I live in Atlanta. I’ve also vacationed to Atlanta when I lived in Central Georgia. MadMan spent many weekends in Atlanta before he moved here for college. Needless to say we have a little knowledge on where to go, what to eat, and where to stay.
For the people moving: Atlanta is fun, hot, and southern. When you look for a place to live, look at your commute first. Traffic is awful. Don’t be afraid of the MARTA, it’s not as bad as people make it out to be.
For the people visiting: The humidity is bad, bring light clothes. There is tons to do and lots of walking, bring good shoes. We have many festivals, so you should check out at least one.
Places to See
If you’re visiting Atlanta to eat and vacation there are so many options you might just need to go ahead and move for a few years. If you like the outdoors, you’re in luck because we have a trail that winds around the entire city. We also have a few mountains (kinda more like big hills) for you to enjoy.
The Great Outdoors:
Atlanta is nature city. We have more than should be allowed. Stone Mountain being the prime example. Who left the large chunk of rock sitting in the middle of our town? Since it’s there, you should know that they make use of it in a spectacular laser light show during the summer. There’s also a whole park around it just waiting to be explored.
If big rocks aren’t your style, check out The BeltLine. You can walk, eat, and shop all along this wonderful paved route through the city. There are parks to explore right along side some of the best historical shopping in town. (See Ponce City Market.) If you’re really looking, you might even spot some of our local art. (Look up Tiny Doors Atlanta)
* It should be noted that the lady at the door is made of orange peels.
If your willing to travel OTP, Kennesaw Mountain is a wonderful hike for the entire family. Parking is free, but it can be hard to find on a pretty day. You also have Sweetwater Creek. It’s super fun and great during the summer.
I have Children!
Well, I don’t have any, but if you have children, I have a few places that you can all enjoy together. All previously mentioned places are great for kids. Along side the World of Coke, Atlanta Zoo, and the Georgia Aquarium there is no shortage of places to entertain your children. If your willing to have a bit of thrill OTP, Six Flags is where it’s at. There is a height limit, so very small children may not find much of interest at the park. Owned by Six Flags is WhiteWater. It’s a water-park North of Atlanta.
Atlanta has your shopping. Amazingly, it’s almost always packaged in a historical place so that you can shop, while your significant other can check out the local history. Remember Ponce City Market? It’s an old Sears factory converted to shops and lofts along The BeltLine with a small boardwalk park on the roof. Quite wonderful for the whole family. Another historical shopping destination is Atlantic Station. It used to be an old train depot, now houses shops, food, movies, expos, and housing. As of this writing, Bodies has been there for years.
* If your more shopping than all around entertainment, there are a plethora of shopping centers all around Atlanta. Much to many to list. If you want to travel OTP for shopping, there are two outlet centers, one North and one South. Both are good, just take your pick.
What to wear while adventuring:
When you get to Atlanta, be prepared for anything. It could snow one day and be 80 the next. However, as a general rule, the summers are awful. Bring lightweight clothing. Sunglasses and hats are a must. The winters are don’t exist (think 60 degrees) for the most part, so check the weather before you pack. Good luck packing for spring and fall.
After fun, there’s food.
Maybe before, that’s ok too.
There’s a lot of great places to eat in and around Atlanta. If you’re on a budget you should find all the wonderful food trucks, I haven’t found a bad one yet. If you are looking for a place with seats (maybe some air conditioning) here are a few great ones you have to visit while your here.
- The Varsity: It’s great to visit, and the food is good. I don’t eat here as it is really greasy and quite unhealthy, but if it’s your first time in town, it’s a must visit.
Pro Tip: know what you want BEFORE stepping up.
- The Vortex: It’s 21+ only, but it’s award winning. Also not healthy, but a must go.
- Marlow’s Tavern: AMAZING Sunday Brunch. A bit more on the pricey side, but if you like a good Southern brunch (the answer is yes) then you have to go.
- Tin Lizzy’s: A fun atmosphere with lots of tacos and drinks.
- Waffle House: I know you may have them, but do you have one on every corner? We do. And it’s a place some of us would rather eat than a fancy sit down restaurant.
- Chick-fil-a: You’ve heard of it. It’s a little famous and has even begun to spread to other parts of the country. We are the home. Come try it.
When you visit you should know how to understand what we are talking about. We talk slow, we say weird things, and we use “fake words.”
- Coke: When speaking of Soda, Pop, Pepsi, or any other carbonated beverage, we call it coke. As the home of Coke, you won’t find Pepsi.
- Ain’t: It’s a word. That’s a fact and it ain’t up for discussion.
- Y’all: If you want to get looks say “you guys.”
- Fixin’ ta: The way we say “about to.”
- OTP & ITP: Out the perimeter & In the perimeter. This represents who lives inside the I-285 circle and who lives outside of it. It’s a hot debate in these parts.
Eating our Food:
We eat some funny things down here. Here’s a guide to the funniest of funny:
- Boiled Peanuts: We have a lot of peanuts. So we take them and boil them in a pot. Best eaten hot. I prefer the spicy kind myself. MadMan hates them.
- Fried Green Tomatoes: A southern classic. One that I personally hate, but you should try it while you’re down here.
- Sweet Tea: It’s half sugar, half tea. Enjoy.
- Grits: Very tasty, made for southern breakfasts. Again, MadMan won’t touch it, but I can’t get enough.
- BBQ: Smoke pork butt, tear it apart, put sauce on it, slap it onto a bun. That’s how it’s done.
- Fried Oreos: Fair food. Will leave you in the restroom for a while but worth a try.
- Peach Cobbler with Vanilla Ice Cream: We love anything peaches, but this is a favorite. Visit any fair and find this delicious food.