Mom’s Guide to Budget-Friendly Fun in Helen, GA

Warmer weather is upon us, and that means some of mom’s most shining moments are around the corner with the kids being home for summer break. While it may seem daunting to organize enough activities to keep your littles entertained throughout the summer, sprinkle in one – or a few – trips to Helen, Georgia, where your brood can live it up without breaking the bank.

Elevated, Adrenaline-Packed Entertainment

For your thrill-seeking mini-mes, Helen has plenty of options to get their hearts pumping. Check out ziplining with Screaming Eagle Adventures at Unicoi State Park, where you can choose from experiences ranging from 1 to 4 hours with varying price points. Change your perspective as you soar across up to 17 different ziplines ranging from 50 feet to ½ mile in length, teeter across up to 7 suspension bridges, and climb staircases up to 65 feet high. Reservations are strongly recommended and even include free photos!

When your crew cannot get enough of gliding above the trees, Nacoochee Adventures also offers ziplining. The Moonshine Canopy Tour, Big Zip Intimidator, Gold Mine Canopy Tour, and Big Bear Canopy Tour range from 30 minutes to 2.5 hours. Try “The Intimidator” line where you can race your partner down one of the longest dual lines in the county at nearly ½ mile long! Nacoochee Adventures also features giant swings that lift 50 feet in the air if you are craving more elevation after your zipline tour.

For your kiddo who loves amusement parks, check out Georgia Mountain Coaster, the first alpine coaster in the state! Fly through the air as you take in downtown Helen at rapid speed. Pay for the first ride with graduated rates depending on your child’s age, then the second ride is half price. Just note that cart riders must be at least 38 inches tall and 3 years or older to avoid any meltdowns before you arrive!

A visit to Alpine Speedway will stay in step with the “need for speed” theme. Alpine Speedway is the largest 1/32 scale slot car road course in the US and offers 3 tracks with various speeds and experience levels. Entry as well as spectating is free. For more fun on wheels, head to Alpine Fun Factory, a one-stop shop for Extreme Speed Indoor Karting, Extreme Laser Tag, Skating Rink, and an Arcade and Bounce Zone. No worries if your kids want to try different things – admission is customized based on which activities you want to try and how much time is desired to be spent in each.

A Sweet Escape

After all that adventure, make a pitstop to Hansel and Gretel Candy Kitchen. Up to 180 different customer favorites like housemade fudge, brittle, truffles, and chocolates await your choosing at this local staple. Your kids will enjoy the complimentary pomp and circumstance of watching confections being made, complete with a free sample. There are even sugar-free options if that’s what mom and dad are into these days!

Get Your Putt Putt On

When you are looking to tamp down the adrenaline a bit, there are numerous mini golf options to choose from. Bavarian Mountain Miniature Golf and Arcade touts the best view in Helen (think waterfalls and rushing streams) while you play one of two 18 hole mini-golf courses. The arcade is the largest within a 30-mile radius. Pirates Cove Adventure Golf is an 18-hole mini-course that is less than a block from Downtown Helen. The barrier-free course is perfect for wheelchairs or strollers, and children 3 years and under play free! Meanwhile, Alpine Mini Golf’s motto of “fun for all” even includes on-site Scoop De Scoop for a post-round sweet-and-creamy treat featuring Mayfield ice cream!

Nostalgia The Little Ones Will Love

For your tender hearts, remember the Cabbage Patch Kids? A visit to Babyland General, where Cabbage Patch Kids and Babies are born, will warm hearts and will not drain your wallet, thanks to free admission. Cabbage Patch Kids and Babies are born in a variety of sizes, hair and eye color combinations, and adoption fees so your little can find a perfect match – picked directly from a cabbage patch and complete with a birth certificate. Revel in a bit of nostalgia while your kiddos love on their new Cabbage Patch additions. Be sure to have your phone handy to capture all the precious moments.

Discover Cool Keepsakes for Everyone

Tim’s Wooden Toys serves as the perfect stop for individually hand-crafted toys that are made simple, safe, and durable. Stop in to witness the toy-making firsthand or stick around to find the perfect souvenir. Cars, trucks, trains, airplanes, as well as rubber-band guns, swords/shields, and traditional push and pull toys are available. That freshly made toy may just come in handy to keep the kids happy on the drive home—a win-win for everyone!

Helen for the Whole Family!

Who says having fun has to break the bank? Be the “cool mom” who brings her kids to Helen, Georgia, for some seriously unforgettable (and affordable!) summer fun. Click here to discover the right mountain retreat lodging for your fam!

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