As someone who had always dreamed of a job that allowed me to travel, it seemed almost too good to be true to be sent an email with the subject line: ‘Get your passport ready!’ before I had even started at KBC.
Two weeks later and I was lucky enough to be jetting off to Atlanta, Georgia with the lovely Jo Thomas and taking part in the ‘Trails, Tales and Tunes’ fam trip alongside four fantastic journalists from the UK, Ireland and Sweden. A week, and a LOT of fried chicken later – I flew home feeling I now knew Georgia, my travel companions and how to manage a press trip a whole lot better! With too many memories of my trip to cram into a few hundred words, here are the top five reasons why I fell in love with Georgia:
From meeting our amazing driver, Detra, on the first day to every single person that we met along the way at restaurants, hotels, CVBs, etc… there was never a dull moment in Georgia! A friendliness that cannot be ignored, everyone we met was so accommodating with brilliant stories to tell and fascinating anecdotes of their life in Georgia enabling you to get a real feel for every place we visited.
Being British, it obviously wasn’t going to take long for me to start talking about the weather, and whilst it did rain for our first two days in Atlanta, the perfect spring sunshine that appeared for the rest of our trip was glorious. This allowed me to top up my tan and left the rest of the group wishing they’d brought more sun cream!
A self-proclaimed expert in the subject anyway, after six nights in Georgia I feel I can now more specifically demonstrate my knowledge of southern food. Whilst travelling around Atlanta, Roswell and Athens, ‘the best fried chicken in Georgia’ appeared on every menu and we all agreed it would be rude not to check. This, on top of other famous southern dishes including, Shrimp and Grits, barbecued everything, and American biscuits (which are similar to scones) – you won’t be surprised that I arrived home a stone heavier.
With multiple opportunities to recreate an R.E.M album cover to the old funeral home where The B-52s rehearsed, Paul Buchart’s walking tour is a must for those wanting to discover Athens’ musical history – uncensored versions included too. Don’t miss Weaver D’S Fine Foods where not only does it offer ‘the best friend chicken’ (obviously) but R.E.M. used proprietor Dexter Weaver’s slogan ‘Automatic for the People’ which features on the restaurant’s sign, as the title of its 1992 album too.
Whether it’s the roaring Vickery Creek waterfall in sunny Roswell, or listening to live music on the rooftop of the famous Georgia Theatre in Athens – wherever you look in Georgia the scenery is truly stunning. Lucky enough to offer both the mountains and the coast, the state has something for everyone to enjoy.
I’ll leave you with one of my personal favourites… the view of the Atlanta skyline from Nine Mile Station’s gorgeous rooftop bar (wine optional) – cheers!