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15 Best Things To Do In Ellijay, Georgia

What are some of the best things to do in Ellijay, Georgia?

After all, when you think of Georgia, you’ll think of the cities like Atlanta, Savannah, Augusta, Athens and more. Not often would you hear people talk about the small town of Ellijay.

Which is a shame because the town of Ellijay, Georgia has so much to offer in terms of what you can see and do. For instance, this city is also known as the Apple Capital of the state of Georgia. They even hold an annual Georgia Apple Festival in October for people to have fun and eat some delicious apples.

It’s a peaceful mountain town that is quintessentially charming, and welcomes visitors from all around the world to visit its beautiful hiking trails and lake. In fact, one of the highest waterfalls in this side of the country can be found here in what is called Amicalola Falls State Park. And because you can find multiple different rivers around the area, it makes for a perfect place to have some fun with different water activities like tubing down the river, swimming, or even fishing for some fish.

Fun Fact, Former President Jimmy Carter has a log cabin second home here in this city too!

Ellijay, Georgia may be a small town, but it does have a lot to offer.

Which is why if you’re wondering what are some of the best things to do in Ellijay, Georgia, then you’re in the right place.

In this post we’ll be detailing all the best things to do in Ellijay, Georgia.

So if you’re ready, lets get started!

Things To Do In Ellijay, Georgia

In no particular order, here are the best things to do in Ellijay, Georgia.

Stroll Through Downtown Ellijay

Downtown Ellijay

If you want to see what life is like for mountain town locals, then you’ll definitely have to head down to downtown Ellijay. Here you can find everything from amazing restaurants, taverns with live music, tons of shopping areas, and also many memorable festivities and parades.

Home to over thirty different shops providing all kinds of items for sale like homemade soaps, antiques, beautiful art and other hand crafted items, you are bound to find something of interest to you here. Plus many of the shops here have all the latest trends in fashion in stock for you to look as fashionable as possible. But in my opinion, what’s best about this area is definitely the restaurants as you can find some of the best tasting things to eat here. For instance, you can try pizza on the boardwalk or even get some really high quality craft beer at the River Street Tavern.

So go on a walk around this area, maybe buy a few things, eat some delicious food, whatever the case may be, there is definitely something here that will entertain you for hours on end.

Eat Some Delicious Georgia Peaches

Georgia Peaches

Lets be honest here, if you’re ever going to visit the state of Georgia, one thing you must do is to eat one of the many delicious Georgian Peaches. Little bit fuzzy on the the outside with just the right balance of sugar to acid ratio. Making it one of the best treats to have whenever you’re hungry.

But what makes these peaches so special?

The reason is because unlike other peaches, the peaches in Georgia are grown in the absolute perfect environment. They are grown with red clay soil, perfect weather and moderate humidity to produce some of the sweetest, juiciest and most flavorful peaches of them all. And you can find these peaches in almost every single shop, farmers markets and orchards all around the area. So come on over and buy some peaches. I guarantee you that you will absolutely love every bite of it.

Go Tubing Down The Rivers

Tubing Down Ellijay River

If you didn’t know, the name Ellijay is derived from the Indian word meaning “many waters”, which means that you can expect this town to have all sorts of rivers and lakes for you to play at. In fact, there are three different rivers surrounding the town of Ellijay which makes it perfect for all sorts of water activities. You’ll find Ellijay River, Cartecay River or even the Coosawattee River all offers the same relaxation and fun you can ever want. These rivers flow through the mountains in and around the city making sure you get one of the best scenic experiences possible.

And also, because these rivers are calm and flowing, one of the best thing to do is to go tubing down the river. Enjoy a peaceful day while you sit inside a floating tube and just float around the river mindlessly while having a good time. But it isn’t just tubing that you can do over here. You can also do other water activities like kayaking down the river, swimming, or even fishing here as well. So if you love having fun in the waters, then you should definitely head down to these rivers. As you will definitely find something entertaining and fun to do.

Play At Carter’s Lake

Carter's Lake

If you aren’t able to make it to the ocean and play, do not worry. Here in Ellijay, Georgia, you will find one of the most beautiful and scenic lakes in the Southeast. Carter’s Lake is located at the southern end of the Blue Ridge Mountains and is filled with sparkling waters, rugged shoreline, and a cozy atmosphere which provides a beautiful surrounding for any and all activities you want to do. The lake was named after the 19th century Georgia politician Farrish Carter Tate, and is the deepest of all of Georgia’s reservoir lakes. It stretches for about 3,200 acres with about 62 miles of shoreline.

