Time: 4.5 hours
The Big Oak – Thomasville, GA
Ray Charles Plaza, Flint River (a.k.a. the river from “Deliverance”) and Turtle Grove Play Park – Albany, GA
World’s Largest Peanut – Ashburn, GA
This one we didn’t stop at, we drove by it on the highway and my husband was too annoyed with me already so I didn’t ask him to turn back for a peanut selfie. Not a huge loss.
Duane Allman’s grave in Rose Hill Cemetery – Macon, GA
This was a surprisingly cool stop, even if you don’t know or care about the Allman Brothers. The cemetery itself is beautiful and creepy and filled with interesting monuments. It’s huge, so it’s a good place to stretch your legs. I would say NOT stroller friendly. The entrance is perched atop a hill, and it stretches across and down the other side to a set of train tracks.
Little Five Points neighborhood – Atlanta, GA
This is what you’d call the commercial “hipster” neighborhood of the city. It’s rife with vintage and thrift stores, record shops, bars and places to get pierced, tattooed, or coiffed. There are plenty of places to eat as well. Junkman’s Daughter, which is like a glorified Newbury Comics, was my daughter’s favorite. She got a $3 rubber cat nose there that she inexplicably wears around the house all the time.
Final destination: Loews Hotel Atlanta
Highlights: As a lifetime Northeastern US resident, there were a lot of scenes along this journey that were completely unfamiliar to me. There are the beautiful – rows of pecan trees, peach trees, fields of cotton, highways with cotton puffs littering the sides like snowballs. And the painful – shacks and trailers so tiny and dilapidated you’re shocked people live in them, overt displays of racism, and the ugly reality of the economic devastation that our history of slavery has left in it’s wake for generations. And of course among both, a church every half mile. It was really eye-opening and reminded me how sometimes visiting a place in your own country can still feel like a different world entirely.
Bummers: There’s a gap between Albany and Macon where there’s really nothing to stop and do.
Verdict: I would do this road trip again. Even with a two year old in the backseat it was totally manageable, and way more interesting than the journey from Tallahassee to Jacksonville. Not to mention better than flying out of Tallahassee Regional, which I’m pretty sure is a shed from Home Depot that planes land behind.