Day Trips from Midtown Atlanta
Visitors looking for adventures beyond Atlanta should consider a day trip to one of these diverse Georgia communities. Each one is rich in history, natural beauty, shopping alternatives and regional cuisine. For more information, call the Georgia Tourism Division (404-656-3590).
Visitors looking for adventures beyond Atlanta’s attractions should consider a day trip to one of these diverse Georgia communities. Each one is rich in history, natural beauty, shopping alternatives and regional cuisine. For more information, call the Georgia Tourism Division (404-656-3590) and step out of our Midtown Atlanta hotel.
A 15-minute drive northwest takes history buffs back in time to the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park (770-427-4686), site of the major battle between North and South troops that led to the fall of Atlanta in 1864. Other educational points of interest include the Kennesaw Civil War Museum (770-427-2117), Pickett’s Mill (770-443-7850) and the Concord Covered Bridge Historic District. The great outdoors welcomes adventurists to shoot the rapids down the Chattahoochee River or relax at Sun Valley Beach. For more information, call the Cobb County Convention and Visitors Bureau (800-451-3480).
Thirty minutes northeast of Atlanta, seasonal fairs and festivals take
place at the Gwinnett Fairgrounds (770-963-6522), the Hudgens Center for the Arts (770-623-6002) and Vines Botanical Gardens (770-466-7532). Art and shopping connoisseurs frequent the historic tannery town of Buford, off I-85, Old Town Lilburn and Historic Norcross. Braselton boasts Château Élan Winery & Resort (678-425-0900); the Yellow River Game Ranch (770-972-6643), a 24-acre wildlife preserve; and Road Atlanta Raceway (770-967-6143). For more information, call the Gwinnett County Convention and Visitors Bureau (888-494-6638).
Twenty miles northwest of Atlanta, Marietta provides a glimpse of the South’s storied past. The Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art (770-528-1444) showcases Southern artists’ works. Walking tours escort visitors past 19th-century mansions, and the famed “Cannonball Trail” features numerous Civil War sites. Five National Register Historic Districts contain more than 150 antebellum and Victorian homes, including the Kennesaw House (770-528-0431). White Water, American Adventures and the Foam Factory (770-424-9283) offer enjoyment for everyone. Also, the Georgia State Fair (770-423-1330) takes place here every fall. Call the Marietta Welcome Center (770-429-1115) for additional information.
Twenty miles north of downtown Atlanta, Roswell is a charming community that began in the 1830s as a mill town. As the mills flourished, antebellum mansions sprang up along the west bank. Most famous of these is 1839 Bulloch Hall (770-992-1731), the Greek Revival home of President Theodore Roosevelt’s mother. The 1845 Archibald Smith Plantation Home (770-641-3978) is complete with outbuildings and original furnishings. Much of the original mill village has been restored, with period storefronts throughout the Historic District. Roswell also offers a thriving arts community. For more information, call the Historic Roswell Convention and Visitors Bureau (800-776-7935).
“Atlanta’s True South” lies along I-75, 15 miles south of downtown. Historic Jonesboro, made famous by Margaret Mitchell’s classic novel Gone With the Wind, transports visitors to that era. The Road to Tara Museum (770-478-4800) is filled with Rhett and Scarlett relics. The neighboring Welcome Center offers driving tours of 32 Civil War–related sites. Today, Jonesboro offers top-name retailers, antique stores and the Atlanta State Farmers Market (404-675-1782). Atlanta Motor Speedway (770-707-7904) attracts fans of NASCAR’s Winston Cup, and Spivy Hall (770-961-3683) presents international performers year round. Contact Clayton County (770-478-4800) for more information.
Six miles east of Atlanta, DeKalb County lays claim to Georgia’s Stone Mountain Park (770-498-5600), the world’s largest granite formation. DeKalb also features the Fernbank Museum of Natural History and IMAX Theater (404-370-0019), Callenwolde Fine Arts Center (404-872-5338), Emory University’s Michael C. Carlos Museum (404-727-4282) and the annual Georgia Shakespeare Festival (404-264-0020). Exotic cuisine and shopping abound at DeKalb’s International Corridor, while deliciously fresh produce, meats, dairy and flowers are exchanged at the farmers market. Call the DeKalb County Convention and Visitors Bureau (800-999-6055) for more information on things to do in Atlanta..
North Georgia Mountains
Recreation in Ellijay-Blue Ridge
There is plenty to do in this section of the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest. Make a reservation at Dream Weaver Cabin in the Aska Adventure area and head for the hills. For skilled hikers, try a section of the Benton MacKaye trail. Try antique shopping in either downtown Ellijay or Blue Ridge. Stop and ride a horse at Blanche Manor, then take the family on an adventure from a bygone era, riding the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway. Mercier Orchards is a popular place for apples and pie as well as the country store. If you would like to rent a boat on Lake Blue Ridge check out the Marina. Or, catch a movie at one of the last Drive-in Movie Theaters the Swan Drive in.
Roughly an hour east of Atlanta, Madison is situated right in the middle of Georgia’s historic heartland. At the core of Madison’s cultural life is the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center (706-342-4743) and the Morgan County African American Museum (706-342-9191). Tree-lined streets and brick sidewalks direct antique buyers to a wealth of shops; quaint restaurants tempt diners with soul food, Southern barbecue and home-style buffets. With Hard Labor State Creek Park (706-557-3001) and Lake Oconee nearby, Madison is the ideal place for an outdoor getaway. For more information, contact the Madison Welcome Center (800-709-7406).
Some 45 miles west of Atlanta, Carrollton sustains its small-town charm within a university setting. The beautiful campus of the State University of West Georgia (770-836-6676) is the backdrop to landmarks such as The Intown South Historic District of stately mansions, specialty store and antique-laden Adamson Square, and the Southern-fare restaurants of Main Street City. Nearby John Tanner State Park (770-830-2222) and McIntosh Reserve Park (770-830-5879) offer a variety of recreational options. Call the Carrollton Convention and Visitors Bureau (770-214-9746) for more information.