Scene of Atlanta at Night
Travel Allied February 9, 2024

By Melina P.

How to Spend Your Weekends on Assignment in Atlanta

You landed a contract in Atlanta, congratulations! With the whole city at your fingertips, you may not know where to start when deciding how to spend your weekends. Lucky for you, this guide is jam-packed with recommendations for things to do both inside and outside of the city. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re into shopping/eating or getting in touch with nature.

  1. Ponce City Market

Ponce City Market, located in the city, is a collection of shops and restaurants located in a large historic Sears building. It’s a trendy spot to shop for clothing, home décor, and other items, and to grab a bite to eat from various food vendors and sit-down restaurants. After shopping and eating, you can head to the rooftop to visit Skyline Park, where you can play carnival games, mini golf, purchase drinks, and enjoy a view of the city.

Outside of the Ponce City Market building you’ll find easy access to the BeltLine, a paved trail that stretches far across the city, connecting parks, restaurants, and neighborhoods. Hop on an electric scooter and enjoy the ride while taking in various artistic murals along the way!

  1. Brunch

Everyone loves a good brunch spot! Up your brunch game by visiting one of the many aesthetically pleasing spots in Atlanta. Atrium is located inside the Ponce City Market building. Their weekend brunch menu is available on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:00-3:00.

Along with brunch they have mimosa bottle service, espresso martinis, bloody marys, and more! Other trendy brunch spots include The Select ATL, Sun In My Belly, and Atlanta Breakfast Club. The options are endless!

  1. Oakland Cemetery

Oakland Cemetery is a must-see if you have any interest in history or enjoy walking through beautiful landscaping. It’s a public park, so it’s free to enter, but they also offer guided and self-guided tours for a fee. In addition to the tours, the Historic Oakland Foundation holds various events throughout the year, including plant sales, pop-up markets, and a “Run Like Hell 5K.”

  1. East Palisades Trail

If you brought a furry friend along on your travel assignment, here’s a great dog-friendly option for you! The East Palisades Trail in Sandy Springs, GA is only twenty-five minutes outside of the city.

Among the hiking paths that follow the Chattahoochee River, you can find scenic overlooks, a dog-friendly beach, and a bamboo forest. Yes, you read that right, a bamboo forest. It’s not what you would expect to see right outside of Atlanta!

  1. Stone Mountain

Stone Mountain.jpg

Stone Mountain is another unique find. The state park is located thirty minutes away from Atlanta. The park’s main attraction is a large, unusual mountain with a completely stone surface. You can hike up the mountain, but I would recommend taking the Summit Skyride at least once.

This is a Swiss cable car that lifts you to the top of the mountain and provides an amazing view on the way up. In addition to the mountain itself, the park consists of hiking areas, a gift shop, a scenic railroad, and more. They also host different events and festivals throughout the year.

  1. Hollywood of the South

Did you know that the Atlanta area is considered the “Hollywood of the South?” A ton of movies and TV shows have been filmed in the surrounding areas! My favorite town to visit is Covington, GA, which is about a forty-minute drive from Atlanta.

Covington is the home of some popular ones, including Dukes of Hazard, Remember the Titans, Sweet Magnolias, and probably most notably, The Vampire Diaries. While visiting Covington, you can walk around the charming town square for some shopping and eating. Stop in at the Welcome Center, which is basically a museum of props from shows and movies filmed in town.

Afterward, choose from several options of tours to get the insider scoop and check out filming locations throughout the area! Watch out for vampires while you’re in town, and don’t be surprised if you see people drinking “blood bags” on the square!

  1. Athens

If you’re a football fan, you should definitely make the hour and twenty-minute drive to Athens. Bonus points if you can go during football season! Downtown Athens has a variety of stores, coffee shops, restaurants, and bars to enjoy. While in town, you can explore the beautiful UGA campus and see Sanford Stadium. GO DAWGS!

  1. Providence Canyon

Providence Canyon in Atlanta.JPG

This one is for hikers and nature lovers! Providence Canyon, located in Lumpkin, GA, is a two-hour and fifteen-minute drive from Atlanta. This state park is considered “Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon” and boasts amazing views! While hiking through the sandy floor of the canyons, you’ll be in awe of their beauty and intrigued by the unique colors and textures around you. I can’t recommend this one enough!

  1. Helen

Helen is a must-see while you’re in Georgia! It’s a Bavarian-style mountain town about an hour and a half from Atlanta. As soon as you step into town, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported into historic Germany! The town is packed with souvenir shops, candy shops, and authentic German restaurants. Helen is best known for its Oktoberfest, which lasts from the beginning of September to the end of October.

In Helen, you’ll also find recreational activities including tubing, ziplining, and a mountain roller coaster! Outside of the main town are various wineries as well as popular waterfalls, including Anna Ruby Falls and Raven Cliff Falls. Helen makes for a great day trip, but has enough to see and do to make a full weekend out of it!

  1. Take a Road Trip

If you want to head out of the city for a weekend, you’re in a great central location for a variety of road trips. The following towns are within a four-hour drive from you!

  • Birmingham, AL
  • Nashville, TN
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Charleston, SC
  • Hilton Head, SC
  • Savannah, GA
  • Tallahassee, FL

Just pack a bag and decide where you want to go!

Welcome to Atlanta! I hope this list gave you some ideas to make the most out of your time here. One thing is for sure, you’ll never be bored!

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