Stephen C. Foster State Park in Fargo, Georgia. Photo by @elvagogringo
Photo by @elvagogringo

Stephen C. Foster State Park in Fargo, Georgia. Photo by @elvagogringo

Five Amazing Screen-Free Getaways in Georgia

Need a break from your devices? Immerse yourself in the peaceful environments at these getaways featuring little or no cell service and few distractions.

If you didn't post photos from your travels, did you actually go? It's easy to get caught up in social media in this technology-driven age, but where do you go when you want to disconnect? Georgia has a number of places with little or no cell service, few distractions and a peaceful environment for a low-key getaway.

Hike Inn, Dawsonville

Len Foote Hike Inn in Dawsonville, Georgia

Located within Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge in Dawsonville, Hike Inn is a unique getaway for hikers and overnight travelers. Many people who are starting to hike the Appalachian Trail at Springer Mountain start their trip here, only 8 miles from the trailhead. It’s a five-mile hike from the state park to the inn.

They discourage bringing alcohol, but two communal meals are included with your stay: breakfast and dinner. You might be asking yourself, "So what is there to do there?" In addition to hiking, the Sunrise Room has stunning views of the surrounding park as well as puzzles you can do with your fellow guests. The inn leads nature walks, as well. Bring a good book and cozy up to the wood burning stove.

View from the Hike Inn

Know Before You Go

  • Reservations are encouraged because of the unique nature of the inn, which is made up of 20 bunk rooms that resemble dorm rooms.
  • There are no electrical outlets in the bunk rooms, and the closest phone number is at the Amicalola Visitor’s Center, so tell your friends and family where you'll be in advance.
  • They also ask that you leave your cell phones, laptops, and other electronics at home.

Related: Tips for an Unforgettable Stay at the Hike Inn

Greyfield Inn, Cumberland Island

Greyfield Inn on Cumberland Island, Georgia

Built by the Carnegies in 1900 for their daughter, this home on remote Cumberland Island was turned into an inn in 1962 and has been a retreat for visitors since then. Made up of 15 unique rooms and 200 acres, Greyfield Inn includes all meals and activities in your stay, including three meals and non-alcoholic drinks.

You also can take advantage of equipment needed for kayaking and fishing or go on a naturalist-led tour of the island. Disconnecting doesn't have to mean boredom! Guests can go birding, swimming, hiking, fishing, kayaking or relaxing on the beach.

Stafford Beach on Cumberland Island

Know Before You Go

  • Because Cumberland Island is an undeveloped national seashore, there is little cell phone service on the island. The inn doesn’t offer WiFi so that guests can keep the tranquil atmosphere free of electronic devices.
  • Dress for the property is casual during the day, especially if you're exploring the natural settings, but for dinner, jackets are required for men.
  • There are no stores on the island, so bring anything you might need. Luggage should be 25 pounds or less because it has to be transported onto the island by boat.

Related: Cumberland Island: From Camping to the Carnegies

Stephen C. Foster State Park, Fargo

Photo Credit: Rena Johnson Photography - https://www.facebook.com/RenaJohnsonsPhotography/

Set in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, North America's largest blackwater swamp, Stephen C. Foster State Park is unlike anywhere you’ve ever been. Cypress knees dot the landscape, and Spanish moss hangs from trees. Wildlife is around every corner, spotted from trails and kayaks. The swamp is home to countless species of birds, bears and reptiles, including more than 10,000 American alligators. You can rent a boat from a local outfitter or try your luck at fishing. The park also runs guided tours and offers archery and geocaching.

Accommodations at the park run the gamut with multiple options on 80 acres. Campers can set up at the campgrounds that have space for RVs and tents. There are also cottages and group-friendly campsites and an eco-lodge. Don’t count on WiFi, and instead use the opportunity as a chance to see the stars brighter than anywhere else.

Kayaking at Stephen C. Foster State Park

Know Before You Go

  • You likely won't have any cell service during your stay in the state park in Fargo.
  • The closest major town or city is Valdosta, which is an hour and a half driving, or Waycross, which is the same distance.
  • Be sure to pick up any essentials, like groceries, you might need for your stay.

Related: Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Okefenokee Swamp

Koinonia Farm, Americus

Koinonia Farm in Americus, Georgia

Located near the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site and Andersonville National Historic Site, Koinonia Farm is a truly unique getaway. Founded in 1942 as an intentional Christian farming community in Americus, all were welcomed equally from the beginning. It became the site of conflict during the civil rights movement, but the farm is now home to a successful mail-order business, especially Georgia pecans.

In addition to visits to the farm itself, Koinonia hosts classes and workshops, as well as overnight stays. Self-guided visits are offered from one night to two weeks. Options range from private rooms in one of the onsite homes, which range from $30-80 per night, to RV and primitive camping sites for $10-15.

Signs at Koinonia Farm

Know Before You Go

  • Reservations are encouraged because space is limited.
  • Although not required, take advantage of the communal potluck meals on Sundays to fully appreciate what Koinonia is all about.
  • They offer daily chapel services and worship on Sundays.
  • Be sure to bring home some Georgia-grown goods as souvenirs!

Related: 4 Places to Feed Your Faith in Georgia

Ignatius House, Sandy Springs

Ignatius House in Sandy Springs, Georgia

Disconnecting doesn't have to mean visiting a remote location. There are also places to get away from it all that are a short drive from downtown Atlanta. Ignatius House is a Jesuit retreat center in Sandy Springs, but you don't have to be religious to visit. They offer a place to reflect for as many days as you need. Take time to wander the grounds and admire views of the Chattahoochee River. There are also optional daily liturgies at the St. Ignatius Chapel.

Retreats include cozy private accommodations and bathrooms as well as daily meals, which can be adapted for dietary needs. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all made with fresh and local ingredients. A welcome reception takes place after check in to get you settled in and introduce you to the spiritual advisors on staff.

Trail at Ignatius House

Know Before You Go

  • Although you'll probably have cell service at Ignatius House, use your stay as a chance to disconnect.
  • Leave the laptop at home, and instead bring a good book or journal.
  • Bring a pair of comfy shoes for hitting the trails.

Related: Best Wellness Retreats in Georgia

Published: June 2020
Written by: Caroline Eubanks