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ATLANTA ATTRACTIONS



Atlanta Attractions | Geogia Coast Attractions | Savannah Attractions

Zoo Atlanta
Type: Zoos/Aquariums
Location: Grant Park
Address: Grant Park, 800 Cherokee Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-624-5600
This zoo has nearly 1,000 animals living in naturalistic habitats, such as the Ford African Rain Forest, Flamingo Lagoon, Masai Mara (re-created plains of Kenya), and Sumatran Tiger exhibits. Sibling gorillas Kudzoo and Olympia are always hits. Don't miss the popular Chinese panda exhibit, consisting of two precocious bears named Yang Yang and Lun Lun. To reach the zoo by car, take I-20 east to Exit 59A, turn right on Boulevard, then right again at the next light into Grant Park. Follow signs to the zoo. $16. Daily 9:30-4:30.

World of Coca-Cola Pavilion
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 55 Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-676-5151
At this three-story, $15 million special-exhibit facility, you can sip samples of 38 Coca-Cola Company products from around the world and study memorabilia from more than a century's worth of corporate archives. Everything Coca-Cola, the gift shop, sells everything from refrigerator magnets to evening bags. $6. June-Aug., Mon.-Sat. 9-6, Sun. 11-6; Sept.-May, Mon.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. noon-6.

William-Oliver Building
Type: Architectural Sites
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 32 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA
Walk through the lobby of this art deco gem and admire the ceiling mural, brass grills, and elevator doors. Formerly an office building, it has been renovated for luxury downtown residences and won a prestigious award for historic preservation from the Atlanta Urban Design Commission.

Sweet Auburn Curb Market
Type: Markets/Bazaars
Location: Sweet Auburn
Address: 209 Edgewood Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-659-1665
The market, an institution on Edgewood Avenue since 1923, sells vegetables, fish, flowers, prepared foods, and meat. Individual stalls are operated by separate owners, making this a true public market. Don't miss the splendid totemic sculptures by young Atlanta artist Carl Joe Williams. The pieces were placed as part of Atlanta's Olympic art program. Mon.-Thurs. 8-6, Fri.-Sat. 8-7.

Stone Mountain Park
Type: Parks
Location: Stone Mountain
Address: U.S. 78E (Stone Mountain Pkwy) Stone Mountain, GA
Phone: 770-498-5600
This 3,200-acre state park 15 mi east of Atlanta has the largest exposed granite outcropping on earth. The Confederate Memorial on the north face of the 825-ft-high domed mountain is the world's largest sculpture, measuring 90 ft by 190 ft. The park has a skylift to the mountaintop, a steam locomotive ride around the mountain's base, an antebellum plantation, a swimming beach, a campground, a hotel, a resort, a wildlife preserve, restaurants, and two Civil War museums. Summer nights are capped with a laser light show, and annual events such as the Yellow Daisy Festival and the Scottish Highland Games are popular in the fall. Per car $6; annual pass $30; day pass to all attractions $12.85 Georgia residents, $17.10 out-of-state residents; additional fees for special events. Daily 6 AM-midnight.

Six Flags over Georgia
Type: Amusement Parks
Location: Austell
Phone: 770-739-3400
Address: I-20W at, 7561 Six Flags Pkwy. Austell, GA
Atlanta's major theme park, with eight sections, heart-stopping roller coasters, and water rides (best saved for last to prevent being damp all day), is a child's ideal playground. The Georgia Scorcher, a roller coaster that you ride standing up, moves at 54 mph. The park also has well-staged musical revues, concerts by top-name artists, and other performances. Take MARTA's west line to the Hightower station and then the Six Flags bus. All-inclusive 1-day pass $39.99, parking $9 or $12 (depending on the lot). June-Aug., daily 10 AM-11 PM; Mar.-May and Sept.-Oct., weekends from 10, closing times vary.

SciTrek
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Midtown
Address: 395 Piedmont Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-522-5500
The Science and Technology Museum of Atlanta covers 96,000 square ft and has rotating exhibitions and daily science demonstrations at the Coca-Cola Science Show Theater. About 150 hands-on exhibits occupy four environments: Simple Machines; Light, Color, and Perception; Electricity and Magnetism; and Kidspace, for children ages 2-7. The Information Petting Zoo exhibits "cybercritters." $7.50. Mon.-Sat. 10-5, Sun. noon-5.

