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another view of the waterfall
Amicalola Falls State Park
Closest available address
418 Amicalola Falls State Park Road Dawsonville, GA 30534
The office is open 8-5. Park is open 7-10 & the lodge is open 24 hours.
Best time to visit
Summer, Fall, Spring
Amicalola Falls State Park is an 829 acre park in north Georgia. The park features a 729 foot cascading waterfall, the tallest in the eastern US. Also popular are the park's impressive mountain views, which can be enjoyed at the 56 room lodge. Amicalola is only 1.5 hours by car from Atlanta.
Amicalola is an Indian word meaning tumbling waters. The waterfall was first protected by the state of Georgia in the early 1900s but the park was not significantly developed till the 1950s. The lodge was built in the 1980s. Park day use facilities are relatively modest and include picnic areas and playgrounds. The visitor center has a few displays on the area’s natural history. There also are live animals such as snakes and birds on exhibit and periodic weekend programs are held to introduce these animals and explain their behavior.
The big draw here is the waterfall. The best time to see it is during the spring when water levels are higher but fall is also a popular season due to the change in colors of leaves. One can park near the base of the falls or nearby an overlook at the top, but the more adventurous can ascend or descend 600 steps to get a firsthand view of the falls from top to bottom. This is a novel and memorable way to experience a waterfall, but consider your condition before setting out. Another moderately difficult walk is the mile long East Ridge Trail, which connects the visitor center to the top of the waterfall. The trail views are nothing special but there is an 800 foot elevation change. For better views and a relaxing atmosphere find a rocking chair on the back porch of the lodge at sunset on a nice day. If you are into waterfalls and don’t mind a short drive from Atlanta, this park is a reasonable choice for a brief excursion. It should be noted that Amicalola attracts a steady stream of visitors much of the year, so privacy often is limited.
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