Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island, Georgia. Photo by @joshsumner
Go to the beach
Georgia's beaches are among its best resources. Explore some of Georgia's 15 barrier islands, including:
Brunswick and its four barrier islands - St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Little St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island - are brimming with activities from deep sea fishing to golfing and shopping. Seek out the otherworldly landscape of Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island, hunt for tree spirits on St. Simons Island, and indulge in luxurious solitude on Little St. Simons. Explore all there is to see and do in the Golden Isles.
Tybee Island is a family-friendly beach town that is a short drive from downtown Savannah. Rent a cute cottage, go on a dolphin tour, dig in to fresh seafood and much more. Find places to stay and things to do in the Guide to Tybee Island.
Adventurous types can camp at the beach at Cumberland Island, a National Seashore known for its wild horses and ruins of the Dungeness mansion. Catch the ferry to the island, and be prepared for a vacation experience like no other.
Get out on the water
Sunrise over Lake Sinclair in Milledgeville, Georgia. Photo by @benjamingalland
Enjoy the great outdoors around Georgia, especially the lakes, rivers and ocean.
Georgia's Lake Country boasts a number of lakes, including Oconee and Sinclair. Closer to Atlanta, Allatoona and Lanier welcome boaters and fishermen. Lakes Burton, Rabun, Hartwell and Blackshear are also worth exploring.
The Chattahoochee River runs from the top of the state to the bottom with opportunities for recreation along the way, including tubing near Helen and Atlanta, as well as kayaking and paddleboarding. Albany's Flint River runs through town, allowing visitors to put in their boats easily.
Exploring the Okefenokee Swamp
Take a guided boat tour with knowledgeable naturalists to experience the mysterious Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, or rent a canoe or kayak and set out on your own. Reserve a camping platform to stay overnight for a truly unique outdoor adventure! Take advantage of the discounts on multi-day, multi-entrance passes to Okefenokee Swamp Park in Waycross and Okefenokee Adventures in Folkston, to experience boat tours, train rides, nature shows and the incredible scenery of the fascinating swamp environment.
Go see a drive-in movie
Drive-in movie theaters are making a comeback, and Georgia boasts five that have been going strong for decades. From the Wilderness Outdoor Movie Theater in northwest Georgia, which boasts the largest outdoor movie theater screen in the world, to the Jesup Drive-In in south Georgia, which has 1950s-esque car hops, these theaters offer classic fun for the whole family. See what's showing at a theater near you!
Plan a road trip
Chickamauga, Georgia. Photo by @hogjowlroad
What's a better time to start planning a getaway by car? Decide what you want to see, whether it be coast or mountains, cities or small towns. Follow the 41-mile Russell-Brasstown Scenic Byway through the mountains, or drive along US-17 to coastal communities from Richmond Hill to Darien. Bring your own car, or hire a campervan from Live More Campervans, Scamper Van or Escape Campervans, which allows you to sleep in your wheels at one of the state's many campgrounds.
Hunt for murals
Mural in Atlanta's Little Five Points neighborhood. Photo by @wtfmymy
Looking for colorful walls to photograph? You're in luck. Atlanta has hundreds of murals in every corner of the city, especially around Cabbagetown and Old Fourth Ward. Savannah also has its own, usually commissioned by art galleries and non-profits to beautify their buildings. Macon also has upped its game in terms of public art, with murals, sculptures and Little Free Libraries around town. Don’t miss the mural in Dublin, which honors the civil rights movement and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Tour a brewery, cidery or distillery
Creature Comforts Brewing Co. in Athens, Georgia. Photo by @eatwell_traveloften_enjoyart
The Peach State has a thriving scene for craft beverages as new breweries and distilleries are opening every year in every corner of the state. No matter where you go, plan on having a designated driver.
Atlanta has the most craft breweries, including big-name ones like Sweetwater and those with multiple locations like Monday Night. But there are many breweries in other cities and towns, like Macon Beer Company, Creature Comforts in Athens, and Eagle Creek Brewing in Statesboro. Grab a bite with your pint at a brew pub, like Rome City Brewing Co. and Good Word Brewing and Public House in Duluth.
For more great breweries, check out this list of The 21 Essential Breweries in Georgia.