Michael C. Carlos Museum
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Emory
Address: Emory University, 571 S. Kilgo St. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-727-4282
Housing a permanent collection of more than 16,000 objects, this excellent museum designed by renowned American architect Michael Graves exhibits artifacts from Egypt, Greece, Rome, the Near East, the Americas, and Africa. European and American prints and drawings cover the Middle Ages through the 20th century. The gift shop has rare art books, jewelry, and art-focused items for children. The museum's Caffé Antico is a good lunch spot. Suggested donation $5. Tues.-Wed. 10-5, Thurs. 10-9, Fri.-Sat. 10-5, Sun. noon-5.

Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Sweet Auburn
Address: 449 Auburn Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-524-1956
The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic District occupies several blocks on Auburn Avenue, a few blocks east of Peachtree Street in the black business and residential community of Sweet Auburn. The neighborhood is the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr., who was born here in 1929. After Dr. King's assassination in 1968, his widow, Coretta Scott King, established the center, which exhibits personal items, such as King's Nobel Peace Prize, Bible, and tape recorder, along with memorabilia and photos chronicling the civil rights movement. In the courtyard in front of Freedom Hall, on a circular brick pad in the middle of the rectangular Meditation Pool, is Dr. King's white-marble tomb; the inscription reads; "Free at last!" Nearby, an eternal flame burns. A chapel of all faiths sits at one end of the reflecting pool. Daily 9-5.

Martin Luther King Jr. Birth Home
Type: Houses/Mansions/Museums/Galleries
Location: Sweet Auburn
Address: 501 Auburn Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-331-6922
This modest Queen Anne-style historic home is managed by the National Park Service, which also has a visitor center across the street from the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change. The visitor center contains a multimedia exhibit focused on the civil rights movement and Dr. King's role in it. To sign up for tours, go to the fire station (39 Boulevard, Sweet Auburn). Free. Daily guided ½-hr tours every hr 10-5.

Hurt Building
Type: Architectural Sites
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 50 Hurt Plaza Atlanta, GA
Named for Atlanta developer Joel Hurt, this restored 1913 Chicago-style high-rise, with its intricate grillwork and sweeping marble staircase, has a lower level of shops and art galleries. The excellent City Grill restaurant is at the top of the sweeping staircase.

Georgia Governor's Mansion
Type: Government Buildings
Location: Buckhead
Address: 391 W. Paces Ferry Rd. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-261-1858
Built in 1967, this 24,000-square-ft Greek Revival mansion contains 30 rooms and sits on 18 acres originally belonging to the Robert Maddox family (no relation to Georgia governor Lester Maddox, who was its first occupant). Federal-period antiques fill the public rooms. Free guided tours Tues.-Thurs. 10-11:30.

Folk Art Park
Type: Parks
Location: Midtown
Address: Ralph McGill Blvd. at Courtland St. and Piedmont Ave. Atlanta, GA
Revitalizing an ignored part of the city, the park pays homage to an important American art form by gathering works that reflect the diverse styles of American (especially Southern) folk art. Works by more than a dozen artists are on display, among them Harold Rittenberry, Howard Finster, and Eddie Owens Martin. Martin's brightly painted totems and snake-top walls replicate portions of Pasaquan (the legendary visionary environment that Martin created at his farm near Columbus, Georgia).

Flatiron Building
Type: Architectural Sites
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 74 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA
The English-American Building, as it was originally known, was designed by Bradford Gilbert. Similar to the famous New York City Flatiron Building, built in the early 1900s, this one dates from 1897 and is the city's oldest high-rise. Weekdays 8:15-5:30.

Fernbank Science Center
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Emory
Address: 156 Heaton Park Dr. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-378-4311
The museum focuses on geology, space exploration, and ecology; it's best for younger children. Special seasonal programs for children under 5, priced at 50¢, are offered weekends at 1:30 from October through November, from early December through the first week of January, from the end of January to March 15, and during the summer. Museum free, planetarium shows $2. Mon. 8:30-5, Tues.-Fri. 8:30 AM-10 PM, Sat. 10-5, Sun. 1-5; planetarium shows Tues.-Fri. at 3:30 and 8, weekends at 3:30.

Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Emory
Address: 767 Clifton Rd. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-370-0960 / 404-370-0019
The largest natural history museum south of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., holds a permanent exhibit, A Walk Through Time in Georgia. You can meander through 15 galleries to explore the earth's natural history. The museum's IMAX theater shows films about the natural world. The café, with an exquisite view overlooking the forest, serves great food. Museum $12, IMAX $10, combination ticket $17. Museum Mon.-Sat. 10-5, Sun. noon-5; IMAX Mon.-Thurs. 10-5, Fri. 6:30 PM-10 PM, Sat. 10-5, Sun. noon-5.

