A Relaxing Family Vacation in the Georgia Mountains

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Last year, along with many across the country we had to cancel our spring break plans with family, and suddenly life as we knew it came to an abrupt halt.  

After such an exhausting and scary year my family along with our “quaranteam” wanted to make this Spring break something relaxing and safe as well as special for our kiddos.   We decided a cabin in the mountains was just what we needed…especially after not finding any available houses on the beach.  We visited Ellijay in the Georgia mountains and we had the best time!

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Where is Ellijay, Georgia?

Ellijay, Georgia is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Georgia, just south of the Tennessee line.  The location is perfect for day trips to Helen, Georgia or Chattanooga Tennessee with both only an hour and a half in either direction.  If venturing out that far isn’t for you, Ellijay, Georgia and nearby Blue Ridge Georgia has plenty to offer.  Be prepared to spend a day traveling to and from.  It’s about an 8 hour drive, but the ride is totally worth the relaxation and beauty experienced while being there.  

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Where we stayed in Ellijay

In order to accommodate our party we needed a cabin big enough for 3 families of 4, plus pets.  We found our cabin through Mountain Resort Cabin Rentals, and could not have been happier with the service we received.  The Cabin was clean and welcoming, it had 6 bedrooms and 3.5 baths, a game room in the basement with a pool table and card table, as well as a hot tub outside under a covered porch, and a screened in back porch with a fireplace, as well as a firepit.  It also had 2 sleeper sofas which we didn’t use.   The cabin was located in the Coosawattee River Resort which had tons of amenities as well. Including an indoor pool, outdoor pools, a gym, arcade, tennis courts and putt-putt golf to name a few.  We also had access to several parks, the Coosawattee River, a fishing pond and so much more.

The Resort is located along the river and on a mountain. The ride to our cabin was an adventure in itself!  With twists and turns and drop offs to one side, and the mountain to the other and steep inclines, my kids loved every second of it!  The views from the ride were simply beautiful with tons of deer everywhere.  There was also a one way bridge that crossed over the river rapids underneath.  

Be sure to check out VRBO or Airbnb for options of vacation rentals too.  There is also accommodations available at Amicalola Falls Lodge.

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What there is to do in Ellijay

We were in Ellijay for 3 days, and unfortunately it rained most of the time.  We were only able to spend a day exploring before the rain came in.  Top on the list and a must do was ziplining.  We headed over to Zipline Canopy Tours.  Zipline Canopy Tours is tucked away and off the beaten path, which gives way to beautiful views with a creek down below perfect for skipping rocks.  They had several adventure options to choose from to make your experience what you wanted.  They have a Kid Zip, Adult Zip, Hour Long or 2 hour long, as well as a zip and raft combo, and aerial challenge course.  We had kiddos that were 8-9 who participated in the Kid Zip, and kiddos 11-14 who participated in the adult hour long zipline through the trees with one of the dads. The Kid Zip was closer to the ground and landed on platforms that were about 20 – 40 feet apart.  The kiddos had to transition their harnesses between ziplines, which got tricky for the shorter ones.  The adult 1 hour zip took them deeper into the trees about 25-50 feet high, and they soared through 7 zips, ranging from 150 – 500 feet apart.  They all had an absolute blast!

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After the zipline, we had lunch at Southern Charm Restaurant, in Blue Ridge Georgia which was so yummy.  They had fried green tomatoes, meatloaf, catfish, shrimp, and much more.  My kiddos and I are gluten free, and they gave us the gluten free menu upon request. 

After lunch we enjoyed the weather with a stroll through Downtown Blue Ridge. It was warm and welcoming and very dog friendly.  One of my daughter’s favorite shops was Lily + Coco, the store was so whimsical and felt just like a fairyland.  My favorite shop was the Blue Ridge Olive Oil Company, they had a wide selection of olive oils and vinegars which were available for tasting before buying.  Our last stop before making the trek up the mountain to our cabin was Three Sisters Fudge, it is a local family owned shop with delicious ice cream and a great selection of fudge and made for a great end to the day.

Located in Downtown Blue Ridge is the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway. We missed the timing for this 4 hour ride, but it’s a 26-mile round trip ride through the North Georgia countryside and along Toccoa River which I am sure has amazing views!   We were only able to spend one day out on our vacation because of the rain and the need to recharge, but just being in a different place and relaxing with friends made the down days just as fun.  We were able to enjoy the chilly days and evenings on the screened in porch next to the fireplace.   The kids had enough space to spread out, and even came up with a day of “Olympic games” for us to play on St. Patrick’s Day.  

The places that we researched and didn’t get to visit are: 

The Panorama Orchards

Build an Ark Animal Rescue

Amicalola Falls State Park

If you are looking for a relaxing place to unwind, enjoying the outdoors, and experiencing somewhere new I highly recommend Ellijay Georgia.  I cannot wait to go back!  

Article and photos by Abby O’Connor



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