People from all over love coming to this lake to have some relaxation and fun. You can enjoy a wide range of water activities here like swimming, boating, fishing and more. There is even an area which offers camping and a pavilion to enjoy having a picnic. It’s the perfect area to visit if you want to get away from all the city life and be one with nature. And best of all is that this lake is totally safe as there are no dangerous marine life like sharks living inside it which makes it perfect for kids and people of all ages to have some fun.

Check Out Gilmer County Fair

Gilmer County Fair

Gilmer County Fair is one of the longest running annual event sin the county and also a chief fundraiser for the Ellijay Lions Club. It is usually held during the month of August. And just like any county fair, it offers a range of entertainment for the entire family to have fun with. For instance, you can find carnival rides, Peachtree Rides, live entertainment, and also an exhibition featuring many things like Quilts, Agriculture, Crafts, Food, Canning, Baking, Sewing, Needlework, Art, Flowers, Photography, and more. You will be able to spend hours on end here laughing, eating, playing and more all while being surrounded by some of the nicest people ever. So if you ever get the chance to visit during the times of August, then the Gilmer County Fair is definitely something you need to do.

Go Glamping

Glamping in Ellijay

If you never been glamping before then you are in for a treat as the town of Ellijay, Georgia is one of the best places ever to go glamping. For those that don’t know, glamping basically means camping but in a more glamourous fashion. you’ll be surrounded nature and wildlife all while having the comforts of home be at your disposal.

And one of the best mountain retreats to go glamping at is definitely Elatse’Yi. The name actually translates to “Verdant, Green Earth”, which is a Cherokee word. This place is truly a hidden gem as you’ll be able to experience something not many other people will be able to experience. For instance, you’ll be surrounded by lush trees and plants while you are relaxing on the front porch of a 1969 Airstream. You can even climb into the Treeloft to observe the beautiful sunset and sunrise. Not only that, but they even have a Geodesic Dome where you can enjoy the beautiful night sky under the stars inside the dome.

Summer time is usually the most perfect time of the year to go glamping. So if you’re ever in the area around Summer time, then this is definitely something you need to try.

Check Out Crossroads Grocery

Crossroads Grocery

Crossroads Grocery is an iconic place that is located at 8994 Hwy 52 East on the corner of Clear Creek Rd. Many people who visit the town of Ellijay, Georgia will usually make a stop here to see exactly what they have to offer. Established in 1907, it is the oldest, continuously run store in Gilmer County. It continues to be a place of business and social activity here in this town.

Here you can find all your regular convenience store items like snacks, drinks, fishing and picnic supplies, firewood, ice, non-ethanol gasolines (87 and 93 octane), diesel fuel, and Appalachian Trail items. They also have a portion of the building dedicated to serving cafe style items. You can find things like deli sandwiches, salads, BBQ, Brunswick stew, hot dogs, burgers, pizza and more. Overall, its a great place to visit especially if you want to feel what a country side mountain store does.

Sip Some Wine

ellijay wineyards

If you didn’t know, the town of Ellijay is filled with all sorts of amazing vineyards for you to enjoy. And one of the best things you can do to have a relaxing day is to simply go to one of these vineyards and sip on some wine. You’ll be surrounded by such scenic views like mountains, lush green trees and plants and more. One of my favorite vineyards is one called “Ott Farms and Vineyard which is situated on over 7 acres of Gilmer County’s most beautiful mountain view. They have many different wines that are freshly made and ready for you to try. And depending on what day you come, they might even have some live music playing around to entertain you. And while you are sipping on some wine, you can also try some of their dips like smoked trout dip or even spinach artichoke dip which pairs perfectly well with the wines.

Overall it is an experience you will definitely love as you are surrounded in peaceful nature with beautiful views.

Gilmer Arts

Gilmer Arts

Located on Dalton Street, the Gilmer Arts Gallery is the perfect place to learn and appreciate some of the finest forms of art this town has to offer. Here they bring visual and performing arts to Gilmer County so that people of all ages can learn some new things. Here you’ll be able to find a selection of classes for all ages. For instance, adults can sign up for many different workshops like watercolor painting, pastel and oil painting, mosaic crafting and more. And because it is an arts gallery, you can expect them to hold regular exhibitions to showcase all the works of art by local and regional artists. Not only that but you can also enjoy some really awesome live theater here and other performances too. Just check their website for the dates and shows and you’ll will be set.

Panorama Orchards and Farm Market

Panorama Orchards and Farm Market

Apple orchards have a long history in the town of Ellijay. After all, for as long as people can remember, there has always been apple orchids around the area. When roaming around the area, you can find many different orchid farms playing host to a variety of these fruits. One of the most popular ones is Panorama Orchards. They are a family owned and run business which allows visitors from all over to see how they grow their apples. Visitors who come will also be able to see a collection of antiques that were used back them for apple farming in the 1920’s. And aside from the apples, this place also offers a whole bunch of other foods as well too. For instance you can find things like fried pies, Panorama ice cream, baked goods and homemade fudge. Definitely a great place to learn about all things apples.