The gluten-intolerant can rejoice, as there are also cideries around the state. Urban Tree Cidery is located on Atlanta's Westside with a taproom to sample their varieties. Treehorn in Marietta is another favorite, as is Mercier Orchards in Blue Ridge. If you're looking for a low-alcohol option, Cultured South on Atlanta's West End brews the popular Golda Kombucha.
Distilleries also are open to visitors to offer a glimpse into how your favorite spirits are made. Atlanta has the ASW Distillery, Old Fourth Distillery and Independent Distilling distilleries. Dalton Distillery and Dawsonville Distillery both specialize in legal "white lightning." Richland Rum in Richland and Brunswick crafts the only single-estate rum in the United States, made from Georgia-grown sugar cane.
Learn about Georgia history
Fort King George State Historic Site in Darien, Georgia. Photo by @bwebmasta
Even if you're out of school, you're never done learning. Use this spring as an opportunity to visit some of the state's historic sites.
Fort King George State Historic Site
Travel back to colonial days at Fort King George State Historic Site on the coast, which marks the 300th anniversary of Georgia's founding in 2021. The 18th-century frontier settlement is open for tours where visitors can explore reconstructed buildings. Climb ladders inside the blockhouse, lay on soldiers’ bunks, peek out musket holes and even ring the dinner bell.
Bike the trails
Gear up with your helmet and two wheels to explore the state. There are plenty of paved bike paths for beginner or expert riders.
Silver Comet Trail
The Silver Comet Trail is a national treasure, running from Smyrna to Cedartown before crossing into Alabama.
The Atlanta BeltLine is a popular path, looping around the city, but can be crowded on weekends. Also check out the lesser-visited sections of the trail like the Westside and Northside.
The 18-mile long linear Carrollton GreenBelt is the largest paved loop trail system in Georgia. Explore Carrollton by pedaling to the University of West Georgia, numerous shopping centers and a number of city parks along the way.
Arabia Mountain PATH
The Arabia Mountain PATH runs 30 miles, linking cultural, scenic, natural and historic sites, including the Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers.
The Chattahoochee Riverwalk in Columbus runs 15 miles alongside the water, offering views of the whitewater rapids and a connection to the National Infantry Museum.
Attend a spring arts or sports event
Just as daffodils, dogwoods and azaleas flourish in the spring in Georgia, so do outdoor arts and sports events. Pick any city, and you'll likely find a spring event to enjoy!
International Cherry Blossom Festival
Take in an Atlanta Braves game at Truist Park. The Braves open at home on April 9, 2021, against the Philadelphia Phillies. The Braves' first homestand of the season will continue with two more games against the Phillies and a four-game set against Miami. Plan your trip with this Insider's Guide to Atlanta Braves Games.
Tickets to the legendary golf tournament in Augusta are hard to come by, but even if you don't have tickets, there is plenty to do off-course during Masters Week April 5-11, 2021. Follow these tips on how to make the most of your trip. Plan your trip with this Guide to Augusta.
Savannah Music Festival
Take a culinary tour of the state
Southern Belle Farm in McDonough, Georgia. Photo by @osama.wbhatti
You can't say we don't eat well in Georgia! Go in search of fresh flavors this spring on a culinary trip across the state.
Grab a bucket and head to one of Georgia's many pick-your-own farms for a true Southern springtime tradition. The whole family will have fun picking their favorite springtime treats fresh from farms throughout the state.
Georgia's spring food festivals offer a huge menu of options. A few choices include:
- Georgia Strawberry Festival, April 22-24, 2021
- Vidalia Onion Festival, April 22-25, 2021
- Taste of Richland & Market, April 25, 2021
- North Georgia Highlands Seafood & Wine Festival, June 4-6, 2021
100 Plates Locals Love
You don’t have to go on an organized tour and can instead plan your own. Choose some new dishes to try from Explore Georgia's list of 100 Plates Locals Love, or visit 10 of the locations on the Brews & Q's Trail and earn a free t-shirt.
Let Good Taste Be Your Guide
Search for your destination on OpenTable, where you might be able to grab a last-minute spot at one of the James Beard Award-winners. Alternatively, pick out a few places on your own and order small bites along the way.