Finding a place with snow in or near Atlanta is not easy, but it’s not impossible. Snow Atlanta-style is a bit different than real snow, but perfect for southerners who don’t get to see the real stuff often.
OK, yes, we remember those few years that Atlanta, Georgia transformed into a winter wonderland…but those are rare and short-lived.
If you are thinking, “But I want to find REAL snow near me!” — part of the beauty of living in Atlanta is we are within driving distance to many great ski resorts in North Carolina and Tennessee (and even one in Alabama). Your family can still find winter adventures to enjoy snow and skiing near Atlanta!
Here’s our family fun guide on where to see snow and go skiing in Atlanta (or nearby).
‘SNOW’ MANY REASONS TO HEAD TO LANIER ISLANDS
Anyone who says it rarely snows in the South has never been to Margaritaville at Lanier Islands during the holiday season. License to Chill Snow Island is now open, where snow will fall daily to line the “slopes” of Blizzard Mountain, a 575-foot-long, eight-story high snow tubing ride. Snow Island offers ice skating, amusement rides, snow play, and more! Visits with Santa are also available on select dates.
Winter Season Passes for unlimited visits and rides this season are on sale now at a discounted price of just $79.99 (Regularly $99.99). Sale runs through 11/29/22.
SNOW NEAR ME? FIND REAL SNOW NEAR ATLANTA AT BEECH MOUNTAIN
Whether you have young kids who have never seen snow, or older kids wanting to return to the slopes, the ski resort town of Beech Mountain, North Carolina is one of our favorite winter escapes within driving distance of Atlanta.
BEECH MOUNTAIN IN A NUTSHELL
This small town, nestled against the slopes of the Beech Mountain Resort, is an ideal place for a family snow-cation. The town, at an elevation of 5,506 feet above sea level, has a free youth sledding area open all winter, which my kids LOVED. Sledding and snow play? Yes, please!
The resort also offers skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, ice skating, and various ski and snowboard lessons for all ages of children. (Don't worry! They have adult programs too.)
Read More: BEECH MOUNTAIN SKI RESORT: A GREAT FAMILY SNOW VACATION DESTINATION
SKI, SKATE AND TUBE AT BEECH MOUNTAIN
Beech Mountain has lift tickets options for a half day, full day, and night skiing. If you decide a half-day on the slopes is enough, or want to take a break, skating and tubing session tickets are available separately from lift tickets and are good for two hours.
So if you'd like to experience tubing, skating, or just the various shops in the village without ever buying a lift ticket and hitting the slopes -- it's totally doable, no skiing required.
LODGING AT BEECH MOUNTAIN
The town offers a broad range of lodging to fit most needs and budgets. Here are some of our favorites:
- Best Shuttle To Resort: In winter, the Beech Alpen Inn is a snow scene and you can walk to the slopes or you can catch a complimentary shuttle to Ski Beech village about a mile away.
- Best Family-Friendly Spot: With an amazing indoor pool, playground, hot tub, and more -- Pinnacle in Beech Mountain is the perfect family-friendly spot.
- Best Condo: This Cozy Beech Mountain Condo is just 2 miles to Beech Mountain Ski Resort and features access to an indoor pool and more.
INSIDE AND OUTSIDE THE ATLANTA PERIMETER
SNOW MOUNTAIN IN STONE MOUNTAIN PARK
Note: Stone Mountain Park’s Snow Mountain has again been canceled for the 2022-2023 season (November 2022 - February 2023).
Snow Mountain is an affordable and great option for families in the Atlanta metro area to enjoy winter family fun in the snow without the hassle of driving for hours.
Snow Mountain at Stone Mountain Park is the best place to find snow in Atlanta. Snow Mountain has tube runs, sledding hills for the little ones at Avalanche Alley, a snow play area, snow man center and more.
