Atlanta is sometimes referred to as the capital of the South, and many people travel here for business conferences, top-notch restaurants, and the bar & club scene. Atlanta is also known for famous museums like the World of Coca Cola and the world-class aquarium. But there are also some other amazing places to visit in the region if you have a car and a weekend free for a road trip.
You can reach unique destinations in Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, and elsewhere in Georgia within just a few short hours. Here are 12 of the best weekend getaways from Atlanta. We’re offering a hotel recommendation in each place as well as some ideas of fun things to do to fill your weekend away from the city!
Chattanooga, Tennessee (Hotel Prices & Photos)
Chattanooga is just a short drive away from Atlanta but has beautiful mountain scenery and lots attractions for the whole family. From here, it’s easy to get to the Tennessee Aquarium, Ruby Falls, Rock City Garden, and Lookout Mountain. Other top attractions are the Reflection Riding Arboretum and Nature Center and the Chattanooga Choo Choo. Stay at the Mayor’s Mansion Inn in the Fort Wood Historic District, which is an 18-room bed and breakfast built in 1889. Romance, winter, and valentine’s packages are available, and the Christmas season is a particularly special time to visit Chattanooga and stay here.
Savannah, Georgia (Hotel Prices & Photos)
To experience the very best of southern hospitality, book at stay at the Ballastone Inn in Savannah. This is a romantic and historic getaway B&B that has 16 guest rooms, an elegant southern breakfast, high tea, hotel bar, and gardens. Each room here gives you an authentic taste of the south. While you’re in town, make sure to walk through the Savannah historic district and check out Forsyth Park, the Bonaventure Cemetery, and River Street for food and shopping.
Asheville, North Carolina (Hotel Prices & Photos)
There are lots of reasons to visit Asheville, North Carolina: the quirky arts scene, the craft breweries, the nearby hikes, The Biltmore, and the exciting festivals throughout the year. The Biltmore Village Inn has been welcoming guests for over 15 years, although it was built back in 1892 with beautiful Queen Anne Victorian architecture. This is a great place for a weekend getaway if you want to be social and meet other travelers. Guests participate in an evening social hour, play games of cornhole, and sip glasses of wine by the fire pit.
Jekyll Island, Georgia (Hotel Prices & Photos)
Jekyll is one of the most popular and visited barrier islands off the coast of Georgia, and the Jekyll Island Club Hotel is a Victoria-style hotel that is steeped in history. This is a great weekend getaway spot for both couples and families. The island is mostly a state park, which ensures that much of it will always remain undeveloped and naturally beautiful. The hotel has 157 rooms and suites in five settings: The Clubhouse, Annex, Sans Souci, Crane Cottage, and Cherokee. Ocean Suites are being built as well for more accommodations.
Charleston, South Carolina (Hotel Prices & Photos)
When visiting Charleston, make sure to visit the South Carolina Aquarium, tour a plantation, and relax on the beaches of Sullivan’s Island and Folly Beach. In addition, Wentworth Mansion is a pet-friendly and small luxury hotel that is in downtown Charleston in the historic district. Here you’ll find a seasonally inspired restaurant and a luxury spa that are near the King Street shops and nightlife scene. Guests receive complimentary breakfast and parking, nightly homemade chocolates, afternoon hors d’oeuvres & wine, and evening port, sherry, and brandy. East wing rooms, garden rooms, mansion rooms, mansion suites, Suite Nine, and the Grand Mansion Suite are available.
Unicoi State Park – Helen, Georgia (Hotel Prices & Photos)
There is lots of nature around Atlanta if you only get out of the city to discover it. Helen is a Bavarian themed town nearby with many German-inspired buildings, restaurants, taverns, and gift shops. It’s a truly unique place to find in the state of Georgia and fun for the whole family. One great place to visit nearby is Unicoi State Park, which has a lodge for easy access to park activities. There are 100 modern guest rooms at the lodge, which also has a restaurant and gift shop. You can also rent a cabin with one, two, or three bedrooms. Campsites are also available at the park if you have a tent or RV.
St. Augustine, Florida (Hotel Prices & Photos)
For a historic and fun weekend away from Atlanta, take a drive to St. Augustine, Florida. Local attractions to add to your itinerary include Fountain of Youth, Lightner Museum, San Sebastian Winery, Alligator Farm, and a boat ride with Schooner Freedom Charters. Ghost tours and trolley tours are also popular in St. Augustine. The Casa Monica Resort and Spa is a unique and boutique luxury hotel that was originally opened in 1888 and restored in 1999. Costa Brava is the onsite Mediterranean restaurant, and the Cobalt Lounge serves up excellent cocktails.
Blue Ridge, Georgia (Hotel Prices & Photos)
The Blue Ridge Mountains of Georgia are absolutely stunning, and a great place to stay in the region is the Aska Lodge. This is a lovely mountain getaway B&B that is just an hour and a half from Atlanta. Plan a weekend here if you are looking for seclusion, peace, and quiet. Each room has one bed so it’s great for couples. While in Blue Ridge, check out the waterfall hike at Falls Branch Falls. The start of the Appalachian Trail is close by too.
Destin, Florida (Hotel Prices & Photos)
While you’re here, visit the Henderson Beach State Park nearby that has over a mile of unobstructed beach. Boat Tours, Crystal Beach, and golf are also popular in Destin. Top attractions that you can hit up on the way to Destin include the Wild Animal Safari and F.D. Roosevelt State Park. Henderson Park Inn is a premier Destin beach hotel that’s great for a romantic getaway with someone special. Here you and your sweetheart can enjoy the peaceful shores of the Emerald Coast. It overlooks the beaches of Destin and is an all-inclusive resort for adults only. You’ll enjoy a gourmet breakfast, boxed picnic lunch, cocktails at sunset, and lots of complimentary perks.
Gatlinburg, Tennessee (Hotel Prices & Photos)
Gatlinburg is a fun weekend getaway destination for families because there are so many activities here to get involved in. There are carnival rides, mini golf courses, tourist shops, and of course the Great Smokey Mountains for hiking and exploring. For accommodations, consider staying at the Elk Springs Resort in Gatlinburg because it has luxury cabins that sleep four people. Here you’ll find an indoor pool, hot tub, fireplace, cable TV, and free Wi-Fi. And it’s only about 15 minutes from Dollywood and the main entrance to the national park. Honeymoon, pet-friendly, theater room, and Creekside cabins are available.
Birmingham, Alabama (Hotel Prices & Photos)
Top things to do in Birmingham are the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Birmingham Museum of Art, and Vulcan Park & Museum. If you have time, check out the McWane Science Center, the Southern Museum of Flight, and Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark here in town. For a luxury boutique hotel in downtown Birmingham, try The Hotel Highland in historic Five Points South. You’ll be close to the entertainment district and the UAB Medical Center here, as well as the Birmingham airport and sports venues. There are 63 guest rooms here and an extended continental breakfast.
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (Hotel Prices & Photos)
On the drive to Myrtle Beach from Atlanta, you can stop by Augusta, Georgia to stroll along the Augusta Riverwalk and stop into the galleries and studios along Artists Row. Myrtle Beach is a big tourist town with lots of places to stay and attractions to check out. One place to consider staying at is the North Beach Plantation, which is located on a 7.5-acre property between the Atlantic Ocean and White Point Swash. It offers the best aspects of relaxation, including a swim-up pool bar, lazy river, and private cabanas. There’s a steak house and sushi bar onsite, and accommodations range from a one-bedroom bathroom luxury oceanfront condo to a five-bedroom cottage that sleeps 14.