Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Clarkesville, GA

  • Published 2022/07/28

If you need to relax for a few days, Clarkesville in Georgia is the best place to unwind.

This small city is the county seat of Habersham County, which features tremendous natural beauty.

The city gets its name from General John C. Clark and has much to offer regarding recreation.

Clarkesville’s downtown thrives with restaurants to suit every taste, a theater, and various intriguing stores.

Some notable landmarks include the Grace-Calvary Episcopal Church and the De Soto monuments, which depict how De Soto traveled through Habersham County.

There are plenty of reasons to visit Clarkesville.

Its small-town feel is perfect for those who want to escape the city life but still want to stay near Atlanta for a weekend getaway.

This town is also great for families as there are plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy.

Here are the best things to do in Clarkesville, GA:

Go Hiking at Moccasin Creek State Park

Scenic view of the Hemlock falls in Moccasin Creek State Park

JayL /

Moccasin Creek State Park is one of the most popular places in Clarkesville.

Located on the shores of the picturesque Lake Burton, Moccasin Creek State Park takes pride in being “where spring spends the summer.”

Despite being in a mountainous area, the park is remarkably flat.

People in wheelchairs, huge R.V.s, and kids’ bicycles can easily navigate the park.

Hiking trail in Moccasin Creek State Park

Sikander Iqbal, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

However, only seniors 65 and older, kids under 11, and anyone with a Georgia handicap fishing license can fish from an accessible pier that sits above a creek stocked with trout.

There are hiking trails to explore, and you can rent a canoe or kayak to enjoy the lake.

The park has something for everyone, with a playground, a beach area for swimming, and a fishing pier.

Moccasin Creek State Park is the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors.

See Automobiles at the Miles through Time Automotive Museum

Located in the Old Clarkesville Mill, the Miles through Time Automotive Museum is a must-see for anyone who loves cars.

The Miles through Time Automotive Museum is home to nearly a century’s worth of automotive history, memorabilia, and artwork.

Check out one-of-a-kind historical exhibits that aren’t available anywhere else.

See vintage gas pumps and signs, old car parts, and other exciting items.

The museum is also home to a working garage that restores vintage cars.

If you’re interested in seeing how they restore old cars, watch them work on the cars.

The Miles through Time Automotive Museum is for anyone who loves cars and wants to learn more about their history.

Enjoy the Great Outdoors at Pitts Park

Pitts Park is the perfect place for you if you love the outdoors.

The park has a playground, a pavilion, and a walking trail for those who want to get some exercise.

Located just one block from Clarkesville Downtown, Pitts Park is the perfect place to bring the kids.

There are also plenty of picnic tables, making it ideal for a family picnic.

Pitts Park is a great place to relax and enjoy the outdoors.

The park sits on the banks of the Soque River, making it the perfect place to enjoy the river views.

Bring the family to Pitts Park for a picnic or a day of fishing.

Discover the Charms of the Mauldin House

The Mauldin House is an excellent place to learn about the city’s history, serving as a welcome center in the city of Clarkesville.

Built in 1820, the Mauldin House was once known as the Little Pink Cottage.

In addition to being a welcome center, the Mauldin House is part of the historical park and offers tours of the house and the grounds.

The Mauldin House is a farmstead that exhibits family and agricultural life from the 19th century.

On the grounds of the Mauldin House, you can also find the Big Holly Cabin, an authentic one-room log cabin from the early 1800s.

The Mauldin House is a must-see for anyone who wants to learn about the history of Clarkesville.

Explore the Hemlock Falls Trail

Mesmerizing Hemlock Falls

Andy Coan, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Take a two-mile hike on the Hemlock Falls Trail at Lake Burton to discover a valley full of waterfalls close to Moccasin Creek State Park.

The Hemlock Falls Trail is an easy hike with a few small hills.

The main attraction of this hike is the breathtaking Hemlock Falls, which you can see at the end of the walk.

See it cascading down a vertical cliff and into a cold pool below.

After marveling over the waterfalls, you will arrive at a valley studded with huge boulders.

Descend into several smaller waterfalls amid a lush forest.

The trail is open all year, so you can enjoy the beauty of the falls no matter the season.

The Hemlock Falls Trail is the perfect place to enjoy a day in the company of nature.

Get Up Close and Personal with Apple Mountain Alpacas

As you drive towards Clarkesville on Georgia Highway 115, you’ll see a sign for Apple Mountain Alpacas.

This farm is home to alpacas, llamas, and sheep.

You can tour the farm and learn all about these fantastic animals.

You need an appointment to visit the farm, but it is well worth it.

The tour includes visiting the farm store, where you can purchase alpaca products such as yarn, socks, and sweaters.

Apple Mountain Alpacas is a great place to learn about these fascinating animals and get some unique souvenirs.

Win a Game at Clarkesville Lanes

Whether you are a seasoned bowler or a total newbie, Clarkesville Lanes will give you a good time.

This bowling alley has 16 PBBA-certified lanes and an extensive selection of bowling balls.

In addition to a wide range of bowling equipment, they also have a pro shop where you can buy custom orders of balls, shoes, and other equipment.

The Grant Street Grill is one of the most excellent features at Clarkesville Lanes.

It boasts a complete bar, delicious food, many enormous flat-screen HDTVs, and a fantastic sound system.

If bowling isn’t your thing, you can play at the two competition-type dart boards and three competition-type pool tables.

