Travel & Leisure

Family Fun Weekend at Historic Banning Mills – Lodging, Zip Lining & More

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Family Fun Weekend at Historic Banning Mills – Lodging, Zip Lining & More

Historic Banning Mills is an outdoor adventure park located in Whitesburg, Georgia, only one hour outside of Atlanta. They have over ten miles of adventurous zip lines that weave in and out of tall Georgia pines and oak trees. They also have the longest continuous eco-canopy zip line, as well as the tallest artificial freestanding climbing wall. But that is not all. You can spend the entire week or weekend in a Tree House or one of their cozy Pine Log Cabins. My family and I recently had an opportunity to explore the activities of Historic Banning Mills and unplug from our electronics for a fun filled weekend. I wanted to thank Historic Banning Mills for hosting my family for this amazing weekend of adventure, ziplining, dining and lodging. All opinions here are my own.

Check-In

When we first arrived, we went to the lobby to check in. You are required to arrive about thirty minutes before your scheduled time. There you will fill out the necessary waiver and release of liability forms. If your children are old enough to sign their name, they are required to fill out their own form. While you wait, you can sit and warm up by the cozy fireplace.

It was a November weekend, so it was pretty chilly the morning of our scheduled zip line tour. So sitting by the fire was a must. Thankfully, it did warm up as the day went on.

Safety Briefing and Gearing Up

We walked outside over to the safety area where we geared up with our gloves, helmet and harnesses. The guides gave us a twenty minute safety briefing and live demonstration of hooking up and zip lining. We were then split up into smaller groups of around eight to ten people with two guides. Historic Banning Mills uses a Closed Belay System from start to end, so you are never disconnected. They take their safety standards seriously so you are in good hands!

Zip Lining Adventure at Historic Banning Mills

There are many zip lining courses throughout Georgia, but nothing like at Historic Banning Mills. With over five zip lining courses and five levels to choose from, you can fill your day with fun and adventure. We completed three levels, which is called their Flight Pattern Plus Zip Line Canopy Tour Course. This took us about three hours to complete. It was dad’s very first time ever ziplining and he had such a blast.

Zip lining through the trees at 1500 feet long and speeds up to  55-60 mph was exhilarating! We finished at the beautiful Snake Creek, a 900 foot long zip line. The scenery was beautiful.

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Both my brave daughters participated as well and begged to go on the Screaming Eagle Zip Line next. Unfortunately, we were advised they were not quite the weight limit for Level Four, so maybe next time. Guinness World Records has declared Screaming Eagle at Banning Mills as “The Longest & Largest Zip line Canopy Tour in the World!”

Photo Courtesy of Banning Mills

Watch our daughters race down one of the zip lines in this YouTube Video:  

Hiking and Exploring Nature

After zip lining, we took a walk through their trails and eventually ended up on the suspension bridge. This was my daughters’ second favorite thing to do at Banning Mills.

Suspension Bridge at Historic Banning Mills

I don’t suggest you pulling out your phone or camera when you cross, in case you may drop it.

There are many other activities at Banning Mill that we didn’t get to experience, so this gives me a another good reason to go back soon. They have over 80 acres of beautiful nature trails, Olympic sized swimming pool (in season), 18 Hole putt putt course, sand volleyball, tennis/basketball court, horseshoes, billiard’s room, catch/release lake, and paddle boats…just to name a few.

Dining Options

After our fun filled day of adventures with zip lining, we went back to the main lobby for a sack lunch. You can purchase these sack lunches for only $7 each. It came with a freshly made to order sandwich, chips, and apple. The sandwich size was very generous in portion, so I could have split a sandwich with dad. It was perfect to tie us over before dinner.

Gourmet dinners are not included in your zip lining tour but can be added to your package if you include overnight accommodations. Dinner does require reservations so the chef can prepare your meal fresh.  I enjoyed a delicious Smoked Scottish Salmon, pan seared and roasted, topped with whiskey apples. Dad had a Petite Angus Filet, pan seared and topped with balsamic onion marmalade. Everything was absolutely delicious.

For all overnight guests who stay on the Inn side of Historic Banning Mills, they will receive a full country breakfast each morning of their stay. They serve just about anything you need from fresh fruit or yogurt, coffee, bacon, ham, sausage, homemade biscuits and eggs cooked to order.

If you have any dietary needs or allergies, just let them know so they can make the appropriate accommodations.

Lodging Options at Historic Banning Mills

Haven’t you ever wanted to sleep in a tree house before? There is a first time for everything. For lodging, my husband and I had the pleasure of sleeping overnight in this tree house.

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The girls stayed next door in the Pine Log Cabin. The cabin and the tree house were both furnished with everything you needed including a small refrigerator, microwave, and coffee pot.

log cabins at historic banning mills

If you are looking for a romantic night in the tree house, it even comes with a jetted tub. Both in the cabin and tree house, there was plenty of space to spread out.

We were even able to enjoy the back deck that over looked the creek.

The weather was chilly, so we were glad to have the gas fireplace nearby to stay warm at night. It was a wonderful night and we were able to sit back and unwind as we enjoyed our tree house experience.

It is definitely a unique experience we never will forget. The tree house would be a wonderful couples weekend getaway, especially at Valentine’s.

Things To Do Nearby

We didn’t really have any reason to leave and venture out from Banning Mills, but we were told of a vineyards and winery nearby. Being a wine lover such as myself, I just had to go check this place out. Just fifteen minutes from Banning Mills, you can visit and have wine tasting at Little Vine Vineyards in Villa Rica, Georgia. There you will meet the owners, Jerri and Sherrie Culver.

They started this venture together in 2010 and planted their very first grapes in 2011.  Several of their wines have received medals in the 2015 – 2016 Georgia Trustees Wine Challenge and 2016 – 2017 NY International Wine Competition. So this vineyard and winery is definitely worth checking out.

My family and I had such a wonderful time at Historic Banning Mills; an experience as a family that we will never forget. My husband overcame his fear of heights, we stayed overnight in a tree house for the very first time, and we put our electronics away (except for snapping a few good photos) so we could focus on each other with no distractions. What more can you ask for in a perfect fun filled weekend?

 

Follow Historic Banning Mills on Social:

Facebook | Instagram |Twitter

Address:

205 Horseshoe Dam Rd,

Whitesburg, GA 30185

770-834-9149

 

Looking for more adventures in Georgia? Then you may also like to read:

Best of the Best Things To Do In Columbus, Georgia

White Water Express in Columbus Georgia

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Winona Rogers
Winona is the author of Southern Family Lifestyle, a national blog focusing on food, family and travel. Her site was nominated this year as the Top 10 Parenting blogs in Atlanta according to Care.com. In her spare time, she loves to travel with her family and cook. Winona and her husband have four children and five grandchildren living in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia.

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