Atlanta Weekend Itinerary
Hit all the major Atlanta highlights with this weekend itinerary
Day one: Downtown and around
Start your day at Georgia Aquarium, where you can see more than 100,000 animals of 500 different species in more than 8 million gallons of marine and fresh water. The nation’s largest aquarium also houses the world’s largest fish — whale sharks.
Head to World of Coca-Cola, where the famous soft drink’s story is told through fascinating exhibits, classic ads and an imaginative replica of the bottling process. Featuring a multi-sensory 4-D theater where viewers can join the “Search for the Secret Formula” and an opportunity to taste more than 100 beverages from all around the world, the World of Coca-Cola entices visitors of all ages. When exploring, be sure to step inside the Vault of the Secret Formula. This immersive experience showcases the legend and lore surrounding one of the world’s most-beloved beverages. Highlights include the Virtual Tastemaker, a full-body interactive game and mobile storytelling option created with QR codes.
Visit Centennial Olympic Park, the world’s gathering place during the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. The park offers concerts, festivals, seasonal activities, a playground and the world’s largest Fountain of Rings. The park also offers seasonal activities such as free concerts April-September during Wednesday WindDown and music at noon every Tuesday and Thursday. Cozy up for the holidays in December with ice skating and Holiday in Lights.
For casual cuisine, head to nearby Ted’s Montana Grill, created by Atlanta mogul Ted Turner, for bison burgers. Lunch on classic American fare like a rock star at Hard Rock Cafe while surrounded by authentic rock memorabilia. Mellow Mushroom started in Atlanta in 1975 and is the city’s local take on pizza.
Experience the American civil rights movement firsthand at the new interactive National Center for Civil and Human Rights. The center’s theatrical and high-tech exhibits use motion, sights and sounds to immerse visitors in the American civil rights movement and current human rights issues.
Just across the park, Children’s Museum of Atlanta features hands-on exhibits and activities where kids ages 8 and younger can learn and explore.
For seafood and an award-wining wine list, visit Ray’s In the City. Ruth’s Chris Steak House at Centennial Park serves its signature steak with a lovely view of the park below. New to Peachtree Street but filled with vintage conversation pieces and heirloom recipes, Meehan’s Public House and Sweet Georgia’s Juke Joint are two great spots to unwind, whether you’re in the mood for a pint or barbecue. Two additional great options are White Oak Kitchen & Cocktails, featuring upscale Southern cuisine and cocktails, and modern Mexican at Alma Cocina. If hand-crafted beer is your idea of the perfect dinner drink, head over to Max Lager’s Wood-Fired Grill & Brewery for great food and seasonal brews.
Don’t miss the action at State Farm Arena during an Atlanta Hawks game. Enjoy fierce gridiron battles at Mercedes-Benz Stadium during an Atlanta Falcons game or cheer on Atlanta United during a passionate soccer match.
Then, see the Atlanta skyline from 20 stories up as you go round and round on SkyView Atlanta, the city’s giant Ferris wheel.
Consider grabbing dinner and drinks at The Battery Atlanta, just outside the gates of Truist Park, where the Atlanta Braves play from April to October. Catch foul balls and maybe even line drives, and visit the Braves Monument Garden.
Day two: Get cultured in Midtown
Visit the Midtown Arts District and gaze at more than 12,000 works in the High Museum of Art, a division of the Woodruff Arts Center. Also at Woodruff Arts Center, you’ll find the Grammy Award-winning Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Tony Award-winning Alliance Theatre.
Just across the street, Museum of Design Atlanta presents unique, urban exhibitions that examine the effects of design on day-to-day life. This boutique gallery is a work of art itself with its naturally lit exhibition space.
For an authentic Atlanta treat, try a chili dog and Frosted Orange at The Varsity, the world’s largest drive-in restaurant. Grab a sandwich or indulge in something sweet at Highland Bakery-Midtown.
Piedmont Park encompasses more than 180 acres of lush lawns, Lake Clara Meer, a public swimming pool, scenic walking and jogging paths, playgrounds, athletic courts and an off-leash dog park. It’s also home to many seasonal activities, such as Atlanta Dogwood Festival, Atlanta Jazz Festival, Atlanta Pride and Music Midtown.
