Georgia vacations are for those who want to be able to change it up at a moment’s notice. On one hand, you’ve got bustling cities with superb shopping and outstanding restaurants. On the other, you can find yourself soaking up the sun on a brochure-perfect beach or marveling at a majestic mountain range. Take a family vacation to Atlanta and explore the Georgia Aquarium, the biggest in the world. Couples might enjoy a romantic getaway in a luxury, pine mountain lodge, among the waterfalls, forests and walking trails in the stunning Blue Ridge Mountains. Whatever you want from your vacations in Georgia, the ‘Peach State’ always delivers.
When it comes to romance, there are few vacation destinations with more to offer than the aptly-named Golden Isles. Each barrier island has its own character, but they all have one thing in common – natural beauty. Expect fertile marshland, golden beaches, remote villages and a rich, cultural tapestry.
Jekyll Island is great for families, with the Summer Waves Water Park and the Georgia Sea Turtle Center offering easy days out with the kids. Saint Simons Island is the spot for sweethearts, with the Avenue of the Oaks offering the perfect setting for a stroll and over 100 restaurants where you can enjoy a leisurely dinner. Sea Island offers all the trappings of 5-star Georgia vacations, complete with a championship-level golf course and some fantastic horse-riding trails.
Home to the impressive Georgia University and one of the Civil War towns, the city of Athens is a great place or family fun and couples looking to enjoy some quality downtime together. If you’re travelling with teens, don’t pass up the opportunity to take a tour of the UGA Campus (and maybe drop a few hints about getting good grades!), while younger children will enjoy a trip to the Memorial Park and Bear Hollow Zoo.
Set in the west of the state, Columbus is a city packed with things to see and do. To dip into America’s past, make some time to visit the Columbus Museum, which is the second-largest in Columbus. The RiverCenter for the Performing Arts is the place to soak up some culture, while Golden Park is a must-see for any baseball fans.
The largest barrier island in Georgia, Cumberland Island is the fastest place to slow down! One of the most undeveloped and unspoiled of the Sea Islands, it offers peace and tranquility in abundance. Watch for Loggerhead Turtles along the sandy beaches, or spend your day observing the birds that have made the marshes their home. Wild horses and hogs roam the island and it’s not unusual to see the occasional, wandering armadillo.
To the east, Tybee Island has established itself has one of the most popular vacation destinations for lovers of sand, sea and surf. If you can tear yourself from the beach, pay a visit to Georgia’s oldest and tallest lighthouse. Kayaking along the coast is great fun or kayakers of all abilities, while you can watch dolphins in the wild as part of a dolphin-spotting boat cruise. Fresh seafood is the island’s culinary trademark, and there are some fantastic restaurants to enjoy.
June, July and August are the months that draw the biggest crowds, but they can be uncomfortably hot and humid. For cooler sightseeing conditions, the months between March and May are ideal. There are plenty of festivals and celebrations during these weeks, so the only thing you’ll be missing out on is the large numbers of tourists.
With 20 interstate highways, it seems that all roads eventually lead to Georgia. The state allows foreign drivers to use their own licenses, as long as they are in English. Cars are the easiest way to get around and soak up the scenery at your own pace. For longer journeys, Amtrak is the most popular rail service. While it can be more expensive than driving, it offers the chance to relax in comfort and style. Megabus and Greyhound are cost-effective options for long distances.