On our way to Myrtle Beach last year, we had a layover in Atlanta. Since Atlanta is the only aquarium in the USA with a whale shark and manta ray (both favorites of our son), we decided to make it a two-night layover instead to get a full 24 hours there. We had so much fun, that we can’t wait for our next visit! Turns out, there are tons of family activities in Atlanta. Not that I had any doubt. If you only have a day or two there, you can’t do everything, so here is a list of the top 5 that you should not miss. It’s also handy that they are all right in the same neighborhood.
The Georgia Aquarium is home to dolphins, beluga whales, sharks and whale sharks, sting rays and manta rays, sea turtles, and thousands of fish and other marine life. We spent over 5 hours here and still can’t wait to go back. The dolphin show is included in the ticket price, which is nice. There is a play area and touch pool where you can touch baby rays and sharks. The main attraction for us was the Ocean Voyager by Home Depot for the whale sharks and manta rays by far.
World of Coca-Cola is a wonderland of soft-drink-themed fun for all ages. The Secret Formula 4-D Theater Experience takes you on a sensory adventure to find the secret formula. Collectors will love the Coca-Coal Gallery and the Coca-Cola Loft filled with memorabilia from every era. Meet favorite characters, see how the soda is made, and taste some of the many flavors from around the world.
Imagine It! Children’s Museum – next to coke museum: For us, no trip is complete without a visit to the local children’s museum. This children’s museum is great for families with kids of varying ages because there things for each of them to enjoy. Crawl spaces and sensory tables for babies and toddlers, the grocery store and fishing pond for preschool and early elementary kids, and older kids can enjoy the guilty pleasure of ‘being a kid again’ under the guise of helping little bro or sis.
Centennial Olympic Park – across from aquarium and Coca-Cola: Just across from the entrance of the Georgia Aquarium and the World of Coca-Cola is a shaded playground with benches for Mom & Dad to have a rest while the little ones play. You can explore deeper into the park and join in the local events, or just stay at the playground and play. After going down all the slides and climbing all around, we cut through this park to get to the next stop on our tour… CNN Center.
Cartoon Network Shop in CNN Center: We skipped the Studio Tour because of time, and went straight to the Cartoon Network store (attached to the CNN Store). But, if you have time, I would highly recommend the tour. You’ll get to see how a real newsroom and tv studio works and possibly meet some of the anchors like Robin Meade (a great way to get kids interested in watching the news, I might add). Print out a scavenger hunt and answers handout before your trip for school-aged kids.
There are obviously so many more things to do here, but if there is something you think I missed, please add it in the comments!
Kid-friendly or not, check out these great deals on hotels in Atlanta: