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The Pup's Guide to Blue Ridge, Georgia

Date: March 14, 2018
Travel

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mountain-top-cabin-rentals-isabella-and-penelope-1.png Blue Ridge, Georgia is one of the Blue Ridge Mountains best-kept secrets when it comes to dog-friendly getaways. My husband and I took Isabella there with us for an autumn getaway shortly after we met, and I was blown away by how dog-friendly the area was. 

Now, we return to Blue Ridge about once to twice a year to escape the city and enjoy some quality time - just us and Isabella and Penelope. 

All that said, it’s surprising how little there is online regarding how pet-friendly Blue Ridge, GA is. We found out from our experiences. For that reason, we’re providing The Pup’s Travel Guide to Blue Ridge to tell you all about one of Fannin County’s best dog-friendly travel destinations!

The Town of Blue Ridge, GA

Blue Ridge screams southern mountain charm. 

blue-ridge-georgia.pngWith the center of town being a little over a mile long, Blue Ridge is one of the cutest mountain towns I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting. The streets are lined with shops and restaurants, the rail line still operates and runs through the center of town, and the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains are in view as far as the eye can see. 

When we visit Blue Ridge, we always plan to spend at least one or two day in town. Majority of the stores are dog-friendly, so we’ll peruse the shops with Isabella and Penelope in tow. After we do a bit of shopping, we’ll stop in our favorite wine bar or grab a bite at one of the restaurants with an outdoor patio. There are also a variety of breweries and wineries in the area, but we typically don’t venture outside of downtown Blue Ridge unless it’s for hiking.

Below are a few of our favorite shops and restaurants within the center of town:

isabella-and-penelope-blue-ridge-ga-2.pngFavorite Dog-Friendly Restaurants

  • Blue Ridge Cellars - This is our favorite spot to hang out in Blue Ridge. The second floor back patio is shaded for the dogs and overlooks the railroad. Whenever we first arrive in town, it’s great to grab a bottle of wine, sit and relax after our four-hour drive from Charlotte. It’s locally owned and the staff is beyond friendly!
  • Black Bear Bier Garten - Located next door to Blue Ridge Cellars, this Bier Garden is another great spot to hang out and enjoy the beautiful mountain weather. It shares a patio with the Cellars so you can always go back and forth between the two.
  • Harvest of Main - This restaurant is nothing short of amazing. The patio is located in the front of the building so you can watch the activities taking place on Main Street, and the patio is shaded for dogs. The food is all locally sourced and it’s delicious!
  • Masseria Kitchen + Bar - If you’re looking for some comfort food, Masseria is your place. The patio is on the main floor and also faces the railroad, and it’s enclosed during the colder months. It’s Italian food at its finest, and they have a great beer selection as well.

Favorite Dog-Friendly Stores

  • Love Dog & Cats Too - This boutique is the local pet store and it’s full of cute items, toys, and organic treats. They stock Up Country, Inc. collars and leads so we always get Isabella and Penelope new ones when we visit. 
  • Blue Ridge Mountain Outfitters - If you like Patagonia and other outdoor adventure brands like Yeti or NorthFace, you’ll want to check out this shop. They have a great selection and at great prices. 
  • Pezrok - This shop is one of the coolest local shops I’ve ever visited! It’s owned and operated by a Blue Ridge local, and it’s a variety of artistic products inspired by nature. The shop is full of driftwood carvings, petrified wood, onyx and ceramic sinks, dichroic glass art, jewelry, gems and minerals, and much more. Even if you’re not in the market to make a purchase, the quality of the items in Pezrok will blow your mind.
  • Presents of Mine - This boutique is full of unique gifts for the home. From decorative pillows and cutting boards to seasonal decor, this shop is super neat and has a lot to offer.
  • Blue Ridge Adventure Wear - This shop is your typical tourist shop, but it has some gems. It houses Kurgo products and tons of outdoor gear. If you forget anything you might need to go hiking, you’ll find it in here. Plus, they always have great deals going on.

Dog-Friendly Mountain Cabins

When it comes to staying in Blue Ridge, Georgia, there are a variety of dog-friendly lodging options. There are several inns and hotels in the area, but did you really go to the Blue Ridge Mountains if you didn’t stay in a cabin? 

And when it comes to dog-friendly cabin options, I highly recommend Mountain Top Cabin Rentals

Mountain Top Cabin Rentals offer a variety of dog-friendly mountain cabins in Blue Ridge and in neighboring towns like Mineral Bluff. Cabins offer beautiful mountain, river and wooded views and are always secluded. 

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One thing we really like about Mountain Top Cabin Rentals is that the cabins are always super clean, upscale, and stocked with most necessities such as linens and cookware. A lot of the dog-friendly cabins have amenities such as jacuzzis, air hockey, foosball, pool, smart TVs, grills, fire pits, and more. Cabins range in size so they can accommodate singles, couples, or groups.

We’ve used Mountain Top Cabin Rentals many times with Isabella and Penelope, and we couldn’t say enough good things about the dog-friendly cabins and customer service.

The Best Hiking Trails

isabella-and-penelope-blue-ridge-ga-hiking.pngOne difficulty dog owners face when going to the mountains on the east coast is that many hiking trails throughout the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountain ranges are not dog-friendly due to wildlife. Fortunately, hiking trails around Blue Ridge are pet-friendly for the most part.

Fannin County hosts a variety of trails taking hikers from the tops of mountains to some of the most beautiful waterfalls. Below are a few of our favorite trails to take Isabella and Penelope on.

  • Jacks River Falls - This trail takes you out to Jacks Waterfall in the Cohutta Wilderness Area, and it’s a 4.5-mile long trail through the rugged wilderness. 
  • Jacks River Trail - This trail is 16.5 miles long leading to Jacks River Falls and has some water crossings. 
  • Hemp Top Trail - This trail takes you to one of the highest points in the Cohutta Wilderness, and it is considered an advanced trail.
  • Fall Branch Falls - A super easy hike, this trail takes about 30 minutes roundtrip and shows you a double waterfall leading into a creek.
  • Aska Trails Area - 17 miles in length, this intermediate trail is open year-round and is also a biking trail.
  • Swinging Bridge - This easy hike takes you across a 260-foot suspended bridge that crosses the Toccoa River.
  • Long Creek Falls - Also an easy trail, Long Creek Falls trail is a gradual hike along a creek.
  • Three Forks - This 3.7-mile hike heads to Springer Mountain.
  • Springer Mountain - This intermediate hike is the starting point of the Appalachian Trail and leads to the summit.
  • Amicalola Falls & Trails - This easy trail leads you to the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River.

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Download this trail guide to get the trail access points.

Have a Question About Blue Ridge?

As you can tell, Blue Ridge has a lot to offer you and your pup. It’s a beautiful, relaxing getaway not lacking in an adventure! If you have any questions about anything I mentioned above or if we missed anything you’d recommend, let us know in the comments below.