Clarkesville Lanes are the perfect place to spend an afternoon or evening with friends.

Grab Some Unique Pottery at the Mark of the Potter

The Mark of the Potter is a unique pottery studio where you can watch the potters at work and purchase their creations.

Established in 1969, Mark of the Potter is inside an old farmhouse that the artisans have converted into a shop.

You’ll find a variety of pottery, from functional pieces to decorative items, in the oldest craft shop in Georgia.

The potters are very friendly and love to talk about their work.

The Mark of the Potter is a great place to find a unique souvenir or gift.

Discover the Soque River

The Soque River is a beautiful place to relax and enjoy nature.

Before emptying into the Chattahoochee River in the southwest portion of the county, the Soque River meanders for about 30 miles through primarily private land.

Previously a well-kept secret, fly fishing on the Soque River has become a popular pastime for local anglers.

The Soque River is the best trout stream, too, since the upper Soque River’s water temperature is perfect for supporting a large trout population.

The city restocks the river yearly.

Landowners and nearby fishing outfitters make sure to feed the fish properly to retain their trophy size.

For a trout fishing experience, get in touch with local companies for Fly Fishing.

Discover the Soque River today!

Breathe in the Scenic View of Lake Burton

Boating in Lake Burton

ESB Professional /

One way you can experience Lake Burton’s beauty is to take a scenic drive around the lake.

Lake Burton is the largest of the five lakes in Georgia’s Power North Lakes.

The lake measures 2,775 acres and has 62 miles of shoreline.

Lake Burton also offers many locations for swimming or picnicking; one of them is the white sand beach at Timpson Cove Beach.

Shoreline of Lake Burton

Dwayne Vandiver /

Jones Bridge Park provides a beautiful vista for drivers on U.S. Highway 76.

You can go boating, camping, picnicking, swimming, and fishing in Lake Burton.

There are also well restrooms and parking spots for your convenience.

Of course, you’ll want to take plenty of photos to remember your visit to Lake Burton.

Learn Fly Fishing at the Brigadoon Lodge on the River Soque

The Brigadoon Lodge on the River Soque is great for learning about fly fishing.

The Lodge is the best trophy trout river for fly fishing in North America.

This company offers fly fishing lessons, guiding, and equipment rental.

They also have a fly shop where you can purchase supplies.

The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, so don’t hesitate to ask for help.

The Brigadoon on the River Soque is a great place to learn about fly fishing and start this fun and challenging sport.

Visit the North East Georgia Regional Library

The North East Georgia Regional Library is a great place to go if you want something to do indoors.

Since 1928, the Clarkesville Library has served as the region’s administrative center until 2009.

The library has books, magazines, and newspapers of different niches.

It has six affiliate libraries, which offer a combined inventory of more than 500,000 items.

The North East Georgia Regional Library also has a meeting room that you can rent for events.

A library is an excellent option if you’re looking for a place to read or study.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Explore Cornelia’s Historic Train Museum

You can find Cornelia’s Historic Train Museum inside an old depot built in 1914.

The museum has various exhibits showcasing the history of the area’s railways.

You can also see a model train display and watch a video about the local railway.

The museum provides an insight into early 1900s life through railroad items, old photographs, and much more.

You can explore with a professional historian who can walk you through the museum’s history.

The Cornelia Historic Train Museum is a great place to learn about the history of the area’s railways.

You can find this museum in Cornelia, Georgia, 16 minutes from Clarkesville.

Sample the Local Wines at Habersham Vineyards & Winery

Since 1983, Habersham Vineyards &Winery, one of Georgia’s most prominent and oldest wineries, has produced renowned Georgia wines.

It started as Stonepile Vineyards in the 1970s and became the first commercial winery in Rabun County.

The winery is open daily for wine tastings in the North Georgia Wine Country in Nacoochee Village.

The tasting area has a gift shop with gourmet meals, wine specialty goods worldwide, and an extensive range of wines cultivated and produced in Georgia.

Habersham Vineyards &Winery offers foreign cheeses and all the necessary condiments for the ideal picnic.

The vineyards and winery are open for tours and tastings, and you can also purchase wine by bottle or case.

You can find them at Helen, Georgia, 18 minutes from Clarkesville.

Embark on an Adventure at Sunburst Adventure Park

The entire family will enjoy the thrilling outdoor activities at Sunburst Adventures.

You can find Sunburst Adventures in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Batesville, a little Habersham County community just two hours from Atlanta.

It’s 19 minutes from Clarkesville.

This is an excellent place to explore and hike the many trails.

You can try numerous outdoor activities like ziplining, ATV trail rides, and horseback riding on the thousand-acre expanse of Sunburst Adventure Park.

Likewise, stay in Sunburst’s beautiful vacation cabins in the mountains of Northeast Georgia.

Every window offers stunning views, and facilities include hot tubs, fireplaces, and Wi-Fi, available only in the Wildwood/Coppertop areas.

There are restaurants and shops in the area to fill your dining needs.

Enjoy a weekend getaway at Sunburst Adventure Park!

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a place to relax and rejuvenate, Clarkesville is the perfect destination.

You can find this quaint city in the stunning North Georgia mountains, offering a variety of activities for everyone to enjoy.

From exploring the local library to taking a ride on the vintage train, there is something for everyone in Clarkesville.

So, what are you waiting for?

Start planning your trip today!

You might find more things to do in Clarkesville, GA, when you arrive.

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