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This historic state holds endless amounts of Southern charm in its grassy rolling plains and Victorian plantations. Between the haunted cottages of Savannah, the unofficial "capital of the South," Atlanta, and the refined shores of Tybee Island, Georgia is a state that is coming of age. And, in the northeast corner of Georgia, the hiking mecca of the United States, the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, begins.
If you're visiting Georgia, here are some of the most common activities, attractions and adventures waiting for you:
- Atlanta: The "rock of the South," Atlanta sits in the western region of the state, slowly spreading her reach further and further out. But while the city grows, it manages to retain a regal sense of elegance, and is home to major attractions including the CNN Center, Centennial Olympic Park, the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and dozens of world-class museums, galleries and restaurants.
- The Golden Islands: These islands are deeply rooted in colonial Spanish history, which has been masked by the dominance of Victorian-era architecture. The buzzing marshes and flickering lighthouses of the Golden Islands are the perfect backdrop for some relaxation.
- Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge: Forests and swamps dominate this uniquely southern nature preserve, which was founded in 1936 and houses an astonishing range of flora and fauna, particularly rare birds.
- Stone Mountain: This is the largest exposed dome of granite rock on the continent, and is a unique attraction well worth the short trip from Atlanta.
- The Blue Ridge Mountains: Home to some of the best Georgia camping, the Blue Ridge Mountains in northeastern Georgia are equally idyllic and awe-inspiring.
There is also a wide range of family-oriented activities to enjoy; there are many amusement parks in Georgia and water parks in Georgia that are perfect for whiling away a summer's day. Eight of the thirteen Georgia National Parks are located in the western half of the state and are easily accessible from Atlanta.
Georgia is located in what is considered a "subtropical" region, and it features mild winters and long summers. Spring and autumn are also considered excellent times of year to visit, with pleasant temperatures and plenty of sunshine.
For your vacation rental, consider a condo if you're staying in Atlanta or any of the state's other major cities or a cabin rental if you're exploring rural areas and nature preserves. These options are less crowded than hotels, and offer more privacy for couples, families and groups.
If you want to explore more of the American South, head into neighboring Florida, Alabama or Tennessee. The Carolinas also border Georgia, and all these destinations are easily accessible on the Interstate highway system.