Nestled within the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Georgia, Blue Ridge is the proper trip vacation spot for out of doors fanatics, notably within the fall when the air begins to chill and the colors of the leaves start to alter. The world has 300 miles of mountaineering trails, together with the famed Appalachian Path, and 100 miles of trout streams – the city is formally designated the Trout Capital of Georgia. Zip lining, whitewater rafting, and kayaking are additionally on the listing of out of doors actions in this mountain city, and in case you’re in search of one thing extra laid-back, you possibly can go to one of many many craft breweries and wineries within the space, go apple-picking or take pleasure in a spherical of golf. In case you’re planning a visit to Blue Ridge otherwise you’re contemplating the city for an upcoming trip, this information may help you benefit from your expertise. (Word: Some excursions, occasions, and sights could also be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Examine native tourism boards earlier than touring.)

Lake Blue Ridge

(Courtesy of Fannin County Chamber of Commerce)

The reservoir, shaped when a dam was constructed on the Toccoa River, is 11 miles lengthy and boasts 65 miles of shoreline, solely 25% of which is developed. You’ll be able to spend a day right here or calm down at one of many campgrounds to your complete journey. You’ll be able to loosen up on the seashore, go swimming or pull out your fishing rod, and in case you go to the marina or one of many boat ramps, you could possibly lease kayaks, paddleboards, or a pontoon boat. Relying on the place you go and what time of the 12 months you go to, the lake additionally has concessions, a waterfront restaurant, picnic areas, public restrooms, and showers. You may additionally discover well-maintained mountaineering trails weaving by the woods and across the lake, the place you possibly can go for a stroll by yourself or with your loved ones.

Toccoa River Swinging Bridge

(Courtesy of Fannin County Chamber of Commerce)

Measuring 270 toes in size, the Toccoa River Swinging Bridge is the longest swinging bridge east of the Mississippi River. The bridge is about 21 miles southeast of downtown Blue Ridge, but it surely’s solely a brief hike from the parking space when you arrive. You’ll be able to plan a brief go to simply to see the bridge, or you can also make it a part of a day hike on the Benton MacKaye Path. Previous guests word that the gravel highway resulting in the bridge may be tough on smaller automobiles, and advocate arriving early within the day to keep away from a parking jam. However, the bridge is a good possibility for households who need a brief hike or adventurers who plan to remain within the space longer. Alongside the way in which, you may drive by the scenic Wilscot Valley, the place you possibly can guide a room on the Wandering Wilscot Lodge.

Mercier Orchards

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Opened in 1943, this family-owned apple orchard dates again 4 generations. Deliver your loved ones for a U-Decide occasion, the place you can decide on contemporary apples, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and peaches. You too can take a look at the market, the place you may discover extra contemporary vegetables and fruit, in addition to a wide range of jams, jellies, preserves, apple butter, and extra. Whereas the U-Decide occasions are topic to climate and availability, the market is open year-round (except for chosen holidays). Whilst you’re there, cease by the café for breakfast or lunch. You might also need to check out a few of the orchard’s onerous ciders on the faucet – Mercier is the one apple orchard within the state that grows, presses, ferments, and bottles their very own cider – or take you to decide from the orchard’s sturdy wine assortment. The one drawback to contemplate is that costs could be a bit excessive, and the orchard can get crowded on weekends and through the apple-picking season.

Tackle: 8660 Blue Ridge Drive, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Blue Ridge Scenic Railway

In order for you the complete Blue Ridge Mountains expertise, look no additional than the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway. Visitors can take a two-hour trip or a four-hour tour with a cease. With the latter possibility, guests will begin in downtown Blue Ridge and embark on a 26-mile journey alongside the Toccoa River. You may spend the primary hour on the preparation, which has each open-air and closed, climate-controlled rail vehicle, relying on your consolation stage and the climate. After the primary leg, you may cease on the sister cities of McCaysville, Georgia, and Copperhill, Tennessee, the place you may have two hours to discover the cities, seize a chew to eat, and do some purchasing. Then, you may take the one-hour journey again by the forest to Blue Ridge. Guests particularly love this scenic trip in the course of the fall and winter. There are two- and four-hour excursions within the fall, permitting you to see the altering colors of the leaves. The particular Vacation Specific trip is just one hour lengthy, however, there’s a four-hour possibility in December as properly.

