woman and child stand under waterfall looking up

An Adventurer’s Bucket List in Rabun County

Tucked in the northeastern corner of Georgia and surrounded by national forestland, Rabun County is filled with dramatic natural beauty and thrilling outdoor adventures. Escape from it all and make the most of your mountain getaway with this Top 10 Bucket List.  

group of rafters in action doing down a river with water splashing

1. Take a thrilling whitewater rafting trip down the wild & scenic Chattooga River.

Choose one of three outfitters to guide you on a wild ride down the Chattooga, one of Georgia’s most beautiful mountain rivers. Southeastern Expeditions, Wild Water Chattooga, and the Nantahala Outdoor Center can take you on the ride of your life.

5 people ride 5 horses in the river surrounded by green trees

2. Ride horseback through a mountain stream.

If you prefer a milder adventure, visit the Dillard House Stables. Ride deep into pastures, skirting along the outside of the Little Tennessee River and then down the middle of the river for an exciting in-water riding experience. Enjoy breathtaking mountain views and an abundance of natural greenery.  

woman and child stand under waterfall looking up

3. Go forest bathing and hike to a stunning waterfall.

With more than 34 waterfalls (and the hikes to reach them) ranging from easy to challenging, there are plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in the area’s lush forests. You will be well rewarded for your efforts when your hike ends with the majesty of clear mountain water cascading dramatically over rocks and outcroppings. 

sunset aerial view of Terra Incognita winers

4. Tour and taste at a mountain top winery or craft distillery.

Rabun County’s rich mountain soil and pure water are the perfect combination to produce fabulous wines and spirits. With four wineries—Tiger Mountain Vineyard, Stonewall Creek, 12 Spies, and Terra Incognita, and two distilleries — R.M. Rose and Moonrise — you can sample award-winning beverages while enjoying spectacular views and small-town charm.

man with backpack fly fishes in a rushing river

5. Learn how to land a beauty with a guided fishing tour.

Rabun County offers world-class fishing for both seasoned and beginner casters. With a number of highly skilled fishing guides angling in the area’s lakes, streams and rivers, even a novice is sure to bring home a trophy — or at least a good story about trying. 

two women walk downtown with shopping bags in hand

6. Hunt for treasure in antique shops, art galleries and markets.

You won’t find mega-malls in Rabun County. What you will find is one-of-a-kind shops filled with lots of character and personality. You never know what you’ll find at the locally owned boutiques, galleries, and markets — but whatever it is, you probably won’t find it anywhere else. So, if you’re a treasure hunter looking for that perfect something-or-other, Rabun County is where you should start.

camera points down at person fixing rock climbing gear from higher on the gorge

7. Climb Tallulah Gorge.

As one of the deepest gorges east of the Mississippi, the Tallulah Gorge is just begging to be explored. Expert climbers can scale its sheer quartzite walls with special permits, and casual visitors can test their endurance on the 1,000-plus Hurricane Falls stairs, which take you down to the gorge floor and back up the other side. Regardless of your skill, climbing the gorge is an amazing feat and entitles you to your share of bragging rights.

Fried green tomatoes with shrimp and grits on a white plate

8. Enjoy a true Farm-to-Table fine dining experience.

As Georgia’s Farm-to-Table Capital, Rabun County boasts many exceptional chefs and restaurants that transform just-picked, locally grown products into culinary delights. You don’t have to travel to a big city for excellent cuisine. Discover a surprisingly innovative and exciting epicurean adventure set in an enchanting, rural environment.

front view of cabin at Wolffork Vally Farm

9. Stay in fun, historic, or unique accommodations.

Where you stay can be a big part of the fun in Rabun County. Take your pick of accommodations of all sorts: upscale, historic B&Bs that are as gracious as they are intimate; eclectic cabins and tiny homes surrounded by woods and streams; distinctive remodeled artifacts like a 1929 caboose or an 1800s cabin; and everything in between. From rustic camping to elegant resorts, there’s a place for everyone.

wicker basket with clippers and clippings of clovers

10. Step outside the box and reconnect with your roots.

Disconnect from your norm and try some grassroots experiences. Forage the forest for edible plants with Wildcraft Kitchen. Learn how to build an indigenous musical instrument at Archaic Roots, or take a class in spinning, weaving, or even soap making at the Foxfire Museum and Heritage Center. Whatever you try, your horizons are sure to expand!

All of these wonderful opportunities and many more are waiting for you just a short trip away. Get even more ideas for your upcoming trip at ExploreRabun.com.

Published: May 2021

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