Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Clayton, GA

  • Published 2022/03/02

There are endless things to do in and around Clayton, Georgia, that you simply won’t accomplish during your stay.

Located in Rabun County, Georgia, Clayton is a small city.

The city is also the county seat.

In 1821, European-American immigrants established Claytonsville City.

Clayton became its official name when it was incorporated in 1823.

The name was chosen in honor of Judge Augustin S. Clayton, a distinguished judge and legislator.

He served in the Georgia House of Representatives and Senate before being elected as a US Representative from Georgia.

Judge Clayton was the inspiration for the city’s name.

There are several waterfalls, hiking paths, some of the highest mountains in the state, and innumerable streams filled with trout in this section of Northeast Georgia.

However, Clayton’s downtown area is also home to many fashionable boutiques, farm-to-table eateries, and breathtaking vistas of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

In addition, lodging options, including hotels and cabins, abound in the area.

From scenic hikes and cascading waterfalls to beautiful mountains and fun-filled roadside attractions for the whole family, enjoy the best things to do in Clayton, Georgia, below.

Go Hiking at the Warwoman Dell

A waterfall at Warwoman Dell

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East of Clayton, Warwoman Dell is a lovely wilderness area with tall trees and a sloping forest floor covered in lush, green foliage.

Some of the most spectacular waterfalls, such as Becky Branch Falls, may be found in this stream-filled valley covered with mosses and wildflowers.

Warwoman Dell has a long and illustrious past.

The Warwoman, a revered Cherokee woman who frequented the region and counseled the Cherokee tribal council on war and peace, was the inspiration for the town’s name.

It was initially planned to build a rail line that runs through the Blue Ridge Mountains in the mid-1800s.

A wooden footbridge at the Warwoman Dell

Fredlyfish4, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

However, these were put on hold due to the Civil War.

After decades of logging, the region was restored to its natural splendor by Civilian Conservation Corps workers in the early 20th century.

The dell has been transformed into a picturesque picnic area and hiking trail popular with locals and tourists alike.

While the route isn’t particularly lengthy, it’s a stunning one.

As a bonus, there are three waterfalls to be found on a quite easy and short hike.

Trail and trees at the Warwoman Dell

Fredlyfish4, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Unwind at Kingwood Resort

Kingwood Resort and Winery, nestled in the southern foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is the gateway to a different Georgia.

Spending time in this idyllic setting—which has everything from towering trees to rolling hills and a championship golf course and wineries—is like nothing you’ve experienced before.

Experiencing new things isn’t just a fantasy while you’re staying at Kingwood Resort.

The Kingwood Golf Course is the centerpiece of our resort, with a driving range and putting green in addition to its 18 holes of challenging play and breathtaking views.

It’s a great place to play golf or trek miles of beautiful trails, or just relax and enjoy some friendly competition.

The inn’s two dedicated tennis and pickleball courts are just across the street from the inn’s guest rooms and main welcome center.

A swimming pool, spa, and fitness center are also available at the hotel.

Swing Your Club at Rabun County Country Club

Rabun County Golf Club is a nine-hole, regulation-length golf course constructed in 1940.

Good shots will be rewarded on this challenging but manageable course, making it an excellent choice for a family excursion.

Rabun County Golf Club offers discounted online tee times, generally available.

Your shot-making skills will be tested to the limit on this miniature and demanding golf course.

Our bentgrass greens are a delight to play on, with their subtle swaths of movement.

Rabun County Golf Course Offers Year-Round Golf in the Heart of Georgia.

The Civilian Conservation Corps, a WPA project started under Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s presidency, established this historic nine-hole mountain course, perfect for golfers of all skill levels.

The Rabun County Golf Club was meticulously carved out of it to preserve the natural landscape.

A succession of up-and-down par-3s and a blind downhill par-4 begin the roller coaster journey at the third hole.

Gaze at Stunning Works in Timpson Creek Gallery

Cecile Thompson, the owner of Timpson Creek Gallery, is noted to see the beauty in everything.

She is sought after because of the high quality of her design work.

People come from all over the world to see the ever-changing selection of procurements because of her passion for textiles and art.

Art, antiques, apparel, jewelry, and anything else you need for your home can be found at this one-of-a-kind shop.

