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On the shores of Lake Allatoona, the Red Top Mountain Campground is an ideal destination for RVers wanting to swim, fish, or water ski. It’s located within Red Top Mountain State Park, which is also a hiker’s heaven and is named after the high iron-ore content of its rich, red soil.
Camping at the Red Top Mountain Campground includes access to more than 50 walk-in campsites, as well as 18 cottages for those who don’t want to set up their RV. There are clean restrooms and showers available for guests, as well as picnic shelters, two boat ramps, and a marina. If you’re traveling with kids, there are tennis courts and three children’s playgrounds scattered throughout the park, not to mention a mini-golf course.
Acworth campers are on the doorstep of the Red Top Mountain State Park, which occupies a wooded peninsula that juts into Lake Allatoona. There are more than 15 miles of hiking trails to explore (including one that’s accessible to strollers and wheelchairs), with the four-mile Iron Hill Trail offering impressive views across the lake. Don’t miss a visit to the reconstructed 1860's homestead within the park or the nearby Allatoona Pass National Historical Registry Marker that designates the site of an 1864 Atlanta Campaign of the American Civil War.
A short drive south of the Red Top Mountain Campground is Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, which preserves a Civil War-era battleground of the Atlanta Campaign. Its name derives from a Cherokee word meaning “burial ground,” with the park also encompassing the peak of Kennesaw Mountain. There are three battlefield areas to explore, one of which is directly in front of the Visitor Center, while Peter Valentine Kolb's farmhouse has been beautifully restored to its original condition. Watch the short film about the battle that was fought here, then head out to explore the 17 miles of interpretive hiking trails that wind through the park. Historic earthworks and cannon emplacements dot the park, as do monuments representing each of the states that fought here (Illinois, Texas, and Georgia).
Combine your visit to the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park with a stop at the Smith-Gilbert Gardens, which is home to around 3,000 plant species. It occupies more than 17 acres and includes 15 themed garden spaces that are dotted with contemporary sculptures and historical treasures. Visit the award-winning “Garden with Wings” butterfly house and pollinator garden and admire the Hiram Butler House, then explore the impressive collections of hydrangeas, camellias, conifers, and roses.
RV camping at Red Top Mountain Campground is just 15 minutes’ drive from the center of Acworth, where there are a couple of supermarkets for stocking up on supplies. There are also plenty of gas stations here if you need to fill up your RV rental and a good selection of fast-food restaurants and grill-style eateries if you don’t feel like cooking.
A short drive west of the Red Top Mountain Campground is the Etowah Indian Mounds, an archaeological site that was occupied from 1000-1500 AD. It’s one of the most intact culture sites in the southeastern United States and is now designated as a National Historic Landmark, with a series of platform mounds for visitors to explore. Around 140 buildings have been identified on the site by archaeologists, including log temples and a raised ceremonial plaza, while copper tools, weapons, and clay figurines have also been uncovered here.
Camp in an RV near Acworth and spend a day visiting the museums of Cartersville, which lies just ten minutes’ drive to the west. Witness the United States’ largest collection of Western art at the Booth Western Art Museum, where you can also visit a gallery filled with letters signed by every U.S. president is. Cartersville is also home to the Tellus Science Museum that’s ideal for kids, with huge dinosaur skeletons and exhibits related to space exploration.
Another cultural destination not to miss is the Rose Lawn Museum, which occupies the restored Victorian home of Reverend Samuel Porter Jones. Browse the original furnishings and personal treasures that detail his life and legacy or coincide your visit with the Annual Arts Festival in September. History buffs should also make a point of visiting the Bartow History Museum, which details Northwest Georgia’s industrial, agricultural, and cultural heritage within a mid-19th-century courthouse.
Whether you want to discover the storied battlefields of Georgia or get cultured in the museums of Cartersville, book an RV in Bartow County and start planning your next vacation.