If you want to experience Southern, there's no comparison. Atlanta is a large urban area. Savannah is a much smaller, walkable town, and has a much older history. There are "Southern" places in Atlanta, but lots of other stuff in between. You might also want to include Charleston in your considerations.
Savannah would be my choice.
I agree with the folks above, though I think the term "true south" is oversimplified. If you're expecting Steel Magnolias, Gone with the Wind, Tennessee Williams or even In the Heat of the Night, those are all romanticized versions the region. Savannah and Charleston are the two cities that reflect the most history in their architecture, but as colonial cities they are entirely distinct from anything you would see inland.
New Orleans also has a remarkable history and is a fascinating city to visit, but it is also distinguished by its French influences.
Atlanta is a very large city similar to many other large cities. It has some very charming areas together with the skyscrapers, but, of course, had to be entirely rebuilt after being burned in the Civil War. The historical sites here are mainly battlefields, graveyards or sites that gained significance after the war.
The short answer is that I don't think there is any one "true south" but I think that if you're looking for charm and history, Savannah is your best bet.
One of the best trips in America is visiting Charleston, SC and Savannah, GA. There are some great places to visit on the E Coast close to both cities. Myrtle Beach, SC, the islands near Charleston, Beaufort, SC, Tybee Island, GA, St. Simons Island, GA are all great places to visit for a few days in that area. Enjoy your trip.
"A taste of the true south?" What is that? What do you think that is?
Both Atlanta and Savannah have a lot of historical "old south" things to see. The historic district of Savannah is small and very walkable. A small walkable place to stay in Atlanta would be the small town of Decatur, which is in the midst of Atlanta. You can stay there, walk around the town and eat and shop, and/or take MARTA into Atlanta itself for more attractions. If you want to see both Atlanta and Savannah as part of a larger tour, you could include both - but 2 days wouldn't be enough for both. The small town of Madison would be a great place to stop and stretch your legs, but I don't think you want to spend 2 days there. If you DO want that kind of place, we can suggest places to walk, ride horses, etc. - but it depends on your interests.
Thanks everyone for your help. We've decided to go to Savannah now. :)
Depending on your interests I would choose the one you would enjoy most. Savannah has more of a historical aspect, while Atlanta is more modern and for younger people if you like tall buildings. I recently went to Atlanta and all that I can tell is there is: The Georgia Aquarium, The Fox Theater(not quite sure what will be there... unusual for me), Centennial Park, Phillips Arena, the Georgia Dome, Atlantic Station is really cool. I do know more about Atl., but Savannah would be a better choice if you like history.
I agree with ElphabaThropp1314. Actually i don't think you can feel the true south in only one city tho.
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