Things to do in Atlanta

Things to do in  Atlanta

Civil Rights and tasty bites

Rich in history and sunny in disposition, the southern city of Atlanta, Georgia mixes family fun with big-city amenities. While visitors flock to the most popular things to do—such as the Georgia Aquarium, Centennial Olympic Park, World of Coca-Cola, CNN Center, and Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site—they would be remiss to overlook the city’s charms, expressed in the distinct character of each of Atlanta’s 242 neighborhoods. From historic Buckhead’s grand homes and tree-lined boulevards to the skyscrapers etching the skyline of the industrial downtown, Atlanta’s flavors are as complex as the soul food binding the city together.

Top 15 attractions in Atlanta

Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park

The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park commemorates the life, work, and legacy of the Civil Rights Movement leader. The center—which takes up several blocks in Sweet Auburn, the center of black Atlanta—includes King’s birth home and the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where both King’s father and grandfather served as ministers.More

Centennial Olympic Park

The 1996 Summer Olympic Games live on at Atlanta's Centennial Olympic Park, a 22-acre (9-hectare) site that remains one of the city’s top public spaces. Come to splash in—or photograph—the park's main icon, the Fountain of Rings, a computer-controlled fountain with lights and jets of water that display the Olympic logo.More

World of Coca-Cola

Explore the history of the beloved beverage brand at the must-see Atlanta attraction, World of Coca-Cola—the dynamic, interactive, multimedia home of Coke’s secret formula. See more than 1,200 rare artifacts and sample more than 100 different beverages, get closer than ever to the vault that holds the secret Coca-Cola recipe, and take a trip around the world in a thrilling 3D movie experience.More

Inman Park

Atlanta’s first planned suburb—and the first “electric trolley neighborhood” in the country—Inman Park was established in the 1880s, and is now one of the city’s most desirable areas. The neighborhood is known for its grand Victorian homes and the annual Inman Park Festival, plus a wealth of restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and boutiques.More

Atlanta Beltline

Among the largest urban redevelopment projects underway in the US, the Atlanta BeltLine is a multipurpose trail that occupies a former railway corridor. Poised to transform the city upon its projected completion in 2030, the circular route will link 45 intown neighborhoods, creating an extensive path for pedestrians and cyclists.More

Georgia State Capitol

Sitting next to Liberty Plaza in downtown Atlanta, this gold-domed capitol celebrated Georgia’s emergence after the American Civil War. A National Historic Landmark, the neoclassical building features a statue of Lady Freedom holding a sword and lanterns atop the dome, plus a museum about art and state history.More

Oakland Cemetery

More than just Atlanta’s oldest cemetery, dating back to 1850, Oakland Cemetery’s large grounds serve as a tranquil sanctuary from the urban bustle. Take a quiet moment to meander past stunning mausoleums, grand oaks, and notable graves including those of Bobby Jones, Margaret Mitchell, and Maynard Jackson.More

Margaret Mitchell House

Though much of the epic Pulitzer Prize–winning novelGone with the Wind takes place in famously grand houses, author Margaret Mitchell penned the tome from a tiny Atlanta apartment. Today her home is the Margaret Mitchell House, which serves as a tribute to where the author lived and worked while writing the novel from 1925 to 1932.More

Ebenezer Baptist Church

Located in Atlanta’s Sweet Auburn neighborhood, Ebenezer Baptist Church is where Martin Luther King, Jr., the most prominent figure of the American civil rights movement, was baptized, grew up, and served as pastor until his death. Part of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park, the church is a memorial to King and has been restored to look as it did when King and his father were ministers.More

Zoo Atlanta

Founded in 1889, Zoo Atlanta is among the country’s largest zoos. Based in Grant Park, the zoo is home to more than 1,500 animals from around the world, including one of the country’s largest population of great apes. Plus, it’s one of very few American zoos to house giant pandas.More

Krog Street Market

Housed in a restored cast iron stove factory, Krog Street Market is a colorful food hall in the heart of the Inman Park neighborhood. Stalls showcase southern and international cuisine, featuring artisan food, local bakeries, produce, and gourmet specialties. A ‘living room’ offers a communal space for you to dine and relax.More

College Football Hall of Fame

The College Football Hall of Fame—also called the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame—is a modern museum honoring the greatest players of college football in the US, past and present. Anchoring the center of Atlanta’s Centennial Park District, the museum holds dozens of interactive exhibits featuring players, teams, uniforms, and history—plus virtual reality games and an indoor football field.More

