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Mountain Living in North Georgia: Ellijay's Best Kept Real Estate Secrets Unveiled

Ellijay in the lush foothills of the North Georgia mountains, it is a treasure trove of natural beauty, vibrant culture, and burgeoning real estate opportunities. Known as the "Apple Capital of Georgia," this charming town offers a unique blend of outdoor adventures, culinary delights, and a welcoming community, making it an ideal place for both tourists and prospective homeowners. Let's dive into what makes Ellijay, GA, a perfect spot for your next adventure or your forever home.

Ellijay, GA

A Historic Gem Wrapped in Mountain Charm: Ellijay

Before European settlers arrived, the area was inhabited by indigenous peoples, including the Cherokee. The name "Ellijay" is derived from the Cherokee word "Elatseyi," meaning "new ground," reflecting the area's fertile lands. The town's location at the confluence of the Ellijay and Cartecay rivers made it a valuable site for agriculture and settlement.

Today, Ellijay maintains its historical charm while evolving into a destination for outdoor enthusiasts, history buffs, and those seeking the tranquility of mountain life. The downtown area, with its historic buildings, offers a range of shopping, dining, and entertainment options, preserving the town's heritage while catering to contemporary tastes.

Outdoor Adventures in Ellijay

Ellijay, Georgia, is an outdoor lover's haven, offering a rich array of activities that cater to adventurers of every stripe:

Hiking and Biking:

  • Bear Creek Trail: Located within the vast expanse of the Chattahoochee National Forest, this trail is a favorite among mountain bikers and hikers alike. It features a moderate loop that takes you through beautiful forested areas, alongside creeks, and past the Gennett Poplar, one of the largest trees in North Georgia.

  • Mountaintown Creek Trail: Also in the Chattahoochee National Forest, this trail offers a more challenging terrain for experienced hikers and bikers, providing stunning views of cascades, lush forests, and diverse wildlife. It's a backcountry adventure that showcases the rugged beauty of the Appalachian landscape.

Kayaking and Tubing:

  • Ellijay River: The Ellijay River flows through the town and offers kayakers a mix of peaceful waters and gentle rapids. It’s an excellent spot for beginners or those looking for a relaxing day on the water. Outfitters in the area provide kayaks, guides, and safety equipment for a hassle-free experience.

  • Cartecay River: Known for its tubing adventures, the Cartecay River winds through scenic landscapes and offers a fun, leisurely way to experience the natural beauty of Ellijay. With several rapids along the way, it provides just enough excitement. Local businesses, like Cartecay River Experience, offer tube rentals and shuttle services for an enjoyable day out.


  • Carter's Lake: Just a short drive from downtown Ellijay, Carter’s Lake is the deepest of Georgia's reservoir lakes and a prime spot for fishing, especially known for its striped bass, spotted bass, and walleye fishing. The lake's clear waters and undeveloped shoreline make it a peaceful fishing location. Public boat ramps and fishing piers provide easy access for anglers.

  • Noontootla Creek: This managed trout stream is a bit further from Ellijay but worth the drive for those looking to catch trophy trout. Its pristine waters and beautiful surroundings make it a top destination for fly fishing enthusiasts. Access is mainly through private property, so it's recommended to connect with a local guide or outfitter for the best experience.

Apple Picking

  • Apple Orchards: Ellijay is renowned as the Apple Capital of Georgia, and visiting its orchards in the fall is a must-do activity. Farms like Hillcrest Orchards and R&A Orchards offer u-pick apple opportunities, hayrides, petting zoos, and farm stores filled with apple products and homemade goods.

Winery Tours and Tastings

  • Local Vineyards: The North Georgia mountains are home to several vineyards and wineries, with Ellijay serving as a great starting point for tours and tastings. Cartecay Vineyards, Engelheim Vineyards, and Chateau Meichtry are popular spots where you can enjoy the scenic views while sipping on locally produced wines.


  • Whitepath Golf Club Location: Situated in Ellijay, Whitepath Golf Club is a public golf course that features 18 holes spread across a picturesque landscape, with views of the mountains and the Ellijay River. The course is known for its challenging layout, scenic beauty, and wildlife sightings, providing a unique golfing experience for players of all skill levels.

  • Bent Tree Golf Course Location: Although not located directly in Ellijay, Bent Tree Golf Course is nearby in the North Georgia mountains and offers another excellent option for golfers. This course is part of the Bent Tree Community, situated a short drive from Ellijay, and features a beautifully maintained 18-hole championship course with stunning mountain views, water hazards, and varied terrain that challenges golfers.

Ellijay’s Culinary Delights and Local Attractions

Ellijay’s, nestled in the North Georgia mountains, is renowned for its vibrant culinary scene, featuring restaurants that highlight local ingredients and Southern hospitality.

  • Local Cuisine: Ellijay’s dining scene offers a range of options from Southern comfort food to international cuisines. Enjoy the homey atmosphere and hearty meals at Cantaberry Restaurant, known for its homemade soups, sandwiches, and desserts. For a taste of Italy in the mountains, Charlie's Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria serves up authentic Italian dishes in a cozy setting.

