Georgia is known far and wide for the state's famous peaches, peanuts, and breathtaking natural terrains, ranging from the Appalachian Mountains to the Atlantic coast. To help you explore some of the most beautiful landscapes in the Peach State we've consulted Trails.com and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and highlighted five great hiking areas and trails; enjoy!
Amicalola Falls Trail
The trail to Georgia's tallest waterfall is 7.5 miles from Springer Mountain (which is also the southern end of the Appalachian Trail) and it treats hikers to a peaceful walk through beautiful, mossy forests. The 720 ft. cascades of Amicalola Falls are located in the heart of the lush, rolling hills of the Chattahoochee National Forest and are one of the state's most popular outdoor destinations.
Skidaway Island State Park
Three trails (Sandpiper Trail Loop 1 mi., Big Ferry Trail 1 mi., and Avian Loop Trail 3 mi.) are connected by a mile-long connector path to let hikers explore Skidaway Island State Park, which is a barrier island located near historic Savannah, Georgia. These trails treat hikers to great views of live oaks, pine stands, cabbage palmettos and marshes (which serve as permanent and migratory homes for many birds and animals hikers often report seeing) as well as historic sites such as ancient Native American shell mounds, liquor stills from the prohibition era, and earthen mounds from the Civil War period.
Unicoi State Park
Six trails that cover nearly 15 miles of ground in north Georgia's wooded mountains are open to hikers all year long at Unicoi State Park. Hikers should make time to enjoy sights of Smith Creek and Unicoi Lake as they explore the Chattahoochee National Forest.
You can hike up to 78 miles of the Appalachian Trail within Georgia's borders, including the trail's highest point of elevation, Blood Mountain. Creek valleys, seasonal wildflowers, and hardwood and pine forests offer wonderful views to hikers, but the rugged terrain of the Blue Ridge Mountains makes this part of the AT strenuous and difficult at times.
The Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge
Eight trails (ranging from 0.2 to 4 miles in length) provide hikers a view of one of the nation's oldest and most well-preserved freshwater wetlands: The Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. These trails take hikers through lower riparian habitats and upland pine forests and offer ample wildlife viewing opportunities.