With its Bavarian-themed architecture, charming shops, and beautiful scenery, Helen Georgia is a great place to visit for a weekend getaway. As my friend and I were tight on time, we packed in a LOT of Helen, Georgia goodness into a little over a day visit.
Babyland General Hospital
BabyLand General Hospital is the fictional “birthplace” of the dolls known as the Cabbage Patch Kids. It is located in Cleveland, Georgia, and is a popular tourist destination, especially for families with young children. In 2016, BabyLand General Hospital moved to a new location in Cleveland.
The beautiful white southern-style building features a variety of interactive exhibits, including a nursery, a delivery room, and a school. Visitors can also learn about the history of the Cabbage Patch Kids and how the dolls are made.
BabyLand General Hospital is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Georgia and it’s estimated that over 1 million people visit the store each year. Visitors can purchase Cabbage Patch Kids dolls, as well as a variety of other merchandise, such as clothing, accessories, and toys. While we were there, we saw the ‘birth’ of a Cabbage Patch Doll from the Mother tree, assisted by the help of a Babyland Nurse. It’s Free to go in! Definitely worth a visit. 300 NOK Dr, Cleveland, GA 30528
Chattahoochee River Trail
If you need to get some steps in, The Chattahoochee River Trail offers scenic views of the Chattahoochee River and its surrounding woodlands and wetlands. You can access it in a parking lot near the Waterpark in Helen, or from the Hardman Farms Visitor Center.
Hardman Farm is a historic site with an 1870 Italianate mansion, Indian burial mound, nature trail, and visitor center. The farm was once home to the Hardman family, who were prominent landowners in the area. The mansion is now a museum that houses exhibits on the history of the Hardman family and the farm. The Indian burial mound is a sacred site for the Cherokee people. The nature trail winds through the woods and offers scenic views of the surrounding countryside. The visitor center provides information about the farm and its history. *There is a fee to access the farm property which is now managed by the State. They have a nice gift shop as well! 143 GA-17, Sautee Nacoochee, GA 30571
Wine Tasting & Antiques
Habersham Winery is a family-owned enterprise with wine tastings, plus a shop stocking globally sourced gourmet foods. We did the flight tasting and purchased some tasty pimento cheese and crackers.
After wine tasting we ventured into the huge antique building to the right. It has three floors STUFFED full of vintage items! It is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.
Head across the street to the Nora Mill Granary after vintage shopping. They still grind grits, flours and other grains in the mill and it’s a great place to stock up on locally produced souvenirs.
Make sure to grab an iced coffee from Jumping Goat Coffee Roasters! I definitely needed a little pep after all of that shopping! 7025 S Main St, Helen, GA 30545
No stop in Helen, Georgia would be complete without visiting the Cuckoo Store! Bavarian Clockworks is the largest cuckoo clock store in North America.
They offer a wide variety of authentic German cuckoo clocks, as well as beer steins, Alpine wooden crafts, and more. The clocks vary from small ones under $100 to thousands of dollars. They set the clocks to different times so there is always a constant stream of cuckoo activity! 8065 S Main St Suite 600, Helen, GA 30545
Mountain Alpine Coaster
The Georgia Mountain Coaster is the first alpine coaster in Georgia. It is located in downtown Helen, GA, and offers a thrilling ride through the beautiful mountain forest. The coaster is built by the top manufacturers in the world and features a variety of twists, turns, and drops. Riders can control their own speed using a manual brake lever, so they can go as fast or as slow as they want.
At first, I was worried about going too fast, but honestly, it was super fun and I felt like I had control of my coaster the entire time. $13 per ride and half off additional rides. 8409 S Main St, Helen, GA 30545
There’s no shortage of German food in Helen, Georgia! If you are tapped out on Bavarian food, make sure to check out Cowboys & Angels for Southern fare.
There are also many country and farm stores. I recommend stopping at as many as possible! Not only will you find locally made goods (jams, honey, etc.) but most have fresh pastries like Apple Cider Donuts of Handpies. Yum! We found the prices to be very reasonable and most have old kitschy decor which brings back happy memories of days gone by. One of our favorites (next to our Motel) was Betty’s Country Store. Friendly & they have everything! 18 Yonah St, Helen, GA 30545
Helen, Georgia borders the Blue Ridge Mountains. If you have time, try to do a scenic drive (we did a long loop out on our way to Atlanta). The mountains are absolutely breathtaking! Make sure not to speed on the country roads. We actually had a small bear run in front of us, so thankfully I am a very slow driver. 🙂
About an hour west and slightly north from Helen, Georgia is the Expedition: Expedition: Big Foot Museum. You can do this sideshow stop in about 30 minutes and it was definitely a fun little museum packed with Sasquatch information. 1934 GA-515, Blue Ridge, GA 30513