3 Georgia Getaways Worth the Drive From Atlanta

From romantic excursions to fun for the whole family, these resorts have thought of just about everything for the ideal weekend away.

Looking to make a fast break from the city’s hustle and bustle? Located a short drive outside Atlanta, arrive at one of these new, or newly revamped, resorts for that much-needed R&R.

Barnsley Resort 

You’ll feel it as soon as you pull down the long, tree-lined driveway: this place is something special. The storybook site of an 1840s love story, the former estate blends the best of past and present. Situated just 60 miles northwest of Atlanta, history, outdoor adventure and Southern comfort converge at this resort-meets-playground, including a Jim Fazio-designed golf course, horseback riding, biking, local cuisine and a boutique spa.

couple horseback riding at Barnsley Resort

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Inn at Barnsley
In 2018, the property debuted the brand-new Georgian Hall as well as the Inn at Barnsley Resort, bringing the total number of guest rooms and suites to 150. Inspired by Italianate and Gothic revival style and English country homes from the turn of the 20th century, the new builds are a complement to the existing setting. Kick up those feet. You’ll want to stay awhile.

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Beretta Shooting Grounds by High Adventure Company 
Whether you’re a sharpshooter or a novice, Beretta Shooting Grounds by High Adventure Company has you covered. The Barnsley sister property has over 3,000 acres of prime quail hunting habitat and a clubhouse to relax after a day of stalking prey. Rather channel your inner angler? Through a partnership with the local Cohutta Fishing Company, try fly casting lessons and full or half-day guided fly fishing trips. Or, simply paddle out with one of the resort’s available canoes.

Georgian Hall

SAVOR

Beautiful Ruins
What remains of the original manor built by Godfrey Barnsley for his wife, Julia, towers over the resort’s legendary gardens and pulls at the heartstrings.

 

Great Wolf Lodge Georgia

North America’s largest collection of indoor waterpark resorts has a destination in LaGrange, less than 2 hours from Atlanta. The wide variety of activities will keep little ones entertained for hours. The best part? It’s all under one roof, rain or shine.

Great Wolf Lodge
 

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The Suite Life
Great Wolf Lodge Georgia boasts 457 guest suites and nearly 500,000 square feet of entertainment space and lodging amenities to enjoy. Choose between more than a dozen options, from a Kid Cabin to Wolf Den to the Grizzly Bear, so you can pick the right suite for your family’s size and budget.

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Swim, Splash, Slide
The centerpiece of the resort is the nearly 100,000-square-foot indoor water park. The resort features a massive outdoor resort pool with additional water attractions for families to enjoy together. Split time between splashing, tackling a ropes course or scaling a multi-story rock wall before playing MagiQuest, a live-action game where guests embark on a magical adventure across the resort. That’s all before dinner at Barnwood, the farm-to-fork, on-site dining spot. Don’t forget to check out the events calendar, too.

waterslide at Great Wolf Lodge

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Genuine Smiles
Get ready for ear-to-ear grins when kids see Fort Mackenzie for the first time. The multi-level interactive water treehouse has a big tipping bucket, high-thrill slides, a relaxing lazy river and a huge wave pool. Bonus: parents can find an oasis made with them in mind at the exclusive, adult-only outdoor pool.

Château Élan Winery & Resort

Nestled in the foothills of the North Georgia mountains about 40 minutes from Atlanta, the 16th century-styled château and full-service winery announced new ownership in 2018. Together with the estate’s European spa mansion, 63 holes of championship golf, tennis center and seven distinctive dining outlets, they are ushering in the next era for the landmark resort.

Château Élan Winery & Resort

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The Spa Experience 
With AAA Four Diamond distinction, the Inn certainly provides all the necessary comforts. Still, if you’re seeking added luxury, opt for a suite in the 35,000 square-foot, adults-only, Spa Mansion.

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The Winery
After making wine in North Georgia for three decades, the past three years have marked a turning point: Château Élan has become the most-awarded winery on the East Coast. Executive Winemaker Simone Bergese is, in large part, to thank. With more than 250 awards won since his first harvests in 2013, including multiple best-of-class, double gold and gold medals, Bergese’s results are a testament to the fresh energy that is reinvigorating the property. Taste it for yourself with a pre-selected flight, or reserve a table at the newly renovated marc for a divine meal paired with your pour.

marc, the newly-renovated restaurant located inside the beautiful Château Élan Winery

The Golf Club
Short on time? Play a Château Short Course with three ways to work on your swing in about 2 hours. Play the Loop, Signature 6 or the Original 9. Need a refresher? Qualified golfing professionals offer hourly golf instruction. No matter your level, any golfer can reap the benefits of a certified PGA pro to assess and improve your abilities.

SAVOR

Vineyard Sunsets
Choose your favorite bottle of wine and enjoy a picnic at the vineyard as the summer sun sets over Château Elan. 

Colleen Ann McNally
About the author

Colleen Ann McNally has called the South home for 20 years and counting. She aims to travel light, but also love...