Starting in/Ending in: Atlanta, Georgia
Total driving distance approximately 732 miles
Travel across the state and discover Georgia’s abundant scenic beauty that’s as rich as its famous red clay. Explore the coastal plains, salt marshes and barrier islands of the east, the pine-forested, fertile fields of the Piedmont or the foothills and rugged mountains of the north and find what makes Georgia such a geographical center. You’ll also find the soul of Georgia in its rich African American heritage and culture. This is where the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was born, where he preached from the pulpit and where his memorial, The King Center, continues to project freedom and justice today. Another inspiring Civil Rights landmark is Macon’s Tubman African American Museum, a must-see destination that you’ll never forget.
- Blue Ridge Mountains
- Savannah National Landmark Historic District
- St. Simons Island
This cosmopolitan city where Margaret Mitchell penned her novel ’Gone with the Wind’, is the capital of the South. A charming blend of Old Southern traditions mixed with 21st century America. Museums depicting early southern history are just steps from shopping malls and award-winning restaurants. There are 55 wandering Downtown Ambassadors who walk the streets at hand to help you make the most of this city – how inviting is that!?
Overnight: Sheraton, Atlanta, Georgia (2 nights)
For a feel of the old days, start at the Atlanta History Centre in the upmarket Buckhead district. Fascinating exhibits take you from railroad town to modern days and explain why the Civil War happened. Visit the Margaret Mitchell House and Museum. Marvel at how the author created her romantic Civil War epic “Gone With The Wind” in her dark basement flat, goggle at film memorabilia and enjoy the exhibits. Created in Atlanta in 1886, Coca-Cola’s status as a cultural icon is mapped out in the World of Coca Cola. Here you can sample Cola product from around the world. Don’t miss the State Capitol building, similar to the one in Washington, or for a more up to date activity, visit the CNN Center and tour behind the scenes of this groundbreaking news channel. Fancy a stroll? Walking around the neighborhoods is a great way to get to know Atlanta…Buckhead, the “Beverly Hills of the South” is full of posh houses and even posher shops. Virginia Highland has lots of nicely renovated homes while elegant, magnolia tree-filled Druid Hills was the backdrop in the movie Driving Miss Daisy. Historically Atlanta is fascinating. This is where you’ll find the final resting-place of civil rights leader Dr Martin Luther King. Visit his birthplace, a National Historic Site, and his church. The city has endless museums and galleries.
At the north end of Georgia’s Hospitality Highway and in the heart of Georgia’s Wine County is Dahlonega. Nestled in the foothills of the southern Appalachian Mountains, the quaint historic town of Dahlonega claims fame to being the site of the first American Gold rush as well as a community filled with the arts, four wineries, numerous heritage sites, and plenty of outdoor recreation.
Overnight: Historic Smith House Inn (Historic Room), Dahlonega, Georgia
Today take a hip trip to Athens! The eclectic college town of Athens is nestled just below the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the northern gateway to the Antebellum Trail. The National Trust for Historic Preservation has selected Athens as a 2009 Distinctive Destination in recognition of the authentic visitor experience provided by its dynamic downtown, cultural diversity, attractive architecture, and strong commitment to historic preservation and revitalization. Guided and self-guided tours of 16 historic districts and four house museums provide a glimpse into the past of numerous Confederate leaders. Athens’ restored, Victorian-era downtown historic district remains as vital as ever, housing an eclectic mix of restaurants, retail shops, local art, living space, and the world-renowned music clubs that gave birth to R.E.M., the B-52’s, and hundreds of other bands.
Overnight: Hotel Indigo Downtown, Athens, Georgia
While Augusta is known worldwide for the Masters® and the coveted green jacket, you’ll find that Georgia’s second-oldest and second-largest city – also known as the “Garden City” of the South – is full of history, atmosphere, Southern charm, and activities to engage everyone’s interest. Augusta epitomizes the Classic South. Founded in 1736 as a trading post during the British colonial period, the city showcases Antebellum mansions, hallowed historic sites, and quiet, tree-lined avenues perfect for relaxing strolls. While Augusta celebrates its colorful past, it is equally proud of its exciting present. Nestled on the banks of the mighty Savannah River, the Garden City is a blend of Southern charm and city fun.
