Explore Trip Ideas

Destination Atlanta

There’s more to Atlanta than peaches, Coca Cola or Gone with the Wind. Blessed with a mild climate, the Blue Ridge Mountains and a robust cultural history, Atlanta is the gateway to a wealth of recreation opportunities. Atlanta began as a railroad town in 1836 and became a bustling city by the start of the Civil War. Today, Atlanta is the top cultural center of the Southeast and attracts more than 17 million travelers each year. Let us guide you on your journey.

Centennial Olympic Park-Atlanta, GA

Outdoor adventures: Inside the Perimeter

Grant Park Historic District

This Victorian neighborhood is one of Atlanta’s oldest and most historic districts. It includes Grant Park, Zoo Atlanta, the Atlanta Cyclorama (a Civil War Museum) and the Oakland Cemetery where Margaret Mitchell, Bobby Jones, 25 former mayors, six former governors and many Civil War Soldiers are buried. The district is included on the National Register of Historic places.

Atlanta Botanical Garden

Hands down, one of Atlanta’s most beautiful attractions with more than 30 acres of gardens, forest, wildflower trails, and 10,000-square-foot Fuqua Orchid Center. Don’t forget the Canopy Walk, a 40-foot high suspension bridge creating a treetop walking trail.

Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area

Chattahoochee River National Rec Area (Tom Murphy)

The Chattahoochee River is a great place for a picnic, a leisurely walk, or boating on a sunny afternoon. The 48 miles of the river that the park contains can take the whole day or just a few hours to explore. The area is great for a quick getaway from the fast pace of city life. Get outdoors and experience your Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area as you have never done before!

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Surrounded by a 65-acre forest, the Fernbank Museum of Natural History offers an observatory, a planetarium, an IMAX movie theater and many fascinating exhibits. Hands-on activities help visitors become aware of how their senses interpret the world around them, while children can explore the nooks and crannies of a multi-level clubhouse, walk through a virtual waterfall and shimmy up spiraling netting to discover the insides of a mighty red oak tree.

Centennial Olympic Park

Created as a gathering place for the 1996 Summer Olympic Games, Centennial Olympic Park is a verdant oasis that serves both locals and tourists. With a children’s playground, foot paths and its ideal downtown Atlanta location, the park is a prime downtown destination.

Outdoor Adventures: Outside the Perimeter

Allatoona Lake

Only 30 miles from Atlanta, locals and visitors can enjoy picnicking, camping, hunting, fishing, swimming or observing the abundant wildlife along Allatoona Lake's beautiful shores. At the visitor center, see video exhibits and displays about the area's history from the time of early Native Americans to gold mining and iron-making days, to the Civil War and up to the present.

Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests

Chattahoochee River National Rec Area
This National Forest offers winding trails that lead visitors through scenic mountains and rolling hills, by wild rushing rivers and cascading waterfalls. The famous 2,135-mile Appalachian Trail begins here and hardy hikers don't see the end until they reach Maine! Drive along the Ridge and Valley Scenic Byway, and don't forget to stop at Brasstown Bald, Georgia's highest peak at 4,784 feet. Click here for information about camping in the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests.

Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge

The refuge is open daily during daylight hours. A photography and observation blind is located along the Allison Lake Trail; and take checklist for birds - spring bird migration occurs during late March and April, fall migration peaks in September and October and December through January is the best time to see waterfowl.

Lake Sidney Lanier

Lake Sidney Lanier
Nestled in the foothills of the Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains, Lake Lanier is known for its aqua-blue colored water, spectacular scenery and variety of recreational activities. With more than 7.5 million visitors a year, it is truly one of America’s favorite lakes. Seventy-six recreational areas have been developed around the lake including 59 parks, 10 marinas, 6 reservable campgrounds, and Lake Lanier Islands Resort and Water Park.

History and Culture: Atlanta’s Rich Past, Present and Future

Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site

This site tells the story of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and the Civil Rights Movement. Here you’ll find the restored King Birth Home, Ebenezer Baptist Church where three generations of the King family preached, the King burial site, and a visitor center with exhibits.

Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield

Kennesaw National Battlefield
Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield is a 2,923-acre National Battlefield that preserves a Civil War battleground of the Atlanta Campaign. The battle was fought here from June 19, 1864 until July 2, 1864. Over 67,000 soldiers were killed, wounded or captured during the campaign.

Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum

The award-winning Jimmy Carter Presidential Museum has interactive displays and fascinating exhibits. Experience "A Day in the Life of the President" by stepping into the Oval Office, or take a virtual trip with the Carters to fight disease and promote democracy.

The High Museum of Art

Considered the leading art museum in the Southeastern U.S. and one of the most-visited art museums in the world, the High Museum holds more than 11,000 works of art in its permanent collection.

Stone Mountain Park

Located on 3,200 acres of natural beauty, Stone Mountain Park features a wide variety of fun-family activities. Ascend to the top of the largest piece of exposed granite in the world via the Cherokee National Recreation Trail for a great view, and make sure to visit the Confederate Memorial Carving, which is larger than Mt. Rushmore.