Stone Mountain Park, Atlanta
The main feature of Stone Mountain is the carving of three leaders of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. However, each evening when the sun goes down there is quite a light show. The laser show features lighted figures on the side of the mountain, music and fireworks. It tends to be a bit overly patriotic at times but is still a good show. Admission is free but there is a $7 parking fee per automobile at the park entrance.
These days people come to Stone Mountain for the amusement park stuff or to see the laser show in the evening. But it has an interesting history. It was owned in the early 20th Century by a man who was active in the Ku Klux Klan and was the site of burning crosses and be-sheeted rallies. The carving was done as a Confederate Memorial (it features Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson and is the largest relief sculpture in the world. The "mountain" is the largest granite outcropping in the world and the stone it sits on extends for miles. It is a beautiful park and the amusements are great for kids. The photo is from the top of the mountan, reachable by walking or cable car. I went down to the end of the rainbow and sure enough, I found a pot of gold!
Stone Mountain has a great lasar show. It beams lights on the side of the mountain. The mountain has carving of Georgia history.
Try to get there early and bring blankets, just make it a picnic.
Also, there are train rides around the park and boats tours. The park could easily be a mini vacation in itself.
Stone Mountain is the largest piece of exposed granite in the world. It is around 400+ feet high, and if you can make it all the way to the top, you get a sweeping view of the Atlanta skyline. If you're lazy, you can take the sky lift. It's not just a giant rock, but also an amusement park. There are water parks, so during the summer you can swim, boat, & fish. There's also a theme train that goes around the mountain, picnic areas, and there are also festivals & events held here from time to time. There is also one of the largest carvings in the world on the mountain, a tribute to the Confederate heroes, Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee, and Jefferson Davis. Prehistoric people once lived on the mountain, and there are rare mosses found nowhere else in the world. Furthermore there's a lot of wildlife in the park - once while walking down a seculded forest trail, I remember seeing a rattlesnake here - so watchout!
Stone Mountain is a quartz monzonite dome monadnock. It rises to 1,686 feet (513 m) elevation and 825 feet (251.5 m) from the ground. If that was not impressive enough, it is also the largest bas relief sculpture in the world of three Confederate leaders of the Civil War, President Jefferson Davis and Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson proudly riding on their favorite steeds "Blackjack," "Traveller," and "Old Sorrel,". This carving measures 3 acres (12,000 m2), about the size of three football fields. The carving dimensions of the three men are 400 feet (120 m) above the ground, 90 by 190 feet (58 m), and are recessed 42 feet (13 m) into the mountain.
The carving sprung from the idea in 1912 from Mrs. C. Helen Plane, member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. In 1916 Gutzon Borglum was commissioned to do the carving, but was reassigned in 1923 to finish Mount Rushmore. Augustus Lukeman continued until 1928 and sadly it stood unfinished for over thirty years. In 1958 the mountain was purchased by the state from the Venable family and in 1964 Walker Hancock assigned started carving, but once again it was passed on to another, Roy Faulkner. It finally was finished on March 3, 1972.
Stone Mountain Village is a weird place - it's a small theme park based around Stone Mountain. Stone Mountain itself is the biggest exposed mass of granite in the world (according to it's own website!). It is quite a size.
On the side of the mountain is a carving - very impressive, however somewhat disturbing in my mind as it's been a focal point for different peoples for many thousand years - why should we spoil natures beauty - guess I'm just being a little narky this evening! But like I said it is still quite impressive.
For more information about Stone Mountain, visit the website below.
At 1686 feet tall, it stands above anything around the area to the east of the city. Kennesaw Mountain is the only rival to height and size. The area park is 3,200 acres and at the east end of the city. The three figures of great soldiers are carved into the mountainside. Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee, and Jefferson DAvis are of fame to the South for what they gave for the cause. It covers 3 acres, or 3 football fields in size. It is 190x90 feet. The mountain is 5 miles around the perimeter, and there are numerous walk paths to take. At the main part there is a small area of the history. In the summers they hold lazer shows with beams of light shining up the sky. The added attractions for visitors includes a lot of "tacky" things to do for adults and kids.