Check Out The Apple Festival

Apple festival

If you didn’t know, Ellijay is the apple capital of Georgia. This means that they take great pride in having such delicious apples. Which is why every year, they hold a little festival that celebrates the title of being called the apple capital of the state. The festival lasts around two weeks during October where hundreds of vendors come to sell and showcase their items. They also have various different artists and musicians coming together to perform a very vibrant and family-friendly experience. There will also be a parade and an antique car show for people to watch. Overall, just a very friendly and fun experience for the entire family to enjoy.

Build an Ark Animal Rescue

Build an Ark Animal Rescue

Build an Ark Animal Rescue Foundation is one of the best places to visit if you love caring for animals. They serve as a rescue place for any and all animals that need help. For instance, you can find many types of animals like goats, rams, sheep, alpaca, poines, horses, rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs, cats and more all here trying to get some help. They have a huge range which allows the animals to free roam around peacefully surrounded by nature in the beautiful North Georgia Mountain side.

But what makes this place so special is that a lot of the baby animals here are also able to be adopted. Which means avid animal lovers can come here and pick out a new family friend to bring home with them. Although not all of the animals here are able to be adopted because some are sponsored to live here by their owners.

But the most unique thing about this place is that it also serves as a hospice for many aging old animals to allow them a chance to live out their lives in the peaceful surroundings of this area.

Tabor House & Civil War Museum

If you love history and want to experience what it was like many years ago, then you should definitely visit the Tabor House & Civil War Museum. Here you’ll be able to find an ancient home that was build many years back in downtown Ellijay. Inside you can find one of the South’s largest Civil War libraries there is and also rooms replicating what it was like to live in a home during the late 1800’s.

The building is one of the oldest homes located in downtown historic Ellijay and allows you to research Civil War heritage and even look through its amazing book collection. Not only that, but you can also find hundreds of different movies and videos detailing the Civil War and what it was like back then.

Truly an eye opening experience and a place where you can learn so much about history.

Amicalola Falls State Park

Amicalola Falls State Park

If you’re ever in the town of Ellijay, Georgia, then one place you definitely have to visit is the Amicalola Falls State Park. This place isn’t actually in the town of Ellijay, Georgia, but it is relatively close by. You can get there by driving which takes only about 20 minutes or so and you’ll be able to see one of the more beautiful waterfalls of all.

Amicalola Falls State Park is a huge 829 acre State Park that is located right on the side of the town of Ellijay. The park was named from a Cherokee language word meaning tumbling waters, because inside you can find the Amicalola Water Fall which is said to be the biggest waterfall on this side of the area. In fact, the water fall reaches a height of about 729 foot high, making it the biggest in the state of Georgia as well.

But this place isn’t just a state park. It is also a lodge resort where you can have lots of fun and adventures. For instance, some of the activities you can find here include zip lining, archery, hiking around the area, fitness trails, scavenger hunt, going on a tour to visit the Amicalola Waterfall, and much more. It’s a place where you can relax to your fullest while being surrounded by all this beautiful nature and wildlife.

Jacks River Falls

Jacks River Falls

If you love amazing waterfalls and flowing water, then you’ll love Jacks River Falls. It is located in the Cohutta Wilderness Area which is just a short drive away from the town of Ellijay, Georgia. This area has become really popular in recent times as being one of the best places to have some fun. In fact, Blue Ridge Outdoor Magazine has even named it as being one of the best swimming holes to jump into this summer.

To reach this area, you will have to hike through a few miles of wilderness trails, but it is definitely an experience you have to try out. You’ll be surrounded by lush green plants and amazing wildlife that will simply be a sight to see. If you’re lucky, you might even see some deer, black bears, snakes or even some birds of prey roaming around. Once you arrive at Jacks River Falls, you’ll be amazed by what you’ll see. A giant flowing waterfall cascading down into a big pool of water. If you’re daring enough, you can climb up the rocks to the top which is only about 20 feet high and jump down into the cool and refreshing pool.


Overall, the town of Ellijay, Georgia might not be the biggest town out there. However it does have quite a bit of stuff for you to see and do.

So hopefully this post about the “15 Best Things To Do In Ellijay, Georgia” was able to help you in some sort of way. This way if you ever find yourself visiting the town of Ellijay, Georgia, you will know exactly what things you are able to do.

Also, if you’re going to be visiting the state of Georgia anytime soon, then you might like some of my other Georgia posts:

Or if you are interested in reading some of my other posts about traveling, you can do so by clicking these links:

Or you can check out all my blog posts by click this link.

Hope you have a safe and fun trip~

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