Atlanta lacks little when it comes to entertaining the family, but if it’s the frosty fun you’re craving you might feel left out in the cold. The good news is that snowy spots are only a short drive from the heart of Hotlanta. Read on to find out where to plan your family’s next brr-illiant afternoon of fun.
Photo: Lanier Islands
Lanier Islands’ Winter Adventure
If you’ve been to Lanier Islands for the drive-through light spectacular and think you’ve done Lanier Islands, you’ll be delighted to re-visit this Atlanta area standard bearer this year. Winter Adventure is a snowy playscape where the water park normally operates during the summer months. From a snow lagoon where the wave pool used to be to a bubble ice skating rink (think your normal rink, then imagine it with – yes – bubbles), there’s no limit to the fun your crew can crank out during an afternoon at Lanier Islands’ Winter Adventure. Open Nov. 27 to Feb. 15; see website for hours and pricing, which vary by date.
7000 Lake Lanier Islands Parkway
Photo: Stone Mountain Park
Stone Mountain’s Snow Mountain
A trip to Snow Mountain is certainly the closest winter snow experience to Atlanta. Here you can spend a fun-filled day playing across five football fields of frosty manmade snow. Catch a ride on a family-sized tube down a 400-foot hill in Avalanche Alley or simply spend your time making snowmen and snow angels on the lawn. Note there are some height-restrictions for the tubing rides, but there are snowy experiences designed for all ages. Entrance to Snow Mountain is separate from basic park admission (and park entry and parking are extra). Open Nov. 21 to Feb. 28; see website for hours and pricing which vary by date.
1000 Robert E. Lee Boulevard
Stone Mountain, Ga
Photo: Scaly Mountain via Facebook
Scaly Mountain Outdoor Center
For snow tubing and ice skating, head to Scaly Mountain just across the Georgia border in between Dillard and Highlands, North Carolina. It’s only a two hour drive, so you can easily do it as a day trip. However, if you want to make a weekend of it, there are plenty of family-friendly accommodations nearby. Scaly offers three snow lines for individual tubers (must be 4 years old and 42”tall) and a kiddie slope for kids under four. You can also try out some ice skating in their outdoor rink and trout fishing in stocked ponds (if they aren’t frozen over). Snow tubing is $25 for adults and children per 4 hour session and the kiddie slope for young tubers is $12 per 2 hour session. See website for hours of operation, which vary by date.
7420 Dillard Road
Scaly Mountain, Nc
Photo: Sapphire Valley via Facebook
Sapphire Valley Ski Area
Located about 2 ½ hours from Atlanta, Sapphire Valley offers the closest ski lodge experience. It’s ski courses consist of a 1600 foot main run with a vertical drop of 200 feet and a beginner slope with modest vertical drop of 50 feet and a moving carpet lift – and did somebody say “ski school?” Yep. They did, and Sapphire Valley has it.
127 Cherokee Trail
Sapphire Valley, Nc
Have you taken your tots to play in the snow? Tell us about it below!
—Rachel Quartarone & Shelley Massey