15 Musts for Your Trip to Blue Ridge
Top 15 Things to Do
Here are more than a dozen ways to make the most of your time in Blue Ridge.
1. Relax -- you're on Blue Ridge time.
Wake up to cool, crisp mornings with a cup of coffee on the porch. After a day of fun and adventure, finish the day in the same spot enjoying a glorious mountain sunset with a glass of wine or sweet iced tea. You may never want to leave the porch, but don’t miss out on the fun of exploring the Georgia mountains.
2. Experience some beautiful mountain scenery.
Winter, summer, spring and fall, Georgia’s Blue Ridge is simply beautiful. Winter is the quiet season, with occasional snow. Spring is best for trout fishing, wildflowers, blooming dogwoods and native azaleas. Summer brings a profusion of mountain laurel and rhododendron blossoms, along with warmer water for tubing & rafting. Blue Ridge is the perfect place to experience the brilliant colors of fall, or to enjoy the holidays with family and friends.
Download one of our Scenic Driving Tours here.
3. Fall in love with our small mountain towns.
You'll fall in love with the mountain towns of Blue Ridge and McCaysville. Blue Ridge was founded when the railroad came to the mountains and it has been a resort town from the beginning. In the early days, flatlanders rode the train to town to drink from the healing waters of mineral springs. Today's visitors still ride the train, but they are more attracted to the antiques, specialty shops, galleries, restaurants, small town atmosphere and friendly people. The Toccoa/Ocoee River runs through the quaint town of McCaysville, twin city with Copperhill, Tennessee. Stand in both states at one time at the Blue Line, which marks the spot where Georgia ends and Tennessee begins.
4. Uptown dining in a small town setting.
Local food is an essential part of the trip when you visit Georgia’s Blue Ridge. Add three local breweries to the mix and you’ve got a pretty eclectic dining experience in a small town setting.
Download our restaurant guide here.
5. Enjoy Blue Ridge's artsy vibe.
Blue Ridge has an artsy vibe, with a vibrant arts scene, galleries, live music and great community theater to sweeten your Blue Ridge experience.
Find information about events and exhibits at the Blue Ridge Mountain Arts Center here.
Purchase theater tickets at the Blue Ridge Community Theater online here.
6. Ride the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway.
Take a ride on the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway along the Toccoa River from Blue Ridge to McCaysville. Board the train at the historic depot in Blue Ridge. The view changes with the seasons. Special trips are planned throughout the year like the Firecracker Special and the Santa Express trips. Open mid March through December.
Call 1-800-934-1898 or visit www.brscenic.com.
7. Hike to a beautiful local waterfall.
A beautiful waterfall is the best reward at the end of a hike. Three of our favorites are Falls Branch Falls and Long Creek Falls, in Fannin County, and Amicalola Falls near Ellijay.
Download our waterfall guide here.
8. Float the Toccoa River.
The most popular family pastime in the summer is probably tubing the clear, chilly Toccoa River either above the Lake Blue Ridge dam on Aska Road or below in McCaysville. But there are lots of ways to enjoy our rivers, streams and lakes, including rafting, canoeing, kayaking, pontooning and paddle boarding.
Click here for a list of rafting and tubing rental companies and guides.
9. Fish the Trout Capital of Georgia.
Fannin County is the Trout Capital of Georgia. There are over 100 miles of great trout fishing rivers, creeks and streams in the area, including Jack's River, Conasauga River, Toccoa River, Rock Creek, Noontootla Creek and Cooper Creek.
Find out more about fishing in Blue Ridge here.
10. Hike the Appalachian Trail.
Fannin County has more than 100,000 acres located in the Chattahoochee National Forest, including 40,000 acres in the Cohutta Wilderness. Two of the greatest outdoor adventures in the world begin here. Both the Appalachian and Benton MacKaye Trails start at the top of Springer Mountain.
Find directions on our hiking map here.
11. Ride horseback on mountain trails.
Our riding stables specialize in family trail rides for kids of almost all ages. Open year round with seasonal hayrides and evening wagon rides with campfire dinners. Call for reservations and to book special group events.
For a list of riding stables click here.
12. Sip some great local wine and craft beer.
The North Georgia Mountains are known for the beauty and quality of our farm wineries, not to mention the great taste of Georgia’s mountain wines. A more recent addition are Blue Ridge’s three outstanding craft breweries, recognized among the best in Georgia. Taste our wines and brews right where they are made, or in tasting rooms, local pubs and restaurants.
Check out our wine and brew tour here.
13. Taste locally grown fruit and veggies.
Visit Mercier Orchards, largest orchard in the south, located on Highway 5 just outside Blue Ridge. Pick apples off the tree, buy fresh apple cider and the best fried apple pies – a true farm to table experience. Treat the family to a farm tractor tour and u-pick strawberries, blueberries and apples in season. The new tasting room features homemade hard cider from the freshest Mercier grown fruit. Also don't miss Cider House Orchards in McCaysville, an old fashioned apple orchard and fruit market with u-pick apples all season.
14. Celebrate winter, spring, summer and fall.
Georgia’s mountain towns are well known for the number and quality of festivals in the fall: the Marble Festival in Jasper, Bear on the Square in Dahlonega, Apple Festival in Ellijay and Sorghum Festival in Blairsville, just to name a few. But there are many more festivals and celebrations to enjoy in the mountains all year long.
Find out more about our annual festivals and events here.
15. Take a scenic drive in the mountains.
Explore the Blue Ridge mountains and countryside with one of our Scenic Driving Tours by clicking here: Scenic Driving Tours. Drives range from ½ day to full day trips with lots of mountain scenery and attractions along the way.