Things 2 Do

Waterfalls, wine and wild adventure on the menu in Dillard this week

DILLARD, Ga. — Looking to celebrate the end of a challenging school year? Want a break from the 9-5 that isn’t so 9-5 anymore? Escape to the north Georgia mountains and the city of Dillard this week.

What’s there to do?

For the adventurous...

Climb atop horseback and explore the north Georgia wilderness. The Dillard House Stables offers plenty of options. And with the temperatures climbing, a splash through the Little Tennessee River will have you leaving the office at the office and enjoying some fun for a change.

“About half the ride is actually in the water when the weather permits,” Pam Thompson from the Dillard House Stables told’s Nelson Hicks. “It’s just something fun for everybody. It’s an easy ride for beginners but advanced riders enjoy it, too.”

Other options include zip lining through mountain tree-tops, whitewater rafting and fly-fishing.

For the explorer...

Enjoy waterfalls, state parks and all the scenery along the way. Rabun County in northeast Georgia boasts three state parks and more than 34 waterfalls, with a beautiful hike to each one. The wildflowers are amazing this time of the year and the mountain laurel is in full bloom. This is a season and event you don’t want to miss.

“(There’s) all kinds of things, trails and parks,” David Okum from the Rabun Manor said. “But the most beautiful thing is the mountains. They are all around us. So, there are lot of lakes (and) boating. Within 15 miles of us, there’s all kinds of great activities. Anything that someone wants to do in nature, this is definitely the place to be.”

For the wine and spirits lover...

Head to 12 Spies Vineyards. Between the great wine, stunning sunsets, views and gardens, a trip to 12 Spies Vineyards will put even the most stressed-out business owner at peace. Many nights, the winery also features live music.

Wine’s not your thing? Maybe whiskey is. The R.M. Rose Company ranks as the oldest registered distillery in Georgia. Take a peek inside the distilling process before enjoying some Fire on the Mountain Cinnamon Whiskey, apple whiskey or one of the company’s other offerings. There are several other wineries and distilleries near Dillard.

“There is lots to do here in Dillard,” Andy Sudderth, from the R.M. Rose Company, said. “You can come and spend the day, eat at the Dillard House, come and tour the distillery, take...some free tastings (and) we can mix you a drink. Really, there’s a lot to do.”

For the foodie…

As Georgia’s farm-to-table capital, Rabun County boasts many exceptional restaurants, but Dillard is home to the original farm-to-table restaurant, the world famous Dillard House.

“The meals here have been served farm to table since 1917,” Louise Dillard from the Dillard House said. “At one time, we had a large farm here. Carrie Dillard, who founded the Dillard House in 1917, prepared all the vegetables fresh. She grew cows, she grew chickens, she grew hogs. She did everything from scratch. And we continue to try and carry on that tradition to the best of our abilities.”

If you’re thinking about the upcoming Memorial Day weekend, look no further. The Dillard House presents November Blue, a multi-genre Nashville band who will be playing on Sunday, May 30. The Dillard House invites you and your family to join them for a fun-filled weekend that includes barbecue chicken, ribs and beef brisket, hot dogs, sides, desserts and great music. Check out the Dillard House’s website for more on the big event.

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Celebrate the start of summer with a quick weekend away. You and your family have earned it after this year. Do it all in Dillard, the city that makes escaping the ordinary extraordinary.

This story is sponsored by the City of Dillard.