Our 5 Favorite Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails Near Atlanta

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Our 5 Favorite Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails Near Atlanta

Atlanta has been informally called “a city in a forest,” and for good reason. Many Atlantans choose to live here to appreciate nature without forgoing the luxuries of city life. Perhaps that’s why Atlanta was recently ranked in the top 10 cities for dog lovers in the United States. According to a recent study from realtor.com, 54% of households in Atlanta own a dog.

We’ve fetched a list of beautiful hiking trails near Atlanta, so you and your canine companions can enjoy a “staycation” together whenever you have a few hours to spare. Lace up those hiking boots, pack your backpack (don’t forget the treats!), and hop in the car with your favorite co-pilot to explore the forest that surrounds our city.

Our Favorite Trails

Cochran Shoals to Sope Creek

Photo by Atlanta Trails

With miles of paths meandering alongside the Chattahoochee River, it’s no wonder that Cochran Shoals and Sope Creek are two of the most popular parks near Atlanta. Enjoy the wide running trails of Cochran Shoals and the rugged terrain near Sope Creek with an 8.5-mile hike that connects the two parks. 

Morningside Nature Preserve (Dog Beach)

Photo by Explore Georgia

Take a single step into this urban oasis, and you will soon forget that you are only 10 minutes away from Buckhead. The Morningside Nature Preserve is a 30-acre park that features winding trails that are suitable for trail runners and walkers alike. Be sure to cross the iconic suspension bridge over Peachtree Creek for beautiful scenic views. Dog lovers won’t want to miss a trip to the Dog Beach, where dogs can roam free and splash in the shallow waters of the creek bed.

Sweetwater Creek Trails

Photo by Atlanta Trails

The Sweetwater Creek State Park, located just beyond Atlanta’s western perimeter, offers four different dog-friendly trails of varying difficulties. You and your dog can choose one trail and stick to it, or you can combine several trails for an all-day adventure. Wander along the creek and through the dense forest with occasional expanses of flower-filled meadows.

Vickery Creek Trail

Photo by Trip Advisor

Explore two historic mills, a covered bridge, and a rushing waterfall on this scenic trail tucked away in Roswell. The 5-mile journey traverses through the shaded forest with glimpses of the banks of Big Creek. This hike at Vickery Creek is of moderate difficulty and is a favorite among history buffs.

Kennesaw Mountain

Photo by Atlanta Trails

This National Battlefield Park features over 20 miles of trails with incredible views of the Atlanta skyline emerging above the trees. With several trails to choose from, you can surely find one that suits your preference for scenery and difficulty level. Whether you want to hike to the summit or stroll through the forest, there’s a path for you at Kennesaw Mountain.

What to Bring

In addition to the basic hiking items you’ll need on the trail, make sure to pack the essentials for your dog too! When hiking with your dog, we recommend bringing a durable leash, travel water bowl, sanitary bags, plenty of water, treats, and a small bag of food if you are going to be outdoors for a while. If your dog likes to fetch, don’t forget to bring a ball or toy!

We hope you and your dog enjoy exploring the forests of Atlanta together. Thankfully, you don’t have to travel far to find a peaceful getaway – and you know you’ll be in good company!


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