Adjacent to the park, the Atlanta Botanical Garden is an urban oasis of seasonal blooms and mesmerizing water features. Wander through the treetops on the Canopy Walk, a 40-foot high suspension walkway offering a birds-eye view.
Down the street, delight the kids (and the kid in you) at Center for Puppetry Arts. The center is home to The Jim Henson Collection and The Global Collection in its Worlds of Puppetry Museum. The center also offers weekly performances for kids and an adult series. The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum next door is home to exhibition galleries, the Weinberg Center for Holocaust Education and the Cuba Family Archives for Southern Jewish History.
For artisan cocktails and regional, seasonal dishes, visit Ecco. One of the city’s favorite neighborhood hangouts, 5Church, is a two-tier restaurant with an expansive outdoor patio that serves an eclectic, global fusion menu of the city’s favorite foods. Just two streets over, South City Kitchen is the go-to for sophisticated Southern dishes. For fresh food concepts and historic architecture, head to West Midtown. This newly revitalized district offers decadent dining and tons of walkable shopping. At Miller Union, sample dishes prepared with simple ingredients in a rustic setting.
The Fox Theatre offers live performances including Top 40 concerts and Broadway productions by Broadway in Atlanta. Alliance Theatre is one of the largest regional theaters in the nation and has produced more than 50 world premieres, bringing the world’s best talent to Atlanta.
Check out Atlanta’s hottest nightlife at Opera Atlanta Nightclub, Compound, Halo and the Koo Koo Room. For house beats and perfect drinks, relax at Whiskey Blue and Sutra Lounge.
Day three: Shop ’til you drop in Buckhead
Covering 33 acres in the heart of Buckhead, Atlanta History Center features two historic houses, six signature exhibits and the largest collection of Civil War memorabilia in the world. Great for the entire family, the history center also offers gorgeous gardens and two delicious on-site dining options.
Visit one of the Buckhead design and cultural areas that include Miami Circle, Peachtree Decorative Arts Plaza, Galleries of Peachtree Hills and Bennett Street, where the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia permanently houses more than 600 works by local artists in contemporary mediums.
At Buckhead Diner, enjoy inventive Americana dishes such as Maryland Soft Shell Crab B.L.T. Souper Jenny – an Atlanta sensation – serves, you guessed it, soups. Homemade daily from local, sustainable ingredients and heirloom recipes, this cafeteria-style restaurant at Atlanta History Center has some of the tastiest soups, salads and sandwiches in town.
From luxury stores to unique boutiques, Buckhead shopping has everything for the chic, savvy and fabulous. At Lenox Square, visit more than 200 stylish stores including Kate Spade, Bulgari and Louis Vuitton.
Across the street at Phipps Plaza, get the season’s hottest trends from Giorgio Armani, Jimmy Choo, Versace and more. Also at Phipps is LEGOLAND Discovery Center Atlanta. Head to the MINILAND exhibit, which re-creates landmark buildings from the Atlanta skyline. Filled with hours of hands-on, interactive fun, LEGOLAND offers kids playtime inside one of the world’s biggest boxes of LEGO bricks. At the LEGO Racers: Build & Test station, young ones can craft a car then speed down the racetrack.
Then make your way a little further down Peachtree Street to stroll through the Buckhead Village District. With ultra-luxe retail options such as Christian Louboutin, Hermès and Helmut Lang, along with delicious dishes for every palette, you can shop, drop and shop some more.
After a great shopping adventure, reward yourself with an expertly executed dinner at KR Steakbar. Considered one of the most romantic spots in town, Anis Café and Bistro takes its cuisine cues from the South of France, serving chic French dishes in a cozy atmosphere.
Sip, see and be seen in Buckhead’s lavish lounges and upscale hotels at the W Buckhead and St. Regis. Amp up your night with salsa, merengue, house or EDM at Havana Club and Tongue & Groove.
Get to know Atlanta, and discover the best things to do around the city.