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Museum Guide for Atlanta

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Atlanta has a long and colorful history. To get a sense of this multi-cultural city, visit its many museums, learning not only about its past, but also getting a sense of its future. Here are my pick of Atlanta's best.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nature Lover
  • Thrifty Traveler
  • Like a Local

9 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

9 Places

Centennial Olympic Park

Historic Sites, Parks

World of Coca-Cola

Specialty Museums

Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site

Historic Sites

Atlanta History Center

History Museums

High Museum of Art

Specialty Museums

Fernbank

Natural History Museums

Atlanta Cyclorama & Civil War Museum

Art Museums, History Museums

Margaret Mitchell House

Specialty Museums, Historic Sites, History Museums

Jimmy Carter Library & Museum

Libraries, History Museums

Katie C's City Tips

  • The best times to visit Atlanta are usually spring and fall — the temperatures are reasonable and the city slows down just a bit.
  • The fastest (and cheapest) way to get from Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL) to the city center is on MARTA, the public transportation system. Find the station closest to where you're staying and go from there.
  • If you're planning on visiting the city's main attractions, consider making a reservation or buying tickets ahead of time. (Most of Atlanta's hotspots will let you book ahead, saving you time in the lines.)
  • Centennial Olympic Park
    Historic Sites, Parks
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    After Atlanta hosted the Centennial Olympics in 1996, this park became a must-visit location in the city. More than just a beautiful green space, this area also has concerts during the summer, and the dancing fountains draw the attention of every child in the park.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • A recent addition, the Atlanta SkyView is a giant Ferris wheel that affords wonderful views of the city.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #35 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Wow! What a prize park for Atlanta! 10/21/2019
    • Dancing Fountain is So Cool 10/20/2019
    • Centennial Olympic Park
    Address:
    265 Park Avenue West NW
    Atlanta, GA 30313-1615
    Phone:
    +1 404-223-4412
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    7:00 AM - 11:00 PM
    Other:
  • World of Coca-Cola
    Specialty Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    The World of Coca-Cola, the soft drink of choice in the South, is a museum of the history of this concoction, and a truly interactive experience. Here you have the chance to explore many aspects of the beverage and the culture surrounding it, but perhaps the most popular draw is the 'Taste It' lounge, where you can sample more than 100 versions of Coke from around the world.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Must See
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Shopping Fanatic
    • Family
    Tips
    • The Coca-Cola Store is a popular part of the tour, but you don't need a museum ticket to enter it.
    • Download the World of Coca-Cola Explorer mobile app, which is almost like a personal VIP tour guide for your visit.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Save your money! 10/21/2019
    • Interesting and great experience for the kids 10/20/2019
    • World of Coca-Cola
    Address:
    121 Baker St NW
    Atlanta, GA 30313-1807
    Phone:
    +1 404-676-5151
    Hours:
    Sun - Thu
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Fri - Sat
    9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
    Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Known for his influential work in the Civil Rights movement, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of Atlanta's most beloved native sons. His dedicated National Historic Site, which is administered by the National Park Service, includes King's birth home, church, and grave.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Tips
    • To learn more about Dr. King's legacy and work, visit the Center for Nonviolent Social Change, located across from the Ebenezer Baptist Church.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #5 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Top Notch!! 10/21/2019
    • Not easy to get inside! 10/20/2019
    • Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
    Address:
    450 Auburn Ave NE
    Atlanta, GA 30312-1504
    Phone:
    +1 404-331-5190
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Atlanta History Center
    History Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Tucked into a gorgeous neighborhood, the Atlanta History Center is a thirty-three acre destination that includes the Atlanta History Museum (one of the Southeast's largest history museums), the 1928 Swan House and Tullie Smith Farm houses and gardens, the Centennial Olympic Games Museum, and the Kenan Research Center; which houses approximately 3.5 million historic documents. A visit to the Atlanta History Center is an experience that is both edifying and enjoyable.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveler
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Go on a clear day and allow plenty of time to explore the grounds — you'll forget you're in modern-day Atlanta.
    • Check out the Atlanta History Center's collection of Civil War artifacts — one of the largest in the U.S.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #13 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Way better than the Civil Rights Museum! 10/20/2019
    • Excellent Collection of Things to See 10/12/2019