  • Farm-to-Table: The farm-to-table movement thrives in Ellijay, with restaurants like The Roof Ellijay offering dishes made from locally sourced ingredients, paired with stunning rooftop views of the downtown area and surrounding mountains.

  • Georgia Apple Festival: Held annually in October, this festival celebrates Ellijay’s status as the Apple Capital of Georgia. Featuring hundreds of vendors, craft demonstrations, a parade, and plenty of apple-themed foods, it’s a must-visit for anyone coming to Ellijay in the fall.

  • Cartecay Vineyards: Nestled in the rolling hills of Ellijay, Cartecay Vineyards is a picturesque spot to taste some of North Georgia’s finest wines. The vineyard often hosts live music and events, making it a perfect setting for a relaxing afternoon.

Interesting & Fun Facts That Reveal Ellijay

Apple Capital: Celebrated for its annual Georgia Apple Festival, Ellijay is the heart of apple country, where orchards abound and the air is filled with the sweet scent of apples every fall.

Rich History: With roots stretching back to the Cherokee Indians, Ellijay's downtown area is a picturesque scene of historical buildings and landmarks, offering a glimpse into the past.

Communities in Ellijay

Ellijay, Georgia, is not just a single town but a mosaic of communities, each with its own character and charm. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful retreat in the mountains or a vibrant neighborhood close to downtown amenities, Ellijay has something for everyone. Here's an overview of some of the notable communities in and around Ellijay:

  • Coosawattee River Resort - This gated community is a paradise for those who love nature and outdoor activities. Nestled along the banks of the Coosawattee River, it offers residents access to fishing, swimming, and tubing, along with amenities like indoor and outdoor pools, tennis courts, and a fitness center.

  • Buckhorn Estates - Located between Ellijay and Blue Ridge, Buckhorn Estates is a unique community that offers the best of both worlds. It features a public 18-hole golf course, Whitepath Golf Course, river access for fishing and canoeing, and plenty of green space.

  • Walnut Mountain - This gated community offers stunning mountain views, with amenities including a community pool, tennis courts, and several lakes for fishing. Its winding roads lead to private homes tucked away in the forest, providing a peaceful mountain living experience.

  • Falling Waters - As the name suggests, this community is known for its natural beauty, including waterfalls and lush forests. It offers large, private lots for custom homes with access to hiking trails and a private lake.

  • The Oaks at Ellijay - A newer development close to downtown Ellijay, The Oaks offers modern homes with easy access to shops, restaurants, and local attractions. This community combines the convenience of city living with the charm of mountain life.

Vineyards, Ellijay

Real Estate Market Overview in Ellijay

Ellijay's real estate market is characterized by a healthy demand for homes, driven by its appeal to those seeking a quieter, nature-oriented lifestyle away from the hustle and bustle of city living. The market caters to a diverse audience, including retirees, families, and individuals looking for second homes or investment properties, particularly given the area's popularity as a tourist destination.

Home Prices and Inventory

Prices: The prices of homes in Ellijay vary widely, depending on factors such as location, size, and amenities. As of my last update, you could find everything from affordable starter homes and cabins starting in the low to mid $200,000s, to luxurious mountain estates and custom-built homes priced well into the millions. The median home price in Ellijay offers a competitive entry point compared to other mountain communities in North Georgia, making it accessible for a broad spectrum of buyers.

Inventory: The market features a range of property types, including rustic cabins, traditional single-family homes, and expansive properties with acreage. New developments and communities are also emerging, providing modern amenities within a mountain setting

Investment Potential in Ellijay Ellijay's growing popularity as a vacation spot enhances its appeal for real estate investment, particularly in the short-term rental market. Properties located near outdoor attractions, such as the Chattahoochee National Forest, rivers, and apple orchards, are especially sought after. The trend towards remote work has also boosted interest in Ellijay as a place where one can enjoy a balanced lifestyle, further driving demand for homes.

Future Outlook

The real estate market in Ellijay is expected to remain robust, with continued interest from buyers drawn to the area's lifestyle. Factors such as the ongoing development of community amenities, improvements in infrastructure, and the natural appeal of the North Georgia mountains contribute to a positive outlook for property values and market growth.

For the most current insights and data, prospective buyers and investors should consult with local real estate professionals who can provide up-to-date information on the Ellijay real estate market, including specific property listings, price trends, and investment opportunities.


Ellijay, Georgia, is a gem in the North Georgia mountains, attracting homebuyers and investors with its scenic beauty, outdoor activities, and small-town charm. The diverse real estate market offers a range of options, from affordable cabins to luxurious homes, making it appealing for various buyers. As the Apple Capital of Georgia, Ellijay enjoys strong demand, promising growth for both residents and investors. For those interested in the Ellijay real estate market, engaging with local experts can provide valuable guidance in finding the perfect property in this appealing mountain town.

For more information about homes on Ellijay, please feel free to reach out at or call us at 678-981-9110.


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