Goats on the Roof is a roadside attraction located in Tiger, Georgia, off Highway 441 south. So what is the appeal? Well, as the name implies, goats are wandering on the roof – literally.
Here you can feed the goats by sending food up to the roof or feeding them on the ground level. You can eat lunch here, try some iconic nitro ice cream, shop, and use the facilities. There’s even a playground for kids to get in some playtime.
Goats on the Roof is one of the most unusual roadside attractions in America worthy of a stop. And, it has something for everyone to enjoy while taking a break from driving.
A roadside attraction is a feature along the side of a road meant to attract tourists. In general, these are places one might stop on the way to somewhere, rather than actually being a destination. They are frequently advertised with billboards.
The owner of Goats On The Roof is a local Rabun County man named Russ Phillips. Since 2017, this attraction has been getting lots of attention due to its uniqueness. After all, not many places on earth can boast about goats that like to roam around on the roof.
Russ, the owner, is a guy that genuinely cares about his goats. So much that his love for the goats is well known locally, his goats’ love is the first thing people associate him with. Locally, by his admission, he gets nicknamed “the pooper scooper” or “the goat guy”- it’s easy to guess why.
Russ’s goats are not only loved but fiercely protected. The goats have free-roaming privileges on the rooftop, and there is a barn where the goats can rest or take cover from a storm. The barn is the mack daddy of all goat cribs!
The main reason why Goats On The Roof is so popular is because of Russ’s vision for it. He never wanted the place to be a run-of-the-mill tourist attraction. He wanted Goats on the Roof to be a place where people leave scratching their heads. A place so unusual it’s hard to believe it is real and yet provides family fun at the same time.
The Legend of Goats on the Roof
Russ made sure to market the place like something out of the ordinary. He had the genius idea to claim the goats roaming around the roof because they are directly related to aliens. According to the legend that Philips created, the goats first “landed” in 2007. In the Legend, Russ expressed his fear that he thinks the goat will leave him once the eclipse happens – the day the mothership will come back and take the goats back to where they belong. Regardless of what to say, the bizarre story worked as Goats on the Roof is one of Georgia’s most famous tourist attractions today.
Why Visit Goats On The Roof
First of all, you will be able to see goats and feed goats – a whole lot of them.
From the roof, they wander from one building to another using the bridges that connect the buildings. There are several options to feed the goats while they are on the roof. For a small fee, you can send food up to the goats via various pully systems. If you feed the goats, you can earn yourself the goat ranger badge. Then there is the side yard where you can hand feed the goats. The kids love this, and it’s fun to watch.
Think of Goats on the Roof as the ultimate funhouse designed especially for goats. The goats galavant peacefully going about their day on the roof or down in the side yard. No two experiences here will ever be the same—the park hosts different events throughout the year. For example, at Christmas, you can take pictures with Santa and his goat. An alien goat from the roof, of course! And, at other times throughout the year, you can enjoy live music.
While goats might be the main attraction, the goats aren’t the only attraction.
“We don’t just want to be your average stop,” “We want to be out of the ordinary. We want people to scratch their heads when they come through, and when they leave, thinking what was that? But we love just seeing the happiness.” – Russ Phillips
What’s On-Site At Goats on the Roof
Other than the apparent goats that you just read about, a lot is going on! Plenty of reasons to stop here and lots to take in.
Big Billy’s Cafe
A traditional cafe. The cafe boasts homemade fudge, the famous nitro ice cream, and food items made with locally sourced meat. All of the meats come from a local butcher in town. The beef used in the cafe is from Andy’s Market, where cows are grass-fed and grown from birth – 100% organic.
Nitro Ice Cream
Inside of Big Billy’s Cafe, the “nitro ice cream” has won awards!
Ice cream is traditionally churned and then set in a freezer for days or weeks before you eat it. The new craze for eating ice cream is to eat your ice cream made just moments before eating it. Liquid nitrogen is used to flash freeze your ice cream instead of the traditional churn method.
Tempting and delicious, liquid nitrogen ice cream is more than a dessert; it’s a unique experience that creates instant memories. Enjoy classic favorites and discover new temptations with a variety of taste-bud-tantalizing toppings.
There’s an elaborate playground your kids will love.
There’s also the chance for one to mine gems. While you won’t mine from the mine on the side of the mountain, you can pan mine below.
Suppose you’ve already fallen in love with the goats, which at this point you likely will. And if not, for sure you will when you visit – you can buy yourself a goat. Not a real one, the soft stuffed teddy bear-like one.
You can also shop all you want, to your heart’s content. The gift store has tons of hillbilly gifts and Amish furniture. The gift store is stocked with the usual t-shirts, jams, jellies, and boiled peanuts.
Once you’ve taken in all the “goats,” you can, time to relax. Sit on the Amish Adirondack rockers by the fire pit!
What You Need to Know
3026 Hwy 441 S Tiger, GA 30576
Restaurant on Site
Suitable for Ages
Hours of Operation
March 22nd through September 3rd
Open Daily- 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Easter Day – Closed
Thanksgiving Day – Closed
Christmas Eve – Closed
Christmas Day – Closed
Note: Goats on the Roof will be closed August 18, 2020 through August 24, 2020 for maintenance.
Goats on the Roof always get rave reviews from everyone that has ever visited this tourist hotspot. The most common word to describe the place seems to be “unique.”. I would describe it as “out there,” which, for me, is reason alone to stop in.
Families have a blast here. Kids love being around goats, and other attractions add to the experience.
This goat heaven runs on the fan theory that the goats like being on the roof because they are the descendants of aliens living on Tiger Mountain. Remember, legend says that the mountain will experience a solar eclipse one day. This is the day the goats will return to their homeland. Given this, it’s essential to visit Goats on the Roof before it’s time for the goats to return home.
Looking for more unusual things to do? Check here:
Nikki Webster is a travel writer who covers how to travel while grinding a day job and travel without breaking the bank, hotels, cruising, and off-the-beaten-track experiences. She is particularly fond of Florida and writes extensively about the state. She flies around 60,000 miles per year and has visited 54 countries, 50 states, and six continents. You can read all about her travels at www.britonthemove.com.