Southern Water’s Retreat at Lake Sinclair: A Perfect Georgia Getaway

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Isn’t life supposed to slow down after the Holidays? For our family, it seems that hasn’t been the case. Still recovering from weeks of holiday visitors, we were offered the chance to take a getaway up to Central Georgia. Our stay at Sandy Shores at Lake Sinclair, formerly known as Southern Water’s Retreat at Lake Sinclair, was just what we needed to recharge. 

Southern Water's Retreat view from lake dock

Thank you to Michelle at Southern Water’s Retreat for hosting our family on this getaway. All opinions are my own, honest review. The home is now under new ownership.

Southern Water’s Retreat Location

Southern Water’s Retreat lake house is located along the eastern shore of Lake Sinclair, within the Holiday Shores community. About 45 minutes north of Milledgeville, and 25 minutes west of Sparta, you best be sure you pack well. 

front View of Southern Water's Retreat lake house

Nestled through Georgia’s winding backroads, you are literally “in the middle of nowhere.” Your closest stores, restaurants, and gas stations will be in either Sparta or Milledgeville. We drove in after dark, so we suggest being very careful if you are too. We saw lots of deer when we got to be about 15 minutes of arrival. 

Southern Water’s Retreat Indoor Amenities

The main home has 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, and sleeps 12 in all the beds. See our video above for a full tour of both inside and outdoors. Additionally, there is a guest house with full bathroom that can sleep 4 more guests. 

Girls sitting in dining room window seats at Southern Water's Retreat

So many windows, therefore you can always be taking in the lake view!

Teens playing pool at Southern Water's Retreat

You will find movies, board games, and pool table for indoor fun. 

Teens playing 80's arcade games at Southern Water's Retreat.

Also, a throwback video arcade game, with popular games such as Pac-Man, Ms Pac-Man, Asteroids, Galaga, Frogger, Centipede, and many more! Even us adults took our turn. 

TIP: I would take some bath salts or a bath bomb, because there is a larger tub in the master bathroom. 

Southern Water’s Retreat Video Tour

Amenities Outdoors at Southern Water’s Retreat

Beach deck seating at Southern Water's Retreat

You will find lots of places to sit and relax. Since we were there in February, I’m not sure how busy the lake gets in summer. But, we found it to be extremely peaceful and quiet during our visit. 

Back porch at Southern Water's Retreat

We enjoyed both morning and evening drinks on the upper porch, taking in a variety of views. 

Pinterest image of sunset on Lake Sinclair at Southern Water's Retreat

Sitting on the boat dock, watching the sunset was one of our favorite parts. 

Teens roasting marshmallows at Southern Water's Retreat

The walk out basement porch has a hot tub, and propane fire pit. Bring makings for s’mores, because there is also a wood fire pit on the beach area. 

Boat dock at Southern Water's Retreat

If you’re into water sports, there’s a pontoon boat, 2 wave runners, a pedal boat, kayaks, and a paddle board. Sadly, we didn’t partake in any of these activities. 

In addition, you can always take a walk around Holiday Shores.

Exploring the Area

Map of Lake in Georgia showing Southern Water's Retreat

There are several towns around to take a day trip, plus you could possibly get to more than one in a day. Sparta does not have much to offer, but Milledgeville, and Eatonton are both places you could spend the day.

Map of Lake Sinclair in Georgia showing Southern Water's Retreat

Also, on our rainy day, we took a drive up to Lake Oconee, where we found lots of places to eat, a movie theater, and plenty of golf courses. 


Milledgeville is the original capital of Georgia, therefore, you can find the first governor’s mansion here, along with many other historic places. 

Also, Milledgeville is home to the world’s largest abandoned insane asylum. Central State Hospital, also known as Georgia Lunatic Asylum, opened in 1842, and closed in 2010. With over 200 buildings covering more than 2000 acres, it was once home to as many as over 13,000 patients at one single time.

Abandoned building at Georgia Insane Asylum

It was the world’s largest facility of its kind, and it seems the general public is in the dark about all that went on here. You can read more about it from Atlanta Magazine.