Federal Reserve Bank
Type: Financial Institutions
Location: Midtown
Address: 1000 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-498-8764
Don't miss this grand, recently renovated monetary museum whose exhibits explain the story of money as a medium of exchange and the history of the U.S. banking system. Items displayed include rare coins, uncut sheets of money, and a gold bar. There are a tour and a video, The Fed Today. Weekdays 9-4.

Ebenezer Baptist Church
Type: Religious Sites
Location: Sweet Auburn
Address: 407 Auburn Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-688-7263
A Gothic Revival-style building completed in 1922, the church became known as the spiritual center of the civil rights movement after Martin Luther King Jr. won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. Members of the King family have preached at the church for three generations; Dr. King's funeral was held here. The grand building has just been restored extensively to its appearance during the '60s, when Dr. King preached inside it. A tour of the church includes an audiotape outlining the history of the building, though the congregation itself now occupies the building across the street. Free. Tours weekdays 9-5.

Decatur Historical Courthouse
Type: Government BuildingsMuseums/Galleries
Location: Decatur
Address: 101 E. Court Sq. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-373-1088
Known as the Old Courthouse on the Square, this charming building was constructed in 1823 and now houses the DeKalb Welcome Center. One reason to visit this historical site is its location -- it's right in the center of delightful Decatur Square, a quaint town quad with a sophisticated artistic feel, teeming with interesting specialty shops and delectable coffeehouses and cafés. Lively downtown Decatur is one of metro Atlanta's favorite spots for sidewalk-strolling and window-shopping. Take Ponce de Leon Ave. east 8 mi to Decatur Sq. at Clairmont Ave. Weekdays 9-4.

City Hall
Type: Government Buildings
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 68 Mitchell St. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-330-6000
When the 14-story neo-Gothic building, designed by Atlanta architect G. Lloyd Preacher, was erected in 1929, critics dubbed it the Painted Lady of Mitchell Street. The newer wing, with its five-story glass atrium and beautiful marble entryway, houses a splendid permanent collection of art. Weekdays 8:30-5.

Chattahoochee Nature Center
Type: Nature Preserves
Location: Roswell
Address: 9135 Willeo Rd. Roswell, GA
Phone: 770-992-2055
Birds and animals in their natural habitats may be seen from nature trails and a boardwalk winding through 124 acres of woodlands and wetlands. A gift shop, indoor exhibits, birds-of-prey aviaries, and a picnic area are on the property. Naturalist guides accompany evening canoe floats from May through August. $3. Mon.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. noon-5.

Château Élan
Type: Wineries/Breweries
Location: Braselton
Address: 100 Rue Charlemagne Braselton, GA
Phone: 770-932-0900
A 16th-century-style French château has Georgia's best-known winery, ensconced in 2,400 rolling acres about an hour north of downtown Atlanta. Château Élan is also a complete resort: European luxury blends with Southern hospitality at the 274-room inn and spa with private villas, golf courses, and an equestrian center. Take I-85 to GA 211, Exit 126 (Chestnut Mountain/Winder). Winery tours and tastings free. Wine market daily 10-9. Tours weekdays at 11, 12:30, 2, 3:30; Sat. hourly 11-5; Sun. noon-4.

Center for Puppetry Arts
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Midtown
Address: 1404 Spring St. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-873-3391
At this interactive museum you can see puppets from around the world and attend puppet-making workshops. Elaborate performances, which include original dramatic works and classics adapted for the museum theater, are presented by professional puppeteers -- youngsters and adults alike are spellbound. In particular, the popular Christmas performances of The Velveteen Rabbit and The Shoemaker and the Elf are truly magical experiences. $5; special exhibits and programs extra. Mon.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. 11-5.

Centennial Olympic Park
Type: Parks
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 265 Park Avenue West Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-222-7275
This 21-acre urban landscape, the largest urban park to be developed in this country in more than two decades, was the central venue for the 1996 Summer Olympics. The park's Fountain of Rings (the world's largest using the Olympic symbol) centers a court of 24 flags, each of them representing the Olympic Games as well as the host countries of the modern Games. The seating in the fountain amphitheater allows you to enjoy the water and music spectacle (five tunes are programmed and timed to coincide with water displays). The park has a 6-acre great lawn and pathways formed by commemorative brick paving stones. Throughout the year, the park hosts community-wide free events that include concerts and activities for children. Daily 7 AM-11 PM.