Go horseback driving

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Blue Ridge Mountain Path Rides gives the possibility to go horseback driving with a view of the Cohutta Mountains. Rides vary from one to 2 hours, with six departure instances all through the morning and afternoon. Hell’s Hole Journey Outpost, the place the tour begins, is situated roughly 14 miles northwest of downtown Blue Ridge and the tour operator recommends utilizing the Waze navigation app to get right here as a substitute for different GPS maps. Though youngsters youthful than eight years previous aren’t allowed to trip, the outpost has child goats they’ll see. Previous friends have talked about how the horses are calm and the guides are useful and educated.

Hike to one in all 16 waterfalls within the space

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Whether or not you are an avid waterfall hunter otherwise you merely take pleasure in a very good hike, Blue Ridge is a superb alternative for an adventurous getaway. Whereas about half of the paths to the waterfalls are comparatively simple, some are strenuous. Among the many tougher ones are some views which can be value your whereas, nonetheless. At 729 toes, Amicalola Falls is the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River. Latest guests referred to the sheer dimension of the falls as mesmerizing. In the meantime, the paths resulting in Jacks River Falls will take you thru the rugged, distant wilderness, which can be excellent for extra skilled hikers. Different fashionable waterfalls within the space embrace Fall Department Falls, Lengthy Creek Falls, and Helton Creek Falls. Earlier than you go, perform a little research on the problem of the hike and whether or not the parking areas require a payment to enter.

Tank City USA

(Courtesy of Tank City USA)

In close by Morganton, you may discover Tank City USA, the place guests could have the chance to drive a 17-ton metal tank. It is only a 10-minute drive from Blue Ridge, and when you’re there, you may be taught the fundamentals of methods to function a tank. Afterward, you can check your expertise on a rugged doors course for 10 minutes or half a mile, whichever comes first. If 10 minutes sounds too brief, don’t be concerned – guests have the choice to increase their expertise or improve to the automotive crushing package deal, which features a 25-minute drive and a car that may be smashed from each angle. In case you’re not dying to drive a tank, it’s also possible to pay to function as an excavator or shoot 100 rounds with an M-1919 machine gun. Understand that there are age restrictions for all actions, together with for many who need to trip alongside within the tank. Whereas the actions are dear, previous guests have referred to them as once-in-a-lifetime expertise. Some even talked about how youngsters can take part by spray portraying and busting the home windows of the automotive earlier than the crushing begins.

Tackle: 10408 Appalachian Freeway, Morganton, GA 30560

Cohutta Cove Mini Golf

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This 18-hole mini-golf course is situated simply south of Blue Ridge and is right for households with young children. The course has a concession stand that serves up refreshments like espresso, tea, smoothies, comfortable drinks, chips, and sweets, and once you’re executed with a spherical, you and your children can step over to the gem mining station, the place you may obtain a bag with a mix of varied gems, comparable to topaz, sapphire, emerald, quartz and extra. In case you’re planning on doing each, be sure you purchase a combo package deal for discounted charges. The course is enjoyable, clear, and well-maintained, and in comparison with different gem mining spots within the space, friends have stated you obtain good worth for what you pay.

Tackle: 64 Dunbarton Farm Street, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Affiliation and Arts Middle

(Courtesy of Jerry Mucklow)

Positioned in downtown Blue Ridge, the Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Affiliation is the inventive middle of the city, which is listed as one of many prime 5 arts cities within the state of Georgia. The middle options a wide range of multi-cultural works and mediums, working greater than 35 totally different reveals and occasions all year long, with reveals altering each 4 to 6 weeks. Additionally, they supply an array of lessons and workshops appropriate for all ages, together with a summertime artwork camp for teenagers between the ages of 6 and 14. But when you do not have time for a category, the middle gives to-go artwork kits that may be accomplished at residence. Relying on once you go to, you could possibly take part in the middle’s Cork and Canvas occasion, the place you can pattern a collection of native wines paired with savory meals. The setting of the middle in a previous courthouse is exclusive, in line with previous guests, who referred to as the gathering of works from native artists past stunning and eclectic.

