Things to do in Atlanta

Home and birthplace of the iconic Martin Luther King Jr, Atlanta is fill of history and culture. Visitors need look no further for exciting stories of the American South and for some of the United States' finest cultural exports, such as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.

History buffs will love the countless museums this city has to offer. From the Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site and the Atlanta History Center, to the Atlanta Cyclorama, Civil War Museum, and the Carter Center.

A trip to the World of Coca-Cola is a must for lovers of the world's best known brand, while kids of all ages will love the Georgia Aquarium and Zoo Atlanta. Wander through the Botanical Gardens or marvel at the magnificent artwork in the High Museum of Art. The choices in Atlanta are endless.

An Atlanta CityPASS can be bought for approximately $76 for adults and $62 for children and is valid for nine days. The pass allows the bearer free admission to a handful of the city's top attractions. The CityPASS booklet provides attraction information, transport directions, and best times to visit as well as coupons and other special features.

Atlanta History Center photo

Atlanta History Center

Explore the 13 hectares (33 acres) of beautiful gardens, award-winning exhibitions, and interactive activities at the Atlanta History Center.

Atlanta History Center

Explore the 13 hectares (33 acres) of beautiful gardens, award-winning exhibitions, and interactive activities at the Atlanta History Center.

The main attractions are two historic homes, open to the public offering informative guided tours. The Tullie Smith House originally stood outside the city limits but has been relocated to the History Center. The house was built in the 1840s and survived the near-total destruction of Atlanta in 1864 when General William Sherman burned almost two thirds of the city during his infamous 'March to the Sea'. The farmhouse is typical of most in Georgia at the time, despite popular belief that not all Georgians owned large plantations and mansions.

The Swan House, built in 1928, is a grand Italianate mansion that is an Atlanta landmark, once the home of Edward and Emily Inman, heirs to a cotton brokerage fortune. The History Center also features several other historic buildings and exhibitions.

Address 130 West Paces Ferry Road

Website www.atlantahistorycenter.com

Opens Museum: Monday to Saturday 10am-5.30pm, Sunday 12pm-5.30pm. Tullie Smith House and Swan House Tours: Monday to Saturday 11am-4pm, Sunday 1pm-4pm.

Admission

$16.50 adults, $11 children 4-12 years. Other concessions are available, and discounted tickets are available through the website.

Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site photo

Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site

Venture through the Victorian house where Martin Luther King Jr was born in 1929. Here visitors can see where America's Nobel prize-winning Civil Rights leader grew up and where th…

Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site

Venture through the Victorian house where Martin Luther King Jr was born in 1929. Here visitors can see where America's Nobel prize-winning Civil Rights leader grew up and where the movement was birthed. A half-mile stretch of Auburn Avenue, including King's birth home, the Ebenezer Baptist Church where he preached, and the memorial tomb at the King Center, has been made designated a historic site, drawing hundreds of visitors every day. The exhibits contained within provide insight into the life and times of this much-revered man. Tours are conducted every 30 minutes on a first-come first-serve basis.

Address 450 Auburn Avenue NE

Website www.nps.gov/malu

Transport

Auburn Avenue bus 3 at the MARTA Five Points station, or MARTA's Atlanta Tourist Loop.

Opens Daily 9am-5pm (until 6pm from mid-June to mid-August).

Admission

Free

World Of Coca-Cola photo

World Of Coca-Cola

In 1886 Jacob's Pharmacy, a small drugstore in Atlanta, began selling a new headache and hangover tonic called Coca-Cola. In 1891, entrepreneur Asa Candler paid $2,300 to acquire t…

World Of Coca-Cola

In 1886 Jacob's Pharmacy, a small drugstore in Atlanta, began selling a new headache and hangover tonic called Coca-Cola. In 1891, entrepreneur Asa Candler paid $2,300 to acquire the rights of what is now the world's most valuable brand. The following year he founded the Coca-Cola Company. The new, environmentally-friendly construction houses more than just a museum dedicated to Coca-Cola; it is an entire soft-drink experience. Thousands of Coke objects, trivia, and memorabilia are contained among the interactive exhibits, backed up by commercials, radio jingles, a 4D theatre, tasting, and a Pop Culture Gallery.

