Hi all, happy Tuesday! I hope you’re having a great start to your week and enjoyed your holiday weekend even more.
We decided to stay local for this holiday, which left us in the same boat as Easter time. No family around, so up to us to make it extra special. It was also our first 4th as a married couple so I wanted to do something we would definitely remember.
About a month ago, I purchased tickets to the Georgia Aquarium’s Red White and Brew fest– which included entry into the aquarium, dinner, unlimited beer samplings and live music all for $50 a ticket (if you were members $65 if not). Since we wanted to make sure we could go all out and make our lives easier we opted for a hotel room using some travel points at the Embassy Suites. The hotel was right across the way from the aquarium and made life super easy.
The event was hosted in the Oceans Ballroom, where two walls were made of water tanks from floor to ceiling, giving you a special view of whale sharks, rays, and other underwater creatures while you at dinner and sipped your brews. And no, sushi was not on the menu, we actually had delicious barbecue catered by Wolfgang Puck. The macaroni and cheese was a definite favorite of ours.
The event was packed and every ticket was sold. When you entered you received a commemorative glass with a noted fill line to take to any and every beer vendor you wanted all night long for samplings. I think next year they should add trivia or another activity just to keep the activity level high. All in all, it was a neat idea and I’m glad we went. Plus, we took some pretty cool selfies.
A few days prior to the weekend, we made a last minute decision to book a hotel in North Georgia and kind of recreate our Easter getaway. This time, I found a deal for a hotel on Lake Chatuge in Hiawassee, Georgia. The pictures looked great and the reviews were favorable so we decided to head there. We were definitely not disappointed. For just over a 2 hour drive we were greeted with this view outside our hotel room window.
We did everything super easy this trip– packed our own supplies of food, alcohol, etc., and “camped.” Except not really we had a hotel room, but Jarob’s birthday Yeti Cooler got its first use and all we purchased when we got there were two beach towels because that aspect slipped our minds. Planning ahead made for an extremely affordable trip!
We got some swimming in and even got a short hike on the Appalachian trail done before we settled in for the evening to watch the sunset.
The next morning, we decided to stop in Rabun County and hike at Tallulah Gorge State Park. So did everyone else, the place was packed! For good reason though… For just $5 you could hike as long as you liked and see tons of wonderful views, some waterfalls, a suspension bridge, water damn and more. We opted for a 3.5 mile hike (inclusive of 221 steps down and back up the gorge which was easily the most challenging part). We left the hike sweaty messes, but a brief costume change from our luggage in the car changed all that.
It’s just incredible that so many cool places exist just two hours from Atlanta. Rivers, lakes, falls, the Appalachian trail, mountain views, wineries you name it. We love Rabun County more and more each time we visit. I think a fall trip is definitely in the works.
By the time we got home we were exhausted! We caught up on grocery shopping, laundry and some cleaning before settling in for a relaxing evening. I absolutely cannot wait to go back and explore more of North Georgia.