15 Best Things to Do in Cumming, GA

county fair in Cumming, GA
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The idyllic city of Cumming, Georgia, is the perfect destination for those who want a quick escape from busy urban lives.

It’s part of the Atlanta Metropolitan Area but is far removed from the bustling city scene.

So most people come here to enjoy the many exciting attractions and small-town ambiance cultivated by an inviting community.

And with the town’s proximity to Lake Lanier, there are lots of water-related activities to enjoy for visitors.

It also has many family-oriented destinations where you and your loved ones can stay and bond.

Most of these come in the form of community parks, which Cumming has a lot.

So make this your top destination for your upcoming holiday getaway!

Here are the 15 best things to do in Cumming, GA:

Head to the Deep Waters of Lake Lanier

View of Lake Lanier
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Lake Lanier is one of the most significant features in this region of Georgia, covering 37,000 acres in total surface area.

It’s a reservoir that formed after the Chattahoochee River was dammed in 1956, submerging the forests and plains next to the river's original path.

Over the years, many recreational spots started emerging along the lake’s banks, some of which are in Cumming.

And while you can stay on dry ground and simply enjoy the views all around, it’s better to get into the water and explore the hidden wonders of the lake.

View of Lake Lanier
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Get on a kayak or canoe and paddle your way to hidden coves, forested islands, and other lakeside parks of nearby localities.

Fishing is also a favorite activity.

There are many local businesses and fishermen in Cumming that offer charters into the lake.

While on the deeper waters, try catching freshwater game such as small and largemouth bass, bluegill, and walleye.

Go Sunbathing at Mary Alice Beach Park

Next to the beautiful Lake Lanier lies Mary Alice Beach Park, one of the many waterside recreational attractions in Cumming.

This destination is one of the local favorites, thanks to the golden beach that extends along the park’s eastern borders.

So if you’re looking for a small slice of paradise, then Mary Alice Beach Park is a great candidate.

With the attraction’s tranquil ambiance, scenic views of the lake, and modern amenities, you’re guaranteed a memorable and fun experience.

You’re welcome to go swimming, sunbathing, or strolling along the soft sands.

There’s also a forested section for nature walks and hiking, and the boat ramp is ideal for those who want to go fishing into the lake.

Score a Strike at Stars and Strikes Family Entertainment Center

Given the large number of outdoor attractions in Cumming, your trip can be very dependent on sunny skies and good weather.

Thankfully, you have many options in case the skies aren’t cooperating.

One of the favorite indoor attractions in the city is the Stars and Strikes Family Entertainment Center.

This gaming facility has many elements that come together to create a fun and thrilling experience.

Bowling is the main attraction here because who doesn’t like the satisfaction of hitting all the pins in one precise strike?

But there’s also an arcade with old classics and new games that will have you playing for hours.

If you want to test your accuracy, teamwork, and coordination, the laser tag arena is the perfect section to visit.

There’s also a casual dining eatery that offers energizing snacks and drinks if you need to refuel.

Climb Sawnee Mt. Preserve

View of Sawnee Mt. Preserve
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The commanding Sawnee Mountain is the highest point in Forsyth County and all of Metro Atlanta, reaching 1,946 feet above sea level.

It’s located northwest of Cumming’s city proper, so it has become an accessible nature destination for residents and visitors.

Within the 963 acres of land known as the Sawnee Mt. Preserve, hikers and adventurers can enjoy the mountain's scenic trails, thick woodlands, and panoramic overlooks.

View of Sawnee Mt. Preserve
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One of the most prominent features of the preserve is Indian Seats, a natural outcropping on top of the mountain.

In the past, Native Americans used the area for ceremonial rituals.

But the Indian Seats are now used as scenic viewpoints where you can see all of Cumming and the surrounding region.

If you’re curious about the history and native wildlife of the area, make a stopover at the Visitor Center and check out the interactive exhibits about the mountain.

Take a Cooling Dip at Cumming Aquatic Center

When the hot summer days come, Cumming Aquatic Center is a perfect alternative for those who find Lake Lanier too wild.

This sprawling complex covers around 50,000 square feet of space and has outdoor and indoor facilities.

Inside the spacious building is an Olympic-sized pool frequently used for swimming tournaments.

But it’s also open for the general public when not in use for contests.

Diving, water exercises, swimming lessons, and other activities are also conducted on the large pool.

Outside is a waterpark that’s open seasonally.

It features a zero-depth entry pool that extends into a lazy river, offering fun for the whole family.

At the other end of the pool is a towering slide for thrilling rides into the water.

Watch a Game at Central Park

Near the foothills of Sawnee Mountain lies Central Park, one of the biggest community parks in Cumming.

While it’s not as large as New York City’s iconic attraction, this place nevertheless covers an expansive 85 acres of land, making it the largest facility of its kind in Forsyth County.

It’s more of a sports complex than a community gathering spot.

So you’ll see baseball and softball diamonds, two soccer fields, a lacrosse field, and eight tennis courts.

Then there’s the 18-hole disc golf course, always in demand thanks to the quality equipment and beautiful forested views of the section.

After watching or playing a few games, you can rest and bond with teammates on the picnic grounds scattered in the park.

There’s also a rec center for various activities, like dance lessons, fitness classes, and event art workshops, which are open to anyone.

Explore the Length of Big Creek Greenway

View of Big Creek Greenway
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Starting from Roswell, the scenic Big Creek Greenway spans eight miles before finally finishing at Cumming.

This multi-use trail is a favorite for bikers and nature lovers thanks to the views of Big Creek, long, forested sections, and occasional wildlife sightings.

While the paths are well-paved, some sections have no signs of urban development.

