A Football Fan’s Definitive Travel to Atlanta, Georgia

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Mercedes-Benz Stadium with downtown Atlanta in the background. Photo Credit: Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Travel Guides for Sports Fans

Atlanta, Georgia, was site of the Super Bowl 53 between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday 3 February 2019 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Here’s your definitive  travel guide to sightseeing, accommodation, food, and transportation in Atlanta.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium

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Mercedes-Benz Stadium is home of the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League. Photo Credit: Georgia World Congress Center.

Home of the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League and Atlanta United FC of Major League Soccer, Mercedes-Benz Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium with a retractable roof.

The stadium replaces the Georgia Dome, which has been torn down.

Located in Atlanta, Georgia, Mercedes-Benz Stadium was designed by HOK and 360 Architecture and built at a cost of US$1.6 billion.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium claims to offer the lowest food prices at its concession stands of any professional sports stadium in the United States. Not only that, prices will not be raised during the Super Bowl.

Top 10 Things to See and Do in Atlanta

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Atlanta Centennial Olympic Park was built on the site of the Atlanta Summer Olympics, which were held in 1996. © 2017, Gene Philipps. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

It would be a shame to travel all the way to Atlanta just to watch a football games. Why not  arrive a few days early to take advantage of the many tourist attractions the city has to offer?

Here are a few of the most popular things to see and do in Atlanta as well as the city’s top sightseeing attractions.

Centennial Olympic Park

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Centennial Olympic Park. © 2017, James Duckworth. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

The site of the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics, Centennial Olympic Park is crisscrossed with walking paths, water gardens, and the Fountain of Rings. The park will be the site of a free-to-the-public fan village during Super Bowl 53.

College Football Hall of Fame

 

No football fan should leave Atlanta without checking out the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame, with its three floors of interactive exhibits.

World of Coca-Cola

 

Coca-Cola’s secret formula is safeguarded in a vault at this fascinating museum, but there is much, much more to see and do at the World of Coca-Cola! In  case you didn’t know, Coca-Cola was invented in Atlanta on 8 May 1866.

CNN Studio Tours

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CNN Studio Tours. Photo Credit: CityPASS.

Take a 50-minute walk through the world headquarters of CNN, one of the world’s most respected news networks.

Martin Luther King, Jr, Birth House

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Martin Luther King, Jr, birth house. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Martin Luther King, Jr., spent the first 12 years of his life in a Queen Anne style house, which was restored and turned into a museum following his assassination on 4 April 1968. Tours by National Park Service rangers are offered free of charge.

Center for Civil and Human Rights

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Center for Civil and Human Rights. Photo Credit: CityPass.

What role does each individual have in helping to protect the civil and human rights of all people?

Spend 90 minutes to two hours exploring the connection between the American Civil Rights Movement of the last century to the Global Human Rights Movements of today.

Zoo Atlanta

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Zoo Atlanta. Photo Credit: CityPASS.

Get up close and personal with more than 1,000 animals, including amphibians, birds,m reptiles – and the largest community of great apes in the United States or Canada!

  • Zoo Atlanta – 800 Cherokee Avenue, Southeast, Atlanta, Georgia.

Georgia Aquarium

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Georgia Aquarium. Photo Credit: Georgia Aquarium.

Get up close and personal with California sea lions, whales, sharks, penguins, and more at the Georgia Aquarium.

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

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Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Photo Credit: CityPASS,

Take a walk on the wild side through 75 acres of statues of dinosaurs, live animals, and various cultural artifacts. Plus: special exhibits, outdoor adventures, and giant screen movies!

Piedmont Park

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Piedmont Park. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Take a stroll, go jogging, walk your dog, play bocce ball, shoot hoops, play tennis, or cycle in 200 acres of flora in this green oasis two miles northeast of downtown Atlanta. There is even a Green Market on Saturday morning!

  • Piedmont Park – between 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue in midtown Atlanta.

How does Atlanta CityPASS work?>>

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Atlanta Weather 

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Lake Clara Meer. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Although Atlanta has a mild climate, the city does have four seasons. The average annual temperature is 61 degrees Fahrenheit. There is an average of less than two inches of snowfall per year.

While Atlanta does not offer much in the way of outdoor winter sports, the city does offer lots of outdoor activities. Because of the mild climate, there are more than 100 golf courses, 200 public tennis courts, and hundreds of miles of hiking and biking trails in the metropolitan area.

In addition, Atlanta has many outdoor festivals, concert, and other activities throughout the year.

May, June, July, August, and September are the hottest months, with average highs of 79, 86, 88, 87, and 82 degrees respectively.

Fall and spring temperatures tend to be mild. The average high is 72 degrees in October, 63 in November, 64 in March, 73 in April, and 79 in May.

Even during the warmer months, don’t forget to pack a light jacket or sweater. Indoor venues are usually air conditioned, and the temperature can sometimes be a bit chilly if you are wearing summer-weight clothing.

Where to Stay in Atlanta

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Interior of the Atlanta Marriott Marquis. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Atlanta Marriott Marquis – considered one of the best hotels in Georgia, the Atlanta Marriott has five food and beverage outlets, including a steakhouse and one of downtown Atlanta’s largest sports bars.

