Sure, the beach is a great place to hang out during the summer, but so are small towns.
“Perhaps it’s the community festivals, the breezy nights walking down Main Street, or an ice cream truck rumbling down a suburban road blaring that all too familiar song. Whatever it is, we’ve got love for it,” Travel+Leisure wrote in its story on the 15 best small towns for a summer vacation.
One of the 15 just happens to be in Georgia. Even better, it’s only about an hour north of Atlanta.
Welcome to Adairsville.
This town of 4,800 was named for Walter John S. Adair, a Scottish settler who married a Cherokee woman. It was the first in the state to have the entire town listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Although a great place to shop for antiques, Adairsville wasn’t much of a tourist spot until the 160-year-old Barnsley Gardens — now Barnsley Resort — opened to the public in 1991. Now, people are lured in by horseback riding, clay target shooting, archery, a spa, a saltwater pool and more.
Car lovers will want to check out the Savoy Automobile Museum in nearby Cartersville. Have you ever seen a 1947 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Cabriolet? Well, this museum has one, on loan from Jim Taylor. That’s just one of dozens of vehicles in five exhibits.
If your summer plans are already booked, head north in a couple of months for The Great Locomotive Chase Festival the first weekend in October. This annual event dates back to 1968, and is a family friendly weekend featuring food vendors, arts and crafts, amusements, a parade, beauty pageant and more.