Helen Georgia is a curio that is well worth a visit when touring the state, a slice of Bavarian Germany in southern America. Surrounded by the blue ridge mountains and lying on the shores of the Chattahoochee River, Helen is a former logging town that transformed itself into a living attraction by converting every building – from homes to fast food joints – into the attractive alpine German Bavarian style. It is truly the Alps in the Appalachians!
Attractions on Helen Georgia
As the leaves start to turn in the fall, visitors come in their droves to see the spectacular colors and take part in Helen’s three-month-long Oktoberfest celebrations. Set in the Festhalle on weekends throughout September, October, and November, Helen’s Oktoberfest is the longest-running in America, and the most authentic. German beer is served alongside bratwurst and bands playing traditional Oompah music. It’s a guaranteed great night out! Bavarian evenings also happen throughout the summer.
Unicoi State Park and Lodge
Next door to Helen is one of Georgia’s most beloved state parks, with scenic hiking routes for all abilities alongside brilliant spots for picnics and bird watching. You can also hire paddle boats and canoes during high season to explore the mountain lake that nestles in the center of the park. For those who like to stay closer to shore, you can also spend a day relaxing on the lake beach. Keen anglers can also go fishing at one of the many designated spots throughout the lake.
Things To Do
Zipline the Blue Ridge Mountains
Helen is surrounded by spectacular forests and mountains, and what better way to see it than from the air? Zip n Time is a once in a lifetime opportunity to zip line amongst the treetops of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Georgia – a must-do for thrillseekers everywhere!
Visit Downtown Helen
Helen wears its Bavarian regeneration on its sleeve, and it’s a fantastic town to explore, with museums, galleries, restaurants, a German-style bakery, artisanal gift shops, antique centers, and Charlemagne’s Kingdom, a painstakingly crafted model German village complete with working railways.
Babyland General Hospital
Fans of the Cabbage Patch Kids can visit this gorgeous Antebellum-style home where cabbage patch kids are ‘born’. This museum and shop contain thousands of Cabbage Patch Kids toys for you to ‘adopt’ and learn more about the history of one of the most popular toys of the past 30 years. Great for children and nostalgic parents alike!
Where to Stay
There are several reasonable hotels in downtown and central Helen, all keeping with the alpine theme of the city for the true Helen experience. If you wish to explore the surrounding areas more, luxury and rustic mountain lodges and cabins are available in the forests around Helen. The Alpenhaus cabins are built into the mountainside, where you can watch deer from your balcony or enjoy a dip in your outdoor hot tub.
Helen is also home to a host of charming family-run bed & breakfasts which are ideal for a short weekend stay.