The holiday season is officially here. In case you’ll be playing tour guide for out-of-town family or friends, we’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite picks for “only-in-Atlanta” fun and flavor. These are spots that shout ATL; you can’t find these experiences anywhere else.


1 CNN Center, Atlanta.
Cost: $15; ages 4-12, $12
News junkies thrill at the chance to see the inner workings of CNN and the creation of live global news broadcasts.

Stone Mountain Park

1000 Robert E. Lee Blvd., Stone Mountain.
Cost: Christmas Adventure Pass $24.95; ages 3-11, $19.95. parking, $10
If the impressive Confederate Memorial Carving, the skylift, the 1870s-replica town, the indoor and outdoor play experiences for kids, the Antebellum Plantation, and the scenic railroad aren’t enough, Stone Mountain Park is almost always hosting a special event or festival.

The Wren’s Nest

1050 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. SW, Atlanta.
Cost: $8; children, $5
The home of author Joel Chandler Harris, of Brer Rabbit and Uncle Remus fame, is a museum, and one of the only Queen Anne Victorian homes still standing in Atlanta today. Every Saturday, the Wren’s Nest hosts professional storytelling sessions.

Center for Puppetry Arts

1404 Spring St. NW, Atlanta.
Cost: $8.25 for museum admission; show prices vary
CPA, the largest museum dedicated to the art of puppetry, has been around since 1978. In addition to high quality puppet productions, hundreds of puppets from different eras and countries (including Muppets!) are on display.

Centennial Olympic Park

265 Park Ave. West NW, Atlanta.
Cost: Free. Fees for skate rental and ice time.
The iconic Fountain of Rings – the largest interactive fountain in the world – is a can’t-miss crowd pleaser, and Holiday in Lights and the outdoor skating rink make this park a winter winner.

Martin Luther King Jr. Center

449 Auburn Ave. NE, Atlanta.
Cost: Free
The historic site honoring the legacy of MLK Jr. includes his birth home, Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church and Freedom Hall, where you can view Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize and the largest collection of materials about the American civil rights movement in the world.

The Sundial

210 Peachtree St. NW, Atlanta.
Cost: The view: $8; ages 6-12, $4; ages 6 and younger, free
Have a meal, or just the 360-degree panoramic view of Atlanta’s skyline. The Sun Dial sits at the top of downtown’s Westin Peachtree Plaza, the tallest hotel in the Western Hemisphere.

World of Coca-Cola

121 Baker St NW, Atlanta.
Cost: $16; ages 3-12, $12; ages 2 and younger, free with paid adult.
An afternoon spent visiting The Vault, watching the bottling process, singing along to old Coke commercials and tasting drinks from around the globe appeals to anyone who’s sweet on soda.

The Varsity

61 North Ave. NW, Atlanta.
What’ll ya have? No visit to Atlanta is complete without a meal at The Varsity, open since 1928, where placing an order is half the fun! Make sure everyone knows the lingo for ordering their dogs (red, Yankee or walking?) and an FO (Frosted Orange drink).

The Colonnade

1879 Cheshire Bridge Rd., Atlanta

If your guests are craving Southern fried chicken, this is the spot to go. They’ve been serving that dish – and plenty of Southern classics – since 1927! Babies to great grandparents are comfortable here.

– Dalia Faupel

Recent Posts