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Stone Mountain, Atlanta

Georgia
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Stone Mountain, Atlanta, Georgia Georgia

Description

Thirty minutes east of Atlanta is a huge quartz dome that is impressive to visit! On its face is a carving of the confederacy military leaders, but this actually takes away from the gorgeous smooth rock. You can take a skylift to the top, which is a ton of fun. Hiking the 1.3 mile trail to the top is another option for the fit. It's wonderful to stand at the top and take in the views all around. The rock feels just wonderful to sit on in the sun. Joy! Depressions in the rock form little freshwater pools during the rainy season.
There is a cafe and gift shop at the bottom of the skylift. Walk west and you come to a museum with large photos of the carving work that was done on the mountain over a period of five decades starting in the 1920s.
Below the museum is a huge area where snow is made during the winter and families build snowmen or sled on rented tubes and toboggans. Fun!
A little more to the west is a village with some fun play areas. Kids can climb to the top of Geyser Towers, a rope play area with bridges and tunnels. They can shoot balls inside the very loud Great Barn. Camp Highland Outpost is a playground in a circle with tightrope walking, and all manner of fun rope activities. SkyHike is a treetop challenge. There is also a 4D movie which is fun. Kids can ride the bumpy scenic railroad and also take a duck tour, though the duck tour costs extra. There is also mini-golf.
One of the nicest parts is watching the artist in the glass blowing studio make something right before your eyes. A sign posts the time of the next demonstration.
Walk down to the right of the great lawn and there is a secluded area with rocks for kids to leap from and lovely views straight up at the mountain.
After you've tried everything, drive over to the plantation house, which is included in your ticket. It's really a sweet area, with goats to pet and a lovely house with large windows looking out on a flower and vegetable garden, and a working cookhouse. You get a feeling like you are in old-time Georgia. The azaleas here are marvelous! This would be a nice place to get married and it feels like giant quartz mountain nearby would give you good luck!
On certain weekend and summer nights, a laser show is offered for free on the great lawn, creating lights over the mountain. Fireworks also light the night sky.
The Stone Mountain Park website makes this area look like a tourist trap, but it's not. It's a lovely place to visit!
The mountain has an interesting history. It used to be encircle by a rock wall built by native americans. In the early 19th century, men would take their dates to the mountain by horseback. In the mid-19th century, granite quarrying destroyed some lovely features of the mountain. The rock was used to build locks of the Panama Canal, steps of the US Capitol building, and the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. Martin Luther King, in his 1963 "I have a Dream" speech said, "let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!" There is a dark side to Stone Mountain's history. In 1915 a revival of the ku klux klan had their ceremony here. The organization the oversaw the carving on the mountain was filled with klan members. The owner of the mountain allowed the klan unlimited access to hold ceremonies at the mountain until it was sold to the state of Georgia in 1958.
For another super fun place to take your kids, check out the children's garden at Atlanta Botanical Garden, and the playgrounds in Piedmont Park.

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Photo Gallery

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The wonderful rock formations at the summit of Stone Mountain!
The wonderful rock formations at the summit of Stone Mountain!
A romantic spot to stretch out in the sun.
A romantic spot to stretch out in the sun.
Boy on top of the world. I don't think I'd let my child do this...
Boy on top of the world. I don't think I'd let my child do this...
Family picnic on top of Stone Mountain.
Family picnic on top of Stone Mountain.
Hikers gather to watch the city skyline.
Hikers gather to watch the city skyline.
Freshwater pool at the top of Stone Mountain.
Freshwater pool at the top of Stone Mountain.
Outdoor rope play area called Geyser Towers.
Outdoor rope play area called Geyser Towers.
Treetop challenge called SkyHike.
Treetop challenge called SkyHike.
Glass-blowing demonstration.
Glass-blowing demonstration.
Historic plantation at Stone Mountain, and dahlias.
Historic plantation at Stone Mountain, and dahlias.
White dahlia at the plantation.
White dahlia at the plantation.
Dahlia and bee at the plantation.
Dahlia and bee at the plantation.
The room where the husband entertained his male guests, in the plantation house.
The room where the husband entertained his male guests, in the plantation house.
The dining room in the plantation.
The dining room in the plantation.
Dahlias and blue sky.
Dahlias and blue sky.
Wonderful dahlias on a sunny October day.
Wonderful dahlias on a sunny October day.
The barnyard area at the plantation.
The barnyard area at the plantation.
Petting zoo at the plantation.
Petting zoo at the plantation.
Geese in the late afternoon light at the plantation.
Geese in the late afternoon light at the plantation.
Kitchen house.
Kitchen house.
Gazebo for weddings at the plantation.
Gazebo for weddings at the plantation.
Gate to the garden!
Gate to the garden!
The little village where you can walk around.
The little village where you can walk around.
Mountain view from the little village.
Mountain view from the little village.
In the little village is the Great Barn, a noisy place where you can shoot balls around.
In the little village is the Great Barn, a noisy place where you can shoot balls around.
View of the mountain from the Great Barn.
View of the mountain from the Great Barn.
The charming little village.
The charming little village.
Guests make their way along the SkyHike in the village.
Guests make their way along the SkyHike in the village.
Rock-climbing wall!
Rock-climbing wall!
Camp Highland Outpost has some great balancing for little kids!
Camp Highland Outpost has some great balancing for little kids!
Tightrope walking at Camp Highland Outpost, behind SkyHike in the village.
Tightrope walking at Camp Highland Outpost, behind SkyHike in the village.
Sunny places to eat in the village.
Sunny places to eat in the village.
Beautiful October day outside the cafeteria.
Beautiful October day outside the cafeteria.
The carving on the mountain.
The carving on the mountain.
You can take a bumpy ride on an old railroad.
You can take a bumpy ride on an old railroad.
Statue in a nice secluded area below the mountain near the great lawn.
Statue in a nice secluded area below the mountain near the great lawn.
View of the mountain from a secluded area at the side of the great lawn.
View of the mountain from a secluded area at the side of the great lawn.
Lake by the great lawn where the laser show is held some nights.
Lake by the great lawn where the laser show is held some nights.
Goats at the plantation.
Goats at the plantation.

Directions

Parking costs $10 and allows you to hike the mountain and watch the laser show on special nights. Bicyclists enter for free.
Once inside, you can buy tickets for all the activities at the base of the Skylift. You will get a wristband that allows you to enjoy almost all the activities. Ask for the meal plan to be included because it doesn't cost extra and it includes lunch (hot dog, burger, or chicken sandwich and drink)!
Admission to the activities with meal plan is $25 for adults and $20 for children aged 3-11. If I lived in Atlanta, I'd definitely buy an annual membership to this park.
The activities are usually only open on weekends, but the skylift is open every day except holidays 10am-5pm. Check the calendar.

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Visitor Ratings

Overall Visitor Rating: Unrated.

Last Updated Tue, 23 Dec 2014 13:58:45 GMT