Located just one hour north of Atlanta, Gainesville is an ideal day-trip destination for city dwellers. Surrounded by outstanding scenery, Gainesville offers a number of excellent outdoor recreational facilities including the Kinsey Family Farm, Atlanta Botanical Gardens and the Elachee Nature Science Center. Downtown Gainesville has a vibrant atmosphere and is filled with restaurants and independent stores and galleries. To get a feel for what the town was like back in the 1800’s you can join a guided walking tour on the Historic Green Street Tour. If you would like to learn how to kayak or canoe you can enroll for classes at the Lake Lanier Rowing Club. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Some restaurants are currently offering pickup only. Hours/availability may have changed.

1.Atlanta Botanical Garden

Atlanta Botanical Garden
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Continuing the legendary work of the original Atlanta Botanical Garden, the Atlanta Botanical Garden in Gainesville first opened to the public in 2015, offering nature lovers and gardeners a wonderful outdoor recreational facility. The beautifully landscape grounds and display gardens offer a serene atmosphere where visitors can get out into the fresh air surrounded by beauty. Children will love the Fairyland Trolley which connects two fairy villages in the Children’s Garden, while adults can enjoy a walk surrounded by natural woodlands beauty. Trails lead you past the Overlook Garden, Stream Garden, Glade Garden and the Woodland Promenade. Plan to spend at least a few hours exploring.

Atlanta Botanical Garden, 1911 Sweetbay Dr, Gainesville, GA 30501, Phone: 404-888-4760

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2.Kinsey Family Farm, Gainesville, Georgia

Kinsey Family Farm, Gainesville, Georgia
© Kinsey Family Farm

Offering fun and entertainment for the whole family, the Kinsey Family Farm is a nursery and garden center which is ideal to visit with children during the autumn months. At this exciting time of the year the farm bustles with fun activities for children including feeding the farm animals, fish feeding, Halloween pumpkin picking and exciting hayrides. Parents can stock up on fall harvest crops and choose seedlings and container shrubs and other flowering plants. Winter activities include selecting the best Christmas tree ever, or better yet, you can cut-your-own Christmas tree. Afterwards you can warm up with hot chocolate at the shed. The Kinsey Family Farm is open from Monday to Saturday.

Kinsey Family Farm, 7170 Jot Em Down Road, Gainesville, GA 30506, Phone: 770-887-6028

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3.Lake Lanier Rowing Club, Gainesville, GA

Lake Lanier Rowing Club, Gainesville, GA
© Lake Lanier Rowing Club

Ever since 1993 Lake Lanier has been hosting rowing regattas. The lake offers ideal rowing conditions and soon the word got out and the lake started seeing international Olympic teams making their way to Lake Lanier to train. Lake Lanier hosted the 1996 Olympic rowing, canoeing and kayaking events and rowing on the lake has gone from strength to strength. Visitors and locals who would like to find out all about rowing are welcome to join the club’s Learn to Row classes. If you would like to watch a regatta you can check the club’s website for event dates. The venue has seating for many people and there is parking across the road.

Lake Lanier Rowing Club, 3105 Clarks Bridge Road, Gainesville, GA 30506, Phone: 770-287-0077

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4.Elachee Nature Science Center, Gainesville, Georgia

Elachee Nature Science Center, Gainesville, Georgia
© Elachee Nature Science Center

Elachee is a Cherokee word meaning New Green Earth. When you visit the center you will understand why the name is particularly fitting. The center is located in the Chicopee Woods Nature Preserve in the Upper Walnut Creek Watershed. One of few natural areas spared from devastation by cotton plantations, this tract of land is now protected for future generations. The center offers nature and environmental conservation programs for all ages, from preschool to adult. You can take advantage of miles of walking/hiking trails, most of which are suitable for the whole family. Children will love taking part in their regular school-break nature and camping events.

Elachee Nature Science Center, 2125 Elachee Dr, Gainesville, GA 30504, Phone: 770-535-1976

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5.Scott’s Downtown, Gainesville, GA

Scott’s Downtown, Gainesville, GA
© Scott’s Downtown

Scott’s Downtown must be one of the most popular restaurants in Gainesville, judging by the rave reviews it gets from guests. The restaurant strives to offer customers a casual fine-dining experience where excellent food is matched by quality service and a carefully curated list of wines, beers and liquors. Owner Scott is a Gainesville local and is proud to welcome friends and neighbors, as well as visitors, to come and enjoy a memorable dining experience. Scott further strives to source his quality ingredients locally wherever possible and to personally oversee their preparation. Menu highlights include prime Angus beef and a good selection of fish and seafood including Butter-poached Lobster and Chilean Sea Bass.

Scott’s Downtown, 131 Bradford Street NW, Gainesville, GA 30501, Phone: 770-536-1111

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6.Atlas Pizza, Gainesville, GA

Atlas Pizza, Gainesville, GA
© Atlas Pizza

Located on the square in downtown Gainesville, Atlas Pizza has attracted a strong following of loyal pizza fans. To ensure that the pizza you eat is absolutely the best, Atlas Pizza hand-make their own pizza dough and sauces onsite and offer a wide choice of fresh ingredients so that diners can personalize their pizza with ingredients from all over the world. In addition to a range of gourmet and build-your-own pizzas, Atlas Pizza also serves delicious salads, wraps, subs, lasagna, appetizers and desserts. If you are dining in you can accompany your meal with a soft drink, beer or a glass of wine.

Atlas Pizza, 104 Washington Street NW, Gainesville, GA 30501, Phone: 770-531-1144

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6 Best Things to Do in Gainesville, Georgia

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