Site of the first major U.S. gold rush and the heart of Georgia Wine Country, Dahlonega, Georgia offers an authentic, mountain getaway only an hour north of Atlanta.
Dahlonega is nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. With the beauty of the North Georgia Mountains, no wonder the Hallmark Channel loves this little gem of a town as a location for many Hallmark Christmas movies. With the abundance of wineries and street entertainment, the Dahlonega Square can keep anyone busy for a weekend trip.
In the 1820s, Dahlonega was the site of the Georgia Gold Rush, the second significant gold rush in the United States. The city was named Talonega by the Georgia General Assembly in 1833, but in 1837 was changed to Dahlonega from the Cherokee–language word Dalonige, meaning “yellow” or “gold.”
Is there gold in them thar hills? Well, according to historical facts – yes. However, now Dahlonega has been recognized as the heart of the North Georgia Wine Country. Dahlonega and Lumpkin County are known as the Wine Tasting Room Capital of Georgia, so between the gold mining sites and the wine, you could certainly keep yourself busy.
On the historic Dahlonega Square, you will discover a gold mine museum, gift shops, restaurants, art galleries and studios, and wine-tasting rooms. Just sitting on the courthouse lawn, people watching is a treat.
The city’s local festivals and events draw many visitors. For those who love the Hallmark-style feeling, the Old-Fashioned Christmas and New Year’s Eve Dahlonega celebrations are the perfect way to boost your holiday spirit.
On the third weekend of April, Bear on the Square is an annual three-day festival that marks the day that a black bear wandered onto the square. (Our guess is he wanted a sip of sweet tea.) On the third weekend of October, more than 200,000 people experience Gold Rush Days, an annual two-day festival on the square amid the beautiful autumn foliage.
If you are hungry, The Smith House, located just off the square is known for its Southern-rich cuisine. Reservations are required, of course. If you’re in the mood for a little turn of time, do visit the Dahlonega General Store. It’s a town (and Hallmark Channel) favorite.
Nestled among scenic foothills and waterfalls, this charming town has it all: great food and wine, Southern hospitality and history, and amazing entertainment. Take a trip with the family to quaint little Dahlonega. Trust us, it’s a gold mine.
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Spend your New Year’s Eve celebrating with hope, awareness, and purpose in downtown Dahlonega.