CHICAGO — Downtown Atlanta will be the venue of the 2022 Clean Show, taking place July 30 through August 2, and while there will be more than enough to do at the industry’s biggest event, don’t forget to take a look at the host city, because it’s got a lot to offer its visitors!
In Part 1 of this series, we examined ways to get around the city, and today, we’ll take a look at some of the neighborhoods that make Atlanta unique.
Get to Know Atlanta
When you’re not at the Clean Show, you can learn about Atlanta with the help of guided tours, such as those offered by ATL-Cruzers. On this tour, you’ll learn some of the history of the city, as well as information about its unique architecture and hidden neighborhood spots of interest. You’ll also receive recommendations for the best local restaurants and other hot spots to make the most of your visit.
If you’re looking to get a little workout (or a big workout, depending on the weather) during your off-time, Bicycle Tours of Atlanta allows you to get up close to local landmarks. On the history tour, guests explore sights such as Piedmont Park, Virginia Highland, Inman Park, Cabbagetown, Oakland Cemetery, The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park, Sweet Auburn, Little Five Points, the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum, The High Museum of Art, Ansley Park, Grant Park and many other places along the route.
Georgia World Congress Center, The Clean Show’s venue, is also located within easy walking distance of Centennial Olympic Park, a 22-acre green space that celebrates the 1996 Summer Olympic Games held in Atlanta. The Park has been called the crown jewel of Atlanta’s downtown entertainment district, offering gardens, lawns, water attractions and the massive SkyView Ferris wheel.
Atlanta is made up of diverse neighborhoods, each providing the city with its unique blend of culture. Constantly evolving, Atlanta’s neighborhoods offer something for every visitor. As you would expect from a city of 400,000 people, there are dozens of areas of interest; here are some to watch for on your Clean Show downtime.
Westside — Once an industrial area, the Westside area is now known for its imagination. Buildings rich in history are getting fabulous makeovers, and foodies know that this is the area of town that they can’t miss.
Areas of Interest in Westside include:
- Atlantic Station — This area offers streetscape-style walkable paths based on New York City’s Central Park. Boutiques, sidewalk cafes, restaurants and more work together to make it a memorable journey.
- Atlanta Beltline — The BeltLine delineates some of Atlanta’s most historic neighborhoods. As you navigate these areas, be sure to check out the vibrant street art, including “West End Remembers,” the first permanent mural along the BeltLine.
- Herndon Home Museum — Located in Cascade Heights, one of the city’s most affluent areas, this museum was the home of Alonzo Franklin Herndon, a former slave who became Atlanta’s first-ever Black millionaire. The museum explores his journey, his legacy and the ways his foundation is helping the next generation find success.
- Wren’s Nest — A cultural center of the city, The Wren’s Nest is the historic home of author Joel Chandler Harris, and celebrates the heritage of African and Indigenous folklore through the art of storytelling.
- Westside Provisions District — This district is designed to provide an enjoyable walkable environment complete with shopping and food options for all tastes. It’s also home to the world’s largest selection of authentic modern furniture.
- Hammonds House Museum — Founded in 1988, Hammonds House Museum has a mission of providing exposure for artists of color to the mainstream art world. The museum offers exhibitions, as well as artist talks, book signings, film screenings and more.
- Monday Night Garage — Looking for sours, barrel-aged beers and other drinks for a warm Atlanta evening? Monday Night Garage grew out of a small Atlanta Bible study group (who met on, you guessed it, Monday nights), and what began as a hobby to get to know each other in 2006 has blossomed into an award-winning brewery with locations in three states.
Eastside — If you’re looking for the hip — and in some cases eccentric — area of town, Atlanta’s Eastside will probably fit the bill.
Areas of Interest in Eastside include:
- Zoo Atlanta — Home to more than 1,000 animals representing some 200 species from around the globe, visitors can observe, among other sights, giant pandas, one of North America’s largest zoological populations of great apes, and many endangered or critically endangered animals. Zoo Atlanta’s new African Savanna exhibit features African elephants, giraffes, zebras and more.
- Krog Street Market — The Krog Street Market is often named one of the top food halls in the world, with both dining and retail opportunities for all tastes.
- Fernbank Museum of Natural History — Want to stroll through millions of years of history? Take a walk around the Fernbank Museum of Natural History, which offers displays documenting the lives of dinosaurs, as well as live animal exhibits, cultural artifacts, hands-on science explorations and a 4K Giant Screen Theater. The museum also boasts 75 acres of outdoor nature adventures.
- The Roof at Ponce City Market — For those looking for some family fun, The Roof at Ponce City Market offers a boardwalk of games on its Skyline Park, as well as multiple opportunities for food and drink, as well as shopping. All this includes some of the best views of the city’s skyline. The sunsets are particularly impressive.
- The Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum — Dedicated to the administration and history surrounding America’s 39th president, the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum offers exhibitions of objects, documents, photographs, videos and other information about the Georgia native. This includes a life-size replica of the Oval Office as it was during Carter’s time in office, as well as interactive exhibits highlighting the events of his presidency and his life after leaving office.
- The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park — One of Atlanta’s top tourist destinations, The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park provides visitors with a guided tour of MLK’s birth home, as well as attractions that highlight the civil rights leader’s life, career and legacy. The Park includes the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where King was co-pastor with his father, various galleries and King’s final resting place.
Come back Tuesday for Part 3 of this series, where we’ll explore the downtown area and get some picks from locals of things to do and places to go. For Part 1, click HERE.
Have a question or comment? E-mail our editor Dave Davis at [email protected] .