Atlanta, Georgia is a big city with plenty of attractions for visitors. And while many people travel for business, it’s a great place for families to visit as well. You’ll find something to keep every age excited, whether it’s the creatures at the zoo and aquarium or historic artifacts at museums. The Atlanta CityPASS is a great way to save on multiple attractions and skip some of the lines.
When it comes to looking for a place to stay, there are both big-name hotel chains and rentals for larger groups. The Omni CNN Center Hotel has a kids program and easy access to Centennial Olympic Park. Rentals are another good option if you want more space.
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Atlanta Museums and Attractions
Most of Atlanta’s attractions are located around Centennial Olympic Park, but there are some additional, and lesser-known, museums around town.
- Center For Puppetry Arts– This interactive museum has exhibits on puppets from Jim Henson and live performances as well as crafts to create your own puppets.
- Georgia Aquarium– You can easily spend all day at the world’s largest aquarium, which has both sections featuring local wildlife and the famous beluga whales and whale sharks. They have a new encounter that leads you around with iPads gathering information, a STEM initiative that the kids can learn a lot from. Get your Georgia Aquarium General Admission before you go.
- Children’s Museum of Atlanta– Set on Centennial Olympic Park, the children’s museum caters more to younger children with play areas and interactive exhibits.
- High Museum of Art– The South’s best art museum is more suitable for older children, but they have special exhibits that all ages can enjoy, like their Coca-Cola art exhibit and the previous exhibit of the Terracotta Warriors.
- LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Atlanta– Phipps Plaza’s latest attraction shows the little ones how Legos are made, offers games and play areas.
- World of Coca-Cola– This beloved attraction showcases the history of the pharmacy remedy turned international brand and even gives you the chance to sample Coca-Cola products from around the world. Just beware The Beverley! Get your World of Coca-Cola Admission in Atlanta before you go.
- Zoo Atlanta– Get up and close with one of the country’s oldest zoos, home to African elephants, orangutans, and many other creatures. Get your Zoo Atlanta Admission before you go.
- Fernbank Museum of Natural History– Fernbank has a massive forest as well as a museum with dinosaur bones and displays on the history of Georgia.
- SkyView Atlanta– One of the newest attractions is the massive Ferris wheel overlooking Centennial Olympic Park, pictured above. You can go on a 30 minute ride day or night or splurge on the VIP experience for a plush carriage and more time in the sky.
- Tellus Science Museum– Located north of Atlanta in Cartersville, Tellus has information on the natural history of Georgia as well as space, fossils, and gems.
- Atlanta History Center– The Atlanta History Center includes the main museum, the Swan House, the Tullie Smith Farm, the Margaret Mitchell House, and the Centennial Olympics Museum. It focuses on Atlanta’s history and role in the world.
- Delta Flight Museum– Further out of town, the newly opened Delta Flight Museum showcases Atlanta’s hometown airline’s rise from a small regional carrier to a major airline. Tour vintage airplanes and test out the flight simulator.
- Center for Civil and Human Rights– The Center for Civil and Human Rights is a museum devoted to the Civil Rights Movement and more modern struggles for equality. Get your Atlanta Center for Civil and Human Rights General Admission before you go.
- Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site– The historic site includes King’s boyhood home, the church where he was a pastor and his final resting place at the Center for Nonviolent Change. The Martin Luther King Jr. Heritage Tour in Atlanta visits this site and others.
Atlanta Parks and Gardens
Atlanta isn’t your standard concrete jungle. Because of its sprawling nature, there are plenty of green spaces around town, whether it’s public parks or walking trails.
- Stone Mountain Park– The granite monolith with Civil War generals carved into it is a theme park with walking trails, camping, and rides, as well as their nightly laser shows.
- Piedmont Park– The city’s largest park is in Midtown, connecting with the Beltline for even more walking paths and places to explore.
- Centennial Olympic Park– Set in the middle of downtown, the rings fountain is a favorite playground of children in the summertime. Read the names on the bricks of people who donated money to build it.
- Beltline Trail– Walk around the city on a former rail line that loops around town. Rent a bike if you like and stop along the way to admire the artwork and eat at local restaurants.
- Silver Comet Trail– This 61-mile trail outside of Atlanta is a great place to spend the day riding bikes on a sunny afternoon.
- Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area– The river that runs through the city has a number of parks and walking trails that come off of it like Cochran Shoals and a number of others.
- Atlanta Botanical Garden– Located in Piedmont Park, the botanical garden has glass works by Chihuly and a number of unique plants. Visit on a Small Group Tour to Atlanta Botanical Gardens.
Most Atlanta restaurants are family-friendly, but some cater more to families than others.
- YEAH! BURGER– Put whatever you like on a burger and choose healthier, hormone free options if you like. They can adapt to allergies, vegan diets, and gluten-free diets.
- Delia’s Chicken Sausage Stand– With locations on the Westside and East Atlanta, dine on all day breakfast and chicken sausages with a side of milkshakes.
- The Varsity– America’s largest drive-in is the ideal place to go before a night at the Braves game. Grab a hot dog or hamburger with a Frosted Orange.
- Morelli’s Gourmet Ice Cream– Choose from some classic and wacky flavors like rosewater and their signature salted caramel.
- Atlanta Food Truck Park and Market– Choose from the dozens of food trucks the city has to offer, which allows you to pick favorites from each place. They also have live music, games and a playground.
- King of Pops– Cool off in the summertime with KOP’s delicious popsicle flavors. You can find them all over town, but this is the original spot.
- Figo Pasta– Choose your chosen style of pasta with sauces. They also have plenty of gluten free options and won’t break the bank.
- Sweet Auburn Curb Market– The historic market has dozens of food stalls, including burgers, arepas, burritos and much more.
Once you’ve seen all the attractions Atlanta has to offer, you may want some family-friendly activities to keep you busy.
- Topgolf Alpharetta– This isn’t just a driving range, but also a bar and restaurant with pool tables and other games.
- SunTrust Park– The home of the Atlanta Braves is a fun way to spend the evening. Get yourself some cheap seats and indulge in the games and snacks. There’s also a kids area with a zipline.
- Starlight Drive-In Theatre & Flea Market– It’s one of the last remaining drive-in theaters in the area and plays new and old movies.
- Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament in Atlanta– Watch the jousting during dinner and even dress up for the night.
- Atlanta Movie Tours– Visit the city’s notable landmarks that have been documented in movies and television shows over the year like Walking Dead and The Hunger Games.
- Game-X– Better than an average arcade, Game X has games all around of every level.
- Atlanta Scavenger Hunt Adventure– Go on a self-guided smartphone tour to learn about the city. It starts at Centennial Olympic Park and ends at the CNN Center.
There are events throughout the year that children of all ages will enjoy.
- DragonCon– Fans of science fiction and comic books flock to the city for a weekend.
- Decatur Book Festival– The festival features children’s book readings and stalls.
- Great Georgia Air Show– The event in Peachtree City lets you see all manners of planes flying above the city.
- Georgia Renaissance Festival– Enjoy the festivities with costumes, games, performances, and, most importantly, food.