As summer swelters here in the South, sometimes you got to go up to cool down. Just over a two hour drive from the Atlanta area, the Highlands-Cashiers region of North Carolina is right across the state line—and at an approximate elevation of 4,000 feet, the region offers a real retreat from the heat. With an abundance of family-friendly hikes, waterfalls and other outdoor activities, the mountain-top mecca is the perfect place to chill with children. Here is your guide to where to stop, stay and see in the area.

The Dillard House

We suggest you time your trip to take in a meal at the Dillard House, where you will enjoy a smorgasboard of Southern cuisine served family-style. Look for the Hollywood-style sign on the side of the hill as you approach town. Be sure to visit the petting zoo and stables back behind the parking lot before your meal, or, if you want to break up the trip a bit more, arrange a trail ride with the Dillard House stables in advance.
1158 Franklin Street
Dillard, Ga

Where does your family retreat to beat the heat? Tell us below! –Phebe Wahl Photos courtesy of Goats on the Roof via Facebook, The Dillard House via Facebook, Jackson Hole Mine via Facebook, High Hampton Inn via Facebook, and The Old Edward’s Inn via Facebook