National Center for Civil and Human Rights

Opened in 2014, the National Center for Civil and Human Rights is a museum and human rights center in Downtown Atlanta. Housed in a modern building designed to resemble two cupped hands, its exhibitions focus on the Civil Rights Movement and modern struggles for human rights; Martin Luther King, Jr’s papers and artifacts are also on display.More

Piedmont Park

A welcome swath of green in Atlanta’s urban core, Piedmont Park is where Atlantans come to play outside, catch cultural events, and shop for produce at the weekly Green Market. You’ll also find the Atlanta Botanical Garden in the Olmstead-designed park, along with playgrounds, paths, and photogenic Lake Clara Meer.More

Fox Theatre

Melding culture, history, and architecture, the Fox Theatre is Atlanta’s performing arts hub, hosting everything from Broadway-style plays to rock concerts. The opulent theater was built in the 1920s and boasts mosque-like minarets, an Egyptian ballroom, and a ceiling made to resemble the night sky with twinkling stars.More

Trip ideas

Top activities in Atlanta

Atlanta Sightseeing Bus Tour

Atlanta Sightseeing Bus Tour

Midtown Atlanta Food & Cocktail Tour
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Atlanta CityPASS

Atlanta CityPASS

90-Minute Guided Sightseeing Tour by E-Car or MiniBus
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Civil War & Battlegrounds Tour of Atlanta by Private Car Service
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Civil War & Battlegrounds Tour of Atlanta by Private Car Service

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Half-Day Wine Tastings in the North Georgia Mountains
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Illuminarium Atlanta
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Illuminarium Atlanta

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All about Atlanta

When to visit

Atlanta is busiest and most expensive during the summer—which is also when its notoriously steamy weather takes hold. To see the city before the sweltering humidity sets in, consider visiting in the spring instead. Time your trip for April to see the Atlanta Dogwood Festival, or May for the Atlanta Jazz Festival; then, stroll the BeltLine to soak up the city’s outdoorsy side. Alternatively, visit in January to attend a range of events celebrating the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Getting around

Atlanta is served by the world’s busiest airport—Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)—and by Atlanta Peachtree Station, frequented by Amtrak trains. To navigate the city, use MARTA, the city’s transit rail and bus system, or the Atlanta Streetcar, which links Atlanta’s Downtown and Sweet Auburn neighborhoods. Taxis and ride-hailing services offer an additional way to get around town, and much of the city can also be explored on foot, by bike, or by electric scooter.

Traveler tips

Atlanta is a city for food and drink lovers: Here, brunch, booze, and barbecue are serious business. One of the city’s beloved dishes is hot chicken wings (try the classic lemon pepper flavor, an Atlanta must-have). Alternatively, if you’re a vegetarian, indulge in some comfort food alternatives at the Slutty Vegan, which was born in Atlanta and specializes in plant-based burgers.

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People Also Ask

What is Atlanta famous for?

Atlanta is Georgia's capital and biggest city. Atlanta is known for its Civil War–era history, its place in the civil rights movement, and its thriving African-American culture and community. Today, visitors come to see Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park, Centennial Olympic Park, World of Coca-Cola, and more.

How do I spend a day in Atlanta?

Begin your day in Atlanta with a dose of history: Head to the National Center for Civil and Human Rights or Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park. Afterwards, get some fresh air at Zoo Atlanta or stroll along the Atlanta BeltLine. Finish up with a meal at the hip Ponce City Market.

What is there to do in Atlanta for 3 days?

Discover many Atlanta highlights in three days. On day one, visit downtown and see highlights like the Georgia Aquarium, Georgia State Capitol, and World of Coca-Cola. On day two, explore Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park. On day three, head outdoors to the Atlanta Botanical Garden and Piedmont Park.

What's the number one attraction in Atlanta?

As a popular U.S. travel destination, Atlanta attracts millions of visitors each year. Its top attraction is the Georgia Aquarium. Officially one of the largest aquariums in the world, it hosts exhibitions across 11 million gallons of water, from sharks and rays to penguins and beyond.

What part of Atlanta should I visit?

Begin your visit in downtown Atlanta, where you'll find top attractions including Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia Aquarium, College Football Hall of Fame, and National Center for Civil and Human Rights. It's also worth heading east to the Sweet Auburn Historic District to discover the Martin Luther King, Jr. Historic Site.

Is Atlanta worth visiting?

Yes. Atlanta is worth visiting. This metropolitan area of 6 million boasts a vibrant and diverse population, with a wealth of historical landmarks (including those tied to the civil rights movement), world-class museums, bustling sports venues, a thriving restaurant and bar scene, and scenic green spaces in which to unwind.

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