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Presidential Pathways - Southern Towns Area



This section of the Georgia Tourist Guide will introduce you to the southern half of the Presidential Pathways region in west central Georgia. For nature lovers a trip to Providence Canyon, known as “Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon”, will be quite a treat. Providence Canyon is near Lumpkin and resides in a 1003-acre state conservation park known as Providence Canyon State Park. Visitors are amazed at the beauty of the multi-colored rocks and the vegetation. Nearby you can camp or stay in cottages at the Florence Marina State Park on the beautiful 45,000-acre Walter F. George Lake. This lake is ideal for boating, swimming, and fishing. Nature lovers, particularly those that enjoy birding, will love the variety birds found here.

Please do not miss visiting the Andersonville National Historic Site. More than 45,000 Union soldiers were imprisoned Civil War POW camp and nearly 13,000 died. You can walk the walk the solemn grounds and see how the camp operated. Andersonville now serves as the National Prisoner of War Museum, which honors all American prisoners of war. We highly recommend seeing the made-for-TV movie Andersonville prior to your visit to really grasp the significance of this site.

Whereas the northern area of the Presidential Pathways Region focuses on FDR, the southern area focuses on the life of President Jimmy Carter. The Jimmy Carter National Historic Site is housed in the old Plains High School where Jimmy and Rosalynn attended school and houses a museum that depicts the early life of the Carters. In nearby Archery you can visit the site of Carter’s Boyhood home.

Near Lumpkin you can have one of those different experiences that many of us treasure. Stop in at the history village called Westville. This village is built and re-enacts West Georgia life during the 1850’s era. See demonstrations by woodworkers and potters and here you will have all of the ingredients to see how people actually lived.

A visit to Americus should include a stay at the Windsor, a refurbished old Victorian hotel that is now a dazzling and indulgent resort complete with a spa, exquisite dining, and live entertainment. For a fun and relaxing way to see this area, ride the 68-mile long SAM Shortline Excursion Train, which runs from Cordele to Archery and makes stops at several stations along the way. The SAM Shortline runs through the Georgia Veteran’s State Park near Cordele. Established as a memorial to U.S. veterans, this park features a museum with aircraft, armored vehicles, uniforms, weapons, medals, and other items from the Revolutionary through Gulf Wars. Visitors can spend the day or longer exploring the area by land or lake. Within the Park is the first-class Lake Blackshear Resort & Golf Club, which affords a breathtaking view of the 8,000-acre Lake Blackshear. Nestled in the middle of Georgia Veteran’s Memorial State Park, just a short two-hour drive from Atlanta, this resort is the ultimate destination for any escape, from an adventurous weekday getaway, to a family reunion, to a romantic weekend, to a corporate meeting. Guests will find a variety of activities to suit every taste: golfing, hiking, fishing, dining and swimming.


In the middle part of the Presidential Pathways Region is the beautiful and vibrant city of Columbus. Visit any or all of the first-class museums, including the Columbus Museum for Art and the Coca-Cola Space Science Center. The National Infantry Museum at Fort Benning provides a first-hand look at the American infantry soldier over the past two centuries. Stand at the bow of the CSS Jackson and explore Civil War naval actions at the National Civil War Naval Museum. Take in local and international acts, Broadway shows and concerts at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts. Stroll along the Chattahoochee Riverwalk or down the cobblestone streets beneath the stately oak trees. If you have the opportunity, be sure to catch a show at the glorious and opulent Springer Opera House.

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