Atlanta Metro / Lithia Springs

Sweetwater Creek State Park

Mt. Vernon Rd.
Lithia Springs, GA 30122

770-732-5871 | 800-864-7275
  • Sweetwater Creek Ruins

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  • Sweetwater Creek Boat Dock

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  • Sweetwater Creek Bait Shop

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  • Sweetwater Creek Lake

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  • Sweetwater Creek

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  • Sweetwater Creek Boat Rental

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Sweetwater Creek State Park is a peaceful tract of wilderness only minutes from downtown Atlanta. A wooded trail follows the stream to the ruins of the New Manchester Manufacturing Company, a textile mill burned during the Civil War. Beyond the mill, the trail climbs rocky bluffs to provide views of the beautiful rapids below. Additional trails wind through fields and forest, showcasing ferns, magnolias, wild azaleas and hardwoods.  Park rangers lead informative hikes to these areas throughout the year.

The 215-acre George Sparks Reservoir is popular for fishing and provides a pretty setting for feeding ducks and picnicking. Fishing supplies are available in the adjacent bait shop. During warmer months, the park rents fishing boats, canoes, kayaks and pedal boats. Visitors can join the Park Paddler's Club, which challenges them to explore waterways in six state parks.

Info & Amenities

  • Hours of Operation

    Sunday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Monday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Tuesday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Wednesday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Thursday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Friday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM
    Saturday: 7:00AM - 6:00PM

    Admission & Fees

    Daily ParkPass $5.00


    Nature Trails

    Facility Amenities

    Gift Shop, Parking on Site, Picnic Area, Picnic Shelter, Public Restrooms

    General Information


    Group Amenities


    Near Interstate Highway



    Boat Rental, Canoe / Kayak

    Special Tags

    Civil War Site

    Suitable for Ages

    All Ages


  • "Ruins to Rapids" Full Moon Hike

    03/06/2015 - 03/06/2015

    This 1.5-mile hike is moderately difficult and goes down to the Civil War-era textile mill ruins of New Manchester and follows the lovely rapids (up to class IV) of Sweetwater Creek. A flashlight and sturdy, closed-toe shoes are required. No children under six or dogs. Meet inside the Visitor's Center.

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  • Late Winter/Early Spring Wildflower Hike

    Late Winter/Early Spring Wildflower Hike

    03/07/2015 - 03/29/2015

    This moderately strenuous, two mile hike along the white trail and beyond will take us through a variety of lovely habitats to view the earliest of our spring wildflowers, the beloved "ephemerals".

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  • Historic New Manchester History Hike

    Historic New Manchester History Hike

    03/08/2015 - 03/28/2015

    This mile-long hike (easy to moderate) will lead to the five story ruins of the Civil War-era New Manchester textile mill and focus on the history of the Sweetwater Creek Valley. This historian or ranger-led hike will include going to the ruins and seeing the lovely whitewater rapids which provide great photo opportunities.

    Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015:
    12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

    Sunday, Mar. 8, 2015:
    4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.

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  • Native American Heritage Hike

    Native American Heritage Hike

    03/08/2015 - 03/22/2015

    Join us for a two hour moderate hike focusing on the first inhabitants of our area, the Native Americans or American Indians, as we explore the eastside which will include a visit to the "Indian Cave." Meet at the Visitor's Center. Reservations recommended.


    Sunday, March 8, 2015
    1 p.m. - 3 p.m.

    Sunday, March 22, 2015
    11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

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  • Hayride and S'mores

    Hayride and S'mores

    03/14/2015 - 03/14/2015

    Join us for a tractor-pulled hayride up to Jack's Hill. We will also gather around a campfire and make s'mores. Park Rangers and local historians will be leading these programs, sharing history and stories from the park. Reservations are required.

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  • Ranger-led Lake Paddle

    Ranger-led Lake Paddle

    03/14/2015 - 03/29/2015

    Join us for a ranger-led, peaceful outing on the lake and up Beaver Creek. This trip is for those 16 years or older who can swim or children 6 years or older who can swim and are accompanied by an adult. Meet at the Bait Shop. Register in advance.

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  • "Bark in the Park" Dog Hike

    03/14/2015 - 03/14/2015

    Join a Park Ranger and bring your four-legged companion on this moderate mile long hike to the rapids of Sweetwater Creek and to the five-story Civil War era New Manchester Mill ruins. Ages 6 years and older. Sturdy, closed toe shoes required. Reservations recommended.

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  • Backcountry Geology Hike

    Backcountry Geology Hike

    03/15/2015 - 03/15/2015

    Geologist and Friends member John Johnston will lead a moderate three-mile hike identifying rock types and explaining how they formed. Explore the beautiful Jack's Branch area and the seldom visited rock quarry of New Manchester. Meet in the Interpretive Center.

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  • Snakes Alive

    Snakes Alive

    03/15/2015 - 03/15/2015

    Join Park Manager David Jordan in this up-close hour featuring live, non-venomous snakes. We will learn all about our local snakes, including the venomous ones, as well as the natural history of snakes and all about their behavior and senses. Meet at the Visitor's Center.

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  • Candlelight Hike to the Mill

    Candlelight Hike to the Mill

    03/21/2015 - 03/21/2015

    This mile-long guided night hike is easy to moderately difficult and goes down to the Civil War era textile mill ruins of New Manchester alongside the beautiful rapids of Sweetwater Creek. Candle lanterns will be provided. No children under six years or dogs permitted. Meet and register at the Interpretive Center.

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  • Stargazer Hike

    Stargazer Hike

    03/21/2015 - 03/21/2015

    This moderate two-mile night hike will take us to a remote area where we will search the night sky for wonders like planets, stars, constellations, and shooting stars (weather permitting). Binoculars are recommended. Sturdy, closed-toe shoes and a flashlight are required. Meet at the Visitor's Center. Reservations are required. This event is for 12 years and up.

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  • Trails Work Day

    Trails Work Day

    03/22/2015 - 03/22/2015

    Join us for a volunteer work day performing general trail maintenance on the beautiful trails of the park. Bring gloves, water, comfortable work clothes, and closed-toe, sturdy shoes. Volunteers are encouraged to register by calling 770-732-5871. Meet at the Visitor's Center.

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  • Twilight Lake Paddle

    Twilight Lake Paddle

    03/28/2015 - 04/24/2015

    Join us for a peaceful, ranger-led outing as we watch for wading birds and enjoy the setting sun. This program is open to adults and children 6 years or older who are accompanied by an adult. You may choose a canoe or kayak for this trip. Reservations required.

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  • Sweetwater Creek by Kayak

    Sweetwater Creek by Kayak

    04/04/2015 - 04/25/2015

    Join us for a beautiful two-hour paddle through a peaceful stretch of Sweetwater Creek in a tandem kayak. There is an optional short hike to view the mill ruins and whitewater rapids. This outing is for adults (18 years and older) who can swim and those aged 12-17 years with a parent. Kayak, PFD and paddle included. Register in advance.

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