Read More: SNOW MOUNTAIN GA: YOUR COMPLETE GUIDE FOR "SNOW MUCH FUN"
WINTER WONDERLAND AT LAKE LANIER ISLANDS
Play in the snow all day and then take in the beautiful Lakeside Lights Spectacular at night with an All-Access Pass at Lake Lanier Islands!
License to Chill at Snow Island has snow tubing, ice skating, carnival rides, an area for making snow angels and playing in the snow, and after all that -- you can make s'mores and sip hot cocoa.
Daily passes and season passes are available. This year, License to Chill at Snow Island will be open November 19, 2022 - February 26, 2023.
Read More: LAKE LANIER LIGHTS: LAKESIDE LIGHTS SPECTACULAR RETURNS
SNOWIN' AT THE STATION
After ice skating, there is still a lot of holiday fun to be had within the Atlantic Station complex...including snow!
Set to the soundtrack provided by Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Atlantic Station has integrated their holiday tree lights, cafe lights surrounding Atlantic Green, all-new custom jumbotron animated video, and SNOW (!) shows into one spectacular celebration that occurs every hour from 5-9 p.m. Monday – Sunday this holiday season. This is all part of their free Celebration at the Station event.
Celebration at the Station will run from November 19, 2022 thru January 3, 2023.
Read More: ATLANTIC STATION ICE SKATING TIPS AND TRICKS
NORTH CAROLINA SKI AND TUBING RESORTS
If you can't find snow in Atlanta, the next best thing is to head north to the mountains of North Carolina. North Carolina ski resorts have snow making capabilities, so you are guaranteed to see some of the white stuff, even if the weather doesn't cooperate.
Highlands Outpost, formerly known as Scaly Mountain Outdoor Center, in Scaly Mountain, NC is a snow tubing resort that's perfect for a family who isn't interested in skiing -- you just want to enjoy the snow!
No experience needed to fly down Highlands Outpost's snow tubing lanes. And a "magic carpet" will even take you back to the top, so you can do it again and again. Your kids must be at least 42 inches tall and at least 4 years old to tube the big hill, but they also have a kiddie slope for little ones.
This resort is only 15 minutes from Dillard, GA, so it makes for a great weekend getaway or even a day trip! (They have ice skating too!)
Read More: THE 9 COOLEST PLACES FOR INCREDIBLE SNOW TUBING IN NC
HAWKSNEST SNOW TUBING IN SEVEN DEVILS, NC
With 30 lanes of snow tubing, Hawksnest Snow Tubing in Seven Devils, NC is recognized for having the largest snow tubing park on the East Coast. This place is all about the snow tubing!
The lanes here are 400-1,000 feet long and have three moving carpet lifts to bring you back to the top.
And if the weather doesn't cooperate, they have snow-making capabilities, so you and your fellow winter adventurers are guaranteed to experience snow conditions. Ages 3+.
Stay Here: Cozy Condo
APPALACHIAN SKI IN BLOWING ROCK, NC
Appalachian Ski Mtn. in Blowing Rock, NC is a great ski resort for a beginner or a family.
With 10 slopes, 3 terrain parks and a panoramic outdoor ice arena, there is an adventure waiting for every member of the family.
The Appalachian Ski school is the only ski resort in the Southeast region to be an official Burton Learn To Ride Center. They have ice skating here too!
Read More: APPALACHIAN SKI MOUNTAIN NC: AN AWESOME BEGINNER SLOPE
THANK YOU to Stuffed Suitcase for the Ultimate Ski Trip Packing List!
CATALOOCHEE IN MAGGIE VALLEY, NC
The Cataloochee Ski Area is located in the Great Smoky Mountains, which makes it very convenient to visit from Atlanta.
With a variety of terrain for beginner skiers and experts alike, the Cataloochee experience offers something for everyone.
Multiple snow tube runs are available at Tube World -- just down the street from the ski resort.
Stay Here: Quality Inn & Suites Maggie Valley
SAPPHIRE VALLEY IN SAPPHIRE, NC
The Sapphire Valley Ski Resort is the closest ski resort to the Atlanta metro area -- only 2.5 hours away! It's so close that it's almost like finding snow in Atlanta, plus it provides families with a chance to experience skiing.
