Ziplining over Chattahoochee River in Columbus, Georgia

Ziplining over the Chattahoochee River in Columbus, Georgia. Photo by @benjamingalland

10 Best Things to Do in Georgia This Summer

Road trips to water parks, quirky landmarks, drive-in movies and many more of the hottest ways to explore Georgia this summer.

Summertime in the Peach State is unlike anywhere else. Sure, it can be hot, but we have plenty of ways to cool down. No matter what part of Georgia you'll be visiting, you're sure to have a great time. We have a few suggestions to add to your list!

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island, Georgia, at sunrise

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island, Georgia. Photo by @wandernorthga

Cool off in the water

What better way to beat the summer heat than by wading into the ocean, jumping in a lake or playing at one of Georgia's water parks?

The Georgia Coast

Kayak around a historic lighthouse at Tybee Island, photograph Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island, explore historic Sapelo Island and much more on the Georgia Coast.

Margaritaville at Lanier Islands

The water park at Margaritaville at Lanier Islands opens every May as another way to enjoy the lake with mat racing slides, a zipline and water activities for little ones.

Georgia's Lake Country

Head to Lake Oconee and Lake Sinclair for watersports, fishing, golf and cool morning breezes. You'll love all of the water activities as well as great dining, shopping and sightseeing nearby in Eatonton, Greensboro, Madison and Milledgeville.

Marina Station Water Park

Jump and splash at Marina Station Water Park, part of The Ridges Resort on Lake Chatuge in Hiawassee. Fun for all ages, the inflatable water park has twists, turns, climbing mountains, monkey bars, cliff points, swings and slides.

Wahoo Racer water slide at Six Flags White Water in Marietta, Georgia
Wahoo Racer water slide at Six Flags White Water in Marietta, Georgia
Six Flags White Water

Six Flags White Water in Marietta, outside of Atlanta, is a longtime favorite with nearly 70 acres of slides, tube rides, and a wave pool.

SoakYa Water Park at Lake Winnepesaukah

At Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park and SoakYa Water Park in Rossville, swimmers can relax at the beach lagoon, race on the slides and splash in the interactive kids area.

Spivey Splash at Clayton County International Park

Cruise along the state's largest lazy river at Spivey Splash water park at the Clayton County International Park in Jonesboro. Kids will love cooling off on the splash pad, flow rider, water slides and pool, and testing their skills on the ropes course!

Splash in the Boro

At Splash in the Boro Family Water Park in Statesboro, swimmers can float on the lazy river, brave the water slides and bob in the wave pool.

Summer Waves Water Park

On Jekyll Island, swimmers can take a break from the beach at Summer Waves Water Park to brave the Pirates Passage flume, drift down Turtle Creek and wade into the kiddie pool.

Wild Adventures

Valdosta's Wild Adventures theme park also has Splash Island waterpark, which features thrilling slides, a calm wave pool, and even cabanas to relax in.

Find more places to cool off this summer at Georgia's water parks, splash pads and aquatic centers.

Two people ziplining at Banning Mills

Ziplines at Banning Mills in Whitesburg, Georgia. Photo by @banningmills

Soar through the trees

Feeling adventurous? Georgia has a number of thrilling ziplines for all experience levels.

Banning Mills Screaming Eagle canopy tours has the largest, continuous zip line canopy tour in the world.

In Columbus, you can zip from Georgia to Alabama with Blue Heron Zipline Adventure Park.

Zipline Canopy Tours of Blue Ridge soar above North Georgia with two towers and three sky bridges.

Find more places to go ziplining in Georgia.

People shopping at the Market on Madison Farmers Market in Dublin, Georgia

People shopping at the Market on Madison Farmers Market in Dublin, Georgia

Hit up the farmers markets

Take advantage of the state's agricultural bounty by visiting one of the many Georgia Grown farmers markets, like Dublin's Market on Madison, the Atlanta State Farmers Market, Oconee Farmers Market and the Cordele State Farmers Market, the major watermelon distribution hub for the Southeast. They're easy to find in nearly every region. You'll find fresh produce, meats, seafood, prepared foods, and crafts. It's a great way to pick up ingredients to cook for friends and family. The Georgia Department of Agriculture is a good place to start looking.

