The General Coffee State Park, near Douglas in Georgia, is the ideal destination for RVers looking for a rejuvenating getaway. The park is named after General John Coffee, a military leader, a planter, and a U.S Congressman. The land for the park was donated to the state of Georgia in 1970 by a group of Coffee County citizens.
The park's 1,511 acres is home to many wildlife species and a variety of plants —including some rare and endangered plants like the cypress trees surrounding the swamps created by the Seventeen-Mile River. All this wildlife and vegetation is a huge attraction for photographers and birders. If the natural side of the park isn't your thing, then aim to visit some of the historical agricultural exhibits like log cabins, a tobacco barn, a cane mill, a corn crib, and many other historically significant places; all which are available for visitors to the nearby Heritage Farm.
Archery, boating, hiking, and biking are some of the many activities that visitors can enjoy inside of the park. Horse enthusiasts will enjoy the 13.4 miles of horseback trails available. With park approval, weddings can also be hosted here. General Coffee State Park is a perfect place for camping, family get-togethers, fun outdoor activities, and nature —while still being close to the city of Douglas for convenience. There are special events organized throughout the year, so make sure to check your calendar and add a special event or two to your RV vacation to General Coffee State Park.
General Coffee State Park is about 6.5 miles away from Douglas. RVers traveling from Douglas and looking for the most direct route to the park should take GA-32 before turning off on to John Coffee Road into the park. The park accommodation is split by the Seventeen Mile River that runs through it, which means that there are two entrances to the park. To enter the second entrance, continue on GA-32 a little further down the road from the first entry point.
RVers with larger rigs or motorhomes will not have any problems along the way with height restrictions. Once in the park, visitors will be driving on tarred roads, with the occasional dirt road. General Coffee State Park is famous for its gopher tortoises, and campers driving through the park should keep a close eye out for them.
There is ample parking throughout the park. Visitors will find parking in various areas of the park, including Heritage Farm, next to the lake, and by the office.
The park also has several more primitive camping facilities that are suitable for RV and tent camping. These designated areas are scattered around the camping section of the park so you can choose where you'd rather rough it. These campsites do not offer water or electrical hookups, but there is a communal water spigot close by. Some sites have parking facilities a short walk away, which are better suited for tent camping. These sites have grills and fire rings, with a pit toilet nearby. The two pioneer campgrounds are suitable for tent campers and can accommodate up to 30 people. Each site has a picnic table, fire ring, and three-sided shelter.
The Equestrian Campground is located on the right side of the park, and campers will need to use the second entrance to gain access to the equestrian campsites. The four campsites offer 30/50-amp electrical hookups, but there is not a water hookup at each site; instead, there is a public water spigot where guests can find drinking water for themselves and their horses. There are horse hitching posts available at each campsite as well as a grill and a fire ring. Stables are not provided. For restrooms, there is a vault toilet, and if you need to take a shower, passes can be purchased to visit one of the park's shower houses.
Also located on the left side of the park is the Group Lodge that can accommodate up to 40 people in two bedrooms. Situated in its private zone of the park, the lodge has two dorms with bunk beds. The kitchen is equipped for commercial grade and has a commercial freezer and refrigerator, a dishwasher, an ice machine, microwave, stove, pots, pans, and dining utensils. It is also equipped with airconditioning, central heating and has couches, folding tables and chairs, and satellite television. Guests need to bring their own kitchen, bed, and bath linens. There is an outdoor area with a volleyball net and a sports field, as well as a big fire ring. The lodge is accessible for people with disabilities. This lodge is ideal for family reunions and group getaways.
The park also has two cabins, Hawks Nest cabin, and Burnham cabin, which is a luxury cottage. Hawks Nest has one bedroom, a loft, and a bathroom and can sleep up to 6 people with its two double beds and two single beds. The cabin has a fully outfitted kitchen with a stove, refrigerator, an ice maker, dishes, utensils, pots, pans, and a microwave. It is equipped with airconditioning and central heating, as well as other extras like a DVD player and satellite television. Linens for the bed, bath, and kitchen are provided. Outside on the porch, there are some rocking chairs, and a little bit away is a picnic table, grill, and fire ring. Just a short walk away from the cabins is a playground for children.
Burnham cottage is located next to Hawks Nest in a private area. The luxury cottage has three bedrooms, one downstairs and two upstairs and can sleep up to eight people. Similar to the cabin, it has a fully outfitted kitchen, a DVD player, satellite television, airconditioning, and central heating. Linens for the bath, kitchen, and bed are also provided. A wood-burning stove can be found in the living room and in the master bedroom, which helps keep the cottage warm. A new addition to the luxury cottage is board games, which guests can enjoy on their holiday.
