The cute town of Dahlonega, Georgia has so much to offer. Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, this scenic town is known for being one of the first sites of the Gold Rush back in the 1800s. More enticing, though, is that Dahlonega is also home to some great wineries and awesome hiking trails. Keep reading for the best things to do in Dahlonega, GA and plan your getaway!
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SEE ALSO: Day Trip to Dry Tortugas by Seaplane
- PTO/Vacation Days Needed: 0-1
- Nights: 1-2
- Cost: $$
How to Get to Dahlonega
Dahlonega is located just a little over an hour from the Atlanta area. If you are coming from out of state, fly into the Atlanta airport (ATL) and rent a car!
Where to Stay in Dahlonega
Hands down, the best place to stay is at this cute luxury treehouse! It’s conveniently-located just 10 minutes away from town, and 5-10 minutes away from wineries, but it feels super remote! You walk up a short trail to get to the treehouse (there’s a wheelbarrow to help with your luggage) surrounded by nature. It sleeps up to 4 people (King bed and pullout couch), and has all the comforts of home (including A/C and running water). The wrap-around porch is the perfect place to hang out and have happy hour! The house itself has huge windows throughout, so the views from every spot inside are incredible.
Best Hotel to Stay at in Dahlonega
If you want more of a classic hotel experience (or if the treehouse is booked during your dates!) check out the Dahlonega Resort and Vineyard. This hotel has awesome views in the heart of Dahlonega wine country!
What to Pack for Your Dahlonega Trip:
In addition to obvious packing items, don’t forget these essentials, which are especially helpful if you go on a hike in the area!
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- Nano Puff Jacket (packs up small and keeps you warm when it gets chilly at night!)
- The COLDEST Water Bottle (seriously – it stays colder than Hydroflask!)
- Hiking Boots (these are my fave)
- REI Soft Cooler (I have this and love it!)
- Cliff Bar Energy Chews (great to give you a boost of energy on hikes!)
- Sony A6000 (I’m just starting to learn photography, but this is the camera I’ve been using! I love it)
- Day Pack
- SmartWool Hiking Socks
The Best Things to Do in Dahlonega, GA
1. Wine Tasting
Dahlonega is known as the heart of Georgia wine country. Visiting the vineyards is one of my favorite things to do in Dahlonega! There are quite a few wineries to choose from, and most of them are situated less than a 10 minute drive from each other.
Best Wineries for Epic Views
Kaya Vineyard & Winery, Wolf Mountain and Montaluce are three of the best wineries to visit if you are looking for an epic sweeping view of the North Georgia mountains. I visited Kaya Vineyard in Dahlonega and loved it. They also serve food there, so it’s a great spot for lunch with a side of wine tasting!
Winery with the Best Vibe
Cavender Creek Vineyards
I absolutely loved visiting Cavender Creek Vineyards. It’s very laid-back and unpretentious, and has an awesome patio seating area with a view of the vineyard. They also randomly have llamas (or maybe they’re alpacas?) on site that are so cute!
2. Explore the Town Square
Spend some time walking around the main street, perusing the cute shops. You’ll find ice cream shops, a chocolate/fudge shop, vintage stores, boutiques, and more. My favorite store was called “Grateful Days” – a Grateful Dead inspired store with cute bohemian goods located in an old house on the square! Also, a great spot for breakfast or lunch in town is Picnic Cafe.
3. Go for a Hike
One of my favorite things to do in Dahlonega, GA is to go for a hike! There are plenty of awesome hikes in the Dahlonega area. One of the most popular hikes is to Amicalola Falls. This 2-mile hike will take you up a bunch of wooden stairs to reach the tallest waterfall in Georgia! It’s about a 20 minute drive from downtown Dahlonega.
Another great hike option is to Preacher’s Rock. This is one of the shortest, but also rewarding, day hikes along the Appalachian Trail. Most of the trail is pretty easy and flat. At the end, you’ll go up a few switchbacks over some rocky terrain until you reach the epic lookout point of Preacher’s Rock! Here you can see the so many green rolling mountaintops in the background. It’s beautiful!
Preacher’s Rock Trail Info
- Trailhead: Woody Gap Recreation Area
- Miles: 2
- Elevation Gain: 436 feet
- Trail Type: Out and Back
- Time: 1-1.5 hours
4. Coffee at Canopy + The Roots
This coffee shop is so great that we went there two days in a row! Not only does this spot serve coffee (and tea/kombucha), but they also have a yoga studio attached, as well as a “listening room” downstairs where they have live performances in the evenings. They have some pre-made food options that looked pretty good, and some delicious healthy muffins as well. This place has cute decor, outdoor seating, and great vibes.
5. Visit the Lavender Farm
If you’re in the Dahlonega area in June, you should definitely check out the Red Oak Lavender Farm! This is one of the most unique things to do in Dahlonega, GA. The farm is open to the public from May – December, but the lavender is at its peak bloom in June. I visited in May and the lavender plants were’t quite fully bloomed yet, so they were pretty small. But going in June when the plants are taller would be awesome! They also have u-pick events where you can pick some lavender to take home with you.
6. Go Out on the Town
For dinner in Dahlonega, check out Spirits Tavern for the best burger in town (and some good cocktail options), Capers on the Square (Greek), or Bourbon Street Grille (Cajun). After dinner, check out the most popular dive bar in town – The Crimson Moon – for drinks and live music!
7. Pan for Gold
Given that this was the first major site of the Gold Rush in the US, one of the most popular things to do in Dahlonega, GA is to go panning for gold! Head to Consolidated Gold Mine to take the underground tour of the mine, and then they’ll hand you a pan full of sand that you wash through the water and pick out specks of gold that live naturally within it.
8. Picnic at Lake Zwerner
The scenic Lake Zwerner sits just on the outskirts of town, and is the perfect place to bring some snacks and drinks and have a picnic! There’s also a 3-mile trail around the lake if you have the time and want something active!