Every so often, you just have to make time to get the heck away with your significant other. After a busy, hot summer, sometimes there’s nothing left to do but say, “ENOUGH!”, pack a weekend bag, and make a sweet escape.
The ultimate solution? Southern hospitality, strollable streets, and superb dining. Fortunately, Alpharetta, Georgia, has all this and so much more!
Here’s how you can spend 24 hours in Alpharetta:
Roll into Alpharetta around 1pm—just in time for lunch. Check out Ray’s at Killer Creek, a lunch/brunch/dinnertime staple for locals and visitors alike in Alpharetta. The restaurant has a cool glamping vibe with rich wood décor and pretty branch lighting illuminating the tables and chairs. Go a little light on your lunch selection (because, hey, you do have an entire day of Alpharetta adventures awaiting!). Select the Fuji Apple Field Greens (because you should never say no to candied walnuts on a salad!) and an order of the Seafood Gumbo. Ok, so you don’t actually have to keep it entirely light—you’ll be happy to know you can get your fill of the fresh baked bread that appears as if by culinary magic when you’re seated. Chances are there won’t be a single drop of gumbo in your bowl thanks to that pillow-soft bread’s sopping capabilities!
For the couple who has amassed a stunning collection of “couple’s selfies”—faces squished together in the frame, reflection of the cell phone in your sunglass lenses, the vantage point a little too close overall—check out MiniMe Factory. This local business creates a 3D sculpture of you based on a photo taken right there on site as the ultimate remedy to the couple’s selfie. Cheese it up a little for the keepsake—maybe even wrap each other in a big bear hug or have your partner dip you as they take the picture. Talk about one that’s sure to be one for the mantle!
A town’s vibe can often best be described with its local beer. For something sudsy and super refreshing, make a stop to Currahee Brewing Company on South Main Street. Be sure to try the Hop Experiment Volume 6 – a full bodied IPA that isn’t too sweet with an added layer of citrus. Cheers to that!
As the heat of the day tapers down, fit in a little culture while walking off those insanely tasty beers. Stroll down the street to the nearby Downtown Alpharetta Arts Walking Tour, a collection of 14 sculptures from artists all over the world. One visitor favorite is called Torqued Chroma, a mesmerizing steel and polycarbonate fixture that beautifully reflects colors on a tensioned dichroic film. As the sun changes position in the sky, the rainbow hues reflected shift and alter, creating a different view of the piece depending on when you see it. Another can’t-miss is called The Visitor, a cute, oversized fiberglass bear sculpture featuring acrylic paint scrawling of “Hello” in different languages all over its body. Not only is this an adorable reminder of how welcoming Alpharetta is as a city, it also makes for an excellent photo op!
By 6pm, as you find yourself nearing dinnertime, make your way to Chiringa (look for the bright white façade and promise of delicious margs on a brightly painted chalkboard sign out front). Chiringa’s specialty is what they call “elevated beach food,” and the vibe is sunny and laidback. Annnnd they get MAJOR bonus points for having an ultra-refreshing Frose! Choose the Chop Chop Bowl, a delicious yellow paella rice dish topped with antibiotic-free grilled chicken, fresh veggies, and a bold, tangy curry yellow mustard that takes the whole dish to the next level! And if you’re a taco-enthusiast, be sure to select the Fish Tacos served on made-fresh white corn tortillas kicked up with red cabbage, jalapenos, pickled onion, and chipotle Crema. Finish the whole delicious situation off with Chiringa’s Dole Whip, an island-centric treat featuring sweet, creamy frozen pineapple. Full disclosure: This stuff’s so good you may find yourself finished off both your and your dining companion’s Dole Whip. #sorrynotsorry
The party doesn’t stop with dinner on a vacation (even if it is a super short one!). Not ready to turn in to your hotel for the evening? Check out Main Event Entertainment. Upon entry, prepare to have your eyes light up with the glow of the dozens upon dozens of arcade games from every decade! From old-school Whack-a-Mole to 3D zombie shoot-em-up games and even mall classics like virtual skiing and the dance stage one where you have to jump on the arrows (and forgo all sense of shame!) to follow along with the dance steps, Main Event Entertainment packs every square foot full of nostalgic fun. After a few hours of quick-wristed joystick video games, air hockey, skee-ball, and perhaps even a very competitive round of laser tag, you’re certain to laugh and high-five your way to an impressive collection of tickets—so impressive, in fact, that you may even be able to commemorate your epic day in Alpharetta with an arcade prize! Talk about a throwback date night!
Since you are on vacation, give yourself a few extra hours of ZZZZs in your cozy Alpharetta hotel accommodations – of which there are 26 modern hotels to choose from. Then, round up your boo and head to Big Creek Greenway for a sun—soaked morning trek. Take your time, ambling the winding 12-foot-wide Greenway path that features fascinating wildlife, hundred-year-old trees, and a babbling stream. Have your smartphone camera ready—you may even spot a deer on this romantic morning walk.
After a healthy dose of natural wonder, it’s time to get your brunch on. Head over to Avalon where you’ll discover a wealth of incredible restaurants that certainly know how to deliver that Instagrammable intersection of breakfast and lunch! If you’re not sure where to go, check out Oak Steakhouse for classic contemporary brunch fare. Start with the shareable Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffin Tops with creamy honey butter, then up your protein ante with a mouthwatering CAB 5oz. steak accompanied by beef’s brunchy BFF, scrambled eggs. The Steak & Eggs selection also comes with fresh sliced tomatoes for balance, and the whole shebang is drizzled with a creamy bearnaise sauce that tastes as decadent as it sounds. And no brunch is really complete with an adult beverage. The Bloody Mary on offer at Oak Steakhouse sings thanks to Svedka Vodka and Charleston Bold & Spicy Mix for a peppery punch in every sip.
To round out this epic 24 hours in Alpharetta, there’s nothing left to do but TREAT YOURSELF! Since you’ll already be in Avalon, make time to shop this expansive 86-acre development with more than 500,000 square feet of retail (not to mention a movie theater, luxury hotel and even more restaurants and bars). From Lululemon to Crate & Barrel, Vineyard Vines to Chanel, and just about every boutique/shop/store you can think of, whether you window shop or shop ‘til you drop, you’ll have a blast exploring the retail paradise that is Avalon.
This itinerary is just an example of all that awaits in just 24 hours in Awesome Alpharetta (yes, there’s MORE!) For other ways to squeeze every second of fun out of a quick trip to this charming Southern suburb, check out this list of can’t-miss attractions today!