The city of Atlanta is home to just over half a million people. This thriving metropolis has a great deal to offer, from wonderful restaurants to a world-class aquarium.
There is also a remarkable art museum and a great deal of history, particularly surrounding the Civil War and the Civil Rights movement.
The area around Atlanta also has a great deal to offer travelers, and there’s a lot you can see in 100 miles or less!
1) Anniston, GA – 90 miles
2) Athens, GA – 73 miles
3) Carnesville, GA – 85 miles
4) Chatsworth, GA – 86 miles
5) Forsyth, GA- 60 miles
6) Griffin, GA – 53 miles
7) Lafayette, AL – 96 miles
8) Macon, GA – 85 miles
9) Roanoke, AL – 86 miles
10) Sugar Valley, GA – 79 miles
11) Wedowee, AL – 88 miles
1) Anniston, Alabama – 90 miles
If you take Interstate 20 west out of Atlanta you will cross the border into Alabama and reach the city of Anniston. This will take you through some lush, green country and along the southern edge of the Talladega National Forest. Make sure you pack your hiking shoes!
Once in Anniston, Alabama, take the time to visit the Anniston Museum of Natural History. This museum is just one part of the Anniston Museum and Gardens, a large complex that includes a botanical garden and art museum as well.
There’s terrific hiking and, if you are traveling with a stroller, the Chief Ladiga Trail offers a paved path to enjoy the scenery of this lovely area.
2) Athens, Georgia – 73 miles
Hop on Interstate 85 north and follow it to U.S. 29 north to reach Athens, Georgia. Athens is a wonderful spot to visit for those who love history and beer. Athens is getting a reputation as a brewery hot spot!
The live music scene in Athens is also terrific, so if you love to visit a pub, relax with friends and hear terrific performances of up-and-coming artists, you’re going to have fun here.
Not only is Athens the home of the University of Georgia, but R.E.M. started here. The music is bound to be amazing.
3) Carnesville, Georgia – 85 miles
Take Interstate 85 north diagonally across the state to Carnesville. This charming city offers some unique history! Baseball fans will need to stop at the Ty Cobb Museum. There are also many beautiful parks and several hiking trails where you can stretch your legs and do some forest bathing.
There’s an alpaca farm for those who love animals and a pottery studio for fans of local art. If you need a break from the city, a trip to a cottage or glamping tent in Carnesville may be just what your spirit needs. Bring a stack of books and relax!
4) Chatsworth, Georgia – 86 miles
Interstate 75 north to U.S. 411 north will get you to Chatsworth, Georgia. Chatsworth lies along the western edge of the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest and offers plenty of camping, hiking, and outdoor fun.
No matter your experience or fitness level, you can find trails and activities to suit you. For example, rock climbers and boulder hoppers will love the George Disney Trail. If you love to fish, you must check out the Carters Lake Visitors Center.
Of course, you can also check out local history and visit the Chief Vann house, also known as the Showplace of the Cherokee Nation.
5) Forsyth, Georgia – 60 miles
If you take Interstate 75 south out of Atlanta you will easily reach Forsyth, Georgia. Forsyth is straight west of both the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge and Lake Juliette. Bring your outdoor gear and your fishing poles!
Those with an interest in history and, in particular, genealogy should plan to spend at least a day at the Monroe County Local History Room and Museum. The archives in this facility offer visitors a remarkable opportunity to study local history, including many former newspapers via index, Civil War records, and old school and church records.
6) Griffin, Georgia – 53 miles
By taking U.S. 41 south to U.S. 19 south, you will reach Griffin, Georgia. From here, you can easily find spots to hike, camp, fish, and generally hang out in the great outdoors.
In town, make time to visit Meadowlark Gardens. This beautiful botanical garden offers many acres of remarkable trees and flowering plants. There’s a lilac garden where many couples choose to marry; if you plan to go on a Saturday, try to be flexible as to time so you can enjoy some privacy with nature.
7) Lafayette, Alabama – 96 miles
Head southwest out of Atlanta on interstate 85 south and take Alabama state highway 50 northwest into Lafayette. Take your time on this drive; you’ll be heading through some very pretty country. There will be lots of trees and rolling hills to enjoy.
You’ll also be looping south of West Point Lake, so if the urge to do some boating or fishing hits, you’re covered.
Fans of architecture and, specifically, southern architecture will adore the buildings that ring downtown Lafayette Square. While this is not a large city, it is the home of the county seat. Bring your camera and enjoy!
8) Macon, Georgia – 85 miles
Mostly south and a little east of Atlanta on Interstate 75 south is the city of Macon, Georgia. The drive will take you just west of the Piedmont National wildlife refuge and through the Oconee National Forest. Take your time, enjoy the views, and try to go during the day to avoid surprising wildlife on the road.
If you like history and architecture, make sure you bring sturdy walking shoes to Macon. Within 14 historic districts in and around this city, there are 6,000 buildings on the National Historic Register. Fans of architecture and those interested in preservation will need a notebook!
9) Roanoke, Alabama – 86 miles
Interstate 85 south actually takes you southwest of Atlanta and Georgia Highway 34 will take you into Roanoke. This area has a strong history with Native Americans and the forced migration west. Not surprisingly, this Roanoke is named after Roanoke, Virginia.
10) Sugar Valley, Georgia – 79 miles
Sugar Valley is another rural town that has a lot to offer folks who need a break from the city. Take Interstate 75 north to Sugar Hill. Hike the Horn Mountain Ridge or swim and fish in the Sugar Valley Lake. Rent a cabin and hang out in the quiet!
11) Wedowee, Alabama – 88 miles
Interstate 20 west to Alabama Highway 48 will get you to Wedowee. Like other small towns in this listing, Wedowee is a wonderful spot for those who love the outdoors to stay. There’s plenty of fishing, hiking, and camping to do in this area.
What’s with the name? Wedowee comes from the Creek Native American tribe and means “old water.”