16 Best Things To Do Near Big Canoe, Georgia

things to do in Big-Canoe GA

Big Canoe is a gated community located in the mountains about one hour away from the city of Atlanta, Georgia, USA. It lies on 8,000 acres (3,237.5 hectares) of land. Formerly the property of Tate family, it was later sold and in 1972, the Big Canoe gated community was born. Today, it has three man-made lakes and these are named Sconti, Disharoon, and Petite. Lake Petite is the largest of the three and it serves as the main source of drinking water for the Big Canoe community residents. With the natural beauty of Big Canoe and the nearby areas, it has become one of the popular tourist destinations in Atlanta. If you are visiting soon, check our list of the things to do in Big Canoe, Georgia, for a well-spent and memorable vacation.

1. Go fishing and boating at Lake Petit

Sunset on Lake Petit Moncton (8456459730)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user James Mann used under CC BY 2.0

Go fishing or boating at Lake Petit, the biggest of the three man-made lakes in Big Canoe. The lake is the main source of drinking water for the residents of Big Canoe. Covering 111 acres (44.92 hectares), it has become an attraction for the locals and the tourists who love boating and fishing. Different kinds of fishes abound in the lake and these include rainbow trout and others that are native to the area. Go boating and see the scenic beauty of the lake. You can rent a boat on the lake, as well as buy some fishing equipment and bait.

Lake Petit

Address: Big Canoe, Georgia, USA

2. Dine at Big Canoe Clubhouse

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Dine with your friends and colleagues at the Big Canoe Clubhouse, the place where the residents of the gated town dine and mingle. Because of its scenic surroundings, the clubhouse is a popular venue for weddings and other special events. It has an efficient staff that can make any wedding preparations as sooth as it can be. One can go for a wedding package and avoid worrying about the big day. The food and drinks are terrific, the decoration great, and the venue perfect.

Big Canoe Clubhouse

Address: 186 Club House Dr, 10586 Big Canoe, Jasper, GA 30143, United States

Website: Big Canoe Clubhouse

Opening hours: Wed - Sat: 10am - 9pm; Sun & Tue: 10am - 8pm (closed on Mon)

3. Hike or drive across the Nature Valley & Jeep Trails

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Experience different levels of difficulties of a hiking or driving trail at Nature Valley & Jeep Trails. Some trails are easy for neophyte hikers but for the professional ones, there are more difficult paths to go to keep you challenged all the way. Along the way, you will see the splendor of nature. There are waterfalls, streams, valleys, and forests that boast of their scenic beauty. If you want to try something new, drive a four-wheel vehicle on a rocky unpaved and narrow road that has been designed to accommodate a vehicle. Feel the rush of adrenaline as you try to control your jeep as it bounces on the protruding rocks and potholes. Whether you do it by foot or on wheels, the trails in the valley will never fail to capture your imagination and your heart.

Nature Valley & Jeep Trails

Address: Big Canoe, Georgia, USA

Website: Nature Valley & Jeep Trails

4. Savor excellent food at Duffers

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Posted by Duffers Snack Shack on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Enjoy excellent food at Duffer’s, one of the popular diners in Big Canoe. This restaurant specializes in sandwiches and there you can have any kind that hits your fancy, including cold and hot ones. They are served fresh as they are prepared in front of you. The bistro also offers a wide selection of salads, desserts, and snacks. With a scenic view of the lake and located near the barn for the golf carts, you will be able to enjoy a cup of coffee and some food while watching the golfers do their daily routine before they start a game. Dining at Duffer’s is a must-thing-to-do while spending a holiday in Big Canoe.


Address: 586 Big Canoe, GA 30143, United States

Opening hours: 7:30am - 5pm (daily)

5. Go boating, paddling, and fishing at Big Canoe Marina

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Have fun boating, paddling, and fishing at Big Canoe Marina where you can rent all types of boats to suit your needs. Ride a boat and explore the lake at your leisure as you feast your eyes on the scenery around you. Go paddle-boarding and experience the peace and quiet of doing yoga on a paddleboard as a yoga instructor tells you what to do. Have your kids been a failure when it comes to fishing? Let them discover the secret of catching as many fish as they want from the fishing experts in the marina. They will also be given safety tips while fishing. Make your vacation in Big Canoe as exciting as it should be by exploring the lakes with the help of Big Canoe Marina.

Big Canoe Marina

Address: 556 Wilderness Pkwy, Marble Hill, GA 30148, United States

Website: Big Canoe Marina

Opening hours: 8am - 5pm (daily)

6. Admire nature while hiking along Choctaw Trails

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Admire nature while hiking on Choctaw Trails, one of the trails from Meditation Park. The mixed surfaces of the trail make it ideal for a walk or a run. Passing by the Choctaw neighborhood and the banks of the creek of Disharoon, the path is lined with lush vegetation, some of which bear blooms. Through the gaps among the trees, you get a glimpse of the verdant golf course. On a path going down, you will see below a creek that is covered with moss and the remains of an old bridge. Choctaw Trails must be a part of your itinerary when visiting Big Canoe.

