Article originally appeared on Georgia's Lake County Insider Tips blog.  

Shopping in Georgia’s Lake Country any time of year is a favorite pastime for visitors. But the seasonal sparkle of shops covered in twinkling lights, displaying a treasure trove of delightful gifts perfect for friends and family, makes shopping during the holiday season the best. With a bounty of boutiques and antique shops to explore, delightful restaurants to dine at and magical holiday events to celebrate the season, come discover why Christmas is the most wonderful time of year to experience Georgia’s Lake Country.

Kick off the Holiday Shopping Season at Shop, Sip and Stroll

Downtown Madison  Nov. 16, 10am to 6pm

Start checking gifts off your Christmas list in Madison’s historic downtown shopping district while enjoying complimentary beverages, special retail and restaurant promotions, in-store events and more during Shop, Sip and Stroll. The streets will come alive with Holiday music, caroling carolers and shops decked out in their holiday finery. With more than 20 participating shops and restaurants, this family-friendly shopping event is sure to put you in the holiday spirit.

One of our favorite spots for delicious stocking stuffers is Antique Sweets Confectioners, where you can find a merry selection of homemade confections and delightful towers of handmade chocolates, pecan brittles and other sweet treats; plus there are many more places in Madison to shopstay and play.

Find the Perfect Holiday Gift

Downtown Greensboro 

Between the antique stores, clothing boutiques and Greensboro Jewelers, you are sure to find a gift for everyone on your list. One of our favorite stores, Genuine Georgia, showcases art straight from the heart and minds of local artists. After receiving a warm welcome as you enter the store, you are greeted by the scent of Gooseberry candles and the quiet sounds of piano music playing in the background. The lamp-lighted art creatively displayed on antique furniture makes you feel like you’ve arrived home for the holidays.

If you are looking for a festive gift, The French Hare offers a beautiful array of designer Christmas trees and wreaths, artwork, furniture and more.

Enjoy Christmas in the Briar Patch & Small Business Saturday

Putnam County Courthouse Lawn Nov. 30, 12 to 5pm

A variety of vendors will have everything from local artwork and holiday gifts to your favorite holiday treats to enjoy during Christmas in the Briar Patch. The Christmas Parade will start at 4pm with floats and special performances including marching bands, dance displays and special guests. Photo opportunities with Santa and Mrs. Claus in the Gazebo on the Putnam County Courthouse Lawn will take place after the Parade. During the event, take time to do some holiday shopping. Chic boutiquesunique gift shops, and more will be open for Small Business Saturday featuring specials for this year’s holiday season. Support Small Business Saturday by purchasing some holiday gifts (or something for yourself!) and indulge at your favorite eatery. 

Join the movement this November 30, by shopping small and sharing your favorite places. Keep an eye out for other local events happening in Eatonton through the month of December.

Experience the Sights and Sounds of Milledgeville Main Street’s Christmas First Friday

Milledgeville Main Street Dec. 16, 6 to 8 pm

During the Holidays, Milledgeville becomes a postcard-worthy downtown filled with lights, nutcrackers, garland, and local gifts guaranteed to earn a smile. The most cheerful event around, Milledgeville Main Street’s Christmas First Friday, features downtown stores open late for you to enjoy in addition to restaurants, live performances, and even a visit from Santa himself. If you can’t make it to First Friday, don’t worry. Milledgeville’s downtown has the best holiday shopping all season long. You can pick up treats to-go for the foodie in your family. Local favorites include cake squares from Ryals’ Bakery and the Red Velvet cupcake at Doodles Cupcake Bakery. Drop into Eclectic for favorites like soy candles, wooden signs, and maps of Lake Sinclair. The Market Collective has gifts with a vintage twist for everyone in your family. You can find everything from biscuit mix to handmade soaps there, plus so much more!

For more gift ideas and information on how to give the gift of Milly, check out Milledgeville’s Holiday Gift Guide.