Zoo Atlanta#21 in Best Things To Do in Atlanta
What sets Atlanta's zoo apart from other wildlife exhibits is its panda population: Zoo Atlanta is one of only four zoos in the U.S. housing giant pandas. The rare bears are a favorite among recent visitors, but the zoo also boasts more than 200 other species. While here, you'll spot lions, giraffes, zebras and plenty of reptiles. Apart from the animals, the zoo offers a train ride, a carousel, a ropes course and a rock climbing wall, among other attractions. Keep in mind: The cost of these activities is not included with admission.
Travelers (especially those with kids) offer mostly favorable reviews for the zoo, saying it's easy to navigate. But many agree that the property can get crowded on warmer days, so consider arriving early. Also, remember that parts of the zoo are closed for renovations, meaning select animal exhibits (including ones with giraffes and zebras) are currently unavailable.
Admission to this zoo costs $25.99 for adults ages 12 to 64, $21.99 for college students and seniors, and $17.99 for kids ages 3 to 11. Entrance is free for military personnel and children 2 and younger. For those with an Atlanta CityPASS, ticket prices are covered by pass fees. In addition to the on-site attractions and exhibits, visitors can check out the property's gift shops, playgrounds, eateries and animal shows, which are available at select times on Saturdays and Sundays.
Zoo Atlanta is located 1 mile south of Oakland Cemetery in Grant Park. No Atlanta Streetcar stops or MARTA train stations are available within walking distance, but the No. 32 bus makes a few stops by the zoo's entrance. Free (but limited) parking is available in the on-site lot, which can be accessed from Cherokee Avenue. The property welcomes visitors daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Check out the zoo's website for additional information.
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#1 Atlanta History Center
Spread across 33 acres in Atlanta's trendy Buckhead neighborhood, the Atlanta History Center seeks to explore Georgia's past through comprehensive exhibitions, historic homes and miles of gardens and trails. The center's primary facility is the Atlanta History Museum, which showcases exhibits that span the region's history, from Native American culture to life in the antebellum South.
Near the museum is the Swan House, a restored estate originally built in 1928. Living up to its name, every room allegedly features at least one swan (motif). Outside the house, the Swan Woods Trail is lined with beautiful plants native to Georgia. Nearby, you can also see how the other half lived at the Smith Family Farm, a plantation house from the mid-1800s. Meanwhile, bookworms won't want to miss a tour of the Margaret Mitchell House, where the author penned her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, "Gone With the Wind."
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