Colorful structures at Pasaquan in Buena Vista, Georgia

Colorful structures at Pasaquan in Buena Vista, Georgia

Plan a road trip to see quirky landmarks

Georgia has some truly unique attractions that are worth a road trip in their own right. There are quirky artist havens like Pasaquan in Buena Vista and Summerville's Paradise Garden, created by Howard Finster, one of America's most widely known and prolific self-taught artists.

The Ashburn Peanut is a beloved landmark for those driving south along I-75, while the Plains Peanut has the same smile as President Jimmy Carter. While in Plains, be sure to tour the Jimmy Carter National Historical Park to learn more about America's 39th president.

The Doll's Head Trail is a funky Atlanta hike, and the faces carved into trees on St. Simons Island make for a mystical treasure hunt.

But, wait! There's more! Check out these 13 strange things you wouldn't believe are in Georgia.

Cars parked at the Jesup Drive-In in Jesup, Georgia

Cars parked at the Jesup Drive-In in Jesup, Georgia

Catch a drive-in movie

Although there aren't many drive-in theaters left, summertime is great for catching an outdoor film in Georgia. Gather your friends, chairs, and snacks for a new or second-run movie. Swan Drive In in Blue Ridge, Starlight in Atlanta, Jesup Drive In in Jesup, Tiger Drive In in Tiger, and Wilderness Outdoor Movie Theater in Trenton are ones you can check out around the state. Wilderness has the world's largest screen!

Peach tree at Jaemor Farms in Alto, Georgia

Peach tree at Jaemor Farms in Alto, Georgia

Eat a peach

Nothing says Georgia more than peaches! Summer is the best time to get them from roadside stands and in restaurants. There are plenty of ways to enjoy the state fruit, whether in fried pies, milkshakes, peach wine, jams or straight from the tree.

Find out Where to Get Fresh Georgia Peaches.

Runners at the Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta, Georgia

Runners at the Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta, Georgia

Make a run for it

An Atlanta (and Georgia) tradition is the world's largest 10K race: the AJC Peachtree Road Race. It winds from Buckhead to Midtown every July 4. Runners also can participate virtually by running 6.2 miles wherever they choose. Even if you're not up for the race itself, make a sign to cheer on the competitors!

White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Georgia. Photo by Alee Morrison Link

White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Georgia. Photo by @aleemorrisonlink

Go on a farm stay

Get up close with the animals at one of Georgia's farm stays and guest ranches. In Bluffton, White Oak Pastures is a working cattle farm with guest cabins.

In Madison, Crafdal Farm Alpacas lets you stay in rustic cabins on the same property as alpacas, and Southern Cross Guest Ranch is a dude ranch with horseback riding.

Exterior of Hay House in Macon, Georgia

Hay House in Macon, Georgia

Tour a historic home

Choose a part of the state and there's a historic home you can learn about.

In Atlanta, it might be the Swan House at the Atlanta History Center, which film fans will recognize as President Snow's mansion in "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire." In Macon, tour the 18,000-square-foot Hay House, known as the "Palace of the South."

Hills and Dales Estate in LaGrange, the Callaway family home, and the Little White House in Warm Springs, where President Franklin Delano Roosevelt retreated, also can't be missed.

Chow down on ice cream

 

 

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Cool off with a cool treat! Georgia has some fantastic ice cream establishments.

For a limited time, Macon-area Zaxby's locations are the only place in America where milkshake connoisseurs can get their fill of the Georgia-based restaurant's hand-spun shakes. Available in classic chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla flavors as well as the "party in a cup" birthday cake flavor with festive rainbow sprinkles, the milkshakes are just one of the city's many sweet secrets.

You've likely heard of Leopold's in Savannah, which usually has a line down the street. The parlor has been scooping ice cream since 1919, including its famous Tutti Frutti flavor (rum ice cream with candied fruit and freshly roasted Georgia pecans).

Lane Southern Orchards makes peach ice cream, as does Jaemor Farms, where you'll want to add a fresh fried pie to your order.

In Atlanta, Jake's Ice Cream is a must-stop if you're walking the Atlanta Beltline, and in the Grant Park neighborhood, be sure to stop into one of Historic Oakland Cemetery's newest neighbors, oh-so-sweet Cereal and Cream.

Published: May 2024
Written by: Caroline Eubanks
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