225 Baker Street NW
See the World's Largest aquarium with over 10 million gallons of water attractions.
Tickets can be purchased in advance to avoid lines.
Depending on your interests and party makeup, plan on spending a minimum of 3 hours and most likely the whole day touring the exhibits.
Georgia Aquarium is open 365 days a year. Hours of operation vary.
Sunday - Friday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
The Varsity - Downtown
61 North Avenue
Keeping with the "World's Largest" theme, a visit to Atlanta would not be complete without visiting the "World's Largest Drive-In" to eat a little greasy food.
The Varsity has multiple locations around Atlanta, but this one is the largest.
Ordering from the Varsity is a treat, and all starts with the signature "What'll Ya Have?". Act like an old pro by giving an order back quickly:
"I'll have a chili steak, rings, large FO, and PC walkin'."
A hint to the translation of the "secret menu" is found by interpreting the photo:
"I'll have 2 chili cheese dogs, 2 slaw dogs, a PC on ice, and a peach pie."
U.S. Highway 78 East Exit 8
Another of the World's Largest is Stone Mountain - which is the largest exposed granite rock in the world.
The mountain is surround by lakes and a large park.
It's approximately a one mile hike up to the top, and a 10 mile hike around the base.
Entrance fees are based on carloads of people.
World of Coca-Cola
121 Baker Street NW
America’s most beloved drink, Coca-Cola, has been around since a drug-store owner in Atlanta added flavored syrup to sparkling water, and an icon was created.
Originally sold for just a nickel per drink, the soda really took off when the distinctive curved bottle was designed in 1916.
Today, over 1.5 billion servings of the drink are consumed around the world today.
You can find exhibits of the bottle over the years, as well as historical advertising pieces for the brand, at the World of Coca Cola in Atlanta.
Happiness Factory Theater is new, and gives you an inside look at the factories, and the Heritage section gives more information about the brand history.
A favorite part of the museum is the beloved 7 foot tall polar bear, which you can have your picture taken with.
Open from 10 am to 6:30 pm, the center is closed just on Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Admission is $16, with discounts for seniors and youths.
Tip: Come thirsty and sip Coca-Cola products from regions around the globe.
Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum
441 Freedom Pkwy
The Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum was created in 1986 at a cost of $26 million, all raised through private donations.
The grounds cover 35 acres, including a Japanese master garden. The building is 69,750 feet, with over 27 million pages of President Carter’s White House materials, and over 500,000 photographs plus film, video, and audio tapes.
The museum is open Monday through Saturday, 9 am to 4:45 pm, and Sunday from noon till 4:45 pm and the library is open from 8:30 till 4:30 pm Monday through Friday; both sections are closed on federal holidays.
Admission is $8, with a $2 student discount, free parking, and free admission for those under sixteen.
Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
450 Auburn Avenue
Established on October 10th, 1980, the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site consists of many buildings related to Dr. King's childhood in the historic Auburn District of Atlanta.
These buildings include, his home, Ebenezer Baptist Church where he was a pastor and his grave.
The entire site encompasses almost 70-acres.
The visitor's center displays a variety of exhibits about Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement.
The park is open to the public every day from Memorial Day to Labor Day from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Michael C. Carlos Museum
571 South Kilgo Cir
With some of its collections dating back to just after the Civil War, the museum has grown along with Emory University and now houses one of the most impressive collections of ancient Egyptian, Greek, Roman, African, Asian, and ancient American art in the Southeast.
Emory offers museum programs for professors of art, archaeology, architecture, and art history, as well as students of all ages.
The museum is named for famed Atlanta philanthropist Michael C. Carlos, CEO of a large Atlanta beverage distributor.
The museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 am to 4 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday from noon to 5 pm, and there are guided tours on Sundays at 2 pm.
Admission is $8, with discounts for students and seniors.
800 Cherokee Ave.
Zoo Atlanta quite literally was started when the circus came to town in March 1889; a traveling show ran out of cash nearby and the animals drew such large crowds that an Atlanta businessman bought them at auction and donated them to the city.
