14 Best Winter Activities to Do in Georgia!

Because it's a southern state, visiting Georgia in the wintertime generally yields sunshine and warmer (er) temperatures than its neighbors to the north. That's not to say that the Peach State doesn't have its share of ice and snow, but for the most part, those events are few and far between. Jack Frost might nip at your nose a bit, but typically, Georgia only gets a few inches of snow each winter. So, what is one to do in all that warm, southern air? Here are a few ideas.

See Seven States from Rock City, Lookout Mountain, GA

Rock City beckons adventurers and dreamers alike. Perched atop Lookout Mountain, it has breathtaking natural wonders, like massive rock formations, lush gardens, and views of seven states. Take an enchanting journey along the wooded paths and explore the beauty of this one-of-a-kind destination.

Fainting Goat Vineyards and Winery, Jasper, GA

Explore the birthplace of Fainting Goat Vineyards – a special family-run winery in North Georgia. Relax to the sounds of live music every weekend, and take in the breathtaking sunsets during the season. Toast with a glass of their signature wine or stock up on a bottle before enjoying a picnic of charcuterie and olives. Kids and pets are always welcome! Uncover the history behind the name – how a long work day ended at Burnt Mountain with a mesmerizing view.

Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site, Cartersville, GA

Escape into the history of the ancient Etowah Mounds! This 54-acre site is the most intact Mississippian Culture site in the Southeast, home to several thousand Native Americans from 1000 A.D. to 1550 A.D. Follow the nature trail to discover earthen mounds, a plaza, a village site, and more. Along the Etowah River, spot a v-shaped fish trap and learn how early civilizations used native trees for food and medicine. History awaits your exploration!

Dive into some fun at the Georgia Aquarium

A visit to Georgia isn't complete without visiting the Georgia Aquarium. With enchanting and fascinating guest experiences, it is the destination for merriment and culture. Home to incredibly diverse aquatic biodiversity, the Georgia Aquarium provides world-class exhibits and programs to educate and entertain all ages.

Catch a movie at the Jesup Drive-In, Jesup, GA

Remember the good old days of diners and drive-ins? Well, those days are back in style at the Jesup Drive-In, the oldest drive-in in Georgia. Originally opened in 1948, the drive-in has been renovated to its 1950s glory days and features newly released movies and carhops dressed in period attire who will bring your concessions to your car. 

Visit the oldest U.S. military park at Chickamauga-Chattanooga NMP

Lions Park is the proper place for outdoor delights and adventure. Enjoy a stroll on the winding trails, climb the rock wall, or dip in the calm lake. With plenty to traverse, Lions Park will surely be a hit!

Spread your wings and fly to the Museum of Aviation

Originally, the Museum of Aviation, located on Robins Air Force Base in Georgia, only had 20 aircraft on display and another 20 being restored. Today, it’s the second largest museum in the U.S. Air Force and the fourth most visited museum in the Department of Defense. With 51 acres of land, the museum includes four buildings which house 85 historic aircraft, missiles, cockpits, and aircraft-related exhibits. In addition, the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame is also located on the premises.

Birdsong Nature Center, Thomasville, GA

What was once a plantation in the 1800s and later a cattle farm is now the Birdsong Nature Center. Located in Thomasville, Georgia, on 565 acres of land, the center's mission is conservation and education. The land is covered with hardwood and pine forests, dotted with ponds and swamps, teeming with wildlife, and bathed in the vibrant beauty of wildflowers. Birds and butterflies claim the airspace, while 12 miles of nature trails and various natural habitats beg to be explored year-round.