    • Atlanta History Center
    Address:
    130 W Paces Ferry Rd NW
    10 St Nw
    Atlanta, GA 30305
    Phone:
    +1 404-814-4000
    Price range:
    US$21 - US$21
    Hours:
    Sun
    12:00 PM - 5:30 PM
    Mon - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
    Other:
  • High Museum of Art
    Specialty Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Known among locals as 'The High,' this museum is highly regarded not only for the art it contains, but also for its stunning architecture, which makes it art in its own right. The High plays host to a variety of exhibits throughout the year, and houses an impressive permanent collection that is definitely worth a visit.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • On Friday nights, docents lead free (with the price of admission) 30-minute talks that focus on specific aspects of the High Museum's permanent collection.
    • If you're interested in the visiting exhibit, be sure to buy tickets in advance; depending on the popularity of the exhibit, viewing times might sell out.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #22 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • It's not the MOMA! 10/20/2019
    • High culture in Atlanta 10/12/2019
    • High Museum of Art
    Address:
    1280 Peachtree St NE
    Atlanta, GA 30309-3549
    Phone:
    +1 404-733-5000
    Hours:
    Sun
    12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
    Tue - Thu
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Fri
    10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
    Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Fernbank
    Natural History Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    From dinosaurs to the geological history of Georgia and much more, Fernbank is a fantastic and informative destination for families and visitors of all ages. This place offers several floors to explore, and new exhibits are on the docket to keep things fresh.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Friday nights are the time for "Martinis & IMAX" events, when you can enjoy live music and cocktails in the atrium before going for a movie in the IMAX theater.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #45 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    • What a wonderful wedding venue! 10/19/2019
    • Lovely space that is way underutilized 10/18/2019
    • Fernbank
    Address:
    767 Clifton Rd NE
    Atlanta, GA 30307-1221
    Phone:
    +1 404-929-6300
    Price range:
    US$20 - US$20
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Atlanta Cyclorama & Civil War Museum
    Art Museums, History Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Experience a 360 degree view of the Battle of Atlanta during the Civil War at the Cyclorama: The world's largest oil painting is 42 feet tall and 358 feet in circumference. Accompanied by music and narration, you'll sit and revolve to see all the details of this unique piece of art. The museum also boasts Civil War artifacts and a steam locomotive.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The Cyclorama is currently located in Grant Park, near Zoo Atlanta, but plans are in place to move it!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #0 of 0 things to do in Atlanta
    • Beautifully restored 08/20/2019
    • Beautifully restored 04/07/2019
    • Atlanta Cyclorama & Civil War Museum
    Address:
    800 Cherokee Ave SE
    Atlanta, GA 30305-1380
    Phone:
    +1 404-814-4000
    Hours:
    Tue - Sat
    9:15 AM - 4:30 PM
  • Margaret Mitchell House
    Specialty Museums, Historic Sites, History Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Perhaps one of the most famous novels (and movies) about the South, Gone with the Wind is part of the fabric and history of Atlanta. Take a tour of author Margaret Mitchell's house and see where she lived and wrote this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. In addition to its historical value, the house is a wonderful turn-of-the century, three-story Tudor Revival building and contains many artifacts and items that relate to the movie as well.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The Margaret Mitchell house often hosts book talks and literary lectures. An entrance fee applies, and reservations are required, so check the calendar ahead of time!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #39 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful historic home 10/19/2019
    • Over rated 10/17/2019
    • Margaret Mitchell House
    Address:
    979 Crescent Ave NE
    Atlanta, GA 30309
    Phone:
    +1 404-249-7015
    Price range:
    US$13 - US$13
    Hours:
    Sun
    12:00 PM - 5:30 PM
    Mon - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
    Other:
  • Jimmy Carter Library & Museum
    Libraries, History Museums
    See more photos
    Katie C Says:

    Located on 35 acres, the Jimmy Carter Library & Museum is an interactive destination that not only details Carter's time as president (he's the only president from Georgia), but also his humanitarian work, for which he won the Nobel Peace Prize. The museum hosts two to four traveling exhibits each year, so there's plenty to see and experience.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The submarine experience is a cool — and unexpected — part of the museum.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 263 things to do in Atlanta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Very informative! 10/20/2019
    • GREAT VALUE, Great venue 10/20/2019
    • Jimmy Carter Library & Museum
    Address:
    441 Freedom Pkwy NE
    Atlanta, GA 30307-1496
    Phone:
    +1 404-865-7100
    Hours:
    Sun
    12:00 PM - 4:45 PM
    Mon - Sat
    9:00 AM - 4:45 PM
    Other:
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