Blue Ridge, Georgia.
Get Away Completely in Blue Ridge
Visit Georgia’s Blue Ridge, one of the South’s most cherished mountain towns. You’ll find it just 90 miles from Atlanta but worlds away.
The Blue Ridge area is the perfect place to escape the city, where rolling mountains laced with hiking trails, crystal-clear lakes and rivers, wineries and breweries, locally sourced dining, boutique shopping, and friendly people welcome visitors looking for a break from the everyday.
Enjoy Art, Theater, Music & Boutiques
Blue Ridge itself has a vibrant arts scene, drawing creative folks to the area to capture its natural splendor. The Art Center’s studios, galleries, and artists-in-residence program make for two excellent annual Arts in the Park festivals, changing exhibits, and other events throughout the year. The Blue Ridge Community Theater, taking center stage in a beautiful new playhouse, presents local productions nearly every weekend and is beloved for its Live Music Is Better concert series. Live music and jam sessions in the park can also be found most weekends in locales around downtown, especially during the summer months. Peruse the town’s boutiques, galleries, and specialty shops for fine art, uniquely crafted items, and much more.
Indulge in Local Food & Drink
There are many ways to taste all this lush region has to offer. Start with one of seven breweries, including Fannin Brewing Company, Grumpy Old Men, and Buck Bald Brewing. Sample the array of mountain-grown flavors at two stellar wineries: Bear Claw and Serenberry vineyards. Or visit Mercier Orchards to pick apples right off the tree — a true farm-to-table experience.
Local restaurants also showcase home-grown fare: Eat mountain trout from Toccoa Riverside or Harvest on Main; fried-apple pies and apple-cider doughnuts from Mercier; and a Georgia’s Pride burger with bourbon-poached apples and melted goat cheese at Fightingtown Tavern. Dine at casual-upscale restaurants like Black Sheep or The General Ledger, or at fun eateries like Chester Brunnenmeyer’s Bar & Grill, the Boat Dock Bar & Grill on Lake Blue Ridge, or Burra Burra on the River in nearby McCaysville. Find more places to eat and drink in and around Blue Ridge.
Explore the North Georgia Mountains
All that delicious food fuels easily accessed recreation. Two of the most incredible outdoor adventures in the world begin in Blue Ridge’s Fannin County: The Appalachian Trail and Benton MacKaye Trail, both starting at the top of Springer Mountain. Beyond those, there are more than 300 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails within a short drive of town. In fact, 16 different waterfalls are nearby, including Amicalola Falls, the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River.
Speaking of water, Blue Ridge is the Trout Capital of Georgia, with more than 100 miles of excellent trout-fishing rivers, creeks, and streams. Several guide services can set you up with all the tackle you need and lead you to the best spots on the Toccoa River, Rock Creek, Copper Creek, and beyond. You can also tube, kayak or raft the Toccoa in Blue Ridge or McCaysville, rent a pontoon or paddleboard on Lake Blue Ridge or go whitewater rafting on the Ocoee River.
Relax in Luxury
When all that adventure has worn you out, retire to a luxury mountain cabin for a peaceful retreat, or choose to stay downtown, where everything is within walking distance. The area is peppered with cabins, B&Bs, campgrounds, treehouses, lodges, and hotels with mountain amenities that will make your getaway memorable, like cozy fireplaces, porches with stunning views, hot tubs under the stars, and close proximity to trails and fishing spots. Explore places to stay in and around Blue Ridge.
Catch the Train
Before you leave town, you must take one last excursion: The Blue Ridge Scenic Railway. Blue Ridge was established as a railroad town in the late 1800s, with the depot at its heart. Visitors would ride the train to the mountains to escape the summer heat and take in the mineral waters. Today, you can do the same, riding to McCaysville and crossing the Toccoa River bridge to Copperhill, Tennessee, on a four-hour journey through the colorful Appalachian foothills of North Georgia.
Learn more about how to get away entirely in Georgia’s Blue Ridge.