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The best things to do with kids in Atlanta

The best things to do with kids in Atlanta are guaranteed to provide hours of entertainment

Written by
Gerrish Lopez
Contributors
Allie Early
,
Danielle Valente
&
Krista Diamond
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Both trendy and genteel, Atlanta mixes Southern charm with a lively bar scene, renowned restaurants, and a thriving culture scene. And while these are all fun for adults, what about the kids? With attractions and activities for all ages (not to mention attention spans), this Southern city packs plenty of family-friendly attractions, too. The best things to do with kids in Atlanta are the types of activities adults can get behind, too.

The sprawling metropolis offers everything from quiet parks and bustling markets to mesmerizing museums and outdoor attractions. You’ll find unique, only-in-Atlanta experiences that even hyped little ones will enjoy as much as cranky teens. Want to burn off some energy? Rent bikes and pedal the Beltline. Want to keep the little ones focused? The Georgia Aquarium will hold their attention while teaching them a thing or two. Can’t seem to keep their feet planted on the ground? A visit to the Delta Flight Museum (complete with immersive flight simulations) will make their imagination soar.

Rich in culture, history, entertainment, and delicious food, this is one destination where you can make memories that’ll last a lifetime. To give you a head start, we’ve narrowed down our list of the best things to do with kids in Atlanta to help you make the most of your family trip.

RECOMMENDED: our full guide to the best things to do in Atlanta

Best things to do with kids in Atlanta

The country's largest aquarium provides an underwater vantage point for all visitors who are curious about beluga whales, big-bellied seahorses, sea otters, and thousands of other creatures who call this massive attraction home. Vast offerings including birthday parties, camp programs, and volunteer opportunities have made quite a splash amongst locals and visitors alike. Don't miss the expansive, mesmerizing shark gallery.

After visitors quench their thirst, they’re invited to an interactive experience that gives a behind-the-scenes peek at everyone’s favorite soft drink. Equal parts refreshing and entertaining, the World of Coca-Cola allows museum-goers to taste over 100 different beverages from around the world before embarking on a trip to the interactive vault (and inching closer to Coca-Cola’s secret formula). Snap a selfie with the iconic Polar Bear mascot and see art dedicated to important Coca-Cola milestones (like the cans used for the summer 1996 Olympics).

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Lions, tigers and bears, oh my! Zoo Atlanta is home to a variety of species and even more learning opportunities for those visiting the grounds. While the zoo’s furry creatures are sure to keep any kid entertained, Zoo Atlanta takes the experience up a notch: families can feed giraffes, meet giant pandas, chill with toucans, and take part in interactive educational games.

Looking for a floral fix? The Atlanta Botanical Garden will do the trick. Prepare for dazzling displays that'll put you in touch with nature without leaving the city. If you're hesitant to bring the little ones, don't be discouraged: The Lou Glenn Children's Garden, chock-full of climbing nets, a water painting wall and a super-cool treehouse, will keep kids occupied all afternoon long.

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Think of this institution like Atlanta’s answer to NYC’s Museum of Natural History—but with an opportunity to take learning outdoors. A combination of intriguing exhibits and nature exploration, the Ferbank Museum is the ideal place for kids to explore the world around them. Loop around Dinosaur Plaza (much to little paleontologists’ delights) or spend an afternoon in WildWoods and Fernbank Forest, where little visitors won’t be able to resist the interactive adventure.

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A former railway corridor around the core of Atlanta has been revitalized into a vibrant, multi-use path lined with art, native plants, and outdoor attractions. While not all sections are paved yet, the loop is fully accessible; upon completion, some time around 2030, it will ultimately connect 45 neighborhoods throughout the city. Walk between stops like Ponce City Market and Piedmont Park, stop to enjoy a picnic, or check out events along the BeltLine like fitness classes, art events, and more.

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This iconic park is famous for its ring fountain shows—the water reaches 25 feet high, while seasonal events like concerts and fireworks displays take it all up a notch. Once the site of the 1996 Olympics (which ultimately helped reshape Atlanta itself), the park is the heartbeat of the city, and it’s conveniently surrounded by many of Atlanta’s most beloved attractions (such as the children’s museum and the aquarium).

An interactive experience that examines the inner workings of everyone’s favorite brick toy, LEGOLand is a must for budding builders. Creativity will peak when little engineers get a glimpse of the LEGO Master Builder Academy, where a team of professionals will inspire them to make anything and everything from their favorite building blocks. Looking for something a little more active? Grab the whole crew for a round of racing with LEGO Racers: Build & Test, and marvel at it all with a walk through the LEGO factory.

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Air travel is all the more exciting when you get a taste of its past and future at this immersive museum, conveniently located next to the city’s ginormous airport. Aviation fans will marvel at aircrafts dating back to the 1920s while interactive exhibits allow visitors to take rides in the museum’s flight simulator. Plus, the attraction aims to explore the future of flight and the 747s of the next generation—get ready to take flight.

An open-air attraction that quite literally takes fun to new heights, The Roof at Ponce City Market is a must-visit for the young and young at heart. Gamers will revel in the nostalgia of old-school carnival rides, and kids will let out a few shrieks as they work their way to the top of Heege Tower, the park’s signature ride. Don't leave without chowing down on a pretzel or hotdog—oh, and there are plenty of drinks for adults, too! 

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For those craving an adventure, look no further than Treetop Quest. The action-packed attraction is a quick drive from Atlanta and offers families the chance to glide on zip-lines as they advance through obstacles in an aerial playground. There are a variety of levels visitors can tackle, which means everyone in the brood—even your youngest adrenaline junkies, assuming they’re at least seven years old—can get in on the action. 

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P.E. class is taken to the next level courtesy of Adventure Air Sports. Kids who are keen to duel it out for victory can give extreme dodgeball or the ninja course a go, while those with springs in their feet will gravitate toward foam pits and a flying trapeze. Consider this a glorified version of recess—one that your kids won't want to end. May the best player win! 

When the warm weather hits, the Chattahoochee River is open for business. Those who need relief from the southern heat are invited to make a splash with a variety of water activities including canoeing, rafting, tubing, and more. But don't Shoot the Hooch without refueling at the concession stand when your adventure comes to an end.

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