Ten Ways to Get the Kids Outdoors this Spring Break with Affordable Fun at Georgia’s State Parks
Just in time for Spring Break, Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites are offering ten ways for families to enjoy the outdoors and have fun without spending a fortune. From hitting the trails and waterways to golfing, campfires and sleeping under the stars, Georgia’s State Parks have programs for all ages and interests. Many activities are free and parking is just $5 for state parks. Historic site admission is usually less than $10 and parking is free. Below are ten ideas for a memorable Spring Break that's close to home:
Go Glamping – Families who enjoy being in nature but prefer a soft bed at night may want to pay a visit to Cloudland Canyon. The state park recently added ten yurts atop Lookout Mountain. Yurts are a blend between a tent and cabin, with furniture inside and hot showers nearby. Yurts at Cloudland Canyon rent for $70 per night. There are also yurts available at Red Top Mountain, High Falls and Fort Yargo state parks. For more information, call (706) 657-4050 or visit GeorgiaStateParks/yurts.
Go Geocaching - Kids can hunt for treasure and learn about Georgia’s rich history by joining the History Trail GeoChallenge, which takes them to 14 state historic sites. It’s the perfect outing for families who have a passion for the past and enjoy being in the outdoors. Geocaching is the worldwide sport of using handheld GPS units to locate hidden caches. For more information, visit Geostationary/geocaching.
Go Golfing – Take the older kids golfing at one of Georgia’s eight state park golf courses. These quality courses offer a family-friendly atmosphere and are surrounded by sparkling lakes and scenic forests. Rates are surprisingly low, starting at $25 for weekdays. Kids programs are also available. For tee times, visit www.GeorgiaGolf.com or call (800) 434-0982.
Go Fishing – Grab your rod and reel and head out for a day of casting at your favorite Georgia State Park. Fishing in lakes, rivers and streams is free, but a fishing license is required for ages 16 and older. For families who would like to take their fishing adventure up a notch, more than 20 parks rent motorized fishing boats by the hour. For more information, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/outdoors.
Go Biking – Bicycling is a fun way for the entire family to exercise together. Whether in tow with a toddler or teenager, Georgia State Parks offer miles of paved and off-road trails perfect for every skill and age level. Families with smaller children will especially enjoy the bike paths at Red Top Mountain, Tallulah Gorge and Panola Mountain. For more information, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/outdoors.
Go Paddling - Families who enjoy exploring the Georgia waterways can choose from a variety of paddling adventures at Georgia’s state parks. From the small mountain lakes of Fort Mountain and Unicoi to the coastal waterways of Fort McAllister and Crooked River, there are paddling opportunities for all skill levels. Families can bring their own equipment or rent a canoe or kayak at more than 20 state parks. For a challenge, join the Park Paddlers Club which takes explorers to six state parks as they earn a members-only t-shirt. For more information, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/outdoors.
Go Camping – Pack the tent and sleeping bags and build cherished memories while gazing at the stars. Camping encourages the entire family to reconnect and enjoy the simple pleasures of cooking s’mores over a campfire and telling stories. Rates start at just $23 per night. For a complete list of campgrounds, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/campsites.
Go Cozy – Families interested in a cozy staycation will find cabins starting at just $85 per night. Cabins come with fully equipped kitchens, comfortable furnishings and screened porches, plus a wide range of outdoor activities. Some allow dogs with advance notice and a pet fee. To book a cabin getaway, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/reservations.
Go Hiking – Hit the trails with the kids and discover the wonders of nature through their eyes. Georgia’s diverse landscape offers everything from canyons and waterfalls to salt marshes and streams. There are miles of hiking trails for every ability, plus a calendar of ranger-led hikes that introduce children to Georgia’s native animals. Energetic hikers can join the Canyon Climbers Club and earn a members-only t-shirt. For more information, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/outdoors.
Go Back in Time – Spend a few days touring Georgia’s 18 historic sites. It’s a great way to teach the kids about history and burn off energy at the same time. Children can enjoy exploring forts and learning about Colonial Georgia at the popular coastal sites of Fort Morris, Fort McAllister and Fort King George. Or, to learn about Georgia’s Native American history, Kolomoki Mounds, New Echota and Etowah Indian Mounds provide ancient Indian mounds, museums and Cherokee buildings. For more information, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/historic.
About Georgia State Parks
Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites are operated by the Department of Natural Resources and offer pristine natural beauty from coastal marshes and midland swamps to piedmont plains and breathtaking mountains. For more information, including a calendar of events and list of accommodations, visit www.GeorgiaStateParks.org.