Tuesday-Saturday 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Closed Sunday & Monday
8463 Burton's Ferry Hwy.
Sylvania, GA 30467
Georgia Grown & State Parks products now available.
The Sylvania Historic Welcome Center located on U.S. Highway 301 was the very first built in Georgia and is the oldest operating state visitor center in the country. Built in 1961 and officially dedicated on January 20th, 1962, the center was the result of the efforts of Governor Ernest Vandiver who believed that tourism could be used to improve the image of Georgia and become a catalyst for economic growth. The center predates the interstate highway system in Georgia. It was built when U.S. Highway 301 was known as the “short route” to Florida by visitors from the Atlantic coastal states and Canadian provinces.
Still favored by visitors who choose not to travel the interstates, this historic center is located on six acres of land half a mile away from the South Carolina border. Sylvania is the only original visitor center designed by Statesboro architect Edwin C. Eckles remaining. With a midcentury modern design, the center has barrel vault ceilings and an aluminum and glass façade that stand out in the surrounding natural setting. Native Georgia materials such as Etowah pink marble and pecan wood were used in the details.
Behind the building is a park with ten picnic tables and two grills for visitors to enjoy and take a break from travel. Sylvania Visitor Center is also the only visitor center in the state that still gives out free Coca-Cola products as well as Georgia peanuts.
Nearby are the Savannah River and Ogeechee River, Tuckahoe WMA, and the Revolutionary Battle of Brier Creek site. The center itself is also close (or perhaps right on top of) the German settlement of New Goettingen (1750's).
ParkPasses and Historic Site Passes are sold at this welcome center.
- Savannah River
- Battle of Brier Creek Revolutionary Battle Site
- Tuckahoe WMA
- Magnolia Springs State Park
- Georgia Southern University
- George L. Smith State Park
- Mill Pond Kayak
- Georgia's Classic South
- Augusta, GA
- Savannah, GA