Tackle: 420 West Principal St., 30513

Baugh Home Historic Museum

Operated by the Fannin County Heritage Basis, the Baugh Home Museum gives a glimpse into Blue Ridge’s intriguing previous. The house’s structure was uncommon when it was first built in 1893, with its two tales and I-house model – one room deep and two rooms huge. Brick homes had been additionally uncommon in Georgia at the time. Along with the exhibit, the museum additionally homes a genealogical library and analysis middle, which could be a good place to do some household historical past work in case you have ancestors who lived within the space. As an added bonus, there is not any admission payment to see the interval clothes, antiques, and different historic objects in the museum homes. Take into account the museum in case you’re trying to be taught in regards to the historical past of Fannin County or need to do some genealogical analysis.

Tackle: 411 West First St., Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Fannin County Veterans Memorial Park

(Courtesy of Fannin County Chamber of Commerce)

This well-maintained park is residence to a full-size helicopter and a memorial honoring veterans from the world who served in conflicts starting from the Conflict of 1812 to the modern-day Iraq Conflict. Guests say the park has a reverent ambiance, and with its open areas, it is a good place to loosen up on the grass, have a picnic and pay respects to the county’s veterans who served their nation.

Tackle: 4560 Outdated Freeway 76, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Bear Claw Vineyards

(Courtesy of Bear Claw Vineyards)

This women-owned winery is a 10-minute drive from downtown Blue Ridge. In case you go on a Saturday, you possibly can take a tour of the winery, which incorporates seven wine tastings complemented by cheese and crackers. Plan prematurely, although, because the tour is obtainable on a restricted foundation. You too can cease by for a tasting, with a couple of choices to select from, or a wine slushy. On the weekend, the winery hosts dwell music with native bands. The winery even has a treehouse on the property, which you’ll lease for an evening or longer. Simply be sure you plan forward of time to make sure of availability. Previous guests liked the attractive property and high-quality wine, noting that the ambiance is peaceable and stress-free. If you would like to develop your palate even additional, think about Serenberry Vineyards, Cartecay Vineyards, Chateau Meichtry, Ott Farms, and Winery, or Paradise Hills Vineyard Resort & Spa, all of that are situated in Blue Ridge or close by cities.

Tackle: 2281 Tennis Courtroom Street, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Fly-fish on Noontootla Creek

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The small mountain stream Noontootla Creek is well-known for its ample alternatives for trout fishing. Positioned about 20 miles southeast of Blue Ridge, the stream’s identity is derived from a Cherokee time period that means “land of the shining water” or “center solar.” Dwell bait is not allowed, and you’ll solely hold one trout as much as 16 inches, in any other case this creek adheres to catch and launch fishing solely. You’ll be able to fish the stream by yourself, or you possibly can take a guided fly-fishing tour with Noontootla Creek Farms, a privately-held firm that is open to the general public and has greater than 1,000 acres of land and entry to 2 miles of the creek. The farm additionally gives different actions, together with quail looking and a clay-shooting course. If you wish to spend slightly extra time within the mountains, the farm has a four-bedroom farmhouse you possibly can lease. Previous friends have marveled at the dimension of the trout within the stream and the standard of the actions the farm gives.

Grumpy Outdated Males Brewing

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Established in 2013 by two retired beer fanatics, Grumpy Outdated Males Brewing has 24 beer faucets, providing you with ample alternatives to check out a few of the beers which have developed into a staple within the area. The taproom solely serves its personal beer and does not present every other drink or meal – although it might often host a meals truck. On Fridays and Saturdays, the taproom hosts dwell music, and in case you arrive on a Thursday, you possibly can even exhibit your vocal expertise at the brewery’s karaoke nighttime. Guests can select to sit down on the bar or loosen up on the out of doors patio, and whereas some previous friends stated the seating is restricted, guests agree that the beer is prime notch.

Tackle: 1315 East Principal St., Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Fannin Brewing Firm

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In case you’re a beer aficionado, you could need to check out Fannin Brewing Firm’s wonderful number of beers. The brewery started promoting beer in 2012, and since then, has expanded to incorporate an outside beer backyard with yard video games like cornhole and ladder golf. Whilst you will not get a full meal together with your beer, the taproom does promote snacks comparable to chips and heat pretzels. Different breweries close to Blue Ridge embrace Buck Bald Brewing, Copperhill Brewery, and Indignant Hops Brewery.

