retrace your way back to the Ansonborough Inn by bike or hop in the VBT van for a shuttle back.

Today, you shuttle about 70 minutes south to Beaufort, where you cycle the stunning Spanish Moss Trail. Formerly the path of the Port Royal Railroad, this 12-foot wide, multi-purpose paved trail offers beautiful water and marsh views, coastal wildlife viewing, and historic points of interest as it meanders through neighborhoods draped in Spanish moss. The invigorating trail delivers you to Port Royal, a quaint Lowcountry town in the heart of a biologically rich estuarine ecosystem. After time to admire its houses listed on the National Historic Register, follow another segment of the Spanish Moss Trail back to Beaufort, where you pause for a delicious picnic lunch of local specialties prepared by your Trip Leaders. Then, leave your bike behind for a guided kayaking excursion, paddling through a nesting habitat for more than 200 species of birds. As you explore, learn from your guide the Lowcountry secrets of nearby salt marshes.

End your rewarding cycling day in Beaufort. Named “The South’s Best Small Town” by Southern Living magazine in 2017, it is a charming haven renowned for its Sea Islands, historic downtown and savory Lowcountry food. Check into your hotel here and make yourself at home. The Beaufort Inn is conveniently located to give you easy access to the city’s waterfront and beyond.

Enjoy a Lowcountry boil before experiencing firsthand a famous Southern tradition at your inn: a Beaufort social. Enjoy this fun opportunity to dance the exuberant yet dignified Virginia Reel, a Colonial-era folk dance.

If you wish to partake of the Beaufort Inn’s spa services during your stay, VBT encourages you to make your reservations well in advance of your arrival.

Hotel: The Beaufort Inn
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Morning:
Spanish Moss Trail: 15 miles

What to Expect: Cycle along the tranquil Spanish Moss Trail to Port Royal, where several buildings and homes are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Stop at the Sands boardwalk and observation tower for views of the Beaufort River and a possible sighting of dolphins. Your ride will conclude at your inn in the center of Beaufort.

After breakfast in town, ride through beautiful farmland to St. Helena Island, passing the historic Chapel of Ease along your way. During the Colonial period, rice and cotton planters who found themselves too far from the churches of Beaufort constructed informal “chapels of ease” on their plantations. Built in the mid-18th century, St. Helena’s Chapel of Ease was largely destroyed by a fire more than 100 years later. Its four original walls remain, making it an evocative historic landmark.

After your ride, enjoy a visit to the Penn Center, a National Monument and the first institution to recognize the Reconstruction Era of the South. Founded in 1862 to educate freed slaves, it’s now a cultural center for African-American residents of the Sea Islands, a community also known as Gullahs. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. held the annual retreat for his Southern Christian Leadership Conference at the center. After an enriching visit, enjoy a picnic lunch prepared by your Trip Leaders, then return to Beaufort via shuttle or bike.

Later, embark on a walking tour of Beaufort. Stroll past the city’s mix of antebellum mansions, live oaks, and charming 1950s storefronts with a resident guide, who explains why the town has lured so many moviemakers to its lovely streets. A number of critically acclaimed films have used Beaufort as their backdrops, including Forrest Gump with Tom Hanks, The Prince of Tides with Barbra Streisand, and The Great Santini with Robert Duvall.

Make your own dinner plans in Beaufort this evening; there are many excellent restaurants from which to choose.

Hotel: The Beaufort Inn
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Today’s Ride Choices:
Cumulative Distance Range: 15 – 50 miles

Morning:
Spanish Moss Trail: 15 miles
Beaufort to Helena Island: 35 miles

What to Expect: If you wish, you may shuttle to St. Helena Island to begin this morning’s ride at the Penn Center. During this pleasant reel on coastal routes, pause at Land’s End Point to explore the beach. Continue on Seaside Road through beautiful farmland, then return to the Penn Center for a tour a lovely picnic lunch. Those who want a longer ride can start from the inn and cycle across Lady’s Island to St. Helena Island, meeting your Trip Leaders at the Penn Center, then commence with the remainder of the ride. After your picnic lunch and tour, you can shuttle or cycle back to Beaufort in the afternoon.

This morning, shuttle to Savannah (approximately 90 minutes). Once you have arrived you pedal out of Savannah toward the Isle of Hope. Here, cycle past attractive old homes dating from the early 19th century, enjoying views of the Intracoastal Waterway as you ride.

Our destination this morning is informally known as Wormsloe Plantation, a State Historic Site. One of the most photographed locations in the entire South, it features a 1.5-mile-long live oak avenue framed by a graceful stone entry arch. The remains of the estate—which was constructed using “tabby,” a building material similar to cement and made from lime, ash and crushed oyster shells—are renowned as the oldest standing structure in Savannah.

After some free time for lunch on your own in the Isle of Hope area, continue cycling past Savannah State University’s Thunderbolt campus and the moss-hung gardens of Bonaventure Cemetery, an 18th-century cemetery featured in John Berendt’s critically acclaimed novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

After you settle in at your hotel, the remainder of the afternoon is yours to explore Savannah at leisure.

Lunch and dinner are on your own today.

Hotel: Andaz Savannah
Meals: Breakfast
Daily Options: 27 miles

Today’s Ride Choice:
Isle of Hope: 27 miles

What to Expect: As you leave the city center, you ride past seven of Savannah’s city squares. Pedal past Savannah State University toward the waterfront. On the Isle of Hope, ride past stately homes and enjoy marsh views. Visit Wormsloe Historic Site, and the Bonaventure Cemetery. Ride through downtown neighborhoods of different architectural styles back to Savannah.

This morning, spend time exploring some of the most memorable sites of this city. A fascinating walking tour of its picturesque streets and squares provides insight into the city’s history, architecture, gardens and abundant charm. Did you know that Savannah boasts the oldest standing antebellum railroad complex in America? Or that Savannah had the first practical cotton gin? Your guide will help you envision Savannah as a colony, as a burgeoning city of the Victorian Era, and as a thriving modern-day cultural center. Other Savannah bike tours miss the in-depth exploration you’ll enjoy during your visit.

You’ll have free time to explore.

Tonight, celebrate with the group during a farewell dinner at the hotel.

Hotel: Andaz Savannah
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Non-biking Day: Explore Savannah at your leisure

Your tour concludes after breakfast this morning. A complimentary VBT shuttle is available to take departing guests back to the Charleston airport (CHS), arriving around 11:30 a.m. We suggest a flight departing no earlier than 2:00 p.m. Guests with cars parked at the Ansonborough Inn should plan to take a taxi from the Charleston airport to the inn. The cost is about $30.

You may choose instead to fly out of Savannah. We do not offer shuttle service to the Savannah airport. A taxi from the hotel to Savannah International Airport costs about $25.

Meals: Breakfast

South Carolina & Georgia: Charleston to Savannah

Download PDF Itinerary:

Bike Vacation Only View Activity Chart
Reviews

Guest Reviews 79 out of 79 (100%) of reviewers recommend this tour

4.7 out of 5 stars.

Dates & Prices

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