Over 10,000 square feet of aesthetic delight are housed in two Adirondack-inspired structures.

The main home is a treasure trove of one-of-a-kind works of art of every kind.

Dwayne Thompson, Cecile’s husband, owns Timpson Creek Mill Works, the second facility.

Timpson Creek has long been home to a diverse group of artists who have showcased their skills in various genres, including pottery, woodwork, quilting, photography, jewelry, and organic skincare.

Her passion for art encompasses many media, including painting, sculpture, and photography.

Tour Downtown Clayton

Old Downtown Clayton’s Main Street tells the story of what was and what may be again.

Amid Clayton’s burgeoning population, there is an opening for new small businesses to establish themselves.

View our directory below to learn more about what each of the city’s neighborhoods has to offer.

Downtown Clayton has many ts.s available online and in-store to keep your dogs fed, groomed, dressed, and entertained.

Is your dog in need of some guidance?

Find the best dog walker, trainer, and vet for your fur babies.

You’ll find a wide variety of barbershops in Clayton’s downtown area if you’re looking to get a trim on your hair, beard, mustache.

For those looking for a unique eating experience, downtown Clayton provides various options to choose from.

It’s better to shop in downtown Clayton than online since you get to sample an item before buying it for yourself or as a gift.

Hand-picked by local retailers, the merchandise in your downtown is a one-of-a-kind collection.

Drop by Rabun County Welcome Center

Is it your first time in Clayton, Georgia?

It pays to drop by Rabun County Welcome Center before starting your adventure in this city.

The Welcome Center is a one-stop shop for travelers looking for the best lodging, dining, and entertainment options in the area.

Information about hotels, Clayton tours, and local history may be found at the Visitor Center, also called Visitor Information Center.

There are also maps and navigation systems for getting about Clayton and information on Clayton tours.

Stroll around the Stekoa Creek Park

Dedicated to the people of Clayton in August 2015, the Stekoa Creek Park is a beautiful green space for everyone to explore, play, and learn about nature.

It was built by the Chattooga Conservancy, a non-profit devoted to maintaining and promoting the Chattooga River watershed’s ecology and cultural legacy.

Stekoa Creek Park was created to honor Rabun County’s rich cultural and ecological history while repairing the land.

The pavilion near the park’s entrance is based on a 1930s Civilian Conservation Corps picnic shelter design utilized in the Chattooga River watershed to build picnic shelters.

Witness the natural and historical wonders of Stekoa Creek Park, such as the Cherokee Indian hamlet called “Sticoe.”

Go on Extreme River Adventure with Southeastern Expeditions

Southeastern Expeditions provides a white water rafting experience in River Chattooga.

Undammed and still the only Wild and Scenic River east of the Mississippi, the river you’ll be seeing is known as the “Crown Jewel of the Southeast” for a good reason.

A mecca for adventure seekers, the Chattooga is a popular location for thrill-seekers and explorers because of its breathtaking waterfalls and wealth of animals.

As each method of transportation is unique and travels differently on the water and over rapids, Southeastern Expeditions provides expert coaching for each mode.

Try this adventure, and you’ll be proud of yourself for having put your skills to the test in such an unusual, enjoyable, and exhilarating situation.

Taste Moonrise Distillery’s Spirits

Moonrise Distillery believes that art and science go hand-in-hand.

To create world-class spirits, one must have a thorough knowledge of science, a solid devotion to traditional production methods, and an unwavering focus on quality.

The “science” of distillation accounts for 40% of work, while the “craft” of barrel aging and mixing accounts for 60%.

The 2019 Georgia Trustees Wine and Spirits Competition awarded its vodka a Gold Medal.

Meanwhile, unique tastes and smells are created by a procedure that blends two traditional techniques of manufacturing its gin.

Additionally, it serves snow cream with a slight kick of bourbon.

Grab Your Adventure Supplies at Wander North Georgia

Founded by terrific folks who care deeply about their region, Wander North Georgia is a fantastic company.

Quality and design are essential considerations in everything they sell.

Instead of just making money, they use their platform to spread awareness about the benefits of backcountry recreation while also enticing others to come outside.

