Local Secrets: Four Great Stops from Those in the Know

Homemade ice cream at Bob's Brick Oven in Rock Spring, Georgia

Bob's Brick Oven - After enjoying the wood fired pizza at Bob's, be sure to order homemade ice cream.

There are vacationers, and then there are travelers. Travelers seek out locals to tell them the secret spots reserved only for those in the know. We asked Georgia locals their favorite neighborhood secrets, and here is what we found.

 

Bob's Brick Oven, Rock Spring

You may go to Bob's Brick Oven for the homemade sourdough crusted pizza with a dizzying array of fresh ingredients and combinations (which earned a spot on 2016's 100 Plates Locals Love list), but you’ll leave raving about the homemade ice cream.

 

Homemade ice cream flavors change regularly at Bob's Brick Oven in Rock Spring, Georgia
Homemade ice cream flavors change regularly at Bob's Brick Oven in Rock Spring, Georgia

 

Bob makes the fresh ice cream in house and tries to keep vanilla, chocolate, and cookies and cream on hand every day. We recommend stepping out of the box with the flavor of the day. How does chocolate jalapeno ice cream sound? Maybe something a little less spicy, like Baptist Communion Sorbet, or just plain old milk and honey. You can't go wrong.

  • Bob's Brick Oven: 8009 US-27, Rock Spring, GA 30739. (706) 375-4400

 

Miller's Store, McDonough

 

Inside the old Miller's Store in McDonough, Georgia
Inside the old Miller's Store in McDonough, Georgia

 

Head north from downtown McDonough on Highway 155 for 11 miles, and you'll find Miller's Store, which has been in business longer than any other store in Henry County. The current store, built in the 1960s, even had a brush with fame, appearing in the 2006 film "We Are Marshall." If you ask owners Herman or Ray Miller, they’ll give you a tour of the 1930s building out back that previously housed the store and still contains some memorabilia. Behind the buildings and down the hill are a few other old buildings that used to be a cotton mill and a grist mill that served the area. 

Interesting, but what you really want here is one of the homemade biscuits. You can pre-order them the day before, which we recommend, otherwise you might miss out. Biscuits are available first-come, first-served, and each morning a group of local gentlemen called "The Breakfast Club" come in for coffee, conversation and, of course, the biscuits.

  • Miller's Store: 3099 Ga. Highway 155, McDonough, GA 30252. (770) 957-3839. Open weekdays 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 

Oconee River Greenway, Milledgeville

 

Kayaking on the Oconee River. Photo courtesy Milledgeville CVB
Kayaking on the Oconee River. Photo courtesy Milledgeville CVB

 

The Oconee River Greenway is a beautiful park in Milledgeville for walking, jogging, bicycling or just relaxing. If you want to get on the river for a bit of paddling, locals contact Oconee Outfitters. This local outfitter has the scoop on when the dam is releasing water into the Oconee, and when it’s not. You can go it alone, but if the water isn’t flowing, your float trip will turn into a walk-and-drag-the-float trip. Not the same thing.

  • Oconee River Greenway: 400 E. Green St., MilledgevilleGA 31061. (478) 387-4916
  • Oconee Outfitters: 112 N. Wayne St. Milledgeville, GA 31061. (478) 452-3890

 

Antebellum Homes, Washington

Communities like Madison and Social Circle are known for their antebellum homes, but locals in Washington, Georgia, know their community has more antebellum homes (more than 100) than other communities in the state.

 

Robert Toombs House Historic Site. Photo credit: Mercer Harris
Robert Toombs House Historic Site. Photo credit: Mercer Harris

 

This small town between Athens and Augusta, was the first county and the first city in Georgia, pre-dating the American Revolution. Visitors can tour the Callaway Plantation, a Greek Revival mansion built with Georgia red clay, and containing original antiques from the hey day of the plantation era, or the home of fiery Confederate legislator Robert Toombs. (The Robert Toombs House Historic Site is temporarily closed for repairs and aims to reopen later this summer. Check the Georgia State Parks website for updates.) Visit in December for the Christmas Tour of Homes and in March for the Tour of Homes & Spring Festival.

If you plan to spend the night in town, locals recommend the Red Land Motel, locally owned and operated since 1952.

  • Washington Main Street: 104 East Liberty St., WashingtonGA 30673. (706) 678-3277
  • Callaway Plantation: 2160 Lexington Rd., WashingtonGA 30673. (706) 678-7060
  • Robert Toombs House Historic Site: 216 E. Robert Toombs Ave., WashingtonGA 30673. (706) 678-2226
  • Red Land Motel: 1241 Lincolnton Rd., WashingtonGA 30673. (706) 678-3225
Published: June 2017
Sue Rodman
Sue Rodman is Georgia’s official Smart Travel Explorer and the managing editor of the award-winning family travel website 365 Atlanta Traveler .