Best time for 1st visit to Atlanta?

Old Nov 17th, 2003, 04:58 PM
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Best time for 1st visit to Atlanta?

My husband and I live in Southeast Florida and have never been to Atlanta. We would like to plan a 3-day weekend. What is the best time of year to go? I have heard the Buckhead area is nice. Is that in town? Will we need to rent a car? Any hotel,restaurant and sight-seeing recommendations would also be greatly appreciated.
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Old Nov 17th, 2003, 06:11 PM
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I'd recommend going when the dogwood trees are in bloom, which is usually in late March.

I'd recommend renting a car. The MARTA is good for getting from the airport to downtown, but a car is even more helpful.

Spend some time at Ston Mountain Park. The mountain itself is amazing, and the park is beautiful, too. You'll have to have a car to get out to the park.

Also, Olympic Park in downtown is neat, especially if you are really into the Olympics.
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 03:53 AM
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Hopefully I can help you since I live here (although I am always ready to move to the next cool place). Anyway, Buckhead is section of Atlanta that comprises of bars (although from the news stories these days the bars are not quite as safe as they use to be), restaurants, and a zillion shops. Two of the most well known Atlanta malls, Phipps and Lenox are located in Buckhead.

When to come, depends on your interests. if you just want to shop and eat, come anytime. If you would like to do more outdoor things, come in the Spring when the flowers are in full bloom.

Atlanta also has some pretty good festivals. We have the Dogwood Festival that occurs the first week in April usually (www.dogwood.org). We have Summerfest that occurs the first week in June http://www.pemi.net/summerfest/). For Music lovers, we have Music Midtown and this occurs usually at the beginning of May (www.musicmidtown.com). The Atlanta Botanical Gardens are amazing (got engaged there - GRIN),

Stone Mountain usually have varying activities going on that you can check out (www.stonemountainpark.com). You can always hike there and I am pretty sure there is some sort of waterslide area there (never been not much on water parks), a railroad, a skylift, a riverboat, a lasershow etc. Pretty much has a enough to keep different people happy. I know in October they have a Chili cookoff that Miller Lite sponsors and I have managed to have something going on each and everytime it is happening. I really want to go, but unfortunately college football games usually win out. Oh well.

We also have the usually typical zoo (www.zooatlanta.org). A huge water park (http://www.sixflags.com/parks/whitewater/index.asp), two amusement parks (http://www.sixflags.com/parks/overgeorgia/index.asp) and for the younger group (http://www.sixflags.com/parks/aadventures/index.asp).

If you are into the fine arts, we have www.woodruffcenter.org, www.atlantaciviccenter.com, www.atlantasymphony.org, www.atlantaballet.com, www.fabulousfox.com etc. There that has been a sell out for a very long time that everyone is raving about called Peachtree Battle which is a a parody of the blueblooded Buckhead clan. www.peachtreeplayhouse.com.

I think I have given you a enough information for a head start. There is a ton of stuff I left out (Margaret Mitchell House, Martin Luther King Center, The Carter Center, World of Coke, CNN Center, Fernbank etc) because I just do not know what would interest you.

Check out, www.accessatlanta.com or http://atlanta.cityvisitorsguide.com/, www.atlanta.com, www.buckhead.org, www.virginiahighland.com, http://www.patweb.com/l5p/index.cfm, http://www.insiders.com/atlanta/, http://www.midtownatlanta.org/, for more information.

Lastly, as the previous poster mentioned, please rent a car. We have if not the worst, one of the worst mass transportation systems around. Traffic is brutal but so is depending on our rails and buses and a cab could cost a fortune if that is your main mode of transportation.

Please let me know if you need more help.
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 05:50 AM
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beachdreams had excellent advice and recommendations for you. I do agree that the spring is the most beautiful time here in Atlanta. For hotels, in any range, I would recommend the Midtown or Buckhead areas. Both areas are in the city. There are options from Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton, Grand Hyatt, to Embassy Suites (which is a great hotel option in a great location in Buckhead) and tons in between.

You will need a car. There are an incredible number of wonderful restaurants in Midtown, Buckhead and Virginia Highlands (another neighborhood area with shops and restaurants - more residential than the other two). If you could give us more information about your budget and types of restaurants you like, we can give you more specific recommendations.
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 07:50 AM
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I agree with beachdreams also, and if you can't come in the Spring, I would come in the fall when the leaves are changing and it's just getting cool. It's essential you rent a car because there are so many different neighborhoods, great restaurants, and parts of town to explore. There is alot of great history and fun, I know you will have a good time when you visit !
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 03:15 PM
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Thank you ALL for your great help!! I think we will probably wait until the Spring. Maybe April or May? We would be interested in a moderately priced hotel. I think Ritz or Four Seasons will be too expensive for us. As the time gets closer, maybe we could get a deal on Priceline. Has anyone had any luck with Atlanta hotels?
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 03:23 PM
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I feel like Im repeating what everyone said. I lived in Atlanta (Buckhead) for two years. I loved it. Spring and Fall were the most amazing times!
Hotels... I have friends who stayed the the JW marriot thats attatched to Lenox mall.
There is plenty to do there but please eat! Atlanta has some amazing food!!! I miss it!
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Old Nov 18th, 2003, 04:54 PM
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I have seen very good deals for hotels on Expedia, but I did a search and a few that I was thinking of had no rooms available in early April or early May. I have seen the Grand Hyatt in Buckhead for about $130/night, and I've seen Embassy Suites Buckhead for about $120/night - including happy hour and breakfast. You might have better luck searching with more exact dates.

I did see that the Georgian Terrace had availability for $117/ night. The Georgian Terrace is a 4* hotel, built in 1910, and on the National Register of Historic Places. It is located in Midtown directly across the street from the Fox Theater. I also saw availability at Swissotel in Buckhead -another 4* hotel at $179/night. Celebrities are often seen there at their restaurant The Palm.
Hope this helps!
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