Tackle: 3758 First St., Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Expedition: Bigfoot Museum

(Courtesy of Expedition: Bigfoot)

One every of Blue Ridge’s extra distinctive experiences is the Expedition: Bigfoot Museum. A self-guided tour takes an hour or much less, and you will get to see numerous items of “proof” that the elusive Sasquatch exists. The museum, which lies about 7 miles southwest of Blue Ridge close by Cherry Log, consists of the biggest everlasting show of footprint casts within the U.S., a number of interactive reveals, and the world’s solely Bigfoot analysis and tech car on show. While you’re executed with the reveals, step into the present store for some one-of-a-kind souvenirs to take residence. The museum is open each day however closed for sure holidays and gives free admission to teenagers youthful than 5 and lively army service members. Previous friends say that admission is reasonably priced and the expertise is enjoyable for all ages.

Tackle: 1934 Freeway 515, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Lilly Pad Village

Positioned eight miles from Blue Ridge within the Aska Journey Space, Lilly Pad Village gives a couple of totally different family-friendly actions. With the gem mining expertise, guests should buy a bucket and sift by the sand to seek out treasures like emeralds, sapphires, rubies, garnets, and amethysts. In the meantime, those that need to spend a while fishing will discover catfish, bass, and brim within the village’s one-third acre pond. The exercise is catching and launching solely, and you’ll both convey your personal poles or lease some from the operator. Lastly, step right into a mountain setting at Lily Pad Village’s nine-hole mini-golf course. Shaded by a cover of bushes, this golf course is a good way to chill off on a hot day. With one ticket, guests can play by the course as many instances as they need, and even depart and return later for one more spherical. Previous friends raved in regards to the gem mining expertise and agreed that Lilly Pad Village is a must-do in case you’re touring with youngsters.

Tackle: 24 Adelaide Drive, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Do some purchasing in Downtown Blue Ridge

(Courtesy of Fannin County Chamber of Commerce)

Whether or not you are trying to convey the residence the proper memento otherwise you merely need to spend the afternoon window purchasing, head to downtown Blue Ridge, the place you may discover loads of fascinating outlets. On the Candy Shoppe, you may discover a wide range of gourmand desserts, together with cupcakes that had been featured on Meals Community’s hit tv present, “Cupcake Wars.” You may additionally discover a couple of totally different boutiques, together with Juliana’s Boutique, Blue Ridge Cotton Firm, and Blue Ridge Journey Put on. At Blue Ridge Olive Oil Firm, guests can pattern 65 sorts of olive oil and balsamic vinegar from all over the world, and at Out of the Blue Connoisseur Dwelling, guests can browse an in-depth assortment of tremendous wines and gourmand meals. In case you love antiques, take a look at Blue Ridge Vintage Mall & Consignment Inc., which friends say is value a go-to, even when it is simply to go searching.

Take a day journey to a number of of the encircling cities

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Northern Georgia is full of fascinating mountain cities, so it isn’t unusual for vacationers to take day trips from Blue Ridge to expertise your complete area. Located about 50 miles southeast of Blue Ridge is Helen, a Bavarian-style city that may make you’re feeling such as if you’ve traveled to southern Germany – without having to cross the Atlantic Ocean. Whilst you’re within the space, think about stopping in Cleveland, the place you may discover the North Georgia Wildlife & Safari Park and the unique residence of the Cabbage Patch Youngsters, Babyland Common Hospital. If you wish to do a full wine tour, make the hourlong drive to Dahlonega, which is taken into account the center of Georgia’s wine nation and the positioning of the primary main gold rush within the nation. Ellijay, only a 30-minute drive from Blue Ridge, is nicknamed “The Apple Capital of Georgia” and is the residence of the Georgia Apple Competition and the Georgia Apple Blossom Competition. In the meantime, McCaysville, which is simply a 20-minute drive from Blue Ridge, sits on the Georgia-Tennessee state line and has some nice eating and purchasing choices.

