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A Vacation Getaway in the North Ga. Mountains

Updated on February 19, 2011

Dahlonega Ga.

Dahlonega, Georgia

Are you looking for a new place to visit this year? Want away from the salt and sand of the ocean? Tired of the amusement parks? Well how about a new destination in the north Georgia mountains?

Sitting about an hour ride north of Atlanta, Georgia is a small mountain town, Dahlonega. You will find out that the first major U.S. gold rush just happened to take place around the Dahlonega area in 1828 some twenty years before California.  In the town square you find the gold museum that will educate and enlighten you to major gold finds and the people who moved here to seek their fortune. There are still a couple of gold mines that operate close to downtown that you and your family can visit and even pan for gold.

Dahlonega is also the home of North Georgia College. It was founded over 130 years ago and is the second oldest college in Georgia. North Georgia is distinctive among its peer institutions in that it is one of only six senior military colleges in the United States. The Army ROTC Corps of Cadets comprises about 13 percent of the student population at North Georgia. Because of this distinction, North Georgia has been designated by the state legislature as The Military College of Georgia.

Dahlonega is rich in the culture and charm of Appalachian within its beautifully preserved downtown historic district. Quaint shops around the Square are filled with regional art, antiques, unique jewelry and collectibles. There are also, small coffee shops, restaurants and even a vintage music store.

Dahlonega is also the Heart of Georgia's wine country. Tour the local wineries and downtown tasting rooms, sample wines from local and regional growers, all in relaxed quite atmosphere. Spend the week or a night in town with lodging to suit every taste and budget - from delightful bed and breakfasts to country inns and mountain cabins.

You will find the famous Smith House right off the square. The Smith House is known for it down home southern cooking and delightful southern charm. The historic Dahlonega Inn built in 1898 on top of a rich vein of gold. In 2006 the original mine shaft was rediscovered during renovation to the basement area. The mine shaft is now open for display.

Hike from Georgia to Maine on the Appalachian Trail. Enjoy hiking, fishing, and canoeing in the mountains, lakes and rivers of the Chattahoochee National Forest. You can also, challenge the links of the numerous area golf courses.

If you are a motorcycle or bicycle enthusiast, you will enjoy the winding roads and the scenic routes that take you through some of the most beautiful sights in America. Motorcycle clubs from around the nation make their way to Dahlonega every year. Dahlonega is the premiere sports bicycling venue in the South East. As the finish site for the Tour De Georgia mountain stage, the 6 Gap Century ride and other regional competitions, the area has hosted the greatest names in cycling.

Another thing you will enjoy is the beautiful waterfalls. There are about 30 waterfalls within a short ride of Dahlonega, including Amicalola, the highest waterfall in the Eastern United States. Amicalola Falls is also at the foot of the Appalachian trail, see the starting point for the longest hiking trail in the nation. Or you can try your hand at trout fishing in the pond at the park, great fun for the kids and grownups alike.

There are many other things to do in the quite North Georgia town and you will find the town folk friendly and helpful. For Reservations and more information on this great mountain destination contact the local chamber of commerce. I really think that if you want a different type of vacation, this is one you will enjoy.

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