For the past 8 years on MLK weekend my husband and I travel somewhere to meet my in-laws. Although my father-in-law passed, we keep this tradition going in his honor we raise a glass and explore a new city. This year it seemed appropriate that we finally explore Atlanta the hometown of Dr. Martin Luther King and some would argue the birthplace of the civil rights movement in this country.
Brunch is Big in Atlanta - Atlanta Breakfast Club
Our first stop in Atlanta was brunch. Brunch is a big deal in Atlanta and there are plenty of choices. We opted for the Atlanta Breakfast Club directly opposite the Georgia State Aquarium. As the uber pulled up and we saw the line outside it was obvious we made a solid choice. After about a 15-minute wait, we were seated, and our order taken. Service was quick, friendly and the atmosphere was upbeat. The food was well worth the wait. Great chicken and waffles, delicious biscuits and good coffee. A great start to a day with a full itinerary.
After such a delicious brunch we opted to walk to our next destination- The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. This is as short 15-minute walk (approximately 1 mile). If you are in downtown Atlanta, I highly recommend a stop here. Ring the door bell and you will be welcomed and given information for a self-guided tour of this esteemed and beautiful church.
On February 22, 2010, Sacred Heart was elevated to the dignity of minor basilica by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI . Mother Theresa of Calcutta also visited this church for Mass, June 12, 1995.
One of my favorite things about Atlanta is the amazing art you see as you are out and about.
Next stop Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park
This is the number one visitors’ site in Atlanta obviously because of the historical value. Obviously, no trip should be made to Atlanta without taking some time to explore this National Park. Unfortunately, due to the Government furlough it was closed. We were able to walk around and visit the Civil Rights Walk of Fame as well as the King Center.
If you have a spare hour fill it with a quick trip to the State Capital. The building is quite beautiful, and the Office of The Governor is extremely welcoming. Stop by and fill out the visitor book you will receive a post card in the mail from the Governor. They will also offer you a packet of Georgia peanuts. We stopped by prior to our trip to Peachtree Street for a night at the theatre. If you do opt to take this quick excursion once you leave be sure to know where you are heading next. We did get lost and ended up near The Underground area of Atlanta -I do not recommend finding yourself lost in this area of town. Fortunately we were able to get an uber and head to Peachtree Street.
Show Time - Must Do!
Also educaThe Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse is a fabulous concept with a very talented company of actors. We saw Love’s Labors Lost and this was performed with passion and wit. All of us thoroughly enjoyed the experience. We showed up as the doors opened and we were able to enjoy some drinks at the bar before the restaurant opened. Food is served an hour prior to the performance. The choice was varied and included a great draft beer selection. We sat in the balcony and the seats were excellent. The best value for money and a wonderful night of entertainment.There is also an educator discount! The city of Atlanta is blessed with an amazing entertainment asset- impressed!
Day II in Atlanta
After an exhausting but amazingly full first day we opted to slow down a little for day two. Our itinerary of course began with brunch then a short walk to The Atlanta Contemporary. After spending some time in this small but interesting art museum we headed back downtown on a very rainy Atlanta day, this time to explore the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. We closed our day at the infamous Mary Mac’s.
This is the parking lot of Thumbs Up Diner at the mid-town location on Marrietta Street. The line was long so it was a good indication we were in for a treat. The brunch here was simply delicious.I tasted the best french toast I have ever tasted. Be sure to try out one of the five locations in Atlanta you wont regret it.
A short walk around the corner and you will find yourself at a small but well appointed contemporary art museum – Atlanta Contemporary. Always free this place is well worth a visit even if only to see what events are upcoming . atlantacontemporary.org/
National Center for Civil and Human Rights
In the shadow of the Coke Museum you will find the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Given the weekend of our visit we felt compelled to visit. We spent the rest of a rainy day exploring all that this center has to offer. There is so much history and so many exhibits’ you could easily spend the whole day. The center engages the visitor in compelling stories, powerful imagery and gripping artifacts. I visited the Lunch Counter interactive exhibit was one of the most jarring experiences I have ever had. If you are visiting Atlanta, I highly recommend a visit to this center. Take note there is a discount for educators so take your ID.
Next Stop Happy Hour at Torched Hop
This place is a great place to stop for happy hour. It’s across the road from Mary Mac’s and well worth a visit. Amazing selection of craft beers and some delicious cocktails.
Infamous Mary Mac's
If you take a trip to Atlanta plan on eating here. I was skeptical about hitting a tourist trap but was truly pleasantly surprised at the scrumptious food, excellent service and the whole experience in general. Expect a wait but enjoy a good southern cocktail to make the wait certainly palatable. The history of this place is scattered throughout the establishment with framed newspaper articles and autographed pictures of the rich and famous. The atmosphere is fun and upbeat, and the biggest surprise was the decent prices. I loved that you write your own check when ordering the food. Highly recommend this place for some home town southern cookin and a historical perspective of a tea room. Well worth a visit.
And Before we Fly Home....................
We headed to Ponce City Market and the Beltline. Ponce City market is worth a visit simply because of the historic value. This is a converted Sears building with the most outstanding food hall imaginable. We loved the ability to wander and find every imaginable food, Chinese, Italian gelato, chicken and waffles, Cuban the list goes on. I opted for a fresh breakfast sandwich from Roots Bakery which was delicious. Gene devoured a tasty Cuban sandwiches and my friend enjoyed chicken and waffles. Amazing variety and undeniable quality. We all agreed that this was worth a stop. On the floor above the food hall is high end shopping and the entrance to the rooftop garden , the Beltline can also be accessed from this area. This place has so much to offer one could easily spend a day here. If you get the opportunity take a stroll or bike ride on the Beltline. I loved all the art along the way !
Atlanta is a vibrant, friendly city that has so much to offer. We loved the delicious southern food, the friendly people and the endless opportunities of things to do and see. Don’t take my word for it check out Atlanta and see for yourself or explore the options at https://www.atlanta.com/
If you are planning a trip to anytime soon consider an AirBnB. If you have never used them use this code for a discount:
Exploring our world one trip at a time.