Atlanta, Georgia’s biggest city, has the most attractions for visiting families seeking culture, history and recreation in the state. If you’re traveling with active and energized kids, buy a Citypass for everyone in the family and save up to 46% off a select group of the top family attractions. A CityPASS will get everyone into the Georgia Aquarium (with expedited entry), the bright World of Coca-Cola which offers free cold sodas to visitors (key in the hot and humid summers), the Inside CNN Studio Tour (great with tweens and older), the fun Zoo Atlanta (great with toddlers) or the very interesting Atlanta History Center. For more information on seasonal events, festivals, and attractions, contact the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (800/ATLANTA).
Here are our top kid-friendly attractions for ages toddler through tween in Atlanta.
Imagine It! The Children’s Museum of Atlanta
275 Centennial Olympic Park Drive
Atlanta, GA 30313
For younger kids, this is a terrific playspace primarily designed for age groups of 2- to 8-years-old. There’s a lot of things to touch and feel, and comfortable areas for parents who aren’t participating to watch.
Fernback Museum of Natural History
767 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30307
This is the largest natural history museum in the Southeast, and features the world’s largest dinosaurs in innovatively designed exhibits. There’s a 315-seat IMAX theater to cool off during the steamy summers. Weekends and school holidays there is extensive children’s programming each day,as well as hands-on adventures that require advance registration.
CNN Studio Tour
One CNN Center
Atlanta, GA 30303
404/827-2300 or 877/4CNNTOUR
For older children, say 6 years and up, this tour of the world’s most famous news source is a real eye-opener. Take the escalator, which travels non-stop to the 8th floor, to meet your guides who will explain how a news broadcast is put together and how studio productions work. A tip: instead of waiting in line, make reservations beforehand for the 45-minute tour.
Atlanta Botanical Garden
1345 Piedmont Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30309
Children of all ages can appreciate this garden, which has a children’s section and a place to play. The extensive grounds are wonderful for letting off steam after a day of sightseeing. Kids can dig for fossils at the Dinosaur Garden.
The World of Coca-Cola
121 Baker Street
Atlanta, GA 30313
The world’s largest collection of Coca-Cola memorabilia resides at the expanded World of Coca-Cola. With materials dating back to 1886, the families will be treated to various displays and activities including: a thrilling 4-D theater, the Pop Culture Gallery featuring works from Andy Warhol and other great artists, as well as a tasting experience of a lifetime in which you will have the opportunity to sample nearly 70 different assortments of Coca-Cola products.
Six Flags Over Georgia
275 Riverside Parkway
Austell, GA 30168
Perhaps the city’s best known tourist stop, at least for families, is the Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park filled with a variety of big coasters. As of Memorial Day, 2014, Six Flags is now home to the world’s first zero-gravity water slide, Tsunami Surge. The ride provides a unique thrill, combining a five-story drop and a spin around a 40-foot bowl before dropping riders into the zero-gravity plunge. The slide is the headlining attraction within the park’s most recent expansion–the creation of Hurricane Harbor. The new water park boasts a wave pool and an interactive children’s park, called Paradise Island. Perfect for a weekend getaway with the whole family.
50 Upper Alabama Street
Atlanta, GA 30303
Built under the streets and encompassing six city blocks in the heart of downtown, this cool-in-summer “mall” that has activities for all ages. Families may enjoy the Walking History Tour (given several times per day on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays) which begins at the Georgia Railroad Freight Depot. Reduced from its grandeur by a 1935 fire, the depot sits at the zero mile mark staked out by railroad builders back in 1833. UA’s shops and restaurants occupy historic recreation storefronts on Alabama and other notable streets of the 19th century city.
Former Turner Field (Gray Lot)
655 Central Ave SW Atlanta, GA 30312
Tucked away in the parking lots near the former Turner Field, the Atlanta Fair sets up shop every Spring and welcomes families for rides, food and entertainment. The grounds are laid out so families with small children can hit the right-sized rides including a carousel, Ferris Wheel and flying elephants. The soft-hearted carnies are great about helping usher along the game so even the littlest visitors can win a prize. Big kid and adult coasters offer thundering drops and turns for those seeking thrills. Fair food includes classics like drumsticks, snow cones, and cotton candy. The Atlanta Fair ususally sets up the end of February and runs until early April, check their website for the latest schedule.
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