View of Big Creek Greenway
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So the pristine state is preserved, allowing the local flora and fauna to flourish in what is otherwise considered a metropolitan area.

Keep an eye out for nonvenomous snakes, birds, deer, and other species living on the branches or the undergrowth.

While the trail is open all year round, some sections will be closed due to flooding during the rainy season.

So check the forecast and local announcements before biking or walking on the greenway.

Explore the Trails of Haw Creek Park

Covering approximately 85 acres of forests and clearings, Haw Creek Park is a large woodland attraction in the southern section of Cumming.

This family-friendly facility has a day-use section and a larger trail system going deep into the forests.

You’ll find a sheltered picnic pavilion, practice ramps for young bikers, and a woodland-themed playground for the kids.

Unlike the routes of Charleston Park, the trails here are less technical.

So even beginner mountain bikers will have an easy time exploring the interiors of the forests and testing their riding skills.

And even if you’re not a biker, you can still trek the trails and see the hidden wonders of the area.

There are many native animal and plant species living here, so keep an eye out for deer, wildflowers, and birds while exploring the woods.

Catch a Show at School Street Playhouse

The magnificent School Street Playhouse is the center of culture and performance art in Cumming.

It’s located in the old 1923 Cumming Public School, which is listed under the National Register of Historic Places.

Even though the structure is old, it has undergone many renovations to address the modern demands of audiences and performers.

So you can expect ample seating, natural lighting, and great acoustics that elevate the experience.

You can watch thought-provoking plays, musicals, and concerts by local groups and talented performers.

Once the show is over, head over to the in-house fine dining establishment, Tam’s Backstage Food and Spirits, for some delicious fare.

Ride a Jetski on Little Ridge Park

View of Little Ridge Park
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Little Ridge Park is the farthest facility of its kind from Cumming’s city proper, closer to the Buford Dam than the other outdoor destinations.

It’s also located well into Lake Lanier, with most of the park composed of small islands.

So it’s the perfect getaway if you want to drown out all the city noise and commune with nature.

There are many flat trails that bring you to the islands and lookouts in the park, especially the ones with the best views of the lake.

View of Little Ridge Park
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You’ll have plenty of opportunities for landscape photography while in these parts.

There are also boat ramps where you can launch a kayak, canoe, or jetski.

The latter is popular, as it provides easy access to the farther islands that can be inaccessible during high tide.

If you simply want to enjoy the majestic scenery and tranquil ambiance, there are many picnic sites within the park that you can use for as long as you want.

Join the Thrilling Cumming Country Fair & Festival

Cumming Country Fair & Festival is a regional fair considered as the largest and longest festival held in the city.

It’s an 11-day celebration that showcases the town's agricultural heritage and surrounding areas.

So every October, farmers, local businesses, townsfolk, and visitors come together to watch entertaining shows, play with interactive exhibits, and buy fine products.

There will be thrilling carnival rides for kids and adults, magic performances, circus shows, and other fair staples.

Of course, there’s no festival without good food.

You’re welcome to try the American dishes offered by concessionaires during the event, ranging from burgers and sandwiches to Southern delights.

Don’t miss the live concerts, which bring together national and local bands to perform show-stopping numbers.

Test Your Biking Skills at Charleston Park

The expansive Charleston Park is one of the lakeside attractions in Cumming, covering a 154-acre parcel of land.

It doesn’t have a huge beach like Mary Alice Beach Park, but it compensates with its large trail network.

A small portion of the park is dedicated for day use, while the rest is just forests covered in easy to moderate trails.

Hiking on the routes is a great activity for those who want a few hours out in nature, but they are mostly used for mountain biking.

The rugged terrain makes for a challenging ride, especially for intermediate and professional bikers.

But if you’re neither of those, you can simply stay in the day-use area on the park's northern side.

The are picnic tables, restrooms, and an uninterrupted view of Lake Lanier.

Go Strawberry Picking at Warbington Farms

Warbington Farms is a seasonal attraction that showcases the rich agricultural heritage of Cumming.

This fun, family-oriented destination started as a cattle and hen farming facility in 1968, eventually becoming a favorite attraction for kids and adults.

One of the most prominent activities on the farm is strawberry picking, held at a three-acre field open during late spring to summer.

Autumn is the perfect time for pumpkin harvests and other fall and Halloween-themed activities—a popular season at the farm.

They also have a petting zoo for the kids and kids at heart, housing goats, chickens, and baby cows.

For those who want to test their coordination skills, the corn maze is an exhilarating little attraction open to all.

Give Your Thighs a Workout at The Ice

The Ice is Cumming’s premier ice skating rink, an ideal destination if you want to watch figure skating performances or hockey matches.

While it was only established in 2010, the facility has quickly turned into a favorite local venue, thanks to its unique offerings.

The Ice is open to the public for those who want to try ice skating, so many people come here to try their skills at the sport, give their legs a workout, and laugh when they slip over.

If you’re an absolute beginner, you can join skating lessons, which are open to learners of all ages.

Check Out the Scenic Buford Dam Park

Just a few minutes away from Cumming is the structure that created Lake Lanier: Buford Dam.

To access the best views of this manmade wonder, you can visit the scenic Buford Dam Park.

There are plenty of lookouts in the destination that offer uninterrupted views of the lake, the dam, and the islands that seemingly float on the calm waters.

You can stay for as long as you please, as there are plenty of picnic sites, shelters, and camping grounds for the whole family.

Final Thoughts

Owing to its proximity to bodies of water and mountains, Cumming offers a host of outdoor and nature-related activities for thrill-seekers and adventurers.

But it also has festivals, performance art venues, and sporting facilities where human talent and creativity are showcased.

Reference this list when planning your itinerary so you won’t miss the top spots, whatever your preference is.