Foodie Road Trip Georgia
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- Savannah and Tybee Island
- Honorable mentions
- Roadside assistance
- Cheap insurance
From Atlanta to Valdosta, we’re about to reveal the best eats in the beating heart of the American hearth: the great state of Georgia. Unique among states south of the Mason-Dixon Line, Georgia contains several different landscapes that make for great driving as well as great eating.
Indeed, Georgia’s culinary offerings are as diverse as its landscapes, from the coastal plains in the south to the Appalachian foothills in the northwest. You can find world-class BBQ and seafood here, of course, but did you know that Georgia also produces olives?
Before you take off, sign-up for a roadside assistance membership with Jerry. At $6.99, Jerry’s roadside assistance program offers a full menu of services, including towing, flat tire fixes, and winching.
Be sure that you also have the right car insurance coverage, and you’re ready to hit the road!
So buckle your seat belt and unbuckle your belt-belt—here’s a guide to the ultimate foodie road trip in Georgia.
Start your journey in Georgia’s capital city and be sure to allot at least one full day (three meals) to explore. We recommend a bit of caffeine in the morning because there’s a lot to see here!
Why to go: Not only is Atlanta the capital of Georgia, but it’s the heart of Georgia, too. In this city, you’ll find plenty to eat and plenty to explore, from historic sites and botanical gardens to incredible art and music. Each suburb sings with its own rhythms and flavors—and they’re beautiful from behind the wheel, too.
What to do: You could spend weeks in Atlanta and not try every delicious meal on offer. But if you only have one day in town, here are a few restaurants you should consider. For lunch, try the Red Eyed Mule (beloved by Alton Brown) or Heirloom Market BBQ (southern-style BBQ with Korean flavors). For dinner, we love Miller Union for its plating and ambiance.
Still got room? Hit Sublime Doughnuts for a sweet treat or visit Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q after the dinner rush to sample their mouth-watering ribs. On your way out of town, make a stop at Honey Pig in Duluth to sample their incredible Korean BBQ.
- In urban Atlanta, the farthest right lane on the highway is usually exit-only. Try to stay in the middle lane.
- Southern hospitality extends to the road, too—just be sure you give and take in equal measure.
Take DeKalb Avenue east from downtown for 15 minutes and you’ll arrive in the suburb of Decatur. Here, the food is hip and the people are younger. Don’t leave the Atlanta area without stopping here.
Why to go: There is so much to do in this area that Apartment Therapy labeled Decatur one of the “coolest suburbs in America.” In addition to great eats, the Fernbank Museum makes this neighborhood worth a stop.
What to do: For classic family-style meals with Southern fare, head to Revival. If you’re in the mood for tapas, Iberian Pig will suit your fancy. Want oysters? Try Kimball House.
For bougie snacks—no shame!—try Pinewood. Don’t miss My Parents’ Basement, a one-of-a-kind bar with beer, pinballs, and comic books that is much tidier than its name makes it seem.
Don’t worry, there’s dessert. Your best options are Southern Sweets Bakers, Revolution Doughnuts, and the Waffle House Museum. If you need a snack for the road, stop by the DeKalb Farmers Market.
Key Takeaway Don’t be afraid to cruise the suburbs—you’ll find some of the best meals away from downtown.
DeKalb Farmers Market, Decatur, Georgia
An hour and a half east on US-78 will take you to Athens. There’s no need to spend a full day here, but it’s worth stopping for breakfast or lunch and a quick stroll.
Why to go: Athens plays host to a vibrant music industry. It’s also the seat of the University of Georgia, which means there are lots of fun activities and food. The State Botanical Garden of Georgia is here, and Sandy Creek Park makes for a pleasant afternoon stroll.
What to do: If you’re here for breakfast, queue up at Mama’s Boy for peach french toast (Georgia is the Peach State, after all). For lunch or dinner, try Five & Ten. If it’s hot and humid, go straight to King of Pops to get some peach popsicles.
Continue east on US-78 for another two hours and you’ll arrive in Augusta, the second oldest city in the state. With the feel of a resort town, Augusta is a fun stop on your foodie road trip in Georgia.
Why to go: Augusta is mostly known for hosting the Masters Golf Tournament, but it’s also the home of the oldest medical school in Georgia—and home to James Brown.