Copper grave markers at Cedar Lane Cemetery

The Cedar Lane Cemetery honors the over 25,000 unmarked graves of those who passed on. 

You can drive through the property, but it is very well watched over by security. Above you can find some video from our short little drive through on our way home. 

Campus Theatre in Milledgeville

We totally would have went to see Heathers if it were showing there weekend we were there. 

Ultimate Stuffed Sticks at The Brick Milledgeville

The Brick is where we decided to stop in and have a light lunch. Thanks to our server Erin, because she recommended the Ultimate Stuffed Sticks, and they were so good. Along with buffalo chicken dip, and fries, it was just enough to hold us over for dinner. 

Final Thoughts

Cheers to the sunset on Lake Sinclair at Southern Water's Retreat

Our time spent at Southern Water’s Retreat was relaxing and recharging. We highly recommend the home, but it is currently under new ownership, and now called Sandy Shores at Lake Sinclair. You can reach them via their Facebook page, and contact information.

Pinterest image for Southern Water's Retreat

Have you ever stayed at a lake house? Share your favorite place with us. We love learning about more new places to visit.  

For more getaway inspiration, check out:

Things to do in and Around Lexington

A Day in St Augustine

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15 thoughts on “Southern Water’s Retreat at Lake Sinclair: A Perfect Georgia Getaway

  • March 4, 2020 at 9:03 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing your review! We are so happy that you enjoyed your stay with us!

    • March 6, 2020 at 8:25 am

      We are so very thankful for the chance to stay!! We truly enjoyed ourselves.

  • March 9, 2020 at 7:50 pm

    I really enjoyed reading this. I’d also love to see it in the Summertime as I’m sure it would take on a very different feel with all the leaves out. The Asylum looked intense! It looked like they still used some of the buildings, do you know what for?

    We spent thanks giving at a lake house near Chattanooga last year and it was amazing! Thanks for writing this… it makes me want to get back to Georgia someday!

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:48 pm

      Chattanooga is such a great area too!! I bet that was a nice trip.

      I too, would love to see the cabin in summer. I bet it’s so pretty. Not sure what they use some of the buildings for today. of the 200, most were empty. Very sad.

  • March 10, 2020 at 9:02 am

    This looks amazing, and I love the idea of visiting in the winter when things are quiet. The cemetery picture was really a good one, and now I’m trying to adjust my calendar to spend some time in Georgia! I love the idea of visiting a couple of areas in the same day.

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:49 pm

      Thank you Pam!! My friend Amanda took the cemetery picture. So sad we weren’t able to stick around long enough to find it. Can’t wait to see where you visit in Georgia!

  • March 10, 2020 at 10:43 am

    It looks to me like the perfect place to find peace and quiet, and as you said, recharge from the holiday hustle and bustle. I feel more relaxed just by reading your post. Scary thought what may have gone on at the asylum. Sad, I am sure. And I bet it was a little eery.

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:50 pm

      Aww, thanks! Happy it helped you to relax. I feel the same way about the asylum. And it was a bit eery.

  • March 10, 2020 at 7:43 pm

    That home looks like the perfect getaway, even if it’s for a weekend. I would love to stay here. It’s also not so far from us!

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:51 pm

      Yes! Close enough for a weekend getaway. The drive was pretty peaceful.

  • March 10, 2020 at 8:51 pm

    This looks like a great home to rent for a family get together, especially in the spring or summer when the water will be warmer. You can put those water toys to good use!

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:52 pm

      I agree!! It would be so fun to get extended family together here. Would love to get back on a wave runner!

  • March 11, 2020 at 8:39 pm

    This was so interesting! I would love to visit! The water recreation are something we LOVE to do, that would be a total bonus for us! Also, you have me on a total rabbit hole now with Milledgeville – I’m trying to find out everything I can on it now! I’m a sucker for abandoned buildings and the history of them!

    • March 11, 2020 at 10:54 pm

      Ha!! I get the same way. I did quite a bit of reading on it myself, before I had to stop. This is the kind of history I like to learn about. Not all the hyped up stuff from school.

  • June 1, 2020 at 1:00 pm

    This looks like a lovely, peaceful retreat. I have put it on my list for a visit someday.

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