The North Georgia Mountains continue to be a year-round draw for Atlantans, thanks to natural and manmade attractions. Hiking, mountain-biking, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, and horseback-riding are just the beginning of activities for visitors to get outside and enjoy the region’s natural beauty.
But a wealth of manmade attractions—ranging from Blue Ridge’s growing culinary scene to Ellijay’s thriving winery selections and Helen’s kitschy shopping district—offers much more to experience beyond the beauty of Mother Nature.
Perhaps the best part is that these destinations are easily reached in less than three hours from downtown Atlanta, making them ideal for a quick weekend jaunt, as well as a longer family vacation, girlfriends getaway, or couples retreat.
Sautee Nacoochee cabin, Helen
Just six miles from downtown Helen, this two-bedroom, two-bathroom cabin sleeps up to eight—including the family dog. Enjoy panoramic mountain views from the comfort of the large, vaulted living room, or, in the loft, challenge friends to a game of pool. Head outside for a soak in the hot tub, or relax on the screened-in porch. Rates start at $136 per night.
Eagles Breeze, Mineral Bluff
Up on Bear Mountain in Mineral Bluff, this three-bedroom, three-bathroom cabin offers expansive mountain views. Spend the days (and nights) on the large screened porch complete with outdoor fireplace and tons of seating. Compete for bragging rights at pool, foosball, cards, and more in the family room, or try horseshoes and cornhole outside. Rates start at $246 per night.
Cloud 9, Cleveland
With three bedrooms and three bathrooms, this property actually includes not one, but two cabins. The first is home to two bedrooms, with the third bedroom in the second cabin. A deck connects the two cabins and contains a sunken hot tub and freestanding fireplace. Entertainment options include a pool table, ping-pong, smart TVs, Wi-Fi, Play Station 4, and a Game Cube. Rates start at $200 per night.
Deer Creek, Ellijay
A new riverfront cabin in the gated Coosawattee River Resort in Ellijay, this three-bedroom, four-bathroom property welcomes visitors who want to relax to the surrounds of nature. Outside, a fireplace dominates a large covered deck, while a hot tub, fire pit, and second deck offer additional opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors. Inside, relax in the spacious living room, or indulge in pool, foosball, or Xbox tournaments. Rates start at $239 per night.
Arbor Hill, Blue Ridge
For those wanting a mountain retreat loaded with modern amenities, Arbor Hill in Blue Ridge answers the call. USB charging ports, free Wi-Fi, and smart TVs are just the start of contemporary comfort in this three-bedroom, three-bathroom cabin. Outside, hammock swings, a hot tub, and a fire pit all vie for your attention. There’s even an air-hockey table in the downstairs den. Rates start at $196 per night.
Galt’s Gulch, Big Canoe
The largest property in the bunch, and the closest to Atlanta, Galt’s Gulch in Big Canoe between Jasper and Dawsonville is a five-bedroom, five-bathroom home that claims to be a “true luxury mountain home.” Mountain views are prevalent in the winter, but are a bit more obscured from spring through fall when the leaves remain. Amenities include two entertainment rooms with pool, ping pong, and air hockey, two decks, and high-end furnishings and appliances. Rates start at $225 per night.
Chasing Fireflies, Blue Ridge
In this two-bedroom, three-bathroom cabin, there are “mountain views everywhere.” Although the aesthetic is pure rustic, it’s done with a modern spin, which is reflected in the kitchen and bathrooms—and the dynamite exterior. The screened deck is loaded with a hot tub, ping-pong, darts, swing, hammock, 65-inch TV, fireplace, and wine fridge. Rates start at $227 per night. (Note: The no-children or tobacco policy sounds strictly enforced.)