Go zip lining

Zipline Cover Excursions of Blue Ridge give some wonderful actions for vacationers who need extra adventurous expertise. Positioned simply 6 miles from downtown Blue Ridge, the tour operator gives a one-hour zip lining tour with seven zip traces starting from 150 to 550 toes in size, in addition to a two-hour tour with 13 zip traces starting from 150 to 1,000 toes in size. Or, guests can check out the aerial problem course, which has as many as 35 obstacles, together with tight ropes, zip traces, climbing partitions, and suspended bridges that vary in top from 15 to 45 toes off the bottom. One other summer-only possibility is the raft and zip combo, which features a two-hour zip lining tour and a whitewater rafting journey on the Center Ocoee River with Ocoee Rafting. The Center Ocoee rafting journey is a 5-mile tour that takes about 90 minutes. Zipline Cover Excursions of Blue Ridge come extremely advisable for the latest vacationers, with many guests calling the tour guides the spotlight of their journey.

Tackle: 891 Outdated Cashes Valley Street, Blue Ridge, GA 30513

Golf at Outdated Toccoa Farm

(Courtesy of Outdated Toccoa Farm)

Only a 10-minute drive from downtown Blue Ridge, Outdated Toccoa Farm was ranked the eighth-best new golf course by “Golf Digest” in 2020. As a mountain golf course, Outdated Toccoa Farm has options that golfers sometimes do not get from conventional hyperlinks programs, comparable to extra bushes and manicured fairways. Nonetheless, it additionally has a few of the hallmarks of hyperlinks programs, together with sandy soil and loads of dunes. You may additionally discover pure hazards alongside the way in which, together with rock outcroppings and delightful wildflower meadows and mountain laurel shrubs. The course is immaculate, in line with earlier golfers, and every gap has stunning views for an unbelievable general expertise.

Go canoeing on the Toccoa River

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The Toccoa River Canoe Path is a 13.8-mile newbie path for many who need a stress-free canoe, kayak, or tubing journey with just a few rapids. The path can be a superb place for trout fishing. In order for you, you possibly can cease on the Toccoa River Swinging Bridge earlier than you proceed your journey downstream. If you do not have your personal tools, you possibly can lease kayaks and canoes and even take a guided tour by operators like Jon Ron Toccoa River Outfitters and Toccoa River Tubing Firm. In keeping with previous vacationers, a river is a good place for a scenic float, no matter your watercraft. Remember, there is a $5 payment to park and launch at Deep Gap Recreation Space, the start line of the path.

Attend one of many many festivals within the area

(Courtesy of Fannin County Chamber of Commerce)

All year long, Blue Ridge and different North Georgia cities host quite a few festivals. The Blue Ridge Trout and Out of doors Adventures Competition in April, the Hearth & Ice Chili Cook dinner Off and Craft Beer Competition in February, and the Blue Ridge Mountains Wine and Jazz Competition in June are just some examples of what Blue Ridge has to supply. Within the surrounding space, you may discover the Trip the Rails fundraiser on chosen weekends between Might and November in Mineral Bluff, and the longest-running Oktoberfest within the U.S. in Helen. As you intend your journey, examine festivals and different occasions, so you possibly can be part of the celebration of native traditions.

Hike Springer Mountain

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One of many state’s hottest mountaineering locations, Springer Mountain is the start line of the Appalachian Path – or the endpoint, relying on which route you are going. The mountain peaks at 3,780 toes, and there are many trails for hikers of all talent ranges. For instance, you possibly can take a hike as brief because of the 1.9-mile round-trip path from the Springer Mountain parking space to the summit of Springer Mountain, or you can begin at Amicalola Falls for a 15.5-mile round-trip hike. Mountain climbing fanatics word that even the brief path is not essentially simple and will not be a very good match for infrequent hikers, however, say that the views from the height are definitely worth the effort.

Take an electrical bike tour

Pedego Blue Ridge is a locally-owned electrical bike store that gives excursions and even leases if you wish to discover the city by yourself. Guided excursions can last as long as two hours and take you alongside the Toccoa River and thru the rolling countryside. You too can guide a tour that takes you around Lake Blue Ridge, beginning and stopping at the marina. This tour lasts as much as 90 minutes. Critiques of the excursions are nearly completely optimistic, with the bikes offering a straightforward option to cowl the attractive mountainous terrain without a whole lot of effort.

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