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Beaufort, Pat Conroy's Inspiration

Posted by glsavannah on November 4, 2019

One of our new Gray Line Savannah excursions is a day trip to Beaufort, South Carolina. The charming city of Beaufort is known for many things – a gorgeous historic district, a fascinating history featuring pivotal tales from the Colonial South and the Civil War, the rich Gullah culture – and also beloved Southern author Pat Conroy.

Conroy spent many of his defining years in Beaufort and returned to live in the city on and off as an adult. Though he passed in 2016, his legacy is fresh on our minds thanks to the recent publication of a memoir, Tell Me A Story, by his widow, Cassandra King Conroy, and the upcoming Pat Conroy Literary Festival in Beaufort.

One of the defining characteristics of Conroy’s writing is the vivid descriptions of nature, in particular, the coastal landscape of South Carolina. In The Great Santini, Conroy wrote, “At sunset we watch the saltwater tides rising with perfect congruence to the rising moon. No matter the time of day, the creek spreads out in the thrown coinage of sunset, bright as a centerpiece in the transcendental green of the great salt marsh.”

 Strolling through Beaufort, you can see how the author was inspired by his surroundings. On a sightseeing tour visitors can see the house where Conroy wrote – on yellow notepads, no less – famous works The Water is Wide, Prince of Tides, and Great Santini, among others. You can even stroll by the house where Barbra Streisand stayed during the film adaptation of Prince of Tides. (She’s probably not there right now.)

To learn more about Conroy and see the landscape he describes in his books, watch our video below by local expert and guide, Bill: 

 Or join us on a jaunt to Beaufort with Gray Line Savannah for a Lowcountry getaway.

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