Overnight: The Partridge Inn, Curio Collection, Augusta, Georgia
Take the short drive to Savannah, Georgia. Southern hospitality still reigns supreme in Savannah, a city with three centuries of history – proud home to one of the largest National Landmark Historic Districts in the U.S. The Historic District’s 22 squares, which formed a vital part of General James Edward Oglethorpe’s original city plan when he founded Savannah in 1733, serve as the heart and soul of downtown Savannah and have been widely praised for their beauty. This 2.5-mile district from River Street to Forsyth Park, features plenty of quaint shops, charming boutiques and world-class restaurants nestled beneath a canopy of Live Oak trees.
Georgia’s First City also features stunning examples of Federal, Italianate, Georgian and Victorian architecture. Take the time to stroll down cobblestone streets and enjoy all that the Historic District has to offer. The Historic District is alive with art, music, lectures, dance, and live theatre.
Overnight: DoubleTree by Hilton Historic District, Savannah, Georgia (2 nights)
Spend the day exploring more of Savannah’s Historic District or take a day trip out to Tybee Island. Just minutes from downtown Savannah, Tybee Island is a popular spot for fun in the sun on the Atlantic Ocean. If thrills are what you seek, sign up for boating, deep sea fishing or kayaking for a water-filled adventure. Check out the lighthouse, explore the nooks and crannies of the two forts or simply relax on the beach. Love Seafood? – watch as the shrimp boats come home to bring in their catches and sample some of the freshest seafood around in one of the many cafes in Tybee Island.
Welcome to St. Simons Island, Georgia! St. Simons Island captivates visitors with remarkable beauty and fascinating history. Lovely beaches, 99 holes of golf, acres of tennis courts, miles of bike trails, and countless shops and restaurants. Historic remnants of bygone eras, including the St. Simons Island Lighthouse (a working lighthouse in operation since 1872) the Bloody Marsh, Fort Frederica National Monument, historic Christ Church, and the sites of antebellum plantations dot the Island. Treasures are found around every bend on this, the largest of the Golden Isles – enjoy Georgia’s beautiful beaches!
Overnight: King & Prince Beach Resort (Resort View Room, Resort Fee included), St. Simons, Georgia (2 nights)
Spend the day relaxing on the beach. Or get in some exercise by renting a bike or a kayak to explore. There’s enough to do (or not do) to enjoy the day.
An old sweet song. A soulful serenade. A screaming guitar. Get ready to rock when you roll into historic Macon, Georgia! Over the years Macon has established itself as springboard for musical talent. When you visit this midsize Georgia city, start with its newest musical attraction, the Big House Museum, devoted to the history of the Allman Brothers Band. The “Big House,” the former home of some of the band’s members, overflowed with family, friends and late-night music sessions in the 1970s. It opened to the public in December 2009 with posters, photos and film footage of the band. In 1998, the Allman Brothers Band was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame museum (Gregg and Duane Allman were inducted individually in 2006 and 1982), proving that their music is truly one of Georgia’s greatest products. More than 100 Hall of Fame inductees include legends such as Ray Charles and Little Richard (a Macon native) as well as new acts such as Collective Soul and Third Day. Spend the day in Tune Town, the main exhibit space, and learn about Georgia’s musical heritage. At the turn of the last century, the Douglass Theatre provided entertainment for Macon’s African American population; its stage hosted Cab Calloway, Otis Redding and Bessie Smith, among others. The theater is still open today for concerts, movies, plays and opera.
Overnight: 1842 Inn, Macon, Georgia (Complimentary Continental Breakfast)
Return to Atlanta for a flight home (approx. 1 hour and 15 min/78 miles)
or continue back home.
- 10 hotel nights at published hotels (or similar), local hotel taxes and resort fees (except where mentioned), travel tips, maps, and brochures. Complimentary Breakfast subject to change at the hotel’s discretion.
- Rental car, gas, parking fees, porterage, flights, airport transfers, meals, unless otherwise specified in the tour description, park & attractions entrance fees, unless otherwise specified in the tour description, ferry charges, travel insurance.