Since its opening in the early 1970s, the Big Canoe Retirement Community has gown from a small group of retirees to a growing gated community for all ages.
Big Canoe the Enchanted Land
Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains of northern Georgia, Big Canoe is between Dawsonville and Jasper, about a one-hour drive north from Atlanta. The countryside is breathtaking, and the lifestyle is relaxed, making it an ideal place for retirement.
Big Canoe began in 1972 when developers created the community. At the time, it was made up of retirees and families that bought second homes for vacationing. Although the community itself is not even four decades old, its land has a very rich history. Big Canoe was home to many Indian Nations such as the Paleo Indians more than 15,000 years ago, and the Cherokee Indians much later. The Indians referred to the land of Big Canoe as the "Enchanted Land" and with its natural beauty the area still lives up to that name today.
Big Canoe Retirement Community
Today the 8,000 acre community of Big Canoe is much more than just a retirement community. The community is made up of retirees as well as families of all ages. It is home to thousands of permanent residents and a large number of part-time residents. From the very beginning, the natural beauty of Big Canoe was protected with approximately thirty percent of the land being set aside as green space, areas that cannot be developed commercially or residentially.
The community of Big Canoe offers single-family homes that range in price from approximately $400,000 to several million dollars. There are also more affordable condos and townhouses within the gated community, with prices starting at about $200,000. Although Big Canoe is no longer considered a retirement community, it is a wonderful place to retire.
The Natural Beauty of Big Canoe
The natural beauty of the area includes views of seven majestic mountains, gorgeous lakes and beautiful countryside. The community has miles of scenic hiking trials with one going through the thirty-four acre wildflower preserve, McDaniel Meadows.
Within the confines of Big Canoe are three spectacular, pristine, man-made lakes perfect for swimming, fishing and boating.
- Lake Petite is the largest of the lakes. It covers 111 acres and is stocked with trout and a variety of other fish. With a large marina, Lake Petite is safely guarded from pollution as only canoes, rowboats and electric-powered boats are allowed.
- Lake Sconti features a beautiful restaurant on its shores and is well known for fishing.
- Lake Disharoon is the home of the Big Canoe Swim Club. It is set aside for swimming, paddle boating, canoeing and other forms of recreation. The lake features white sandy beaches, a kiddie pool and a covered pavilion. There are also picnic and barbecue areas, a snack bar and a party room.
Amenities of Big Canoe
There are a great number of amenities offered at the Big Canoe community including:
- 27-hole golf course that includes a pro shop, practice putting green, driving range and a professional staff
- Tennis facilities that include eight outdoor courts, four hard surface and four clay surface, two indoor courts, a pro shop and a professional staff
- Interdenominational chapel with seating for 360 people
- Broyles Center which includes a library, meeting rooms, pottery room and a dining room with a full kitchen
- Outdoor amphitheater
- 20,000 square foot, state of the art fitness center
- Racquetball court
- Free-form swimming pool
- 25-meter indoor lap pool
- Massage room
- Physical therapy services
- Basketball courts
- Athletic fields
- Organized sports
- Children's playground
- More than eighty-five miles of paved roads
- Jeep trails
- Smoke Signals community newspaper
- Inter-community mail
- 24-hour security
Big Canoe Future Growth
With more than twenty different neighborhoods, and the projection of more than 4,700 homes, the Big Canoe retirement community has grown far beyond its original plan. With plans for continued growth, Big Canoe will have communities outside its gated areas, such as its Potts Mountain Community. A continuing care retirement community may even be in its future.