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Know Before You Go
- If you plan on visiting more than three of Atlanta's attractions, save money by purchasing the Atlanta CityPass. For USD 69, you'll be able to skip the long ticket lines and see all the featured attractions within a nine day period.
- Atlanta's neighbourhoods are a great place to go shopping. Visit Little Five Points, Buckhead, Midtown and Virginia-Highland to discover the city's art galleries, thrift stores, boutiques and more.
- Atlanta is a mecca for foodies. The city's thriving food scene is overflowing with award-winning chefs, cheap food truck eats and a cuisine diversity that spans the globe.
- Head to the city in the late summer if you want to unleash your inner geek. The annual Dragoncon parade draws crowds from all over to watch the costumed participants march through the streets. Pack your Darth Vader onesie and join in on the fun or admire the costumes from the sidelines.
- If you don't want to pay for WiFi while at Atlanta Hartsfield Airport, go to Concourse E Food Court. You can access the internet for as long as you want without paying a cent.
Getting Around Atlanta
The best way to go around Atlanta is with the MARTA. It's the city's public transport system that operates bus and rail routes throughout Atlanta.
- The MARTA subway is the quickest way to get around. Fares are USD 2.50 for a single trip, or you can buy a day pass for USD 9. Trains run every 10 to 20 minutes from 4:45 a.m. to just past midnight.
- The MARTA buses operate over 91 lines and cover more than 1,000 miles. Buses arrive every 12 to 15 minutes during the week and every 30 minutes on the weekends. A single fare is USD 2.50, but if you want to transfer between the bus and subway, you'll need a Breeze smart card or day pass ticket.
- If you want to drive yourself around Atlanta, prepare yourself for the city's notorious congestion. Parking is also expensive, with some hotels charging up to USD 20 per night. However, it is a good option if you want to travel beyond the city's MARTA range.
- Taxis are available throughout Atlanta but are not the most cost-effective option. Prices can spike, especially if you find yourself stuck in traffic. Uber and Lyft are also available if you don't want to flag down a cab and want to know exactly how much your trip will cost before getting in.
When is The Best Time to Visit Atlanta?
The best time to visit Atlanta is during its spring and summer seasons. From May to August, the city comes alive with its many outdoor concerts, festivals and activities.
The mild spring weather is a good option for those that want to avoid the summer heat. But you will need to dodge the occasional thunderstorm. As the summer season kicks in from June onwards, expect room rates to rise along with the temperatures.
Another shoulder season is from September to November. During fall, the cooler temperatures are a welcomed change to summer's sweltering heat. Prices for hotels also start to drop as tourists make their way home.
If you are on a budget and want to save some cash, visit Atlanta during its winter months. From December to March, hotel rates drop as the colder weather sees the summer crowds leaving the city. You'll also have a better chance finding some great airfare deals during this time of year. Be sure to pack lots of warm layers as temperatures are on average of -1°C and the city sees regular ice storms.
Airports in Atlanta
Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport
Hartsfield is the world's busiest airport and is located 11 km from Atlanta's central business district. It's held the title since 1998 and served 950,119 flights in 2012. The airport is a major hub for travel throughout the southeastern region of the United States and is a hub for Delta Airlines.
Getting To and From Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport
The easiest and fastest way to get from the airport into Atlanta is with MARTA. The MARTA trains take 15 minutes to reach the city centre and run from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Fares for a single trip cost USD 2.50 and trains leave every eight minutes.
The Atlanta Airport Shuttle is an affordable way to get to downtown Atlanta. The shuttle runs every 15 minutes and operates until 11:00 p.m. You can book your transfer online ahead of your arrival, and fares are around USD 16.50 per person.
Many hotels in the area also offer a free shuttle service to and from the airport. The hotel shuttles leave from the West curb outside the Domestic North and Domestic South terminals.
If you want to take a taxi from the airport, head to the Yellow Bus aisle. Fares are set and depend on your final destination. There is a USD 2 surcharge for each additional person, and a trip to Downtown should cost around USD 30.
Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft also operate from Hartsfield Airport. You can find their authorised pick up zones at the Domestic Terminal North and Domestic Terminal South.
For travellers that want to hire a car, the Rental Car Center is a few minutes away on the SkyTrain. There are 13 car rental brands operating at the airport with a variety of vehicles to choose from.