Vogel State Park! This park holds a special place in my heart. Seven years ago my husband and I decided to go on our very first camping trip together as husband and wife. We decided to join his grandpa, Papa Silverhawk, to Vogel State Park. Papa was going to be holding a small event and be playing the flute so we wanted to show him our love and support.
During our first trip, we spent the majority of the time at the State Park and only went out to enjoy Helen, Georgia and hike Helton Creek Falls. This time around we wanted to explore a little more of the area. We spent more time at Helen, Georgia, hiked a few new hikes, and even tried some local restaurants.
- Arrived at Vogel State Park and set up camp.
- Headed to Helen, Georgia to check out the shops, try local wine, and eat some fudge. Took the scenic highway on our way to Helen, Georgia and stopped at several overloks.
- Headed to Helton Creek Falls to hike. Read more about it here.
- Went back to Vogel State Park and decided to hike Trahlyta Falls Spur Trail located around Lake Trahlyta.
- Headed back to camp for dinner.
- Star gazed and ate s’mores before heading to bed.
- Headed out to an overlook for sunrise. It was very foggy so no sunrise views for us that morning.
- Headed back to camp for breakfast and coffee.
- Chilled at camp for a few hours and took a nap. Side note: our mattress had a hole in it from our cat so we woke up early to go to Walmart and get a new mattress until we can get the other one fixed. We decided to go to the overlook and test our luck on seeing the sunrise. Original plans were to hike Bear Hair Gap Trail up to the Vogel Overlook for sunrise and have breakfast up there but after a cold sleepless night, we didn’t have the energy for it.
- We then headed off to explore DeSoto Falls which by the way has two waterfalls. Read all about it here.
- Headed back to camp for shower.
- Decided to have a nice anniversary dinner at a local restaurant. We went to Sicily’s Pizza, Pasta, and Subs on 305 Murphy Hwy, Blairsville, GA 30512.
- Went back to camp to secure our tarps. Then headed off to bed.
- It was pouring down rain. We slept in and waited for the rain to calm down some before breaking down camp and checking-out of Vogel State Park.
- Ate breakfast at Hole In The Wall in downtown Blairsville located at 12B Town Sq, Blairsville, GA 30512. I highly recommend this local restaurant for breakfast. It was very delicious and the staff was very friendly.
- Headed home after breakfast.
Original plans had a slight change due to the weather and minor bumps along the way but overall we had an amazing time.
Camping At Vogel State Park
I absolutely love camping at Vogel State Park. The park overall is very clean and the staff is always very friendly. All of the restrooms were clean as well which is a big plus for me. Campsites were pretty large in size with plenty of room. They also have backcountry options as well but make sure to make reservations in advanced. The campsites on both the main campgrounds and the backcountry fill up pretty quickly. There are cabins available closer to the lake as well.
While camping at Vogel State Park, there is plenty to do. The state park itself has several trails such as Bear Hair Gap Trail, Coosa Trail (has a backcountry area to it), Byron Herbert Reese Trail, and Lake Trahlyta Trail which leads to Trahlyta Falls Spur Trail. You can also find other trails in the sorrounding areas.
If camping at Vogel State Park during the summer, you have even more options, such as swimming at Lake Trahlyta, renting a paddle boat, biking, events, and much more. Make sure to visit this website to view everything that they are currently offering.
Vogel does camping by reservation only so make sure to reserve your campsite ahead of time. They do have a few walk in sites but they fill up quick as well. I recommend doing it 3-4 weeks before or 1-2 months if you plan on going during the summer season. You can make your reservations here.
Things To Do
Though Vogel State Park has a lot to offer, I always recommend to explore outside of the park as well. Here are a few spots that caught my interest or I have visited that are 30 minutes to an hour away from the park.
1. Helen, Georgia – This cute Bavarian town (pictures above) located in the northern mountains of Georgia has the cutest German charm to it. The entire town has Bavarian styled buildings. You can find a lot to do here like cute shops, local wineries, fudge shops, outdoor activities and some pretty amazing hiking trails.
