What to do in Helen, Georgia

Helen, Georgia -- Anna Ruby Falls
Anna Ruby Falls

Take a trip to Northern Georgia

Recently, I went to Helen, Georgia, for a family reunion. I was pleasantly surprised with all there was to see and do in the town. It's both kid- and adult-friendly, providing fun for all ages both day and night.

Here are six, fun-filled activities you won't want to miss if you're heading to northern Georgia. These may even be reason enough to plan a vacation there this fall.


Surrounded by lush trees and vast mountains, the area provides some of the best hiking the U.S. has to offer. In particular, Anna Ruby Falls is a half-mile paved hike that leads to two gorgeous waterfalls. If you're up for the challenge or kid-free, there's a 4.6 mile hike that leads to the same falls. Fresh air, gorgeous scenery and loads of fun and activities are what make Helen a number-one stop for tourists and families alike.


Zip-lining is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for those who seek thrill and adventure. North Georgia Canopy Tours offers multiple zip-lining tours where you zip over ponds and rivers, walk on sky bridges, rappel and go on nature walks. Priced as low as $69 per person for three hours of entertainment, this is not something you want to skip out on.

Oktoberfest in Helen, GA
Oktoberfest in Helen, Georgia

Miniature golfing and sightseeing

After a crazy day of zip-lining, it's nice to unwind in the small town of Helen, also known as "Little Switzerland," with shopping and dining. While the buildings may make it look like a Swiss town, Helen has a true German culture feel with its cobblestone alleys and old-world towers. It's a main stop for tourists and is quite busy in the fall, even offering its own version of Oktoberfest during September, October and November. There are two miniature golf parks in the center of the town with old-fashioned ice cream parlors inside that make for a great evening treat.

Whitewater rafting

Whitewater rafting is an adventure for the whole family. Northern Georgia offers multiple rivers with multiple "levels" of rafting. If you have kids or are looking for a calm ride, the Chattooga River Section III is where you'll find an abundance of wildlife and be able to take in the beautiful scenery. Chattooga River Section IV, though, is where your heart will be racing, and you'll be on the edge of your seat the entire ride. Both trips are $75 and last at least six hours. The choice is yours!


Helen is surrounded by smaller rivers and streams, as well. Throughout the town are multiple areas to begin tubing down one of these rivers. Georgia's Cool River Tubing Company charges just $5 for a tube and provides a minimum of a two-hour float. Relax, unwind and soak in the views as you peacefully float down the Chattahoochee River.

Rent a boat

Though it's true you can rent a boat most places, Georgia is by far one of the best. The water is smooth and the scenery is enchanting. Whether you're looking to relax and rejuvenate or get your adventure on by skiing and wakeboarding, the Georgia lakes are for you. Wakeboard boat rentals are $400 for the day; jet skis are $300 and pontoons, for the partyers, are $200 per day.

Where to eat: Top restaurants in Georgia for true Southern food >>

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Comments on "What to do in Helen, Georgia"

Sarah February 05, 2013 | 9:12 AM

Hi Renza! We did stay overnight - for a whole week actually! We stayed at the cabins at Unicoi State Park. They are all close together, fully furnished, and you have the option of a 1 bedroom or up to a 3 bedroom. They're grouped together (A, B and C) and I think each group has about 8 cabins (just a guess), but we had family in section A B and C and you can walk to all of them :) Hope this helps, and have fun!!

Renza Bryson January 30, 2013 | 4:55 PM

It sounds like you really took advantage of all the Helen has to offer. We live close enough to visit Helen often and always have a great time. Our family is planning a 3 nights 4 day reunion in June and we need to find rooms for everyone. I am curious about accommodations for a family reunion in Helen. I am looking for a group of cabins that are all in the same general area (preferably on the same street within walking distance of each other) that would accommodate about 50 people in approximately 9 different cabins. Did your family stay overnight? Do you have any recommendations?

Allison October 15, 2012 | 1:35 PM

What a great little tourist spot! Helen sounds like a very exciting place. My kids are in a year round swim league and they spend a lot of time in the water so they would love the tubing, rafting and boating. The Swiss town sounds like something I would have to see with my own eyes. Thanks for sharing this!

Erin October 15, 2012 | 10:26 AM

I think this sounds like a great trip to go on with the family. It sounds relaxing yet still provides plenty to do, which is important for my little busy bodies. Thanks!

lindagaskin October 15, 2012 | 9:34 AM

Thecrafts The food there is something for the whole family.We look forward every fall

Katie October 12, 2012 | 12:42 PM

Helen sounds like such a fun place to visit! Sounds so relaxing and perfect for a family vacation. Thanks for the idea!

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