Northwest Georgia is a beautiful place to get out and explore. Whether you’re looking to wander a nature trail, paddle the rivers, or sit back and enjoy the land, adventures await you in Rome and it’s surroundings! [Update: Find more about local hikes and trails here]
Berry College Recreation (and trails)
You can’t go wrong when you explore the largest contiguous campus in the world. Popular trails are
-Viking trail (3.47 miles one-way, paved)
-House of Dreams (2.5 miles one-way, moderate-strenuous)
-Reservoir (start at the beautiful Old Mill and hike about 1 mile uphill to find it)
And it’s always fun just to drive around and watch for animals (you might not need to go far).
Between the Rivers Farmers Market
Open Saturdays from May to October: 8am-11:30am, rain or shine.
Braves Baseball, Rome Braves
Get grass seats for just $5 ($2 on Tuesdays) and let your kids cheer the team on, get some energy out, and enjoy America’s favorite pass-time.
Cave Spring’s Rolater Park
Enjoy the scenery, fill a bottle with spring water, or cool off by dipping your toes in the cool creek.
Cloudland Canyon (Cloudland/Lookout Mountain; 75 min drive)
Though further from Rome, Cloudland Canyon is a beautiful park with a lot to offer. Hikes, waterfalls, views, rivers, canyons, playgrounds, picnic areas, and special events can all be found here. Probably the most popular hike is the (hundreds of) stairs from the top of the canyon to the gorgeous waterfalls in the canyon.
Watch for family farm days and other fun events.
Dillinger Park Pool (Cartersville)
There is a part of the pool area with shallow water for the little ones to play in.
ECO Center Wetland Demonstration Area (Ridge Ferry Park)
Whether you’re visiting Ridge Ferry Park, the Farmer’s Market, or the ECO Center, stop to take a stroll through the wetlands demonstration area (located to the left as you enter) to see several different plants and animals. You especially don’t want to miss the Spring blooms.
Though small, this park is fenced in and often quiet.
Etowah Indian Mounds State Park (Cartersville)
Teach your child about history at this unique state park.
GE Trails at Garrard Park
Stop by the old GE factory to explore several short quiet nature trails in the middle of an urban area. (Moderate, Flat)
Rome is a big area of Geocaching. Be on the lookout for our upcoming post about this, but until then, download the app. It’s like a treasure hunt, only simpler!
High Shoals Falls (Dallas, GA)
If you’re up for a scenic 45 minute drive from Rome, this is a fun place to picnic and dip with the kids.
Jackson Hill Trail
If I’m being honest, I have attempted this trail at least three times with my young children, and we’ve never made it far. Luckily, the beginning is flat and easy to access, and the kids enjoy just wandering. There is also a beautiful bridge located not too far into the trail, and the Rome Labyrinth shares a parking lot.
James H Floyd “Sloppy Floyd” State Park
Located a short drive up north, this park is a perfect place for an outing. The 1.7 mile round-trip hike to the Marble Mine is worth the effort, and pack a lunch to eat at one of the many picnic tables by the lake, or play at the playground.
Lawrence Plantation Pool
Not a member year-round? No problem-families are able to get a swim only membership just for the summer.
LCCL Strawberry Farm
Open April-June, this pick-your-own farm has delicious easy-access strawberries and a quiet patio to enjoy their soft-serve strawberry ice cream (cash or check only). Be sure to check their facebook page for daily opening updates.
Lock and Dam Park
A great local place for camping and picnics.
Marshall Forest Trail
Located just a bit down Horseleg Creek Road, Marshall Forest is a hidden getaway. Explore two self-guided nature trails within the forest, with plant identification tags and 20 stations with plaques written in Braille and English. The trail can be easily walked in 30 minutes.
Myrtle Hill Cemetery Tree Tour
Take your kids out to explore the wide variety of trees in historic Myrtle Hill Cemetery. More info in link.
This unique and artsy garden is worth the 30ish minute drive from Rome.
Pettit Creek Farms
Try out the petting zoo, or visit for a special event such as Christmas lights or the Pumpkin Fest.
Parks and Recreation, Rome
Learn more about all the parks in Rome.
Peek’s Park, Cedartown
Similar to Rome’s Fountains, Peek’s Park has a fun fountain area the kids can splash around in. If you’re there on the weekend, Check out Peek Park’s fourth Saturday Summer Concert Series.
Pettit Creek Farms (Cartersville)
See the petting zoo, Christmas lights, and other events held at various times throughout the year.
Pine Mountain Trails (Cartersville)
Just off the freeway of Cartersville’s Main Street exit, you can find yourself immersed in a picturesque hike to the top of Pine Mountain where you’ll find breathtaking views. (~2 miles one-way, moderate-strenuous).
Putt Putt Fun Center Mini Golf
It’s hard to go wrong with mini golf.
Red Top Mountain State Park (Cartersville)
More hiking with various trail distances and difficulty.
Ridge Ferry Park
Definitely the biggest and most popular park, Ridge Ferry also houses a Farmer’s Market every Wednesday and Saturday morning from May to October. Stop here for the ECO Center or to hop on the paved walking trail that runs throughout downtown Rome.
Though not as friendly for younger children, your older kids will enjoy kayaking, paddle boarding, or tubing with various excursion opportunities.
The Rock Garden, Calhoun
The Rock Garden is located behind a large Seventh Day Adventist Church on the way from Rome to Calhoun. It is a quick stop, but quiet and magical for any child (or adult). Highly recommended. Bring your camera.
Rocky Mountain Recreation Area
Enjoy the benefits of a beach without taking a trip to the beach. Rocky Mountain beach has had sand brought in for a nice lakeside beach experience. Trails, fishing, and camping also available.
Rolater Park & The Cave Spring (Cave Spring)
See “Cave Spring” above.
Another quick stop with great photo ops, the Rome Labrynth is a hidden gem right in the city. Park in the Visitor Center parking lot and head down the (steep) hill. Take time to meditatively walk the path, or let your kids just go crazy. My son got a kick out of the “race track.”
Rome Tour Challenges
If your children are a little older, take this opportunity to learn more about Rome by downloading the challenge app and following the clues of this scavenger hunt.
Currently running from behind the Recreation Center and on top of the levee through town and to the Braves back parking area, the paved trail running through town is 3.5 miles point to point, with extra trail here and there. Bathrooms located at Ridge Ferry Park. Stroller friendly.
Splash Pad, Rome Town Green
Every day in the summer from 10am-7pm, the fountains are running and ready for your little ones to cool off in. Let your child pick up a free lunch at the town green thanks to the summer feeding program grants.
Swimming, Northside Pool
Take advantage of this community pool and fun slide during Rome’s intense Summer heat.
Swimming, Rolater Lake (Cave Spring)
Rolater lake in Cave Spring is shaped like the state of Georgia and has the coldest water around. Swim from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
What else would you add?