There is also a store selling food, drinks, and snacks to be consumed in your room.

The hotel has an indoor/outdoor swimming pool, a spa, and a fitness room. It is located near Georgia World Congress Center and most of the other tourist attractions mentioned in this post.

  • Atlanta Marriott Marquis – 265 Peachtree Center Avenue, Atlanta, Georgia. Click here to check availability: Atlanta Marriott Marquis>>

There are plenty of hotels and motels at all price points across Atlanta.

Check the following hotel booking websites to check hotel locations, availability, and rooms rates …

Where to Eat in Atlanta

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Chicken Wings at Fox Brothers Bar-B-Q. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q – an Atlanta favourite, Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q serves Texas-style barbecue ranging from appetizer, smoked wings, and salads to sandwiches, plates, rib plates, solo meats, and sides.

Leave room for dessert (if that is possible). The homemade banada pudding, chocolate pecan pie, red velvet cheesecake, and Dr. Pepper chocolate cake are pure decadence!

  • Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q – 1238 Dekalb Avenue, Northeast, Atlanta, Georgia. If you want to hoof it to or from Mercedes-Benz Stadium (traffic could be a bitch during Super Bowl Week), take the M (green line) from Vine City Transit Stadium (a two minute walk from the stadium) to Edgewood-Candler Park Station (a 10-minute ride). The walk to Fox Bros. takes about eight minutes.

Where to Eat Closer to the Stadium

Downtown Atlanta is chock-a-block with all manner of eateries, from barbecue shacks to fine-dining restaurants.

The following restaurants were recommended by SCVP.

  • Stats – serving traditional American fare, Stats has five bars, its own brewery with six of its own beers, and 70 high-definition TVs. If you don’t have tickets to the Super Bowl, joints bills itself as “Atlanta’s Ultimate Sports Bar”.
  • Park Bar – located next to Centennial Olympic Park, Park Bar is the official U.S. Soccer Bar. It serves great food, fine bourbon, and craft beer.
  • Hudson Grille – with a large outdoor patio, Hudson Grille has an extensive menu. Winner of Indite Atlanta’s “best sports bar” award. There are three restaurants in Atlanta and one in Sandy Springs.
  • No Mas! Cantina – serving delicious Mexican fare, No Mas! Cantina has a 50-foot bar, an enormous outdoor patio, and great Margaritas. Fenuse Magazine calls it the “Best Mexican Restaurant in Atlanta”.
  • Eliott Street Deli & Pub – housed in a restored heritage building, Eliot Street Deli & Pub specialized in hot and cold sandwiches made with freshly baked bread. Don’t miss the Dirty Bird in Blue! There’s live music in the basement at The 51.
  • Smoke Ring – inspired Georgian road-side barbecue shacks, Smoke Ring serves down home Southern fare in upscale surroundings.

Getting Around Atlanta

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Atlanta Midtown Marta Station. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

If you don’t plan on driving to Atlanta, public transit is a good way to get around.

MARTA is Atlanta’s transit system, which comprises both trains and buses. There are four train lines, which are colour-coded, and 91 buses routes,

Getting to Downtown Atlanta from the Airport

Atlanta Airport is located about 7 miles (11 kilometres) south of downtown Atlanta. Arriving passengers have the following options …

By Car …

Atlanta Airport’s domestic terminal is accessed directly from Interstate 85 at exit 72. The airport’s international terminal is accessed directly from Interstate 75 at exit 239.

These freeways  connect with the following freeways within 10 miles of the airport: Interstate 285, Interstate 675, Georgia State Route 166, and Interstate 20.

By Metro …
The airport has a station on MARTA, Atlantia’s rapid transit system, which is located above-ground, inside the main building, between the north and south domestic terminals on the west end.
The Airport Transit Station is currently the southernmost station in Atlanta’s rapid transit system.
By Rental Car …

The Rental Car Center (RCC) has 13 rental car brands and vehicles. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It can be reached by ATL SkyTrain, a people mover linking RCC with additional parking and the airport terminal. 

By ATL SkyTrain …

In addition to serving RCC, ATL SkyTrain also serves the Georgia International Convention Center and following hotels …

Flying to Atlanta from Other Cities 

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Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport  is the world’s busiest airport.

Located seven miles (11 kilometres) south of downtown Atlanta, the airport has five parallel runways,

More than 104 million passengers passed through the airport’s seven concourses in 2017.

The airport is a hub for Delta Airlines and a focus city for Frontier Airlines, Spirit Airlines, and Southwest Airlines.

Approximately 25 domestic and foreign airlines serve the airport, with non-stop flights to throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, and many other countries around the world.

Traveling to Atlanta from Overseas

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Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Courtesy of ACVP & AtlantaPhotos.com.

Several airlines link Atlanta Airport with cities in other countries. Check lines schedules and fares on the following links …

If You Are Visiting Atlanta …

Atlanta CityPass is a great way to save money and avoid lines.

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This football fan’s travel guide to Atlanta contains affiliate links.

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