This is a bigger resort with skiing and snow boarding. Be sure to check out the Frozen Falls Tube Park, as there are no age or height restrictions.
Stay Here: Fairway Forest
SUGAR MOUNTAIN IN SUGAR MOUNTAIN, NC
The largest ski area in North Carolina is a favorite ski resort for many experienced skiers who can't fly out West or go up North. Sugar Mountain Ski Resort has all the winter activities!
In addition to skiing and snowboarding, they've got an outdoor ice skating rink and snow tubing, too. This resort offers a variety of winter fun for the whole family.
Stay Here: Wonderful Mountain House
WOLF RIDGE SKI RESORT IN MARS HILL, NC
The new and improved Wolf Ridge Ski Resort has gone through a major renovation and added 15 additional acres of ski terrain, a new Quad Lift and a new Terrain Park. That 15 additional acres takes Wolf Ridge Ski Resort to 82 total acres of terrain on which to ski! They also have snow tubing, and offer skiing lessons.
It's conveniently located just 5 miles off I-26, making it a great option for families looking for a great winter destination near Atlanta.
Stay Here: Comfort Inn Mars Hill
ALABAMA AND TENNESSEE SKI RESORTS
Still no snow in Atlanta? Here are a few other neighboring states with snow capabilities.
OBER GATLINBURG IN GATLINBURG, TN
The only ski resort in Tennessee is Ober Gatlinburg! It's located in the popular, family-friendly destination of Gatlinburg, TN.
A trip here makes a perfect long weekend or even a week-long family trip. With so many things to do in Gatlinburg, even the family member who is not fond of snow and skiing will surly find other fun things to do.
Make plans to take a ride on the Aerial Tramway or the Scenic Sky Chair Ride to get great views of the snowy mountains high above the trees.
Stay Here: Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Gatlinburg, TN
Read More: OBER GATLINBURG, WINTER MAGIC & GATLINBURG’S BEST WINTER EXCITEMENT
CLOUDMONT SKI RESORT, LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, AL
Note: No info has yet been released about their 2022-2023 plans. Check their Facebook page for updates.
About an hour and a half from Birmingham is a small Southern town called Mentone. The elevation of the mountain is 1,800 feet, so it can be a bit colder there than down in the valley.
However, Cloudmont Ski Resort doesn’t wait for Mother Nature. The resort has advanced snow-making equipment. As long as the temperature gets below 28, there is snow for skiing or just playing around.
Stay Here: Intimate Treehouse Retreat
SNOW ATLANTA STYLE: NEIGHBORHOOD SLEDDING HILLS IN ATLANTA
So it may not happen often, but it does snow in Atlanta from time-to-time. At least every other year or so we get enough snow in Atlanta to bring out the sleds, hit the hills, and play in the snow.
Here are our favorite neighborhood sledding hills.
Bobby Jones Golf Course, Buckhead. As long as the ground is covered with white, you'll find neighbors all over Bobby Jones Golf Course off Howell Mill Road in Buckhead. (Note: The golf course was redesigned in 2018, so jury is out if you'll still be able to sled here.)
Piedmont Park, Midtown. The hill in front of the Park Tavern is a great spot for sledding. Bonus: You can get some hot chocolate at the Park Tavern.
Here are more places from our readers. Know others? Tell us and we'll add them.
- Chastain Park, Intown.
- Cross Creek Golf Course, Buckhead.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT WINTER FUN IN ATLANTA
- YOUR ATLANTA VACATION
- ICE SKATING ATLANTA 2022: The Best Rinks For Kids, Teens & Adults
- ATLANTA WINTER: 51+ Super Fun Things To Do In Winter Your Kids Will Love
- SKI RESORTS: Top Ski Resorts Every Atlanta Family Should Visit
- OUTDOOR GAMES: 53 Outdoor Games Your Kids Will Love During Any Season
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