You know how things change as the year goes on? I mean, like they always change. But you know how you start the year with some plans and then other plans come up and surprise you? At the beginning of the year it wasn’t even on my radar to spend a weekend in Thomasville, Georgia. But it just worked out that way, and I’m so glad it did.
In late April, I had a trip planned with my parents to go to West Virginia for some family stuff. But when that trip fell through, my mom and I still wanted to get out of town. So I suggested a weekend in Thomasville because a) I’ve wanted to go there for awhile and b) I knew she would love the small town vibes and cute shops.
And I was right. We had a great time in Thomasville. From delicious food to adorable shops to great people (seriously, the friendly people made Thomasville such a great experience), we loved our time in this small Southern Georgia town.
We got into town on Friday evening and checked into our hotel. We stayed at The Hampton Inn in Thomasville, and it was a solid stay. A pretty standard Hampton Inn but everything was clean and comfortable and it was a short 5 minute drive to downtown Thomasville.
Once we got settled, we went downtown and put our name in at Jonah’s Fish and Grits for dinner. It was about a 30 minute wait, so we strolled around downtown some. Most of the shops were closed (remember, this is a small town), but it was a very pleasant evening for some people watching.
Dinner at Jonah’s was great. I had a grouper sandwich that was good. But the cheese grits were amazing and the hush puppies were the best hush puppies I have ever had in my life. (And I’ve had a lot of hush puppies.) (Also, I realize as I’m typing this that hush puppies probably sounds like an odd thing to someone who has know idea what I’m talking about, so suffice it to say they are an iconic Southern food and are basically buttery fried balls of cornmeal with seasonings.)
Planning a weekend in Thomasville? Check out these things to do in Thomasville, Georgia!
Saturday was our main day in Thomasville, and we started with breakfast at Empire Bagel. I am not even normally a bagel person, but these were fantastic. I had a French Toast bagel with Nutella cream cheese (so good!) and my mom got an Empire Egg Sandwich on a French Toast bagel. The combo of savory and sweet there was perfection.
The next stop was one of my highlights: visiting The Bookshelf. When we planned this trip, we had no idea it would fall on the same weekend as Independent Bookstore Day and it was so much fun for me to visit one of my favorite long-distance bookstores and meet some of my favorite book people on a day full of celebrating books.
For lunch, we ate at Sweetgrass Cheese Shop (not to be confused with Grassroots Coffee across the street, which we had also stopped by that morning). Sweetgrass makes their own local cheese, and it is dreamy—so creamy and buttery. I had some on a burger, while my mom got a small charcuterie board to sample several of their different varieties. Sweetgrass is a Thomasville staple, so I definitely recommend trying to get in during your weekend in Thomasville. (Pro tip: plan to wait because they can get busy! Try to eat early, or at least put your name on the list earlier than you expect to eat.)
Next up was our main activity for the afternoon: a tour of historic Thomasville with Thomasville Tours! We booked through their Local Strolls site, met our tour guide, Mike, at the Visitor’s Center, and were off to see some of the most important sites in Thomasville.
I’m not going to lie here: if I was listing the things I was most excited to do in Thomasville, a historic walking tour wasn’t exactly top of my list. I mean, I wanted to do it because I knew it would be a great way to learn a little more about Thomasville and because I knew my mom would love it. But it turns out, this was one of my favorite parts of the weekend!
Thomasville has an interesting history, as it became a favorite Southern city for Northerners to visit to restore their health. It also has had some famous visitors throughout the years, and Mike seemed to have fascinating stories about the history of just about every building we passed.
And of course, no weekend in Thomasville would be complete without a stop by The Big Oak. This giant Live Oak is over 300 years old, which makes it one of the oldest Live Oaks in the country. We stopped by on our tour (where we got a fun story about a US President and The Big Oak), but even if you don’t have a time for a tour, make sure you walk down to see this majestic tree.
At this point in the day, the heat was getting to us, so we headed back to the hotel to rest of a bit. Plus, it stormed for a bit in the afternoon, as it is wont to do in the summer in Southern Georgia (much like Florida).
After a rest though, we headed back out for just a few more Thomasville highlights.
First up: the Thomasville Rose Garden. Thomasville is Georgia’s Rose City, and holds a Rose Festival in the spring each year. We visited the weekend just after Rose Festival, so all the roses in the garden were blooming and we really enjoyed walking around to see (and smell) all the different varieties.
For dinner, we ate at AJ Moonspin Pizza & Pasta, where they make their pizza with a sourdough starter that is over 100 years old. They also have some fantastic pasta. We ordered entirely too much food and it was all delicious.
That didn’t stop us from having dessert at Sweet CaCao Chocolates though. Because my mom and I will never turn down an opportunity for a sweet treat.
We didn’t do much in Thomasville on Sunday, because we had to head home. But just know that we loved Empire Bagel so much that we stopped here to grab breakfast to go on our way out of town.
We truly had a lovely weekend in Thomasville. It made for a perfect little mother-daughter getaway. We loved their food and shops, enjoyed learning about their history, and felt so welcomed by all the people we met.
In fact, as much as Thomasville has to offer in the way of boutique shops and Southern cuisine, it really is the people that make this small town so exceptional. Everyone we met was so happy for us to be there, and their love for Thomasville was so evident. It really was Southern hospitality at it’s finest.
This place is really something special, and it’s definitely on my list to return to sometime.