Choctaw Trails

Address: Golf Course Rd, Jasper, GA 30143, United States

Website: Choctaw Trails

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

7. Explore Amicalola Falls State Park

Amicalola Falls State Park - Entrance Sign
Source: Photo by Flickr user Jared used under CC BY 2.0

While in Big Canoe, visit Amicalola Falls State Park, which is just a 21-minute drive from Big Canoe. At 729 feet (222.2 meters) high, Amicalola Falls is the tallest in the state of Georgia. The cascading water and the spectacular landscape rich with flora and fauna is a haven for nature lovers. The white water roaring down the falls is a breathtaking sight. In addition, the park offers lots of exciting activities such as ziplining, hiking, and listening to lectures about wildlife. If you are a fan of interactive activities, you can engage in survivalist camping where you learn living outdoors with just the basic necessities or have fun scavenger hunting using a GPS. To simulate real-life hunting, the park sets up an outdoor 3-D archery where the targets are three-dimensional objects that resemble the shapes and sizes of animals. These activities make your park visit more unique and thrilling.

Amicalola Falls State Park

Address: 418 Amicalola Falls State Park Rd, Dawsonville, GA 30534, United States

Website: Amicalola Falls State Park

Opening hours: 7am - 10pm (daily)

8. Conquer your fear of heights at Blue Ridge Adventure Park

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Are you afraid of heights? Conquer your fear by hurdling aerial obstacles at Blue Ridge Adventure Park, which is just a 53-minute drive away from Big Canoe. Designed for eight years old’s and above who can extend their arms to 70 inches (177.8 centimeters), the park offers 35 courses ranging from 15 to 50 feet (4.57 to 15.24 meters) above the ground. There are 35 obstacles and 3 levels of difficulty. You will have to walk on hanging bridges and on tight ropes. Everyone is attached to a safety line to make sure that there are no accidents. Finishing the obstacle course requires mental and physical skills and it is an excellent exercise for both the mind and body.

Blue Ridge Adventure Park

Address:2087 E 1st St, Blue Ridge, GA 30513, United States

Website: Blue Ridge Adventure Park

9. Hike to five splendid falls at Emery Creek Trail

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Discover five charming waterfalls while hiking the Emery Creek Trail. The trail has average difficulty although you must take caution as you will walking along a creek the whole time. Some stones are unstable and some parts of the trail can be wet and slippery. However, all your efforts will be rewarded once you reach the first waterfall. Water cascades down a pool where you can take a dip after your rigorous trek. A short walk again and you will find the second and third falls. To reach the fourth and fifth falls, change the direction that you are taking. The trail here becomes a little difficult as you will have to keep moving upwards. Upon reaching the last two falls, look around you and take in the splendor of nature before your eyes. Hiking on Emery Creek Trail will be an experience to treasure after leaving the place.

Emery Creek Trail

Address: Emery Creek Trail, Chatsworth, GA 30705, United States

Website: Emery Creek Trail

10. Feast your eyes on colorful blooms at Gibbs Gardens

Gibbs Gardens~Ball Ground Ga.
Source: Photo by Flickr user Robert Lz used under CC BY 2.0

Feast your eyes on a wide expanse of well-arranged plots of lovely blooms at Gibbs Gardens, a world-class garden in North Georgia. Owned by Jim Gibbs, president and founder of a landscaping company, the place boasts of 16 gardens planted with different kinds of flowering and ornamental plants, water features such as falls, pools, and streams, and bridges to cross. The crowning glory of the gardens is the one million daffodils that the owner planted for his mother. Whatever the season during your visit, you will always find something in bloom to add color to the already vibrant and lovely place.

Gibbs Gardens

Address: 1987 Gibbs Dr, Ball Ground, GA 30107, United States

Website: Gibbs Gardens

Opening hours: Wed - Sun: 9am - 4pm (closed on Mon & Tue)

11. Experience a family-friendly train ride with Blue Ridge Scenic Railway

Stay Between The Lines
Source: Photo by Flickr user Olin Gilbert used under CC BY 2.0

Book a ride with Blue Ridge Scenic Railway, which starts at the historic depot that was built in 1905 at downtown Blue Ridge. The four-hour round trip train ride will take you through scenic mountains and forests and the fantastic views of the Toccoa River. Your final destinations are Georgia’s and Tennesee’s sister towns of McCaysville and Copperhill where you can embark, enjoy a meal, shop, and explore the small towns before you start your return journey. You can travel in an air-conditioned vintage rail car or in an open-air one. Regardless of the season, your trip will allow you to see the scenic beauty of the area.

