- Northside Trail of the Atlanta BeltLine Founded in 2005, the Atlanta BeltLine is a network of multi-use trails that connects numerous neighborhoods, public parks, and mass transit stations. The BeltLine comprises several trails, namely the Northside Trail, West End Trail, Eastside Trail, Southwest Connector Trail, and the Westside Trail. The Northside Trail is a mile long and offers a picturesque view. The rougher terrain makes for a challenging hike as well. Hikers will come across a railroad trestle that serves as a railroad corridor for the BeltLine. The Northside Trail is also less crowded and more secluded as compared to the other Atlanta BeltLine trails. How to get there: Accessible through Tanyard Creek Park, the Northside Trail is located 5 miles north of Downtown Atlanta.
- Lionel Hampton-Beecher Hills Park A combination of two parks, the Lionel Hampton-Beecher Park is named after jazz musician Lionel Hampton and the nearby Beecher Hills School. This 100-acre nature preserve, which is one of the more developed nature preserves in Atlanta, offers around 4 miles of natural-surface and paved trails. Those hiking along these paths will encounter three kinds of champion trees: tulip poplar, sugar maple, and umbrella magnolia. How to get there: The Lionel Hampton-Beecher Hills Park is located at 310 Willis Mill Road, Atlanta, Georgia, around 6 miles west of downtown Atlanta.
- Cascade Springs Nature Preserve Trail Known as one of the oldest surviving forests in Atlanta, the 120-acre Cascade Springs Nature Preserve is a picturesque area that’s perfect for hiking. Throughout the expansive trail and amid towering tees, hikers can spot a variety of wildlife such as deer, guinea, turtles, and birds. You’ll also spot Civil War earthworks along Utoy Creek, a battle site. A tumbling waterfall awaits those who pass the 1.3-mile mark after the Spring Trail junction. How to get there: The Cascade Springs Nature Preserve is located at 2852 Cascade Road southwest, Atlanta, Georgia.
- Morningside Nature Trail A woodland retreat in the midst of Atlanta, the Morningside Nature Trail features tall trees, waist-high grasses, and plenty of wildlife. The trail is located within the Morningside Nature Preserve, a woodsy 33.1-acre area in northeast Atlanta. Dogs are also welcome. In fact, the river below the suspension bridge is known as Atlanta’s unofficial dog beach. The Morningside Nature Trail starts on Lenox Road. How to get there: The Morningside Nature Preserve is located at 2020 Lenox Road northeast, Atlanta, Georgia, less than 7 miles northwest of Downtown Atlanta.
- Fernbank Forest Trail With towering trees, vibrant foliage, and various plant and animal species, the Fernbank Forest looks like it came straight out of a storybook. Located within the Fernbank Museum of Natural History, the 65-acre urban old-growth forest has a 2-mile winding path that starts at the museum’s WildWoods exhibit. The forest is only accessible to guests who pay the museum’s entrance fee. How to get there: The Fernbank Forest is located at 767 Clifton Road, Atlanta, Georgia.
- Oldcastle Nature Trail Also known as the Marcus Center Trail, the Oldcastle Nature Trail is a great place to go for a quiet walk. The trail, which was developed by the Marcus Autism Center, is a relatively easy and fun path with a large grass meadow along the way. How to get there: Oldcastle Nature Trail is located at Briar Vista Terrace NE, Atlanta, Georgia, less than 10 miles northeast of Downtown Atlanta.
- Zonolite Trail Located in North Druid Hills, a suburb in Atlanta, the Zonolite Trail is an extensive, 1.5-mile gravel path that runs through Zonolite Park. The park is also home to a pond, creek, and meadow, along with wildlife such as deer, fish, and birds. How to get there: Zonolite Park is located at Zonolite Road northeast, Atlanta, Georgia.
- East Palisades Trail Located in Metro Atlanta’s Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, the East Palisades Trail is a 2.6-mile path that does not disappoint. The trail, which is accessible all year round, offers a scenic view of the Chattahoochee River and its striking rock slabs. From the Indian Trail trailhead, the path continues southwest. Once you hear the sound of rushing water from the Chattahoochee River, you know you’re going in the right direction. How to get there: The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area is located in 1978 Island Ford Parkway, Sandy Springs, Georgia, around 10 miles northwest of Downtown Atlanta.
The Best Hiking Trails in Atlanta
There’s no better way to enjoy what nature has to offer than with a hike. And with the abundance of nature trails in and around Atlanta, it makes for a great activity to look forward to when we can enjoy the great outdoors again. Discover why hiking is one of the most popular pastimes and one of the top things to do in East Cobb, GA. Here are the top trails to explore: