The rich history of Atlanta, Georgia is just one of the reasons why Atlanta is a popular tourist spot. While the city is not very old compared to many other historic cities, a multitude of famous events occurred between the incorporation of the city of Atlanta in 1847 and the present.
Historically, the Atlanta area was once the home to the Creek and Cherokee Native American territories. This pre-dates the incorporation of the city. In the early 1800's these tribes ceded their land in exchange for land the government owned out west. By 1835, the town was well on its way to becoming a railway center. This is why Atlanta became populated in the first place.
During the Civil War, some of the fiercest battles occurred in and around Atlanta. In fact, a major invasion by Union soldiers took place in the city in 1864. The invasion ended with the burning of the entire city of Atlanta until nearly everything was destroyed. The only buildings that remained, thanks to a Catholic priest who pleaded with Union General William T. Sherman, were the hospitals and churches in the city.
Reconstruction was particularly hard for the Union occupied city after the war. However, Atlanta was able to reinvent itself as the metropolitan city it is today. While the city has never forgotten its roots, it has found a way to learn and grow despite insurmountable tragedy.
Today, Atlanta is a bustling center of industry and entertainment. With so many different things to do and see in one of the strongest and most populated cities in the South, you are virtually guaranteed the opportunity to experience one of the best trips you have ever taken.
- Find an Amazing Place to Stay - When you are planning a trip to Atlanta, you will need to decide where you are going to stay and how much you are willing to spend on accommodations. If you prefer something cozy, you may want to check out one of the Bed & Breakfasts in the area. Pamela Lanier's Web Site has an excellent list of all of the Bed & Breakfasts, Cottages, and Small Inns in the area. One of the best choices is the 1890 Victorian King-Keith House with a cottage and downstairs suite. Another popular choice is the Inman Park-Woodruff Cottage. Located just two miles from downtown Atlanta, this quaint "honeymooners" paradise offers luxurious rooms with historic amenities (i.e. pedestal sinks, claw-foot tubs, etc.).
If you are looking for something more modern, there are numerous hotels and motels for every budget. Those seeking elegance can head downtown to the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel. Featuring 760 bedrooms with 22 suites, this luxurious hotel is relatively affordable. In fact, a single bedroom starts as low as $180.00 (though this fluctuates per season) and moves up in price from there. Atlanta also has the lavish Hilton, the Crown Plaza, and Callaway Gardens.
Of course, there are plenty of budget motels available for those hoping to save a buck on their trip. Those on a limited budget can choose from the Holiday Inn, Best Western, and the Comfort Suites, to name a few of the many options. Your third option when staying in or around Atlanta is a vacation rental. You can search online and find hundreds of vacation rentals, from cabins to condominiums. The nice thing about vacation rentals is you pay per week and can actually save money in the long run if you plan to stay in the area for more than a couple of days.
- Relive History - Once you know where you are going to stay, you can begin to plan your trip. This trip is all about enjoying yourself, so why not see Atlanta in all its glory. The Atlanta Preservation Center is just one place in the city that offers guided walking tours. On your tour, you will step back in time and visit some of the most historic places in Atlanta.
From the Sweet Auburn/Martin Luther King Jr. Historic District to Ansley Park (the first suburb of Atlanta), there is plenty to see and experience on your tour. You may come to Atlanta on a historic tour. In fact, there are tours that travel from battle site to battle site so history buffs can visit some of the most prominent sites of the Civil War. There is at least one tour that begins in Charleston (Fort Sumter) and travels to Atlanta. Another goes from Nashville to Atlanta. You can find out about the tours and make reservations on the web.
Of course, you always have the option of exploring these historic sites on your own. Pick up a travel guide at the Atlanta Convention and Visitor's Bureau when you arrive in the city. You will be able to find any historic place you want to visit by scanning through this guide.
- Be a Thrill Seeker - Atlanta is one of the only cities to have multiple theme parks in and around the metropolitan area. Millions of visitors come from across the globe to experience the thrill of the wind in their face and the adrenaline rush as they ride some of the top coasters in the world. Theme Parks in and around the area include Six Flags Over Georgia, Maxx Family Fun Entertainment Center, Six Flags White Water, and Six Flags American Adventures & The Foam Factory. Other exciting attractions and places to visit in Atlanta include Stone Mountain, Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia Aquarium, Cirque du Soleil, Fernbank Museum of Natural History, Atlanta Botanical Gardens, Zoo Atlanta, ESPN Zone, Chateau Elan Winery & Resort, CNN Atlanta, the World of Coca Cola, and Callaway: Gardens, Resort and Preserve.
- Get Sporty - Atlanta is home to numerous sports teams. If you are into baseball, basketball, football, or even professional wrestling, you will enjoy visiting games and events in Atlanta. The Atlanta Braves, who have consistently been one of the best baseball teams in the National League, play in Turner Field. Football fans can check out the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. Fans of the Atlanta Hawks (basketball) can travel to Phillips Arena. Of course, travelers who may not be Atlanta fans can see their favorite teams play against Atlanta at all of these stadiums. For the more nostalgic sports enthusiast, there is an Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame Museum at Turner Field. Tourists can also visit Centennial Olympic Park to see the home of the 1996 Olympics. At the park in the winter, residents and tourists can enjoy indoor ice skating and have the opportunity to view the 58 ft. Christmas tree.
- Dine in Style - There are many great restaurants in and around Atlanta. For casual and quick dining, there are the ubiquitous fast food restaurants such as McDonalds and Burger King. One exciting family dining experiences you can partake in is the Medieval Times Dining & Daily Tournament. You can enjoy fireside dining, casual dining, and elegant dining at the various restaurants throughout the area. Some of the best places to eat include the Village Tavern, Agave, Aspen's Signature Steaks, Joe's on Sullivan, and Taurus.
- Enjoy the Nightlife - Like many big cities, Atlanta has an active nightlife. Sunset activities may include a trip in a hot air balloon or a sky diving expedition. However, Atlanta's bustling club district is where most of the magic happens each night. Many of the dance clubs in Atlanta are in the Midtown Warehouse District. With a different flavor of dancing and music for everyone, club hopping is common and the parties never end until the sun is ready to rise.
On your trip to Atlanta, you can have an incredible amount of fun. Atlanta offers some of the best attractions and experiences. It does not matter if you are interested in the thrills of the city or the history behind it; you cannot go wrong with a trip to Atlanta. The whole family can enjoy the wonderment of the old south as it shines through the glitz and glamour of this modern Georgian city.