Address 121 Baker Street, Pemberton Place

Website www.woccatlanta.com

Transport

MARTA stop W1 or N1

Opens Sunday to Thursday 10am-5pm, Friday and Saturday 9am-5pm.

Admission

$17 adults, $13 children (3-12); other concessions available.

Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield photo

Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield

Kennesaw Mountain was the scene of a bloody Civil War battle, where in 1864, General Sherman led his Union forces against the entrenched Confederate forces at the site. This result…

Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield

Kennesaw Mountain was the scene of a bloody Civil War battle, where in 1864, General Sherman led his Union forces against the entrenched Confederate forces at the site. This resulted in the death of more than 67,000 soldiers. The park now consists of several thousand acres of protected land, covered with more than 17 miles (27km) of interpretive walking trails. The trails contain historic earthworks and cannon placements, where markers and memorials have been placed to commemorate the event. A small museum at the site displays Civil War artefacts, and a visitor's centre provides information about the battle on the site. This popular park is visited by more than a million people each year, many of whom come to picnic and enjoy the views that the mountain has over Atlanta.

Website www.nps.gov/kemo

Opens Daily 6.30am-8pm.

Admission

Free, but on weekends there is a fare of $3 (adults) and $1.50 (children 6-11) to ride the shuttle bus to the top of the mountain.

Atlanta Botanical Garden photo

Atlanta Botanical Garden

Be sure to visit the Atlanta Botanical Garden while in the city. The Fuqua Conservatory in particular is worth seeing, a giant greenhouse containing different climate-controlled ec…

Atlanta Botanical Garden

Be sure to visit the Atlanta Botanical Garden while in the city. The Fuqua Conservatory in particular is worth seeing, a giant greenhouse containing different climate-controlled eco-systems. A walk through the conservatory takes visitors from a desert into a steamy tropical jungle. The gardens are criss-crossed with dedicated nature walks, passing many quiet spots designed for peaceful contemplation. The garden permanently features numerous sculptures and art pieces, as well as hosting art exhibitions on a regular basis.

Address 1345 Piedmont Avenue

Website www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org

Transport

North Decatur bus 36 from the Arts Center Station; on Sundays, Monroe/Lindbergh bus 27

Opens Tuesday to Sunday 9am-7pm (April to October), 9am-5pm (November to March). Closed Mondays.

Admission

$22 adults, $16 children 3-12 years, other concessions available.

Fernbank Museum of Natural History photo

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

As one of the South's pre-eminent museums, Fernbank Museum of Natural History is a gateway for discovery and exploration. It explores the story of the earth's history, the physical…

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

As one of the South's pre-eminent museums, Fernbank Museum of Natural History is a gateway for discovery and exploration. It explores the story of the earth's history, the physical universe, the environment and human culture through exhibitions, programs and films in the IMAX Theatre. Opened in 1992, Fernbank is 'Atlanta's Home to Dinosaurs,' a reputation highlighted by , a distinctive permanent exhibition which features the world's largest dinosaurs.

Address 767 Clifton Road

Website www.fernbankmuseum.org

Stone Mountain Park photo

Stone Mountain Park

Stone Mountain is situated about 20 minutes from Atlanta and features manmade and natural attractions. The best of these is the huge relief carving of the three Southern heroes of …

Stone Mountain Park

Stone Mountain is situated about 20 minutes from Atlanta and features manmade and natural attractions. The best of these is the huge relief carving of the three Southern heroes of the Civil War, which has been etched into the mountainside. The images of Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Generals Robert E. Lee, and Thomas J. 'Stonewall' Jackson cover an area larger than a football field and are part of the largest relief sculpture in the world. Three sculptors worked in succession on the carving, beginning with Gutzon Borglum in 1915. He later became famed for his carvings at Mount Rushmore. Subsequently two other artists pursued the work that was completed finally in 1972. Visitors can either walk up the mountain or take the Skylift to the top to see the breathtaking view over Atlanta and the Appalachian Mountains. Stone Mountain also features a restored Antebellum Plantation featuring a colonial mansion, slave cabins, coach houses, and barns. The park contains several lakes and hiking trails, a wildlife reserve, and petting zoo.