Grant Park became the home for a bear, elk, lions, camels, a jaguar and hyena, among other animals, and the city opened the collection to the public.
Private citizens and fundraising groups donated more animals in following years, and philanthropist Asa Candler donated his entire menagerie of 40 animals, including elephants, water buffalo, a zebra, a sea lion, and a tiger, Jimmie Walker in 1935.
The zoo is open every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas, from 9:30 am till 5:30 pm. Admission is $20.99, with discounts for children, military, and seniors, and parking is free.
High Museum of Art
1280 Peachtree Street NE
Featuring world-renowned classic and contemporary masterpieces as well as award-winning architecture, the High Museum of Art has developed into the leader in the southeastern region of the United States.
Established in Midtown Atlanta, the establishment features over 13,000 pieces of art amongst its permanent collection.
Collections include 19th and 20th-century American art, European paintings, African American art and growing exhibits of contemporary and modern art as well as photography.
Additionally, the museum is dedicated to supporting works by Southern artists and is the only large-scale museum that offers curators who are experienced with self-taught art.
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
767 Clifton Rd NE
Fernbank Museum of Natural History is the result of a young girl who envisioned teaching people about nature after growing up on in the area.
Emily Harrison named the area Fernbank as early as the late 1880s, and was instrumental in the purchase of the 65 acres the museum sits on; the largest Piedmont forest still in existence in the U.S.
Decades of planning went into the opening of Atlanta’s massive natural history museum, which opened in 1992.
Today, Fernbank gets 500,000 visitors annually; exhibits like the Giants of the Mesozoic, Fernbank NatureQuest, and one of the largest Native American artifacts collections in existence.
Hours are Monday thru Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday noon to 5 pm.
Museum ticket prices are $17.50, IMAX tickets are $13, and a combination ticket is $23, with discounts for students, seniors, and children.
Tip: There are also special Martinis and IMAX hours on Friday evenings. The Martinis and IMAX evenings cost $13 including a movie, or a general admission ticket is $7.
50 Upper Alabama St. #007
Located right in the middle of downtown, Underground Atlanta is the city’s cultural hub, highlighting 150 years of history in this area.
This area originally held railroad tracks and a station that connected area farms with markets, and during the Civil War it served as a supply depot for the Rebel army.
Atlanta was all but destroyed during the war, and Atlantans rebuilt in this same area.
Larger train depots were built, and banks, law offices, distilleries, hotels and saloons popped up to serve the growing population, with the trains and electric streetcars running under iron bridges.
During the 1920’s, the bridges were replaced with massive concrete viaducts, effectively lifting the street level and merchants, leaving the original storefronts intact.
Renovated and reopened in 1989, Underground Atlanta boasts 225,000 square feet of shopping, entertainment, and restaurants, as well as six city blocks of history and cobblestone “floors.”
Restaurant and club hours vary, but the retail shops are open standard mall hours.
1050 Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard SW
Preserving Joel Chandler Harris and the heritage of African American folklore, the Wren's Nest delivers storytelling, student publishing and tours.
The location is an educational resource for the surrounding community as well as global visitors.
In addition to the extensive educational events, the Wren's Nest also holds book release parties, writing classes, community outreach programs and book readings.
The establishment is open from 10 AM to 2:30 PM Tuesdays through Sundays with storytelling session offered each Saturday at 1 PM.
Walk-in and guided tours are available for different fees.
Atlanta Botanical Garden
1345 Piedmont Ave. NE
The Atlanta Botanical Gardens are a well-kept, beautiful secret oasis in the city amid urban hustle and bustle.
Continually changing plant exhibits mean that it is never the same on different visits, and plant lovers of all ages will find what they enjoy here.
The Kendela Canopy Walk gives visitors a view of Storza Woods, which is one of just a few forests left in the city, and takes you on great suspended bridges for a totally different look at the trees.
