17 Free Things to Do in Atlanta

ATL has plenty of activities to offer, but for those of you who are looking to have fun on a budget, we’ve put together a list of fun free things to do in Atlanta GA.

Even though we’ve been moving from city to city, Atlanta is and will always be home to us. We love the community and miss southern hospitality (if you’ve never experienced it, you have to visit the South!)

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Last Updated: August 20, 2020

Free Things to Do in Atlanta

1. Walk Along the Atlanta Beltline

Go for a walk along one of the best urban spaces in America. There are events throughout the year, and it’s a great place to spend the afternoon soaking in the sun.

Out of all the free attractions in Atlanta, we highly recommend this one to first time visitors. If you’ve ever been to the High Line in NYC, this is Atlanta’s version of it.

2. See the Skyline from Jackson Street Bridge

Coordinates: 33.760227, -84.374314, map

This is one of the most iconic views of Atlanta that you can enjoy during the day or night. Photographers love coming here to take long exposure shots with the traffic.

photo: Kim Won

The Walking Dead uses a lot of Atlanta’s iconic spots for filming locations. We put together a guide where you can visit them on your own.

You’ll need your own float (we own this one with a cooler for beverages in the center), but once you have your own, you can hop in the Chattahoochee and float along the calm waters.

Pro Tip: It’s good to have two cars and park one at the exit point. Parking is free.

5. Hike Stone Mountain

1000 Robert E Lee Blvd, Stone Mountain, 30083, map

If you don’t buy any special passes to ride the Skyride or see the laser show, you can simply pay for parking and hike up the mountain. At the top, it has great views of the city and all the green in Georgia (you’ll miss it if you ever move to the desert).

6. Piedmont Park

400 Park Dr NE, 30306, map

This huge park has endless possibilities. Run, walk, rollerblade, have a picnic, play in the playgrounds, take your dog for a walk, and more! It’s a spot that locals enjoy on a nice day. Also, quite a few movies have been shot here too so see if you recognize any of the scenes.

7. Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site

450 Auburn Ave NE, 30312, map

Atlanta has a rich civil rights history. Head to the Sweet Auburn neighborhood and take a tour of the Martin Luther King Jr’s birth home, the 35-acre district, and Ebenezer Baptist Church.

photo: Jim Bowen

8. Hike Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield State Park

900 Kennesaw Mountain Dr, Kennesaw, 30152, map

This state park has 17 miles of trails, monuments, and a museum that tells you more about the Battle of Atlanta during the Civil War. Parking is free.

9. Georgian Terrace Hotel

659 Peachtree St NE, 30308, map

This iconic hotel in Atlanta has been the background of a lot of movies. The classic architecture makes it for a popular stop for photos (we’ve shot several weddings / portraits here).

10. Take a Stroll in the Oakland Cemetery

248 Oakland Ave SE, 30312, map

This historic cemetery is a beautiful place to visit and home to some of Atlanta’s most famous deceased people. It’s a popular spot for photographers too (our photography club at Georgia Tech went here on an excursion).

11. Cool off at Centennial Olympic Park

265 Park Ave W NW, 30313, map

The Fountain of Rings is a popular spot to cool off during the summer. There is also free live music and events throughout the year. If you’re visiting the Coke Museum or Georgia Aquarium, it’s a short walk from there.

12. Historic Fourth Ward Skatepark

830 Willoughby Way NE, 30312, map

This is Atlanta’s first public skatepark. If you don’t sk8 (do people still use that?), you can watch and admire everyone else’s skills.

13. Check out the Carter Center

453 John Lewis Freedom Pkwy NE, 30307, map

Visit the Circle of Flags, rose garden, Japanese garden, and koi pond.

14. Admire the Graffiti at Krog Tunnel

1 Krog St NE, 30307, map

This is one of Atlanta’s favorite instagram / photo / film spots because of the graffiti that covers the area. Even if you don’t want to take photos, it’s a fun art stroll. Also, less than a 10-minute walk away is the Krog Street Market, which is a repurposed industrial space full of eclectic shops and vendors.

675 Ponce de Leon Ave., NE, map

Once a Sears, Roebuck & Co building, Ponce City Market has taken a historic site and created an amazing community of food, shops, flats, and offices.

16. Run, Walk, or Bike the Silver Comet Trail

There is 61 miles of trail great for running, walking, or biking. You can even extend it an additional 33 miles with Alabama’s Chief Ladiga Trail!

17. Dekalb Farmer’s Market

3000 E Ponce de Leon Ave, Decatur, 30030, map

Take in all the new smells and foods that you definitely don’t see at Kroger, Publix, or your regular grocery store.

BONUS. Hike at Amicalola Falls State Park

This is not in Greater Atlanta, but it’s one of the most popular day trips from Atlanta. It has beautiful scenery, hiking trails, and Amicalola Falls is the tallest cascading waterfall in the southeast. You can climb to the top via starts and pathways. Parking is $5.

Essential Travel Tips for Visiting Atlanta

TIPS FOR PARKING IN ATLANTA – Unless specified otherwise, there’s a 50/50 chance you will have to pay for parking in the perimeter (ITP), but it’s generally free outside the perimeter (OTP).

If you’re looking for even more options, check out our Ultimate Atlanta Bucket List.

More Free Museums in Atlanta

  • Atlanta Monetary Museum
  • Babyland General Hospital
  • Center for Puppetry Arts (first Saturday every month) – great for the whole family
  • Childrens Museum of Atlanta (second Tuesday)
  • David J. Sencer CDC Museum
  • The Federal Reserve Bank Money Museum
  • Fernbank Science Center (not Fernbank Museum of Natural History)
  • Georgia Aquarium (on your birthday)
  • Georgia State Capitol Tour
  • Heritage Park Veterans Museum in McDonough
  • High Museum of Art (second Sunday each month)
  • Historic Oakland Cemetery
  • Marietta Fire Museum
  • Roswell Fire Museum

Map of Atlanta's Free Attractions

What to Pack for Your __

Best Places to Stay in Atlanta

All the accommodations listed below have Tripadvisor’s Certificate of Excellence

How many of these have you done? Any other free things to do in Atlanta?

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“Discovery consists not of seeking new lands but in seeing with new eyes” – M. Proust

Esther + Jacob

Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, which is one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found both near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.

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