“What is there to do here?”
It’s the question that rings loudly in almost every downtown Atlanta hotel. Thankfully, many of the hoteliers are very familiar with all the things to do in this stunning city. Some even find it more difficult to narrow down what visitors actually want to do (some tourists are interested in seeing the city sights, while others are simply looking for the nearest venue to celebrate the Braves or the Falcons or other sports teams). For those intrepid adventurers who want to experience it all without breaking the bank, here are just some of the top ten places to check out that won’t burst your budget. Remember to check how close these activities are to a MARTA station, for an even more cost-effective way to enjoy all that Atlanta has to offer!
1. The Governor’s Mansion
Cost: $0 (donations appreciated)
Believe it or not, the home of the governor is, in fact, a free attraction in Atlanta. Does that mean you can meet the governor of Georgia? No. But you can get a great feel for history as you go through the different rooms that are visible to tourists, as well as learn more about this unique state encompassed in the various historical struggles of its city. Be part of history being made, all for the price of– a voluntary donation. Does that mean that your accommodations in Downtown Atlanta can arrange transportation for you? You can be sure of it. Just ask.
2. The Marietta Fire Museum
Cost: $0 (donations appreciated)
Another place that is completely free to visitors (donations appreciated) is the Marietta Fire Museum, which commemorates the fire that destroyed Marietta Square. A history of firefighting techniques await to see how this historical site dealt with and ultimately rose above the horrific event, including the formation of the Marietta Fire Department. For those visiting the Marietta Fire Museum, you can experience the real history of how a city dealt with mass tragedy– and more importantly, how they eventually overcame it.
3. The MLK National Historic Site
Martin Luther King was born and raised in the Atlanta area, so it is a given that he would be given a historic site which goes into the depths of what he accomplished as well as the history that created such a unique historical personage. Make the trip even cheaper by riding the Atlanta Streetcar on your way there for just $1.
4. Yellow River Park
One of Atlanta’s most beautiful natural resources, Yellow River Park is free to enter and has a wide variety of different sites that surround the park’s namesake river. If you are looking for the perfect place to have a picnic, Yellow River Park is a great choice. But even more than that, Yellow River Park is a great place to get away from the beat of the city, and get some nature.
5. Fernbank Science Center
Cost: $0 Admission, Planetarium Shows $7 for adults / $5 for students and seniors
Free admission to the center and affordable tickets to some of the country’s most impressive planetarium shows make the Fernbank Science Center a safe bet for anyone looking for a way to spend the day. The center features over a square mile’s worth of exhibition space, as well as a space observatory, labs, electron microscopes and a 65-acre forest. Not only a tourist destination but a space for learning and inquiry, the Fernbank Science Center is one of the most interesting sites for intellectual study.
6. Georgia Capitol Museum
To be honest, the naming here is a little unfair. One could get the impression that this is simply a museum of Georgia government. To correct that notion, we’ll explain this is actually the seat of government, and in fact is not only a museum, but the working capital building. Will you get the chance to chat up local officials? You bet. But if you’re planning on asking about great places to visit for free, they’ll probably just direct you to this list.
7. Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park
Civil War buffs will be impressed (as will history buffs in general) with the 17 miles of national park that encompass one of the major battles of the civil war. One can experience history as it happened through a number of monuments and locales that help to capture the spirit of the Civil War.
Well, it’s free to get in, but it is a bar and restaurant (and we couldn’t leave out the sports fans). A fixture in Atlanta with multiple locations for sports fans who like to drink, the question is only– will the Ponce De Leon Avenue location survive? Or by the time you read this, will it be a high end eatery? The mystery continues, but sports fans looking for a drink want to get in while they can anyway.
9. Catch Free Secret Comedy
One of Atlanta’s biggest comedy venues, the Village Theatre, offers free shows on Saturday at 1 AM. If you’re up on Saturday night– do it, because you never know who is secretly trying out their act.
Budgeting is without question one of the top reasons why many Americans don’t get out and experience the world around them. What many of us don’t recognize is that a cheap, affordable vacation can be very fun and is often easy to find. Don’t break the bank with your next trip by booking Atlanta accommodations at the Ellis Hotel. Our special offers & exclusive packages make already affordable Atlanta even cheaper! So what are you waiting for? Experience downtown Atlanta without worry of going over budget and book your stay at the Ellis Hotel!