The shop features chacos sandals, boots, shoes, camping and hiking gear, books, and other outdoor products, as well as locally manufactured things, dog toys, and more.

Wander North Georgia also donates a portion of every transaction to local non-profits.

Buy Fresh Produce from Clayton Farmers Market

During the last week of April through the end of October, the Clayton Farmers Market is open on Saturdays.

Locally sourced fruits and vegetables, meats, eggs, and honey are just some of the items you’ll find at the farmers’ market.

In addition to the farmers market, the Northeast Georgia Food Bank sponsors special events in their teaching kitchen.

Its annual Garlic Festival takes place on the last Saturday in July.

One of the regular events is a competition for the best garlic pie.

Submit a pie for a chance to win or participate in the pie tasting!

Go Antique-Hunting at Black Bear Creek Antiques

Antique buyers visiting Clayton, Georgia’s Black Bear Creek Antiques, are in for a treat.

Black Bear Creek Antiques is tucked away in the north Georgia highlands and offers a unique antique shopping experience.

Choose from a wide range of high-quality home furnishings, décor, and collectibles.

For the benefit of customers and local artists, Black Bear Creek is enlisting the help of local potters, woodcarvers, watercolorists, and even a bespoke knife maker in addition to the exquisite antiques and collectibles already on hand.

Overall, if you’re searching for genuine antiques, this is the place to go.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Admire the Breathtaking Views at Black Rock Mountain State Park

Scenic mountain view from Black Rock Mountain State Park

JayL /

Blue Ridge Parkway’s highest state park is home to some of Georgia’s most breathtaking views.

Within 14 minutes from Clayton, you may reach Black Rock Mountain State Park in Mountain City, Georgia.

Four routes take tourists through wildflower-filled meadows, creeks, and tiny waterfalls for those who prefer hiking.

Scenic view of the sky and mountains from Black Rock Mountain State Park

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There are mountaintop cabins and campsites set among the rhododendron and oak trees of the park.

Many walk-in sites are perfect for tent campers who need some extra seclusion.

Anglers flock to the park’s tiny lake, surrounded by an easy-to-follow walking track.

Scenic view from Black Rock Mountain State Park

Thomson200, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Cycle through Tallulah Gorge State Park

A wooden bridge at Tallulah Gorge State Park

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Two miles long and approximately 1,000 feet deep, Tallulah Gorge is one of the most stunning gorges in the eastern United States.

Registration is required to travel the canyon bottom.

However, visitors can use rim paths to several views.

The river and waterfalls may be seen from a bridge suspended 80 feet above the rocky bottom.

Pedestrians and cyclists may use the paved walkway that follows an old railroad bed, while mountain bikers can test their mettle on a 10-mile course.

Fall trees and a suspension bridge at Tallulah Gorge State Park

JayL /

In the park’s Jane Hurt Yarn Interpretive Center, visitors may learn about the town’s rich history and the area’s complex topography and sensitive ecology.

They include the monkey-face orchid and green salamander that live in the gorge.

Snacks, jewelry, toys, literature, walking sticks, apparel, and more are available in a gift store.

You may reach the state park in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, after a 15-minute trip from Clayton.

Aerial view of the rushing waters at Tallulah Gorge State Park

JayL /

Go Fishing at Moccasin Creek State Park

Hemlock falls of Moccasin Creek State Park

JayL /

An extra 22-minute drive from Clayton will bring you to Clarkesville, Georgia, home to Moccasin Creek State Park.

Moccasin Creek, located on the shores of Lake Burton, is known as “where spring spends the summer.”

Despite the park’s mountain position, it is pretty level, making it accessible to huge RVs, kids’ bicycles, and even wheelchairs.

Water flowing out of a rock at Moccasin Creek State Park

JayL /

A completely accessible fishing pier overlooks a trout-filled creek.

You may hire kayaks, SUPs, and canoes during the warmer months.

The park’s central position is ideal for those who want to explore the area’s waterfalls, mountain biking trails, shopping, and restaurants.

Final Thoughts

Clayton has something for everyone, whether you’re simply passing through or searching for a spot to stay for a few days.

From offbeat to beautiful, our list of the best things to do in Clayton, Georgia, is sure to keep you entertained.

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