Providence Canyon State Conservation Park

The Top Choices Feature Georgia's "Little Grand Canyon," a Veterans Memorial, and a Bird Migratory Area.

Providence Canyon State Conservation Park

(Lumpkin, GA) Since southwest Georgia is sweltering during summer, cooler months are the best time to visit this sunny park. Called "Georgia's Little Grand Canyon," this park's beautiful, multi-hued canyons are actually a result of poor farming practices. The interpretive center was recently refurbished and is popular with geology students. Visitors can hike ten miles of trails around and through the canyons. Although the park has no campground, a few backpacking sites are found along the trail, and nearby Florence Marina State Park has camping and cottages along Lake Walter F. George.

Georgia Veterans Memorial State Park

(Cordele, GA) This southwest Georgia park is a short drive from I-75 and is located on 7,000-acre Lake Blackshear. Camping and cottages are near the water's edge and offer great view of cypress trees draped with Spanish moss (making beautiful silhouettes against a winter sky). The museum offers a retreat from the cold and houses uniforms, weapons, medals and other items from the Revolutionary War through the Gulf War. Aircraft and armored vehicles from WWI through Vietnam are adjacent to the museum.

The park also has an excellent golf course and model airplane flying field for those who enjoy cooler weather. Civil War buffs may want to visit the museum at Jefferson Davis Memorial State Historic Site nearby.

General Coffee State Park

(Douglas, GA) This park has an elegantly decorated cabin that would be perfect for a romantic getaway. The master bedroom has a fireplace, four-poster bed and soft quilts. The bath features a clawfoot tub and stone fireplace, and the living room overlooks the rocking chair porch. Other amenities include stained glass windows, a television and VCR (not typically found in state park cottages). Winter weather is usually mild enough for visitors to walk through the park's Heritage Farm with log cabins, a corn crib and more.

A hiking trail and boardwalk wind through wetlands with cypress trees draped in Spanish moss, a pitcher plant bog, and sandhill ridges which house rare gopher tortoises. Hiking these areas during winter offers a new perspective of the grasses and vines which turn gold, red and brown during winter. Migratory birds also flock through this area.


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