Carter Presidential Center
Type: Government Buildings/Museums/Galleries
Location: Virginia-Highland
Address: 1 Copenhill Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-331-3942
This complex occupies the site where Union general William T. Sherman orchestrated the Battle of Atlanta (1864). The museum and archives detail the political career of former president Jimmy Carter. The center itself, which is not open to the public, focuses on conflict resolution and human rights issues. It sponsors foreign-affairs conferences and projects on such matters as the world food supply. Outside, the Japanese-style garden is a serene spot to unwind. $7. Mon.-Sat. 9-4:45, Sun. noon-4:45.

Candler Building
Type: Architectural Sites
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 84 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA
Asa G. Candler, founder of the Coca-Cola Company, engaged the local firm of Murphy and Stewart to design this splendid terra-cotta and marble building in 1906. The ornate bronze and marble lobby shouldn't be missed. Daily 9-5.

CNN Center
Type: Film/TV Studios
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 1 CNN Center Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-827-2300
The home of Ted Turner's Cable News Network occupies all 14 floors of this dramatic structure on the edge of downtown. The 45-minute CNN studio tour begins with a ride up the world's longest escalator to an eighth-floor exhibit about Turner's global broadcasting empire. Tours are not open to children under age 6. Reservations required 48 hrs in advance held with credit card. 50-min tour $8. Daily 9-5.

Bank of America Building
Type: Architectural Sites
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 35 Broad St. Atlanta, GA
Originally a Chicago-style edifice known as the Empire Building, this handsome 1901 classic was designed by Atlanta architect Phillip Trammel Shutze. In 1929 Shutze refashioned the first three floors, bestowing on them a decidedly Renaissance look. This is one of the city's first steel-frame structures, and at 14 stories one of its tallest, but during the renovation Shutze resheathed the base with masonry.

Atlanta International Museum of Art and Design
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Downtown Atlanta
Address: 285 Peachtree Center Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-688-2467
In the Peachtree Center in the Marriott Marquis Two Tower, this museum mounts major international exhibitions covering such subjects as textiles, puzzles, boxes, masks, and baskets. Exhibits focus on arts and crafts, design, and culture from around the globe. Free. Weekdays 11-5.

Atlanta History Center
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Buckhead
Address: 130 W. Paces Ferry Rd. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-814-4000
The museum highlights materials native to Georgia, with a floor of heart pine and polished Stone Mountain granite. Displays are provocative, juxtaposing Gone With the Wind romanticism with the grim reality of Ku Klux Klan racism. Also on the 33-acre site are the elegant 1928 Swan House; the Tullie Smith Farm, with a two-story plantation plain house (1840s); and McElreath Hall, an exhibition space for artifacts from Atlanta's history. $12. Mon.-Sat. 10-5:30, Sun. noon-5:30.

Atlanta Cyclorama & Civil War Museum
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Grant Park
Address: 800 Cherokee Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-658-7625
In Grant Park (named for a New England-born Confederate colonel, not the U.S. president), you'll find a huge circular painting, completed by a team of expert European panorama artists shortly after the Civil War, depicting the 1864 Battle of Atlanta. The museum has one of the best Civil War bookstores anywhere. To reach the Cyclorama by car, take I-20 east to Exit 59A, turn right onto Boulevard, and then take a right at the next traffic light into Grant Park; follow signs to the Cyclorama. $5. June-early Sept., daily 9:30-5:30; early Sept.-May, daily 9:30-4:30.

Atlanta Botanical Garden
Type: Gardens/Arboretums
Location: Midtown at the Prado
Address: 1345 Piedmont Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-876-5859
Occupying 30 acres inside Piedmont Park, the grounds contain 15 acres of display gardens, including a serene Japanese garden, a 15-acre hardwood forest with walking trails, and the Fuqua Conservatory, which has unusual and threatened flora from tropical and desert climates. A permanent Fuqua Conservatory exhibit of tiny, brightly colored poison-dart frogs is popular, especially with children. $12 adults, $9 seniors, students, and children; free Thurs. after 3. Mar.-Sept., Tues.-Sun. 9-7; Oct.-Feb., Tues.-Sun. 9-6.

African-American Panoramic Experience (APEX)
Type: Museums/Galleries
Location: Sweet Auburn
Address: 135 Auburn Ave. Atlanta, GA
Phone: 404-521-2739
The museum's quarterly exhibits chronicle the history of black people in America. Videos illustrate the history of Sweet Auburn, the name bestowed on Auburn Avenue by businessman John Wesley Dobbs, who fostered business development for African-Americans on this street. $3. June-Aug., Tues.-Sat. 10-5, Sun. 1-5; Sept.-May, Tues.-Sat. 10-5.


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