What to do: For a casual bite, go to Sconyers Bar B Que or Manuel’s Bread Cafe. Frog Hollow Tavern is well worth the price, and their patio offers a beautiful view. Finch and Fifth is intimate and stylish—and they also do brunch!
Savannah, GA and Tybee Island, GA
No foodie road trip in Georgia would be complete without visiting the south’s food epicenter: Savannah. Drive just two and a half hours south from Augusta and you’ll hit the Atlantic. If you can, plan to stay in this area for at least two days—including at least one meal on Tybee Island.
Why to go: If you like arts and culture, history, food, beautiful buildings, and walkability—you’ll never want to leave Savannah.
What to do: Where do we begin? Breakfast, of course! Clary’s Cafe offers unique breakfast scrambles, or you can head to Vic’s on the River for Sunday brunch and Gullah food. For lunch, try Wiley’s Championship BBQ, or The Grey (featured on Netflix) for something more elevated. If you need a casual bite, Vinnie Van Go-Go’s is the best pizza in town.
Now for the sweet stuff: Back In the Day Bakery is an old-school bakery and espresso bar. Byrd’s Famous Cookies has peach cookies that will blow your mind. Finally, Jen’s & Friends has drinkable desserts—just make sure you stay the night or have a designated driver.
On Tybee, The Crab Shack is beloved by locals. It’s an easygoing seafood place rated the best in town for over 20 years.
Key Takeaway Aim to spend at least two full days relaxing (and eating) in Savannah. Your tastebuds will thank you.
MORE: Food trail road trips
Once you’ve recovered from eating the world in Savannah, drive three hours south to Lakeland. First, you’ll follow I-95 along the coast, and then take US-82 west along a wildlife refuge to reach the “City of Murals.”
Why to go: Lakeland is off-the-beaten-path for most foodies, but that’s why we like it. You can slow down and explore the Banks Lake National Wildlife Refuge or marvel at murals that depict life in the 1920s.
What to do: The major attraction here is Georgia Olive Farms, one of just a few olive farms in the entire state. When you stroll the groves and sample the fresh olive oil, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’re in Italy instead of Lakeland. If you need a full meal, head to Ray’s Millpond Cafe. It’s not fancy, but it’s always packed with locals and the view of the wetlands can’t be beaten.
- It’s legal to drive without shoes in Georgia! Kick off your sneakers and relax into your trip.
- You can drive up to 70 mph on a freeway outside the city limits, but slow down once you approach an urban area.
Banks Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Lakeland, Georgia
Drive 30 minutes south to conclude your foodie road trip in the small town of Valdosta, not far from the Florida border.
Why to go: There’s something special about a simple, small, southern Georgia town. Sure, Atlanta is impressive, but the Azalea City (Valdosta’s nickname) will remind you what Georgia’s food trail is all about: connection to the community.
What to do: Steel Magnolias is a must-visit for elevated comfort food that changes depending on the seasonal produce. Bubba Jax Crab Shack is tasty and casual. Finally, let loose at Ashley Street Station, a (very) dive-y bar with live music that will serve as the perfect backdrop to celebrate the culmination of your adventure.
If you’re hunting for the best peaches, we’d be remiss not to mention Pearson Farm or Lane Southern Orchards in Fort Valley. It’s just 40 minutes from Macon and you can buy as many as you can carry.
Dahlonega is Georgia’s wine country, and it’s definitely worth spending a day here if you like to drink wine.
Key Takeaway Whether you’re a peach fanatic or a barbecue fiend, tailor this road trip to your foodie goals.
We won’t nag you, but roadside assistance really is a smart investment. It’s only $6.99 with Jerry and it covers flat tire replacement, fuel delivery, lockout assistance, towing, and more. It is easy to add this to your current policy—and you’ll be glad to have it if you hit an expected bump in the road.
How to find cheap car insurance
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How do I find locally grown food in Georgia?
The state offers a tool called Georgia Grown to help connect foodies with farmers. You can always ask restaurants where they get their ingredients, too.
Where can I get cheap insurance as a 26-year-old living in Georgia?
Your age, zip code, and driving history are all factors that insurance companies consider when calculating your premium. Here’s what we’d recommend to a 26-year-old in Georgia.
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