4 Thanksgiving getaways within driving distance from Chattanooga

Contributed photo by Montage Palmetto Bluff / The Montage Palmetto Bluff offers a host of holiday activities.

While Thanksgiving is a holiday typically spent at home, it's also a great time to get away -- whether you choose to gather with family at a destination that takes care of the work for you or slip away for the weekend after enjoying a festive feast.

Located on 35 miles of waterfront on the May River between Hilton Head and Savannah, the Montage Palmetto Bluff offers a host of holiday activities on Thanksgiving weekend in a beautiful Lowcountry setting surrounded by 100-year-old oaks. The festivities kickoff South Carolina-style with an oyster roast on Wednesday evening, followed by yoga on Thanksgiving morning and a nature walk after lunch to work off the turkey. End the weekend with cookie decorating, visits with Santa and a casual dinner with local food trucks on Saturday evening. Named the top resort in the South in Conde Nast Traveler's 2021 Reader's Choice Awards, the Montage Palmetto Bluff is also known for its May River Golf Course and luxurious spa. The pet-friendly resort also recognizes that no family gathering is complete without its four-legged members.

  photo  Contributed photo by Visit South Walton / An aerial view of Watersound, one of 16 neighborhoods in South Walton Beach.

While it may be a bit too cold in November to swim in the emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico on Florida's South Walton Beach, the area's 16 beach neighborhoods -- including Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Watersound and Watercolor -- are still perfect spots for viewing stunning sunsets and taking beach walks in white-sugar sand.

Reserve a table at the grand buffet-style Thanksgiving feast hosted by Watercolor Inn's waterfront restaurant or take your turkey and all the fixings to-go back to your vacation rental for a fuss-free holiday meal.

  photo  Contributed photo by The Omni Homestead Resort / The Omni Homestead Resort is an ideal fall destination.

If you'd like to travel somewhere warm enough to swim, head to the The Omni Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Virginia, where you'll find a hot spring-fed pool featuring toasty temps all year long surrounded by the crisp air of the Allegheny Mountains. You can also sign up for a range of activities planned for the holiday weekend, from artsy endeavors like classes on silk scarf dyeing or ceramics painting, to more active pursuits such as a Thanksgiving morning "turkey trot" for those who choose to run, and "turkey waddle" for those who prefer to move at a more leisurely pace. The Christmas season officially begins at the Homestead on Nov. 21, when a 20-foot tree is installed in the resort's Great Hall.

  photo  Contributed photo by Stacy Redmon / Whitewater Falls in Cashiers, North Carolina.

Cashiers or Highlands in the North Carolina mountains are ideal spots to rent a cabin for a crowd or to relax in a room at one of the area's charming hotels. Enjoy seasonal activities like ice skating in downtown Highlands, or indulge in a treatment at the world-class spa at the Old Edwards Inn.