From the Georgia Mountains to the Chattahoochee River: Explore These North Georgia Attractions
Nestled among the foothills of some of the beautiful Georgia mountains, Northeast Georgia truly is nature's playground. With a million acres of national forest, 56,000 acre LakeHartwell, historical landmarks, seasonal festivals, fine dining andâ€”there are North Georgia attractions to pique everyone's interest.
North Georgia Attractions You May Want to Explore
The Georgia mountains in this region offer mild weather year-round and picturesque scenery. Plus, there is no shortage of North Georgia attractions to keep the whole family entertained in this beautiful area.
The quaint city of Toccoa in the Georgia mountains is a must see. This city is full of wonderful North Georgia attractions that will appeal to every family member. Start with a visit to the 186-foot tall ToccoaFalls, located on the campus of ToccoaFallsCollege. Pay a small fee and spend the day gazing at this natural wonder. Then take a hike to the top of CurraheeMountain, where you can enjoy beautiful views. Next, visit the CurraheeMilitaryMuseum, which has exhibits on the Civil War, WWI and WWII, as well as a focus on the Paratrooper Infantry Regiment that trained in the area in the 40s. History buffs can continue with a tour of the historic Old Stephens County Courthouse, built in 1908.
Alpine Helen, once a sleepy sawmill village with a tiny population, is another of the premier North Georgia attractions. The quaint town in the Georgia mountains will instantly charm you with its Bavarian essence of red roofs, clock towers and cobblestone streets. The best time to visit Helen is during the town's annual Oktoberfest celebration. Oktoberfest in Helen came from humble beginnings in the 1970s, but over the years it has grown into one of the biggest parties in the Southeast, lasting over two months! During the day, peruse Helen's unique shops, eat a relaxing lunch in a beer-garden, and enjoy the sunshine and beautiful scenery. At night, head on over with the rest of Helen to the Festhalle, where visitors eat fresh cooked bratwursts, drink a variety of German beers and dance to the tune of authentic German live music.
Great North Georgia Attractions to Visit in the Fall
If you are seeking seasonal North Georgia attractions, visit Burt's Farm and Buck's Corn Maze. In the fall, Burt's Farm transforms into the largest pumpkin patch in the Georgia mountains. Bring your family and wander amongst the thousands of pumpkins, ranging in size from an unbelievable 150 pounds to a modest one pound. Burt's Farm offers hayrides pulled by tractors that take visitors through winding trails filled with natural beauty. If your stomach is growling after all of that fun, check out the barn store for Burt's fresh baked pumpkin pie and pumpkin roll, candied popcorn and other sugary goodies. If you are feeling up to a challenge, visit Buck's Corn Mazeâ€”an amazing nine-acre corn maze, open to the adventurous at heart both day and night.
One of the biggest North Georgia attractions during the fall is the changing of the leaves. Under a crisp blue sky, the sun's rays dance majestically on hues of orange, yellow and red. The sight of the leaves along the Georgia mountains during their annual transition is absolutely incomparable. Russell-Brasstown Scenic Byway is an ideal destination for viewing dazzling fall color in the Chattahoochee-OconeeNational Forest encircling the byway. The Byway is home to numerous waterfalls that are just a short stroll from the main road. You can also take the Byway to Brasstown Bald, the tallest of the Georgia mountains, to soak in a 360-degree view of the picturesque autumn landscape.
Another of the North Georgia attractions that offers fun year-round, but is especially spectacular with the fall foliage, is Tallulah Gorge, a magnificent canyon in the Georgia mountains that is two miles long and nearly 1,000 feet deep. Visitors can hike trails to several overlooks, or they can obtain a free permit to hike down to the gorge floor. Take in the amazing views of the forest, river and waterfalls atop the suspension bridge that sways 80 feet above the rocky canyon bottom. Take a picnic and make a day of exploring the beauty of Northeast Georgia in the fall.
The Georgia mountains region is rich in historic landmarks and the arts and crafts of the past still resonate in museums and shops throughout the area today. Choose from a wide variety of North Georgia attractions to visit. The Folk Pottery Museum of Northeast Georgia showcases the skills of one of the South's premier grassroots art forms and explores the historical importance and changing role of folk pottery in Southern life. The Nacoochee Indian Mound is the scenic focus at the west end of the NacoocheeValley. Built by the Indians during the Mississippian Period, it was partially excavated in 1915. Although not accessible to the public, the mound may be seen on the east side of GA Highway 75 just before crossing the ChattahoocheeRiver south of Helen.
Enjoy Outdoor Activities in the GeorgiaMountains
There are endless opportunities for outdoor fun in the Georgia mountains, but if you are looking for something more exciting than hiking, camping, or fishing, adventurers of all ages can get in on the whitewater rafting action at the Chattooga River. On the nationally designated "Wild & Scenic" river, three outfitters provide guided raft trips on two sections of the river where paddlers can experience the wild ride of class II, III, IV and V rapids. Adventurers seeking North Georgia attractions can choose a half-day trip or go for the whole day, and picnic on the banks of the river or at the base of a waterfall.
Another must-visit is LakeHartwell, nestled in the Georgia mountains. This man-made lake has over 962 miles of shore and offers a wide range of exciting activities in which you can take part, from fishing to boating and waterskiing. In addition, the area is surrounded by North Georgia attractions such as outlet stores and flea markets, and there are dozens of golf courses just a short drive away.
After a day of fishing, hiking, hunting, golfing, or enjoying other North Georgia attractions, it is time to settle in for a home-style family meal at The Dillard House. The Dillard House is renowned for its farm fresh vegetables and meats served "family style" in the generous proportions that are the cornerstone of southern hospitality. Set in the beautiful natural surroundings of the Georgia mountains, the Dillard House also offers accommodations ranging from renovated modern style rooms to secluded chalets. Plus, the horse stables will keep the kids entertained for hours!
There is such a wide variety of North Georgia attractions to explore that you are sure to find something to delight every member of your family. The natural beauty of the Georgia mountains combined with its rich history make it a wonderful place to visit and a special place to spend a lifetime!
About the Authors
Ty Wheeler is the Director of Adventure at Currahee Club, a gated mountain and golf community in Toccoa, Georgia. As the Director of Adventure, Ty plans and oversees active outdoor recreational opportunities. Prior to working at Currahee Club, Wheeler served with U.S. Air Force Special Operations, providing medical support to the Delta Force and S.E.A.L. teams. Molly Hicks is Currahee Club's Director of Fun, and she uncovers activities for members' families and those who seek low-key activity. Before she came to Currahee Club, she worked with children as an instructor with Computer Tots. For more information about Currahee Club, please visit www.curraheeclub.com.
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