Address 1000 Robert E. Lee Boulevard, Stone Mountain

Website www.stonemountainpark.com

Opens Daily from 10am; closing hours vary according to the season and attraction. Summit Skyride opens daily from 10am to 5pm, with extended hours in summer and on holidays

Admission

Various packages available. A one-day, adventure pass costs $31.95 Vehicle entry to the park is $15.

Jonesboro photo

Jonesboro

About 15 miles (24km) south of Atlanta in Clayton County is the town of Jonesboro, a not-to-be-missed destination for movie fans and those hankering for a taste of the real Deep So…

Jonesboro

About 15 miles (24km) south of Atlanta in Clayton County is the town of Jonesboro, a not-to-be-missed destination for movie fans and those hankering for a taste of the real Deep South. Jonesboro was the setting for Margaret Mitchell's acclaimed novel and later film, Gone with the Wind. Devotees come to see the local historic plantation houses and learn about the real people whose lives inspired the fictional characters of the novel. In Main Street, the Road to Tara Museum is housed in the Jonesboro Depot Welcome Centre, containing original props, costume reproductions, doll collections, and an extensive photo gallery associated with the making of the movie. The Welcome Depot is also the departure point for daily tours, starting at 1pm (except on Sundays). The tours offer a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the true life stories on which the book was based. In Carriage Drive, a beautiful Greek Revival plantation home dating from 1839 is open to the public along with its authentic outbuildings.

Address 104 N. Main Street

Website www.visitscarlett.com

Opens Road to Tara Museum: Monday to Friday 8:30am-5:30pm, Saturday 10am-4pm; Stately Oaks: Monday to Saturday 10am-4pm. Gone With the Wind Tour: Monday to Saturday 1pm, or by appointment.

Admission

Road to Tara Museum: $7 adults; Stately Oaks: $12 adults, $6 children. Gone With the Wind Tour: $24.95.

Georgia Mountains photo

Georgia Mountains

Northern Georgia is predominantly mountainous, dotted with numerous small towns, fascinating historic sites, and national parks and forests. Among the highlights of this region are…

Georgia Mountains

Northern Georgia is predominantly mountainous, dotted with numerous small towns, fascinating historic sites, and national parks and forests. Among the highlights of this region are the New Echota State Historic Site (the last capital of the Cherokee nation), Chickamauga at Fort Oglethorpe, and Jasper, where the marble quarries produced the marble used in Washington, DC. Also worth seeing is the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway, at the end of the Appalachian Highway, and the spectacular Tallulah Gorge near the town of Clayton. The northwestern Georgia region offers hundreds of wooded hiking trails, sparkling trout streams, scenic lakes, and camp sites. Most of the towns and attractions are within an hour's drive of Atlanta, making them perfect day trips or weekend breaks from the city.


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Turner Field photo

Turner Field

Originally built for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Turner Field was converted after the event to serve as the home of major league baseball team the Atlanta Braves. Affectiona…

Turner Field

Originally built for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Turner Field was converted after the event to serve as the home of major league baseball team the Atlanta Braves. Affectionately known as 'The Ted', the open-air stadium is a great place to spend a hot summer night in Atlanta. The stadium is also home to the Ivan Allen Jr Braves Museum and Hall of Fame, with exhibits on famous Braves players like Greg Maddux, Bobby Cox, and Hank Aaron, as well as Braves owner and stadium namesake, Ted Turner.

