Trip Ideas

Top Festivals for Fall

Cooler days and turning leaves lure us out of our air-conditioned lairs and into the crisp fall air and festival season.

  • The Georgia National Fair

    The Georgia National Fair, held over 10 days in Perry, features rides, games and fireworks along with livestock and horse shows.

    GDECD Photography
  • Yellow Daisy Festival, Sept. 10-13, 2015

    Stroll among more than 400 arts and crafts booths at the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain in September. When your stomach starts to growl, the food trucks can fill almost any gastronomic need. Kids have their own activity area, and there’s even a “Men’s Den” with TVs showing college football and other sports. 

  • Oktoberfest, Sept. 10-Nov. 1, 2015

    The Alpine-themed village of Helen, in the northeast Georgia mountains, loves Oktoberfest so much the celebrating starts in September and doesn’t finish until November! The brats are cooking, the strudels are baking, the beer is flowing and polka music fills the air. You’d have to go to Germany for a more authentic Oktoberfest, but this one is less than two hours away from Atlanta, and you don’t need a passport!

  • Jekyll Island's Shrimp & Grits Festival, Sept. 18-20, 2015

    If we must say goodbye to summer, Jekyll Island's Shrimp & Grits Festival, which celebrates two of Georgia’s favorite foods, is the perfect way to do it. Taste the classic Southern dish, watch shrimp cook-offs, tour shrimp boats, sample craft beer and chill out at evening concerts in the island’s beautiful historic district. 
  • Taste of Atlanta, Sept. 25-27, 2015

    Atlanta has a well-earned reputation as a food lover’s town and nowhere is that more evident than at September's Taste of Atlanta. Nosh on samples from more than 90 restaurants showcasing their best culinary creations, and learn some new skills at a cooking demo or workshop in Midtown near Georgia Tech. 

  • Georgia National Fair, Oct. 8-18, 2015

    Fall means fun at the 11-day Georgia National Fair in October. Livestock, fine arts and home arts competitions, big-time amusement rides and concerts by country artists help draw more than 400,000 people to Perry. 

  • Georgia Mountain Fall Festival, Oct. 9-17, 2015

    Surround yourself with the beauty of fall at the Georgia Mountain Fall Festival, a nine-day event in October, featuring Georgia's Official State Fiddlers' Convention, a flower show, arts and crafts, and daily musical performances. Stroll the Pioneer Village to see how mountain towns used to be, and watch demonstrations of how to make everything from moonshine to soap.
  • Georgia Apple Festival, Oct. 10-18, 2015

    Plan on checking out the Georgia Apple Festival in Ellijay, “The Heart of Georgia’s Apple Country,” for two weekends in October. The town square is packed with arts, crafts, apple butter, apple pies, a car show and more apples.

  • Gold Rush Days, Oct. 17-18, 2015

    Gold Rush Days in Dahlonega celebrates the discovery of gold in 1828. Dahlonega also celebrates good times with the Coronation of the King and Queen, a parade, clogging, hog calling, buck dancing and gold-panning contests, and arm wrestling. 

  • Calvary Mule Day, Nov. 6-7, 2015

    For more than 40 years, people have been gathering in the small town of Calvary, Ga., for the November Mule Day Festival. The parade features a mule contest in which mules are judged to be the prettiest, ugliest and most ornery. Entertainment includes gospel groups and cloggers, and visitors can drink cane juice made on the spot by a mule-driven cane grinder.
  • Bostwick Cotton Gin Festival, Nov. 7, 2015

    Take a step back in time at Bostwick's Cotton Gin Festival, and see the farming town that is home to the remake filming of the movie "Footloose." The festival benefits the historic Susie Agnes Hotel, which serves as City Hall and has been a center of community life and commerce for more than a century. Browse booths of handmade arts and crafts, and watch the kids play in the newly harvested cotton.

  • Follow Georgia’s official Festival Explorer Eileen Falkenberg-Hull for more fall festival trip ideas!