For a city of well over five million, Atlanta is pretty laid back. Many of its streets are lined by charming boutiques, home-style restaurants, and unpretentious cafes where you can meet up with friends or spend several hours catching up on work. Museums, theaters, and green spaces make cultural and recreational stimulation easy.
If you live in Atlanta and have already spent time at World of Coca-Cola, the Georgia Aquarium, Zoo Atlanta, and on the Eastside Trail, get to know and appreciate the city even more by checking out some of its less well-known treasures.
Hike Kennesaw Mountain
The top of Kennesaw Mountain offers arguably the best vantage point for admiring the skyline and sprawl of Atlanta. The mountain also has historic significance…it was the last natural obstacle General Sherman’s army had to cross in order to reach Atlanta during the Civil War.
A natural and national treasure rarely too crowded, the hike to the top of Kennesaw Mountain is fairly grueling, but doesn’t take too long. If you want a longer hike, explore the park’s more than 17 miles of marked trail. Kennesaw Mountain is especially beautiful in the spring, when it’s dotted with brilliantly colored wildflowers. It’s also a great place from which to watch the sunset.
Screen a Flick at Starlight Drive–In
The Atlanta area has plenty of movie theaters with stadium seating and comfortable chairs where you can watch the latest blockbuster hits. But if you want to go off the beaten path, plan a trip to the Starlight Drive-In. Open since 1949, Starlight is an institution, and the city’s only remaining drive-in theater. Not only is the Starlight Drive-In the perfect place to return to the 70s for an evening, it also offers double features for the very reasonable price of 0. To make sure you get a good parking/viewing spot and have time to get to the refreshment shack before the movie starts, arrive at least 20 minutes early.
Cheer on the Atlanta Silverbacks
Soccer is not the new football. Not yet, anyway. But the world’s most popular sport has gathered a following in the U.S., and Atlanta has exciting teams in the form of the Atlanta Silverbacks. The men’s club plays for the North American Soccer League and the women’s Silverbacks team plays for the W-league. Check out a game soon at Atlanta Silverbacks Park while tickets are still plentiful and relatively inexpensive. The teams’ loyal fan bases make the games exciting for almost all Silverbacks spectators, regardless of the outcome of the game.
Sink Your Teeth Into a Pastry
If you can believe it, it’s possible to have a Parisian moment in Atlanta. Henri’s Bakery is a longstanding favorite among those with a penchant for cookies, croissants, and eclairs. Some other great places to grab delicious pastries and other baked goods are Joli Kobe Bakery and Bistro, Alon’s, Highland Bakery, and Sublime Doughnuts.
Catch an Indie Show
Atlanta’s thriving arts culture makes it a great place to watch live, local talent tear up the stage. Independent music sets and theater productions are performed throughout the city. The Earl attracts excellent local talent, and its fair drink prices make enjoying a show both cheap and easy. For theater or stand-up, check out Dad’s Garage or the New American Shakespeare Tavern.
It’s not only the oppressive summers of Georgia’s capital city that make Hotlanta a fitting nickname. The human talent and creativity that thrive in the city, coupled with the abundance of natural beauty that envelops it, makes it a place people can explore and enjoy endlessly.
Expand your horizons by stepping off the beaten path if you feel like falling out of your routine. It’s an exciting way to Live Life + Love Life.
Are there places in Atlanta that you love but feel are underrated or yet-to-be-discovered? Let the community know by leaving a comment!