The small town of Madison, Georgia isn’t just one of the most beautiful places in America, it’s one of the most beautiful places to visit in the world. Located just an hour east of Atlanta, you can skip the plane and still experience a town full of culture, charm, and enchantment. You don’t have to take our word for it though; Madison has been receiving accolades since 1864 when it was deemed the “most cultured and aristocratic town on the stagecoach route from Charleston to New Orleans” in the Guide to Georgia. Keep reading to see why Budget Travel Magazine, Architectural Digest, and The Culture Trip all recommend Madison.

16 Most Beautiful Towns in the World: Budget Travel Magazine

“Norman Rockwell meets Gone with the Wind in Madison, Georgia. Legend has it that General Sherman refused to burn down the town during his March to the Sea because it was so pretty. (The more likely reason was that Madison was home to a pro-Union mayor, but no one who’s been there questions the ‘too beautiful’ description.) Restored antebellum homes still stand alongside fragrant gardens and plenty of independent boutiques, restaurants, and inns. The small village is also known for its museums, covering fine art, history, and African American heritage.”

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The 50 Most Beautiful Small Towns in America: Architectural Digest

“When you think of a quaint Southern town with magnolia trees and antebellum homes, Madison—60 miles east of Atlanta—is just that. One of Georgia’s largest historic districts lies in Madison, and it is a stop on the state’s Antebellum Trail.”

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The 10 Most Beautiful Towns In The Southern States: The Culture Trip

“In 1864, General Sherman marched through Georgia to the sea, burning everything Confederate in his Union path. Madison was the town that got away. Sherman left that match unlit, as Madison was the home of pro-Union Georgia Senator Joshua Hill. Because of this fortitude, the town boasts more examples of Antebellum architecture than any other city or town in Georgia.”

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Ready to plan your trip to Madison? You can browse itineraries for all interests, including arts & culture, outdoor activities, history & heritage, and even weekend foodie finds. Madison is the perfect day trip, but an even better weekend getaway. Sojourn in the heart of the town at a boutique hotel, a cozy B&B in the historic district, or check out the top-rated hotels convenient to I-20. See a complete list of places to stay in Madison here.

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