Cascades Garden has water features and bright flowers while the Edible Garden showcases pretty fruit and vegetable plants, the Rose Garden is filled with beautiful rose bushes and other perennials.
The Children’s Garden has a Butterfly Maze, Treehouse with a slide, and a fountain just made for splashing on warm days, Sunflower Fountain.
Thursday evenings the gardens are open at night until 10 pm, with live music and Cocktails in the Garden from May through October.
Hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 9 am to 4 pm, and 5 pm to 10 pm; closed some holidays.
Admission is $18.95, discounts for children 3 to 12, and under 3 are three.
Parking is by the hour.
Atlanta History Center - Swann House
130 West Paces Ferry Road NW
Large museum that documents the growth of Atlanta.
Atlanta Motor Speedway
1500 Tara Place
5887 Georgia Highway 354
Callaway Gardens contains over 4,600 acres of conservation lands that offer something for everyone.
If you are interested in biological or environmental education, this is the place; as it contains a bio-diverse area of the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont, and the Appalachian Mountains.
In addition to the Pioneer Log Cabin, Overlook Azalea Garden, Sibley Horticultural Center, Birds of Prey and Discovery Center, there are some excellent fishing areas, with 13 lakes, some of them stocked seasonally.
A beautiful white sand beach around Robin Lake offers family fun, and there are also areas where you can water ski and wakeboard.
Additionally, there are 10 miles of bicycle trails and seven miles of nature hiking trails.
Callaway Gardens opened in 1952, created by Cason and Virginia Callaway; they were inspired to create it so that everyone could enjoy the beauty of their surroundings at Blue Springs Farm.
Lodging is available in cottages, villas, and a lodge that includes a spa.
Centennial Olympic Park
265 Park Avenue NW
Centennial Olympic Park was built in what was an eyesore section of town less than 20 years ago, until the city was tapped for the 1996 Olympic Games at a cost of $75 million, raised completely with private donations and sales of commemorative bricks.
The area was turned into an amazing spot for visitors during the games and afterwards, a lasting 21-acre green space for residents and tourists alike, with reflecting pools and water fountains and beautiful gardens.
A full calendar of events includes concerts and parties in the park during the summer, and holiday lights and an outdoor ice rink in the winter.
Near the fountains is a volunteer staffed visitor center, where you can check out where a specific commemorative brick is located and get information about walking tours and features, and free Wi-Fi is provided for those who want to relax in the park and work at the same time.
CNN Center Studios
190 Marietta St NW
Offering a free 55-minute guided walking tour through their headquarters, CNN Center Studios includes a food court with full service and fast food restaurants, specialty retail and a variety of other services.
Reservations are recommended at least 24 hours in advance but walk-up tickets are also available.
Each tour departs every 10 minutes and includes a visit to the actual HLN control, filming of a live broadcast, Inside CNN travel mug and souvenir picture.
Large groups are encouraged but require a reservation.
3393 Peachtree Road NE
Built in 1959, Lenox Square continues to be the premier shipping destination in the Southeast.
Nestled in the heart of Buckhead, the location delivers an unmatched shopping experience for locals and visitors alike across four levels of space.
The anchors of the establishment include Bloomingdale's, Macy's and Neiman Marcus department stores.
Overall, the mall hosts 250 specialty stores and a number of fine-dining, casual and fast food restaurants.
The mall is open from 10 AM to 9 PM Monday through Saturday and 12 PM to 6 PM on Sunday.
The Margaret Mitchell House & Museum
990 Peachtree Street NE
Operated by the Atlanta History Center and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Margaret Mitchell House is a Tudor Revival building where famous author Margaret Mitchell wrote her timeless class Gone With the Wind.
The house was built in 1889 as a single-family home but converted to a 10-unit apartment in 1919.
Margaret Mitchell and husband moved into apartment one in 1925.
The house has stood the test of several fires and renovations to become a treasured landmark, literary center, museum of Margaret's life and tourist attraction.