Blue Ridge Scenic Railway

Address: 241 Depot St, Blue Ridge, GA 30513, United States

Website: Blue Ridge Scenic Railway

Opening hours: Sun - Thu: 9am - 4pm; Fri - Sat: 8am - 4pm

12. Build your stamina by hiking Burnt Mountain Preserve

Burnt Mtn Across Grandview
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Microtus used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

Burnt Mountain Preserve near Big Canoe has become a favorite for hikers seeking to build their stamina while enjoying the beauty of nature. There are three trails in this preserve. The two are shorter and easy for children. Experienced hikers usually take the third trail called the Champion Creek Trail, which is the longest of the three and a little bit difficult. From the road, the head of the trail is covered with vegetation but as you move forward, you will see a cleared path. The first half goes down and at the bottom is a waterfall with a pool at its foot. The next half is an uphill climb and you will see wildflowers along the way. It is not a difficult climb but it will surely make you burn lots of calories.

Burnt Mountain Preserve

Address: 2686-2964 GA-136, Jasper, GA 30143, United States

Website: Burnt Mountain Preserve

13. Enjoy splendid mountain views at Eagle's Rest

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Drive up to Eagle’s Rest to enjoy the view from the east, west, north, and south sides of the mountain. The drive is quite easy with a paved road going up followed by a gravel road as you approach the park. You will find viewing platforms where you can stand and enjoy the unobstructed view of the areas below, including Atlanta’s skyline. There are three hiking trails that go around the mountain. Follow a path and you will find yourself returning to the spot where you are now at the end of the hike. Bring a camera to capture images of the many birds that can be seen in the area.

Eagle's Rest

Address: 7315 Monument Rd, Jasper, GA 30143, United States

Website: Eagle’s Rest

Opening hours: 6am - 8pm (daily)

14. Fly high with Nacoochee Adventures

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Discover more at Nacoochee Adventures in Helen, Georgia, which is just a 1 hour and 15-minute drive from Big Canoe. Feel the rush of adrenaline and the sensation of flying as you zip on a line from one point to another high up from the ground. You will be able to fly over the treetops and see the ground farther below. Aside from zipline, the adventure park also offers ATV rides, aerial adventures, and overnight camping on a treehouse. Doing everything way up from the ground can be a thrilling experience.

Nacoochee Adventures

Address: 7019 S Main St, Helen, GA 30545, United States

Website: Nacoochee Adventures

Opening hours: 9am - 6pm (daily)

15. Reconnect with nature at Moody Hollow Outdoors

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Discover Moody Hollow Outdoors, which is approximately an hour and a half drive from Big Canoe. It is not too far from civilization but during your stay, you will experience the kind of simple life that its inhabitants used to live. Cabins bearing the 1950s style dot the area and nearby is a waterfall, a stream that is deep and wide enough for swimming and fishing, and a hiking trail. You can hike up to the summit and feel that you can touch the clouds. Go on a hike and discover the loveliest and quietest corners of the place where you can reconnect with nature and feel one with the universe.

Moody Hollow Outdoors

Address: 1706 Moody Hollow, Hiawassee, GA 30546, United States

Website: Moody Hollow Outdoors

16. Admire the greenery at Chattahoochee National Forest

2012 Fall Color in the Chattahoochee National Forest (8113836041)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user ChattOconeeNF used under CC BY 2.0

Discover nature at its best at Chattahoochee National Forest where you can see all kinds of trees, wildflowers, and wild animals. Falls, streams, and rivers rich with aquatic life are scattered in this wide expanse of natural beauty and wonder. You can hike all you want or take a ride and experience twigs and leaves of trees snapping on your face. You can climb higher to enjoy the most fantastic mountain views or camp near a stream or a river and fall asleep listening to the sound of flowing and gushing water. Bring your family and share with them the awesome beauty of Chattahoochee National Forest.

Chattahoochee National Forest

Address: Suches, GA 30572, United States

Website: Chattahoochee National Forest

Discover nature's best at Big Canoe, Georgia

Lake Petit, Big Canoe, Georgia
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Thomson200 used under CC0

Although a gated community, Big Canoe, Georgia, has a lot to offer to tourists who come to have a vacation either to relax, commune with nature, or to have thrilling adventures. Nearby are several natural and adventure parks, mountains to climb, trails to hike, water features to enjoy, both natural and man-made. Spending a vacation at Big Canoe means no dull moments as you can find plenty of things to do regardless of the season.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Leonora Puno loves to see places where nature abounds. She has traveled to several parts of the Philippines that glorify the beauty of nature. She loves reading about the beautiful places in other...Read more

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