Summer Glamping at Unicoi
Summer Glamping at Unicoi
The 1,000-acre Unicoi State Park & Lodge centers around Lake Unicoi within the Chattahoochee National Forest.
Summer is an ideal season to discover the area’s many hiking trails, waterfalls, rivers, and lakes to keep things cool. As I booked my trip for late June, and having been here numerous times, our family is switching things up by getting a little more involved in guided activities.
First, we secured our places to stay:
Glamorous camping, that is. Reserve your fully furnished safari tent with everything you need from home combined with the Great Outdoors just beyond the tent flap. The park’s 4 glamping sites have options for King, Queen, and bunk beds to accommodate one, two, or more.
Safari Tents Include:
- Keurig coffee maker and mini fridge
- Rugs, lamps, diffuser, and other home décor
- Electrical outlets, ceiling fan, A/C, and heating unit
- 2 hammocks, wood fire ring, charcoal grill with a cooking grate, string lights, 2 camp chairs, and a picnic table
Never tried it? Instructors can help! The 53-acre Unicoi Lake between the mountaintops collects the cool waters from Smith Creek tributary.
The Lodge’s Intro to Paddle Boarding instructor will teach you the basics. Once you establish balance, and paddling forward, you’re now getting it. With each rhythmic stroke of your paddle into the water’s surface, you’ll love the views of Unicoi Lake from a new “you’re on it” perspective as you and the instructor (and/or group) tour the lake.
- Reserve with Activities Department online or call 706-878-2201 x 549
We love walking the trail to downtown Helen. Have you taken this path before? It’s an easy hike if you don’t purchase heavy things while in town. So, if you’re shopping for groceries or who-knows-what, the Lodge offers free shuttle service to and from Helen, and to Anna Ruby Falls (also accessible by trail from the lodge).
Anna Ruby Falls (two falls that come together) is the closest waterfall experience to the park.
We love the easy hike to Anna Ruby Falls on a paved surface from the parking lot. There are slight inclines, and informative panels that showcase the area’s wildlife and history. Expect about an hour round trip.
Legend says a local Civil War soldier, Colonel John H. “Captain” Nichols, found these falls on horseback and named them after his only daughter, Anna Ruby.
Nearby, the Horse Trough Falls trail is only .4 mile in length and leads to beautiful waterfalls; an excellent trail for novice hikers.
You can also raft down the Chattahoochee River with any of the outfitters in Helen. In summertime, you can see dozens of people dangling legs over the inner tube, drifting down the stream.
The kids want to try out Junior Ranger Camp. Here’s more on what I’ve learned, as details are still being updated:
This summer, immerse your kids, nieces and nephews with Junior Ranger Camp at Unicoi State Park. Everyone will learn more about the mountain environment’s natural mysteries in themed weeks. The kids will earn badges and receive them at the end of the week. They will also receive a Junior Ranger Book and T-shirt.
- Kids ages 5-11 years
- Sign up for a day or the whole week.
- Prices vary depending on attendance
I’ve hinted at a few of my plans, and I hope this helps you and your family and friends make the most of your summer visit to one of the most beautiful places in North Georgia.
Book Your Stay: The Unicoi Lodge has 96 recently renovated lodge rooms, and 29 Georgia State Park cabins across the 1,000+ acre property. Tent camping, R/V sites and glamping are also available.
By Stacy L