In my last post about Atlanta (ATL), I pointed you in the direction of some hidden gems for tourists to explore off the beaten path. In this post, I’d like to share a few of my favorite Atlanta neighborhoods and what makes them great options for exploring while on vacation.
People were skeptical when they heard talk of the Atlanta Braves moving to the Smyrna/Vinings suburb of Atlanta. Locals wondered how it was going to happen and what it was going to mean for the area. Well, to everyone’s delight, moving the Braves to their new home at Suntrust Park has brought tons of exciting development with it. Like, The Coca-Cola Roxy Theater and Wahlburgers, a popular burger joint made famous by their hit TV show on A&E.
Housed right next door to Suntrust Park is The Battery, a mixed-use development that includes popular dining destinations like Antico Pizza, Live! At the Battery and Punch Bowl Social which features an arcade, karaoke, food, and drinks.
What was once a semi-quiet suburb of Atlanta, has turned into its own destination over the last couple of years. The Smyrna/Vinings area offers shopping at The Battery and Cumberland Mall and includes one of my favorite Thai restaurants, Thai Diner. Order the vegetable spring rolls and hot garlic shrimp, you won’t be disappointed!
If you want to enjoy the outdoors without traveling too far out of the city, the Chattahoochee River is ideal. There are nature trails for walking and biking, you can also grab a few friends and go tubing down the river in the summer.
Old Fourth Ward
Within the last decade, Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward neighborhood (also known as O4W) located East of Downtown, has become one of the City’s hippest destinations to live, eat and play. After undergoing a revitalization, the area is now bustling with eclectic shops like Ponce City Market (formerly Atlanta City Hall East) and delectable eateries such as Two Urban Licks, where the salmon chips are legendary.
The Atlanta Beltline East is popular amongst tourists and locals alike. It is comprised of the Eastside Trail, Historic Fourth Ward Park, and Historic Fourth Ward Skate Park. In Historic Fourth Ward, you can walk or bike the beltline or you can access some of the numerous restaurants. Ladybird Grove and Mess Hall have a fantastic burger and a lively patio and the popular Kevin Rathbun’s Steak is perfect for an upscale night out.
East Point – ATL Airport District
Going a little South of the City, we find the ATL Airport District. It is an unconventional area to explore, but it is super convenient to downtown and is right next door to Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson, one of the busiest airports in the world. The ATL Airport District is made up of four cities that include: College Park, East Point, Hapeville, and Union City. The area is home to some of the most unique and diverse restaurants like the famous Spondivits Seafood where the steamed seafood bucket is the way to go and stop by Kupcakerie to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Cool things to do in the area include taking a drive on the Porsche test track at the Porsche Experience Center or having a distillery tour and beer tasting at Arches Brewing. One of my favorite places to visit is the rooftop bar Overdrive Lounge. The lounge features incredible views of the Porsche track and the runways at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson where you can watch the airplanes land while indulging in a cool cocktail. I suggest the berry breeze cocktail, it has Tito’s vodka, fresh blackberries, lime juice, and ginger beer. It’s delicious and refreshing!
With so much to do and see in this beautiful city, I encourage you to explore some of the awesome neighborhoods while you are visiting ATL.