Dahlonega is a small town set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of north Georgia. Dahlonega rose to prominence during the early and mid 19th century as the center of the country’s first gold rush in the north Georgia mountains. The town was even the location of a branch of the U.S. Mint until it was shut down at the onset of the Civil War. Dahlonega never regained its prominence and remains a small town today (the administration building of the University of North Georgia now stands where the U.S. Mint was). Dahlonega, however, is well worth a visit as its quaint town square serves as a relaxing way to spend an afternoon. In the middle of the square stands the old courthouse, which now houses the Dahlonega Gold Museum Historic Site. A visit won’t take too long, but visitors can learn more about the gold rush that made Dahlonega famous. Around the square are various stores, cafes, restaurants, and other businesses. Some of the stores offer different home goods, while others are more specialized, such as an olive oil shop and a candle shop. There are art galleries featuring work from local artists. There are a number of cafes and restaurants, such as a coffeehouse, a pizzeria, and an oyster bar. Finally, there are several north Georgia wineries that offer wine tastings in the Dahlonega town square, including Tiger Mountain Vineyards, Habersham Winery, Crane Creek Vineyards, and Stonewall Creek Winery. We spent a late afternoon and early evening in the town square and had a fun time just relaxing and wandering in and out of shops, trying some wine, and getting a bite to eat. We recommend visiting Dahlonega and exploring the town square for yourself.
Tip: The town is festively decorated for Christmas, adding to the ambiance of your visit.