Red Top Mountain State Park in Acworth, GA is known for its amazing location right on Lake Allatoona. This state park — just 35 miles north of Atlanta — is perfect for swimming, boating, water sports, fishing, hiking, and biking.
In addition to all the great things to do at Red Top Mountain State Park, they also have 20 brand new, beautiful cabins right on the water, 93 camping spots, and a lakeside yurt, so you can make a true vacation out of a visit here.
With amazing accommodations, a beautiful lake, and activities galore, this is one Georgia State Park that’s definitely worth a visit! From things to do, to places to stay, to trails to hike — here are 13+ awesome ideas for your awesome lakeside getaway at Red Top Mountain State Park.
What To Do at Red Top Mountain State Park
Cross the cool truss bridge on Red Top Mountain Road to get to the park, and get ready for all things lake related! With the 12,000-acre Lake Allatoona as a backdrop, Red Top offers a lot in the way of water fun.
Get out on the water. You can bring your own boat, or rent one from one of the nearby marinas to enjoy a day out on the water. There’s even a marina inside Red Top Mountain State Park — Park Marina — that offers boat rentals. There are also two boat ramps, and two boat docks within the park. Get your bathing suits, water skis, and fishing poles ready — Lake Allatoona is ideal for swimming, water sports, and fishing.
Swimming. For those who are ready for the beach, Red Top Mountain State Park has a swimming beach that’s perfect for spending time in the water in the summertime! It’s nestled in a cove and surrounded by trees — making it the perfect place to cool off from the heat of a Georgia summer.
Mountain Biking. The 4-mile Iron Hill Trail is open to both hikers and bikers, and offers pretty views of the shoreline along the way. This trail is part of Georgia State Parks’ Muddy Spokes Club — a club that challenges bikers to get out and tackle the trails.
Archery, Tennis, and more. You can also find archery programs, picnic shelters, tennis courts, and, of course — hiking.
Hiking at Red Top
While it may be best known for its lake, Red Top is also a must-visit for hikers. With more than 15 miles of trails that wind through the forested park for every type of skill level, the hiking trails here are the best!
The popular Homestead Trail is a 5.5-mile trail that takes you through some of the most beautiful parts of the park. Part of the trail is a 3.5-mile loop, that follows the shores of Lake Allatoona for half its length. Needless to say, the views from this trail are amazing! Definitely worth doing, and we highly recommend it. Our kids loved this trail, and were happy to walk down to the water and explore.
The Iron Hill Trail is another popular trail for hikers — and as we mentioned above — bikers. This graveled trail is a 3.9-mile loop that winds along the banks of the lake through a historic area that was once home to an active iron mining community in the mid-1800s.
Fun Fact: Red Top Mountain was named for the soil’s rich red color that was caused by the high iron ore content in the area.
The Sweetgum Trail is a great 3.5-mile loop that starts in the Visitor Center parking lot. This trail is a great one to explore, and takes you from the Visitor Center to the Trading Post and the Campground Trail — so if you’re camping, you can access this trail without having to drive to a trailhead.
For those hiking with little ones, the .75-mile paved Lakeside Trail is a great choice. This trail also starts at the Visitor Center, and makes a loop around the shore of the lake for great views. The 1869 Vaughan cabin is located right along the trail. This one is great for little hikers, and is suitable for wheelchairs and strollers.
For beginners, either the Osprey Loop Trail or the White Tail Trail are good choices. Both trails are only about a mile — and you get some good views too! The White Tale Trail takes you to a scenic point at the edge of the lake, and the Osprey Loop takes you through a forest, along a stream, and to two viewing platforms.
While you’re hiking, make sure to take part in some geocaching too! There are lots of fun caches hidden here, including one that’s a part of the Georgia State Parks GeoTour. The Homestead Trail had quite a few geocaches — so that’s a good place to start!
Brand New, Totally Amazing Red Top Mountain State Park Cabins
With so much to do at this state park — you’ll want to stay a week to take it all in. Enter: 20 brand spanking new cabins that you’ll have to see to believe.
When you think of cabins, I’m sure you’re not thinking of the accommodations you’ll find at Red Top. The cabins here are immaculately done, and just so gorgeous. With high ceilings, screened porches overlooking the water, beautiful decor, and wood-burning stoves in the living rooms, the cabins here are just amazing.
The new cabins here can sleep anywhere from 6 and 10 people, and they offer 2-bedroom/1-bath, 2-bedroom/2-bath, and even 3-bedroom/2 bath cabin options.
A stay overnight in a rental cabin would be a perfect fit for a family vacation, or a gathering of friends.
You’ll find some great amenities here, like central heat and air, cable TVs, fire pits, picnic tables, grills, large bathrooms, and modern kitchens with everything you’ll need to make great meals. They also offer handicap-accessible cabins, and pet-friendly ones as well.
One of our favorite details was the doors in both bedrooms and the living room that led out to the screened porch, because the screened porch is the true star of the cabins. All of the cabins overlook the water, and the views of the lake are awesome, so spending time on the porch is a must! The porch runs the length of the cabin, with plenty of rocking chairs and a dining table so you can enjoy your meals lake-side.
The fire pit, picnic table, and grill are all located right next to your cabin — so again, you’ve got great views while roasting your marshmallows over the fire.
The cabins are located in their own little village area, and it comes complete with its own playground and picnic pavilion. My kids loved the playground here – and its location also offers great water views!
The cabins are really great, and during a stay here my 11-year-old said, “This cabin is the best cabin I’ve ever seen!” I couldn’t agree more.
Camping at Red Top
Camping. In addition to the rental cottages, a spacious campground can also be found at Red Top.
They’ve got 93 campsites for tents, trailers, or RVs, a pioneer campground, and the yurt. The campground is large and spacious, with some of the campsites located right on the water. You can make site-specific reservations online, 13 months in advance.
Yurt. Have you ever stayed in a yurt? Red Top Mountain State Park has one yurt, that’s located in the campground area of the park. It can sleep 6, and offers views of the water from the back porch. There is a fan for the warmer months, and a space heater for the winter months. It’s a really cool way to camp, without all the set-up.
Looking for more adventures in the area? There are quite a few experiences nearby that you’ll love.
- Tellus Science Museum: This 12,000-square foot science museum is one of our absolute favorites! You can spend an entire day here checking out all the exhibits, and kids love the fossil digging and gem panning.
- Booth Western Art Museum: It’s the second-largest art museum in Georgia and and houses the largest permanent exhibition space for Western American art in the country. It’s amazing!
- Etowah Indian Mounds State Historic Site: Etowah Mounds is the most intact Mississippian Culture site in the Southeast. There’s a museum, a nature trail, and six earthen mounds for you to explore.
- Allatoona Pass Battlefield: Allatoona Pass is a historically significant location due to its role in two major incidents during the American Civil War. This site is managed by Red Top Mountain State Park, and is just 5 minutes away.
Disclosure: Thanks to Red Top Mountain for hosting me and my family. Opinions here are all our own, always.