Visitors looking for a more luxurious overnight stay can rent one of the four cottages, two of which are pet-friendly or ADA accessible. These adorable cottages are located on the right side of the park and should be booked in advance. Each cottage has four double beds and two bathrooms, meaning it can sleep up to 8 people. A microwave, stove/oven, coffee maker, pots, dishes, and other necessary cooking items are provided. There is a refrigerator, a TV, and linen for the beds and bathrooms.
All four cottages have air and heat indoors, and there is a large picnic table, a charcoal grill, and a fire pit outdoors. If you bring kids, they will love the playground, which is closeby. Tip: Stop at the office to check-in. The staff will give you a key as well as a gate code to access the gate at the second entrance, the closest entry point for the cabins.
The General Coffee State Park campground has 50 RV and tent sites equipped with water and 30- and 50-amp electrical hookups. A few sites (mostly host sites) feature sewer hookups as well. The sites are pull through, with a picnic table, fire ring, and grill. A maximum of six people are allowed to sleep at a site, and the sites are dog-friendly. Guests can stay up to 14 nights on one site. There is a communal restroom in each of the camping areas with toilets and hot-water showers. A short walk away you can enjoy the playground and picnic shelters or walk on further, to the lake, where there are kayaks and canoes. A dump station is located near the campground.
Horse enthusiasts will thoroughly enjoy the horse riding trails and facilities at General Coffee State Park. There are four equestrian trails to choose from, varying in distances from 0.8 miles to 4.8 miles. Riders can enjoy several miles of riding along the edge of the Otter Creek and the Seventeen Mile River. You might even see some whitetail deer and several types of songbirds out on the trails while out on your ride. Near picnic area seven, there is parking available for horse trailers. Visitors will have to pay a small fee for the use of the horse trails and have proof that their horses have had a negative Coggins test.
This beautiful nature preserve is open year-round and is just over 15 miles west of the park. Broxton Rocks is made up of caves, rare plant life, a waterfall, and endangered wildlife like the eastern diamondback snake, the eastern indigo snake, and the gopher tortoise. Visitors can drive most of the way to the waterfall but will have to hike the last mile. Once there, you can enjoy the stunning beauty of the principal and surrounding waterfalls.
There is also a nice spacious area right above the waterfalls to take some pictures or enjoy a picnic. If you are confident enough, you can get into the water for a swim, but be careful as the sandstone rocks are covered in moss and are slippery. This area is a fun outing suitable for all ages. Reservations are necessary for hiking tours and can be made with the Nature Conservancy.
The Heritage Farm at General Coffee State Park is considered one of Southern Georgia's best-kept secrets. A replica tobacco farm with a small museum, a short trail that goes around a large pond, and a petting zoo—make this a fun and exciting place to visit. Children and adults can have fun feeding the farm animals, which include sheep, goats, pigs, donkeys, and chickens. When visiting the Heritage Farm, visitors will be able to see numerous agricultural exhibits like a cane mill and corn crib.
There is no shortage of beautiful hiking trails to walk at General Coffee State Park. The park is extremely well shaded, and hikers will enjoy coolness as they explore the trails. Visitors can choose between the East River Swamp Trail, the West River Swamp Trail, and the Gopher Loop—as well as the Heritage Farm Interpretive Walk. The trails vary in length but are no more than 1.5 miles each. The trails are well maintained, and there are boardwalks in the swampy areas. These trails are spread over the park, and hikers will encounter a variety of habitats and wildlife. River otters, wading birds, raccoons, deer, and the rare gopher tortoise are some of the wildlife you can see along these walks. It can be hot during the summer, so make sure to take enough water with you, and bring a hat to help shade the sun.
Embark on an exciting treasure hunt in the outdoors using GPS coordinates to help you. There are several caches hidden in the park that will take you on beautiful walks around the park. The aim of geocaching is to find the cache and trade trinkets of equal or greater value before signing the logbook to record that you have found it. Search online in preparation for your geocaching adventure to locate the various caches in the park.
Visitors can enjoy a picnic after their hike in one of the park's seven picnic shelters or group shelter. The shelters accommodate anywhere from 30 to180, depending on which one you choose. These shelters are spread over the park, mainly at the beginning of the trails and at the lake near Heritage Farm. You can bring along your boat and take it out on the lake, as long as it has an electric motor. No boat ramp facilities are available.
Don't worry if you don't have your own boat; there are kayaks, pedal boats, and canoes available to rent. There are also land-based activities to do at the park. Visitors who bring along their own equipment can try out the archery range that has six bulls-eye targets. Alternatively, you can rent a bicycle and do some biking around the park.