8 Best Weekend Road Trips From Atlanta GA

Georgia TripsGEORGIA - Whether you’re looking for a romantic weekend getaway or want to take the family on a fun road trip, there are plenty of places to escape near Atlanta. Charleston is the ideal destination if you’re craving a dose of Southern charm. The cobblestone streets are a shopper’s dream, and the historic downtown is full of charming restaurants and boutiques.

Where to Take a Weeking Trip from Atlanta Georgia
Best Weekend Road Trips From Atlanta Georgia

Where to Take a Weeking Trip from Atlanta Georgia

1. Dahlonega in Georgia

The little town of Dahlonega, located in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, has a lot to offer visitors. It's home to some of the best wineries in Georgia, stunning waterfalls, a thriving agricultural industry, and a history that dates back to the gold rush in 1828. Road trip, anyone? Roll down the windows and turn up your favorite playlist. For your next trip, explore destinations within driving distance. Let's go!

It's a perfect place to spend a weekend exploring the sights of northern Georgia and relaxing in the beautiful mountains. Several excellent scenic drives can be explored, including the Lumpkin-Union Loop and the Brasstown Bald Loop, both of which take in stunning views and spectacular mountain landscapes.

Another great way to experience the beauty of Georgia's mountains is to go on one of the many hikes. The Anna Ruby Falls Trail is an easy hike that leads to incredible, misty waterfalls. If you're feeling particularly adventurous, consider climbing to the top of one of the 728-foot DeSoto Falls. This hike takes you through two different paths that lead to viewing platforms for the upper and lower falls.

2. Helen in Georgia

Part Bavarian village and part legit cardio adventure, Helen in Georgia balances mountain town fancifulness with heart-pumping outdoor activities. The north Georgia city by the Chattahoochee River is surrounded by a national forest, with dozens of waterfalls and hiking trails to explore.

The town’s most popular event is Oktoberfest, a celebration that re-creates the magic of Germany with live music, traditional German foods, and beer. The celebration takes place in the fall and runs from September through November. If you’re not a fan of Oktoberfest, you can still enjoy the town’s unique architecture and charm during any other time of the year. In winter, the city offers a variety of indoor activities, such as visiting Christmas-themed shops and trying traditional German Christmas treats.

3. Gatlinburg in Tennessee

Gatlinburg is a mountain resort city in Tennessee that makes an excellent base for exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is known for its sweeping views and quirky attractions and offers plenty of adventure for travelers of all ages. The best way to experience the area's beauty is to go hiking; many trails are available for all levels. You can also partake in outdoor sports like white water rafting and kayaking.

While you're in the area, you should visit the farmers market. It's one of the largest in the state, and you can find fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and cheeses here. Another top attraction in the area is the Gatlinburg Space Needle, a 407-foot observation tower that provides stunning views of the Smoky Mountains. It's a sight that you won't soon forget! You can also visit Anakeesta, a family-friendly theme park that offers a variety of activities and special events. It's a good choice for families of all sizes and can be enjoyed at any time of year.

4. St. Simons Island in Georgia

It’s one of Georgia’s Golden Isles, an archipelago of barrier islands where you can relax on miles of sandy beaches or tee off at an award-winning golf course. You’ll find everything from luxury resorts to cozy cottages and vacation rentals dotted along the Intracoastal Waterways.

The island’s history is evident everywhere you look. The Fort Frederica National Monument offers fascinating insights into American history, while the St. Simons Lighthouse is a must-visit. You’ll find plenty of places to rent bikes and cycle around the island. It’s a great way to explore all that the area has to offer and makes a perfect day trip. If you’re looking for a more active day, try hiking the Colonial Coast Birding Trail. Here, you’ll spot more than 300 species of birds, including bald eagles and ospreys.

You’ll also find a handful of local restaurants and specialty shops in the colorful Mallery Street and Pier Village area, where you can window shop or enjoy a sunset cocktail on a patio. Don’t miss the ECHO restaurant, known for its creative craft cocktails and Southern coastal cuisine.

5. Toccoa Falls in Georgia

Whether you are looking for a quick weekend trip or a longer vacation, there is plenty to see and do in Georgia. From charming small towns and picturesque state parks to bustling cities and more, there is something for everyone. If you are a nature lover, you will want to check out Toccoa Falls in Georgia. This stunning waterfall sits on the campus of Toccoa Falls College and is one of the tallest free-falling waterfalls east of the Mississippi River.

It is 186 feet high, and a short 100-yard path leads to the waterfall's base, making it easy for anyone to view. It is also handicap accessible. Toccoa Falls is located in Stephens County, Georgia, and is a great place to visit on a day trip. It is only a few hours from several locations in Georgia and the Carolinas, so it's worth checking out if you are in the area.

6. Greenville in South Carolina

Greenville has a lot to offer, including trendy Main Street. But the best part of Greenville is its proximity to several natural wonders and historical attractions. For one, there’s Table Rock State Park, a verdant mountain-top hiking destination whose rushing waterfalls and clear streams are awe-inspiring. Or drive just a few miles outside the city and take in the stunning Paris Mountain State Park, which has four lakes to explore and an extensive trail system.

If you’re in the mood for some urban nature on wheels, rent a bike and strike out on the Swamp Rabbit Trail that runs through downtown Greenville. Or explore West Greenville (The Village), a former industrial area home to a host of beer/cafe/food truck/yoga studio combos. And don’t forget to check out the local art scene. The Greenville Center for the Creative Arts has a main gallery and community galleries that showcase some of the area’s most talented artists.

7. Savannah in Georgia

Savannah is a great place to visit for a weekend road trip from Atlanta, Georgia because it has so much to offer in terms of culture, cuisine, and history. Its historic architecture, public squares, and charming neighborhoods make it a beautiful city worth exploring.

You can easily spend an entire day walking through Savannah. Stops at Bonaventure Cemetery and Forsyth Park are ideal, as well as a ghost tour. Another must-do when visiting Savannah is a trip to Tybee Island, which is just a short drive away from the city. It's one of the best beaches in the area and has plenty to do, including water sports, boating, and a beachfront hotel.

For dinner, try the innovative ingredient-driven menu at Husk. This historic mansion has been transformed into a restaurant where you can enjoy dishes that are sure to impress! The kitchen uses only locally sourced ingredients, and you'll find creative dishes like smoked heritage pork with chestnuts and juniper, pecan tortellini, and quail with sweet potato and cocoa nibs.

8. Hilton Head Island in South Carolina

Known as the Southern paradise, Hilton Head Island is a dream destination for anyone seeking a tranquil escape from a busy city. This 12-mile island is dotted with pristine beaches, golf courses, nature preserves, and historic sites, offering an array of activities and attractions year-round. Visitors worldwide flock to Hilton Head for its pristine sands, blue water, and spectacular landscape. The island is also home to several world-class resorts, a thriving real estate industry, and a wide variety of shops and restaurants.

You can easily spend a day or two exploring the area and experiencing its many wonders. Start your trip by taking in the sights and sounds of the historic downtown district, where you’ll find many museums, trails, and events. Then, stroll down to the Soda City Market to check out a slew of regional eateries and artisans that are adored by both tourists and residents alike.