2. Hiking – Besides hiking the trails that you can find in Vogel State Park, you can also hike some of the other trails near by. There is the Appalachian Trail which is best if you are going to hike it all the way through. There is also:
- Helton Creek Falls
- DeSoto Falls
- Blood Mountains and Freeman Loop Trail
- High Shoals Falls and Blue Hole Falls
- Byron Reece Trail
- Brasstown Bald Arkaqua Trail
Atlanta Trail was my best guide to the North Georgia Mountain hiking trails. You can also use All Trails.
3. Visit Brasstown Bald Mountain – Check out their visitor center found above the clouds overlooking Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina. Brasstown Bald Mountain is the tallest mountain in all of Georgia.
4. Tubing at the rivers – During my visit to Blairsville, I saw several signs to go tubing. I felt that at the time the water was just way to cold, especially after the recent coldfront but I am sure this is an exciting activity to do during warmer months. This link has the top 10 tubing locations in the area.
5. Wine Tasting – Besides the trails, outdoors, and history. The North Georgia Mountains are also known for their delicous wine and vineyards. You can find a few in the area here but I highly recommend Fox Winery or Habersham Winery both found in Helen, Georgia.
6. Try a new restaurant or coffe joint – I always recommend others to try new and local food in the area versus going to fast food restaurant such as McDonalds. It is always good to support local businesses. I also feel that it helps with the whole experience of exploring a new town. You can view all of the top local restaurants here.
- Hole In The Wall – For breakfast I highly recommend going to Hole In The Wall. We absolutely loved it. The pancakes are huge though. We ordered two pancakes each and I could barely finish one of them.
- Cabin Coffee Co. – A local coffee shop with numerous locations in several states. This coffee shop was on my list of things to do but sadly when we went it was still to early in the morning and they hadn’t opened yet. I will definitely be trying it next time we go visit this area.
- Sicily Pizza – This is another local restaurant serving Italian dishes and specializing mostly in pizzas. The food was very good but I was expecting a little more. Overall, I would go again. I had the eggplant lasagna and it was very delicious. (They don’t have a website but Google Sicily Pizza Blairsville GA and it should pop up).
There is a lot to do in this area so don’t hesitate on asking at the visitor center or gift shop at Vogel State Park for the top areas to go to. Even doing some quick searches on Google can lead you to many awesome adventures. I will be doing another trip to the mountains soon so I will be updating this post as I continue to learn more. If there is anything in particular that you would like for me to check out during my next visit please let me know in the comments below or DM me on Instagram.
Looks like a beautiful place. And you have some great some great tips on what to do.
Awe thank you. It really is a beautiful place to be at. Thank you for reading.
I love towns like this, but I have never heard of this one. Great post. Now I wanna go to Northern Georgia to have the same experiences. Is it just the state park that is outside of this little town? Or is there a National Park too? If you want to add some bonus material to this post especially under the “things to do”section you can add a trover widget. Its super easy. all you have to do is go to trover. Type in your destination and save items to your list. Then add the code to your blog post and you instantly get a detailed things to do list for your audience. Here is a better a tutorial https://aowanders.com/trover-could-be-the-death-of-the-travel-industry/
Adam, Thank you for reading. I love little towns like this too. I can’t wait to visit again in June. So they have a few state parks. Two in Helen, GA which is Unicoi State Park and Smithgall Woods State Park and one in Blairsville, GA which is Vogel State Park. There are a few others but they are a little further away. I will look into the Trover widget. It looks pretty cool and a very interesting way to share the things I did with my readers. Thank you for reading and thank you for sharing those tips with me. 🙂
I love how wild spaces can come to mean so much to us, by simply experiencing them with the ones we love.
You’ve done a great job with this guide – from the details on what to do in the park to the surrounding areas. And now I also really want pancakes for breakfast. 🙂
haha we had pancakes for dinner yesterday believe it or not. And thank you for reading. I agree. When you experience a place with someone close to you it becomes special. Glad you liked the guide and hope it creates some awesome memories for you one day.
It looks like an incredible place. I’d love to explore there.
That waterfall looks just like a place I visited in New Zealand too.
Oh how cool. I would love to visit New Zealand one day. Thank you for reading.