Address 755 Hank Aaron Drive SE

Website www.mlb.com/braves/ballpark.com

Admission

Game tickets start at $7, museum admission is $5 ($2 on game days). Concessions available.

Georgia Aquarium photo

Georgia Aquarium

The Georgia Aquarium is the largest aquarium in America, containing over 100,000 animals from 500 species. Creatures from all around the world are displayed here, from whale sharks…

Georgia Aquarium

The Georgia Aquarium is the largest aquarium in America, containing over 100,000 animals from 500 species. Creatures from all around the world are displayed here, from whale sharks and manta rays to sea lions and sea otters, penguins, sharks, and a riot of colourful fish. The aquarium also has a 4D theatre that features an animated 3D film, interactive seats, and live actors, as well as a cafe and the Ocean Ballroom for special events. A popular attraction is the Dolphin Tales show, where features choreographed musical performances by the dolphin stars.

Address 225 Baker Street NW

Website www.georgiaaquarium.org

Transport

The Aquarium is connected to the Five Points MARTA Train station by bus.

Opens Sunday to Friday 10am-8pm, Saturday 9am-8pm. Extended hours apply during holidays.

Admission

$36 adults, $30 children 3-12 years. Ticket prices vary according to season, check the website for specific dates. Free audio tours are available.

High Museum of Art photo

High Museum of Art

Located in deep in the city's art district, Atlantas's High Museum of Art is home to more than 15,000 pieces in its permanent collection. This includes 19th and 20th century Americ…

High Museum of Art

Located in deep in the city's art district, Atlantas's High Museum of Art is home to more than 15,000 pieces in its permanent collection. This includes 19th and 20th century American art, African art, and European art, as well as contemporary art and photography. The museum has an impressive collection of Civil Rights photography.

Address 1280 West Peachtree Street

Website www.high.org

Transport

Head northeast on Peachtree Street toward Walton Street NW.

Opens Tuesday to Saturday 10am-5pm (open till 9pm on Friday); Sunday 12pm-5pm. Closed Mondays.

Admission

$14.50 general admission. Other concessions available.

The Fox Theatre photo

The Fox Theatre

Atlanta's Fox Theatre, otherwise known as the Fabulous Fox, is a movie palace built in the United States during the 1920s. The theatre's unique beginnings and Moorish design set it…

The Fox Theatre

Atlanta's Fox Theatre, otherwise known as the Fabulous Fox, is a movie palace built in the United States during the 1920s. The theatre's unique beginnings and Moorish design set it apart from other theatres of that period. Today it hosts an array of artistic and cultural events, including a summer film series, the Atlanta Ballet, and performances by national touring companies of Broadway shows.

Address 660 Peachtree Street NE

Website www.foxtheatre.org

Opens Box office is open Monday to Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 10am-3pm. Closed Sundays.

Imagine It! Children's Museum of Atlanta photo

Imagine It! Children's Museum of Atlanta

The Imagine It! Children's Museum of Atlanta promised hours of exploring and learning. Aimed at children under the age of nine, the museum contains exciting interactive exhibits su…

Imagine It! Children's Museum of Atlanta

The Imagine It! Children's Museum of Atlanta promised hours of exploring and learning. Aimed at children under the age of nine, the museum contains exciting interactive exhibits such as the Curious George Gallery or Healthyville. Children also get the opportunity to paint the walls, crawl through a playground, or even don a raincoat and play in a forest stream.