All aboard the SAM Shortline

Located in Cordele, Georgia, the SAM Shortline transports passengers back to the golden age of railroads. The 1949 vintage railcars provide a nostalgic atmosphere for riders as the train chugs from one quaint town to the next. The train is partly named for the original railroad company, the Savannah, Americus, and Montgomery Railroad Company, that traversed the tracks from Savannah to Alabama in the 1880s. The head of the railroad company was Colonel Samuel Hugh Hawkins of Americus. He is also part of the reason the SAM Shortline has its current name. The train route stops at different towns on different days, but each town is unique and offers joy and excitement to its visitors. Sometimes, the train departs from Cordele, and at other times, it departs from the Georgia Veterans State Park boarding location. 

Star gazing at Stephen C. Foster State Park

Have you ever laid in your backyard and just looked up at the night sky, peering from one constellation to the next? Did you know there’s actually an award for best places to stargaze? The International Dark Sky Association named the Stephen C. Foster State Park in Fargo, Georgia as a gold-tier “International Dark Sky Park.” The designation means the park’s skies have very little ambient light, so visitors can enjoy spectacular views of the moon, stars, planets, and comets. 

State Botanical Garden, Athens, GA

The State Botanical Garden (SBG) is one of Georgia&rsquo's hidden gems. The SBG features guided tours of its extensive gardens and collections in Athens near the University of Georgia. The visitor center features changing plant displays of tropical plants, while the conservatory houses the Tropical Greenhouse Collection. The International Garden, Heritage Garden, five miles of trails, and natural areas offer more than enough trees, plants, and flowers to enthrall visitors for hours. The gift shop is also a must-see, as it features books on gardening, plants available for purchase, children's games and gardening tools, artwork, and products handcrafted by local artisans.

Pebble Hill Plantation, Thomasville, GA

Pebble Hill Plantation was named around the 1850s, though the history of the property dates to the Georgia Land Lottery of 1820. The plantation has been owned by two great families during its existence, the second of which created a trust so the plantation would become a museum upon the death of its last owner. The museum has been restored to the period ranging from 1915 to 1960, the period in which the previous owner's major building projects, family traditions, and grand entertaining took place. Pebble Hill is called one of the state's "Belles," as its stately architecture, southern magnolias, and longleaf pines create a picturesque landscape of southern charm and beauty. Visitors can tour the Main House with its impressive art collection, voluminous library, and priceless antiques and then explore the 3,000-acre property which includes gorgeous gardens, a log cabin school, the swimming pool and tennis court, a fire house, and much more.

Shop, eat and play in Underground Atlanta

Shops, restaurants, public artwork, and live entertainment await visitors to Underground Atlanta, one of the city's oldest and most unique attractions. This "City Beneath the Streets" first reopened to the public in 1969 as a retail and entertainment center, only one year after the phenomenal restoration project began, during which much of the site's original architecture, including ornate marble, granite archways, and decorative brickwork, were saved and restored. Underground Atlanta was closed for a few years during the construction of the local rapid transit line, but it redesigned to include a family-friendly atmosphere with special events and cultural programming added to the line-up of things to do. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, visitors to Underground Atlanta can stop by the information booth to pick up a copy of the Self-Guided Walking History Tour Brochure to learn all about this fascinating venue.

Shakespeare Tavern, Atlanta, GA

Doth thou enjoy good company, fine acting, warm food, and libations? If yes, the Shakespeare Tavern in Atlanta, Georgia, is a must-see. This ornate theatre features a Globe-inspired balcony and Globe-inspired outdoor facade, so the exterior alone is worth the trip. If you've never seen Shakespeare performed live (or even if you have), the Shakespeare Tavern does it right. Other playwrights' works are performed here as well, and each of them is performed by what the Tavern calls its "Original Practice," which means that each show will be served the way the playwright intended, alive and in a voice that every audience member can understand and enjoy. The Tavern offers before-the-show dinner and drinks at the bar. Check out the menu, which features an assortment of delicacies like The King's Supper Sandwich, Shepherd's Pie, and a Cornish pastry.

This text was created by the author with the assistance of GPT-3, a large-scale language generation model developed by OpenAI. The author reviewed, edited, and revised the draft language to their satisfaction and is fully responsible for the content of this publication.

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