July, 2007. We wanted to ride the cable car to the top of the mountain, ride the train, eat a late lunch, and watch the laser show. We arrived around 3:00. The wonderful lady in the ticket booth told us that the All Attractions pass went down after 4:00 from $19 to $14, so we ate lunch first at Miss Katie's Sideboard. Really good southern food. Then purchased our tickets at 4:00. First we rode to the top of the mountain (no point in going if you don't go to the top). Then we went to the lawn in front of the mountain and laid down our blanket to "stake our claim" for a spot to watch the laser show. Then we rode the train and walked through the shops. (The funnel cake with butter pecan icecream on top was to die for.) Then we went to our blanket around 7:30 - 8:00. Glad we had put our blanket down earlier. There was hardlly a spot left. Laser light show was great! It started around 9:30 so by the time it was over it made for a late evening. Worth it, though. (Parking was $8)
The Skylift at Stone Mountain Park.
Swiss-made cable cars take you for a breathtaking ride past the magnificent carving to the mountain's summit. Rising over 825 feet above the surrounding plain, the top of the mountain offers guests fantastic views of Atlanta and The North Georgia countryside. (Yes...I tooke this from the brochure)
Stone Mountain Park, 20 minutes outside of Atlanta, features 3,200 acres of lakes, wildlife, hiking possibilities and plum picnic spots. Tour the restored antebellum plantation or ride the lift to the top of the mountain. You can't miss the monumental three-acre sculpture of Confederate leaders etched into the side of the granite mountain. The night-time laser show also is well worth the drive.
Stone Mountain Park U.S. Hwy 78 to Stone Mountain Exit
Small mountain of a single rock much like Ayers Rock in Australia. It is built up as a tourist attractions which includes:
A large Rushmore type carving of famous Confederate Generals
A cable car to the top
A train that runs around the mountain
A River boat ride
A 1880 town.
you can pay for each of these seperate or you can pay one price for an armband which gives you access to all the attractions.
Stone Mountain is most famous for its "Confederate Mount Rushmore" with the world's largest relief carving featuring President Jefferson Davis and Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson. It was originally begun in 1923 by Gutzon Borglum, one of the men who would later create the more famous Mount Rushmore. After a dispute, a new sculptor named Augustus Lukeman continued the project but quickly ran out of money in 1928 and the monument remained unfinished for years, featuring just the head of General Lee. Work finally resumed in 1964 under the direction of Walker Kirkland Hancock, and the sculpture was completed in 1972. Views of the monument from the lawn are free with a paid parking pass, or you can hike the mountain and even take a cable car across the face to the top.
The park also contains numerous other activities such as golf, tennis, dining, shopping, camping, laser light show, train rides, museums and more.
Parking and entrance to the park is $8 while an all-day pass for most activities is $22. Passes for individual attractions range from about $5 to $10.
During my visit, we spent just a few hours here in the "Crossroads" village and hiking up the mountain.
It is a pretty nice place to visit, full of sightseeing and southern-style attractions. One day all-attraction ticket is $22 which is well worth it, since every event itself is from $7.50 to $12.00 entry fee. This includes: Tall Tales of the South 4D Theater 20-minute show, Scenic railroad, Treehouse Challenge (kids activities), Stone Mountain Museum, Summit Skyride cable car to the top of the mountain, Paddlewheel Riverboat (20-minutes lake cruise), Antebellum Plantation & Farmyard, Antique Car Museum, Mini-golf.
It takes two stops and about 30 minutes to circe 'round the base of the Stone Mountain on this choo-choo train. Not sure about the price for the ride, since it is probable the best to get a daily pass for ALL attractions for $22.
This is a huge festival taking up a large part of one area of the Stone Mountain Park and parking can be hectic midday---best to get there early and get a parking spot near the exit.........Lots of handmade crafts, metal sculptures, antiques, food and drink and also entertainment from country stars to rock and roll. This years fest is from September 9-12...It will still be pretty warm this time of the year so dress accordingly.....very family friendly---they also have food tastings with local restaurant chefs....