Georgia has hosted the Super Bowl, College Football Playoff National Championship and major film crews like “The Avengers.” But two hours north of the country’s busiest airport lies blissfully quiet and breathtaking scenery that allows attendees the space to develop better teamwork and create innovative ideas. Amicalola Falls State Park in Dawsonville, Georgia, and Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen are popular venues for groups—particularly state associations, SMERF and faith-based groups—looking for some fresh air.
And while meetings in the mountains can be peaceful and relaxing, the staff at these parks aren’t afraid to get guests’ blood racing. Adventure is the name of the game in northern Georgia. Here are some reasons both parks are a popular escape.
Both Amicalola and Unicoi parks take the mountain view to a new level with zip line courses above the majestic treetops. Unicoi’s course includes 19 zip lines and seven (or more, if you move to an advanced stage) suspension bridges that range from 75 to 2,000 feet long and as high as 100 feet off the ground. Zip lining and ropes courses can fill the day or planners can opt for a half-day of adventure mixed with meetings at either park.
Take Your Shot
At Unicoi, attendees will get a thrill with 3D archery—think targets that look like wildlife—that Katniss Everdeen would train future “Hunger Games” contestants on. Unicoi also has an air gun range and fly-fishing to catch mountain trout, a Southern staple.
Water High and Low
Amicalola’s featured attraction is its 729-foot fall, the highest waterfall in Georgia. The trek up Springer Mountain may be challenging for some, but is rewarding for all. At Unicoi, groups can dig their toes in the sand visiting the on-site beach, a way to break the Georgia heat in summer. This is particularly popular among groups with children, who also can explore the park through a scavenger hunt.
Ever wonder why housing is referred to as lodging? Because of picturesque views and the comforts of camping afford at facilities like these. Amicalola’s on-site restaurant wisely went for large glass windows where attendees can soak in the views for a buffet including Southern classics. The fried chicken is a guaranteed hit, but other options sure to please include a low country boil, barbecue pork and chicken and several varieties of steak. Both parks include cabins and standard hotel rooms.