Okay, so if we’re being really technical with it, the first day of summer isn’t for another month. Despite the fact that some temperatures and levels of humidity have already risen to extreme proportions, we’re still in the spring season. Which means before the mosquitoes hit in full effect before the temps get unbearably hot, and before the humidity challenges your wardrobe, take a look at these 11 nature preserves in Georgia that warrant an entire day spent outdoors.
1. Morningside Nature Preserve
Morningside Nature Preserve in Georgia is a small but mighty place to explore. Imagine being in the middle of the preserve, surrounded by greenery and the sounds of nature, with complete solitude. This preserve was initially constructed to stop the destruction of over 30-acres of forest, and we couldn’t be more thrilled that they did it. The address for Morningside Nature Preserve is 2020 Lenox Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30324
2. Cascade Springs Nature Preserve
Cascade Springs Nature Preserve has quite the unique history. During the Civil War, soldiers were convinced that the springs were a miracle and had healing powers. However, really it was the silica, potassium chloride, calcium carbonate and other vital minerals which were naturally occurring in the water that made all the difference. Today, visitors can still enjoy the springs and the surrounding area which is one of the oldest forests extant in Atlanta city limits. The address for Cascade Springs Nature Preserve is 2852 Cascade Rd SW, Atlanta, GA 30311.
3. Autrey Mill Nature Preserve & Heritage Center
Perhaps a hidden gem natural preserve in Georgia, Autrey Mill Nature Preserve & Heritage Center is a unique place where visitors can learn about history and nature in one. Despite being right next to a busy area in Johns Creek, the level of solitude and serenity you’ll find at Autrey Mill is unparalleled. The address for Autrey Mill Nature Preserve & Heritage Center is 9770 Autrey Mill Rd, Johns Creek, GA 30022.
4. Big Trees Forest Preserve
This 30-acre nature preserve in Sandy Springs, Georgia is quite the natural beauty, especially in the springtime. The trees and flora are vibrant in color and the water levels for the nearby streams and waterfalls are in abundance. Get a dose of Georgia nature, and also check out some gargantuan trees while you’re at it. The address for Big Trees Forest Preserve is 7645 Roswell Rd NE, Sandy Springs, GA 30350.
5. Blue Heron Nature Preserve
This 30-acre haven for nature and wildlife has been preserved in an urban environment for a reason. Protecting the natural landscapes of what remains in Atlanta, Blue Heron Nature Preserve is a wonderful example of untouched beauty. The address for Blue Heron Nature Preserve is 4055 Roswell Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30342.
6. Daniel Johnson Nature Preserve
You’ll find that a lot of the nature preserves are located in or around Atlanta, and with good reason. Nature preserves are doing exactly that—preserving nature, especially when areas have been destroyed due to urbanization and the like. Daniel Johnson Nature Preserve in Atlanta is perhaps one of the smaller preserves, but that doesn’t make it any less special. Walk the trails and pathways for a unique experience in nature. The address for Daniel Johnson Nature Preserve is 1301 Beech Valley Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30306.
7. Reynolds Nature Preserve
Reynolds Nature Preserve is the perfect place to get a slice of nature without really leaving the city. A peaceful nature retreat in Clayton County, Reynolds Nature Preserve allows for relaxation and a welcomed break from the hectic nature of life. Bring the whole family to walk the trails and see some of the animals this nature preserve holds. The address for Reynolds Nature Preserve is 5665 Reynolds Rd, Morrow, GA 30260.
8. Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve
Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve is a one-of-a-kind, 28-acre wildlife nature preserve which includes many different types of terrains. You’ll find wetlands, upland forests, pine forests and more all throughout this preserve. This means that the opportunity to see all different types of flora and fauna in one day is right here. The address for Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve is 2580 Pine Bluff Dr, Decatur, GA 30033.
9. Dauset Trails Nature Center
Dauset Trails Nature Center is definitely a wonderful place to take the whole family. Beyond the nature aspect of the preserve, it also focuses on wildlife preservation, too, with an abundance of animals to see and enjoy. Spend the day hiking through the preserve’s trails but also kick back with a few rare animals, too. The address for Dauset Trails Nature Center is 360 Mt Vernon Church Rd, Jackson, GA 30233.
10. Clinton Nature Preserve
Over 200-acres of pure natural beauty. Clinton Nature Preserve has been a celebrated place in Georgia for many years now. Walking, hiking, biking—you name it, people come here to do it. It’s not just the trails and nature aspect that make this preserve special, it’s the serene lake and picnic tables, too. The address for Clinton Nature Preserve is 8720 Ephesus Church Rd, Villa Rica, GA 30180.
11. Sandy Creek Nature Center
Sandy Creek Nature Center is an all-encompassing spot for visitors of all ages. This center features live animal exhibits, nature trails throughout and plenty of space to enjoy a bit of the wildlife that Athens, Georgia has to offer. Bring the whole family for a day well spend and enjoy this preserve that has been around since the early 1970s. The address for Sandy Creek Nature Center is 205 Old Commerce Rd, Athens, GA 30607.
Let’s keep this list going! Feel free to add your favorite Georgia nature preserves in the comments section. Otherwise, if you’re looking for more outdoorsy things to do in Georgia, then take a look at the
dock camping at Okefenokee Swamp.