Holiday Happenings, First Day Hikes, Civil War Enactment and More

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Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites

December 2019

Victorian Christmas at Hardman Farm

Hardman Farm Christmas

This beloved landmark in Sautee Nacoochee is transformed during the holidays with Victorian traditions. Docents dressed in their finest 1870s garb welcome guests to open houses on Friday and Saturday nights in December, complete with twinkling candlelight, visits with Santa, and a trip down the Unicoi Turnpike by horse-drawn wagon. Call 706-878-1077 or visit to learn more. Dozens of additional holiday happenings are listed on

Fort McAllister’s Winter Muster is December 14

Fort McAllister

When Gen. Sherman ended his “March to the Sea” in 1864, he presented Savannah to President Lincoln as a Christmas gift, bringing the American Civil War closer to its end. On the 155th anniversary of this event, uniformed enactors will present cannon and musket firings, skirmishes and drills. In addition to a museum, earthen fort and recreated sleeping quarters, this low-country park offers walking trails, fishing, camping and cabins. Admission to the Winter Muster is free and parking is $5. Call 912-727-2339 or visit to learn more.

Join Our Old-Fashioned Holiday Celebrations

Christmas events

If Christmas commercialism leaves you feeling “bah-humbug,” visit one of Georgia’s State Parks or Historic Sites to perk up your smile. Parks all across Georgia are hosting old-fashioned celebrations that will remind you of yesteryear. Choose from hayrides, candlelight tours, holiday crafts and even pictures with Santa. To reserve cabins, campsites and yurts for an early winter getaway, call 1-800-864-7275 or visit

State Parks Open Christmas and New Year's Day

George L Smith State Park kayaking

Whether you want peaceful reflection in nature or a heart-pumping adventure, you can visit Georgia’s State Parks on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. May we suggest one with the most festive of names? Mistletoe on Clarks Hill Lake! State parks are open year-round, but most offices and historic sites are closed so that rangers can enjoy time with their families. Do fireworks make Fido fret? No need to worry on New Year’s Eve because fireworks and sparklers are not allowed inside the parks. Find waterfalls, lakes, marshes and more on

Ring in 2020 with a First Day Hike

First Day Hike

All across the country, park rangers are inviting Americans to start the New Year with an energizing First Day Hike on January 1. In Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites, dozens of guided treks will encourage friends and families to connect with nature -- and each other. Visitors are welcome to explore trails on their own as well. Find a First Day Hike near you on (Does your best hiking buddy have four legs? Leashed dogs are welcome on nearly all park trails, but call ahead to make sure they can come on ranger-led hikes.)

Gift Cards Make Great Stocking Stuffers

Gift Card

We’ll help you fit mountains, museums, waterfalls and lakes into one tiny stocking. Georgia State Park & Historic Site gift cards can be used for camping, cabins, boat rental, golf, picnic shelters, books, toys, historic site admission and dozens of other treats. They can be purchased at park offices or on