3 Atlanta Fall Foliage Day Trips
Leaves are falling in Atlanta and if you haven’t noticed some of our trees are starting to turn. I don’t know about you but every year I look forward to watching the slow motion change of Atlanta’s canopy changing from green to gold to red. In the fall many families like to load up the car one weekend and head North to see the changing of leaves. Create a new tradition and stop for local Georgia apples or honey while you are up there and don’t forget to take lots of pictures of the beautiful leaves!
Before you go: Georgia State Parks created a Facebook Event and are inviting the general public to post pictures from the parks in real time of the leaf changes. Check out the page to see the latest from the park closest to you. https://www.facebook.com/events/408639226000775/
1. Amicalola Falls State Park, Dawonville, GA
Drive Time from Atlanta (1.25 hours)
According to the Georgia State Parks website, the Amicalola Falls is starting to see some changes, the lower elevations are about 3-4 days behind the higher elevations.
“The last two weekends of October and even in to the first several days of November should provide some amazing views from the top of the mountain and of the falls themselves with brilliant colors forming as the days pass by. It will be a great time to enjoy the hiking trails during the day and view a beautiful sunset from the restaurant at the lodge.”
2. Red Top Mountain, Cartersville, GA
Drive Time from Marietta (30 minutes)
Red Top is lower in Elevation than Amicalola or Smithgall so this might be the best option if you can’t go until early November. Red Top is also a family friendly park with less rigorous trails.
“Just 40 minutes north of Atlanta you’ll find a variety of trails with nice fall color. The easy, flat 4-mile Iron Hill Loop is open to bikes and foot traffic, offering great views of the lake and forest. Another good choice for lake views is the 5.5-mile Homestead Trail. Families with young children will like the paved walking path behind the park office. Be sure to explore the log cabin and blacksmith shed.”
3. Smithgall Woods State Park, Helen, GA
Drive Time from Sandy Springs (1.25 hours)
Latest update from the park says a recent cold snap has really forced the leaves to start to pop with color.
“The Sourwoods have reached their peak of firey reds, and the dogwoods have fully turned as well. However, the oaks are coloring-up quickly, and providing a nice mix of reds & yellow-orange hues. The evergreen hollies have loads of bright red berries, and their shining green leaves provide a nice contrast to the autumnal pallet. Beech trees are turning a lovely gold, while sweetgum trees are catching up in coloration. The National Weather Service predicts some sunny days ahead for this weekend, so come enjoy the great colors.”