The Best Green Spaces in Atlanta

Known as “The City in a Forest,” Atlanta is ripe with green spaces. Whether it’s parks, gardens or nature preserves, you don’t have to go far to immerse yourself in nature right in the middle of the ATL.

Piedmont Park

At 211 acres, Piedmont Park, just north of downtown, has plenty of green space to surround yourself with. Originally founded as a country residence outside of the city, Piedmont Park was surrounded by urban development but left as a park that joins several neighborhoods. In addition to more than 100 different kinds of trees — including some of the oldest in the city, called “champion trees” — there are bocce courts, fields for softball, soccer, track, basketball courts, two sand volleyball courts, multiple playgrounds, tons of picnic spots with grills, two dog parks, a splash pad and community pool. Or just sit and take in the skyline view reflecting in Lake Clara Meer.

Piedmont Park connects several Atlanta neighborhoods

Stone Mountain Park

A popular outdoor destination for Atlantans and visitors of all ages, Stone Mountain Park features 3,200 acres of natural beauty. Surround yourself with nature on 15 miles of trails, or take the iconic one-mile climb to the top, where the view stretches for more than 60 miles on a clear day. At an elevation of 1,686 feet, you’ll get a jaw-dropping view of both the North Georgia mountains and Downtown Atlanta. If all that beauty isn’t enough, there are also a wide variety of family-friendly activities from camping, hiking and treetop excursions to fishing, golf, biking, boating and more.

Get an elevated view of Atlanta from Stone Mountain Park

Freedom Park

The city’s biggest linear park, Freedom Park, is also its largest outdoor museum, with permanent and temporary installations dotting over 200 acres. Stroll the paths and take in conceptual sculptures like the “Tree of Life,” or the colorful, inspiring “One Woman Rising,” or the iconic “Homage to King,” a flawlessly crafted steel profile of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a bona fide Atlanta art landmark.

Little Nancy Creek Park

This relatively new Buckhead neighborhood park became a fast favorite with kids (and their parents) when it unveiled its impressive playground in 2011. Designed for all ages, the 8,000-square-foot play area includes a challenging tower for older kids to explore, and slides and smaller climbing structures for the little ones. Surrounded by woods, tree canopy and creek, this city park has a rural feel.

Atlanta Botanical Garden

An urban oasis in the heart of Midtown, Atlanta Botanical Garden features 30 acres of lush, colorful gardens, including an award-winning Children’s Garden, an innovative edible garden complete with outdoor demonstration kitchen, and The Fuqua Conservatory, which houses important tropical palms, conifers and the foremost collection of species orchids in the U.S. Stroll the gardens at sunset to take in the blooms and a scenic skyline-sunset combo.

Acres of gardens welcome visitors at Atlanta Botanical Garden

Chattahoochee Nature Center

Explore 127 acres dedicated to environmental education at the Chattahoochee Nature Center. Learn the Chattahoochee River’s story, hike the woodland trails, meander through the beautiful butterfly and native plant gardens, explore the river boardwalk and view native animals. For the more adventurous, try the new ziplines and canopy walk.

Girl catching a butterfly at the Butterfly Festival at Chattahoochee Nature Center.
See beautiful butterflies at the Chattahoochee Nature Center

Atlanta BeltLine

With 22 miles of multi-use trails making a loop that links 1,300 acres of public parks and neighborhoods, there is much to see and explore along the BeltLine. Download maps to plan your route, then walk or pedal along this former rail line that circles the core of the city’s in-town neighborhoods and discover public art, patio cafes and more. Pups welcome, too!

Explore the BeltLine on foot or on wheels

Morningside Nature Preserve

Just seven miles from downtown, Morningside Nature Preserve is a hidden ATL gem, with 34 acres of natural beauty just waiting to be explored. Two and half miles of trails meander through the woodlands, over a suspension bridge and down to “dog beach” where the locals let their pups cool off in the shallow water of South Peachtree Creek, under the bridge.

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