Address 275 Centennial Olympic Park Dr. NW

Website www.childrensmuseumatlanta.org

Opens Open Monday to Friday 10am-4pm; Saturday and Sundays 10am-5pm. Closed Wednesdays. Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Admission

$14.95

Zoo Atlanta photo

Zoo Atlanta

Zoo Atlanta features around 1,000 animals representing 250 species from around the world and sees over 1 million tourists every year. Founded in 1889, the zoo has become one of Atl…

Zoo Atlanta

Zoo Atlanta features around 1,000 animals representing 250 species from around the world and sees over 1 million tourists every year. Founded in 1889, the zoo has become one of Atlanta's top family attractions. It houses exhibitions on the African rainforest, a free-flying parakeet enclosure, and a reptile house. Children will absolutely love discovering all the animals, including the rare giant pandas, Sumatran tigers, clouded leopards, and komodo dragons. The zoo also has the country's largest collection of gorillas and orangutans. For smaller children there is a petting zoo where they can interact with goats, pigs, and sheep.

Address 800 Cherokee Avenue SE

Website www.zooatlanta.org

Opens Daily 9:30am-5:30pm. Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Admission

$23 adult, $17 children 3-11, other concessions available.

Six Flags Over Georgia photo

Six Flags Over Georgia

A great day out for kids of all ages, Six Flags Over Georgia is an amusement park filled with rides and thrills for every child to enjoy. Try the Acrophobia, the Superman, the Batm…

Six Flags Over Georgia

A great day out for kids of all ages, Six Flags Over Georgia is an amusement park filled with rides and thrills for every child to enjoy. Try the Acrophobia, the Superman, the Batman, or the Goliath for the really adventurous, while younger tots will enjoy the Thomas the Tank Engine ride, Up UP and Away, and the River Carousel.

Address 275 Riverside Parkway, Austell

Website www.sixflags.com/overgeorgia

Opens Gates open 10am; closing hours vary.

Admission

$70 (adults); $50 (children). Discounted tickets are available via the website.

Monetary Museum at the Federal Reserve Bank photo

Monetary Museum at the Federal Reserve Bank

Although it doesn't sound like much of a tourist attraction, a visit to the Monetary Musuem at the Federal Reserve Bank leaves visitors unexpectedly entertained. Tour highlights in…

Monetary Museum at the Federal Reserve Bank

Although it doesn't sound like much of a tourist attraction, a visit to the Monetary Musuem at the Federal Reserve Bank leaves visitors unexpectedly entertained. Tour highlights include an extensive 'History of Money' exhibition, displaying antiquated currency from all over the world, and an interactive, multimedia displays that teach you how to spot counterfeit money. Tourist can try to lift a $450,000 gold bar, create their own currency, and take a free bag of shredded money to take home as a souvenir. Whether part of a guided group tour, or just perusing the exhibitions on one's own, a visit to the Federal Reserve Bank is bound to instil in visitors a renewed appreciation for the rich history that informs present-day money use in America.

Address 1000 Peachtree Street Northeast, Atlanta

Website www.frbatlanta.org

Opens Tours are offered from Monday to Friday, at 9:30am, 11am, and 1pm. Tours must be requested, by filling in a form on the Federal Reserve Bank website. Self-guided tours are possible Monday to Friday 9am-4pm. Self-guided tours are limited to the Visitor's Centre and the Monetary Museum, and do not need to be scheduled in advance.

Admission

All tours are free of charge.

Ebenezer Baptist Church photo

Ebenezer Baptist Church

Though small, Ebenezer Baptist Church has played a large role in America's history. Founded in 1886, the church functioned as the epicentre of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960…

Ebenezer Baptist Church

Though small, Ebenezer Baptist Church has played a large role in America's history. Founded in 1886, the church functioned as the epicentre of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. Martin Luther King Jr acted as co-pastor from 1960 to 1968, and worked toward equal rights for African-Americans during this time. The church has a new premises across the street, but visitors can still tour the old sanctuary where King preached, before walking around the Martin Luther King Jr Park just outside. Annual events surrounding Martin Luther King Jr Day in January typically draw large crowds. Past speakers have included US Presidents, national and local politicians, and civil rights leaders. Remembrances are also held during Black History Month (February), and the anniversary of King's assassination on April 4, 1968.

Address 101 Jackson Street NE

Website www.historicebenezer.org

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