Georgia has a lot to offer in the way of cultural activities. With the state’s rich history and deep cultural roots, it makes sense that the state is packed with historical and museums. Here is a handful of our top picks.
The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, often referred to as the Contemporary, is an artist’s cooperative focused on contemporary work. The art showcased spans a wide breath of media and is typically focused on artists who haven’t been featured prominently in the Southeast. There is no permanent collection and exhibitions change approximately every three months, making this a great regular stop for frequent Atlanta travelers. In addition to the exhibitions, there is a good amount of programming through the Contemporary including contests, panels, and guest lectures. There is a sleek gift shop with art books, music, jewelry, and branded tote bags.
535 Means Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30318. Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday 11am-5pm; Thursday 11am-8pm; Sunday 12pm-5pm. Admission: Adults: $5; students & seniors: $3; children under 12 free; Thursdays free.
The Atlanta History Center is located on 33 acres of land in Buckhead and has the mission of connecting people, history, and culture. Within the center, there is the Atlanta History Museum, the Centennial Olympic Games Museum, Swan House, Tullie Smith Farm, several historic gardens, and the Kenan Research Center. With so many diverse interests, the Atlanta History Center can keep you busy for days or appeal to a big brood with diverse interests in one spot. The center is the home to several signature exhibitions, including a feature on golfer Bobby Jones and southern folk arts, as well as temporary and traveling exhibitions.
130 West Paces Ferry Rd. NW, Atlanta, GA 30305-1366. Hours: Monday through Saturday: 10am-5:30pm; Sunday 12pm-5:30pm. Gardens and grounds close at 5:15 p.m. Admission: Adults: $15; seniors & students: $12; children ages 4-12: $10; children under 4 free.
Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924) lived in this Presbyterian Manse in Augusta from 1860 to 1870. The house was never actually owned by the Wilson family though. It was the property of the local Presbyterian Church and was offered to the minister of the church for his family. Rev. Dr. Joseph Ruggles Wilson, Woodrow Wilson’s father, was the first minister to occupy this house. Wilson moved into the house with his wife and three children, later adding another son. Tours are regularly given by volunteer docents and the house is furnished in a combination of original and period pieces.
419 Seventh St., Augusta, GA, 30901. Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10am-5pm. Admission: Adults: $5; seniors: $4; students $3.
The Breman Jewish Heritage & Holocaust Museum, often just referred to as the Breman, is dedicated to the celebration and commemoration of the Jewish experience. Jewish values, culture, and history are persevered, interpreted, and taught at this well-designed museum. 90 minutes is the recommended timing for a thorough tour of the museum, but many visitors stay longer. There are signature, special, and traveling exhibits at the Breman ranging from moving pieces on the Holocaust to a fun tribute to Dr. Seuss.
1440 Spring Street Northwest, Atlanta, GA, 30309. Hours: Monday-Thursday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Friday 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Admission: Adults: $10; seniors: $7; students: $5; children ages 3-6: $2; children under 3 free.
The Center for Puppetry Arts is a fun place focused on educating and entertaining audiences of all ages. And they really do mean all ages. There are child appropriate performances and shows that definitely skew a little more adult in content, so read closely before you make a family outing. In addition to shows, there’s also a museum with puppets like you’ve never seen and some hands-on elements. There’s also a gift shop if you catch the puppet fever and want to delve into the puppetry arts yourself.
1404 Spring St. Northwest, Atlanta, GA, 30309. Hours: Monday through Saturday 9 am-5pm; Sunday 11am-5pm; Admission: Tickets prices to shows vary; Museum free with show ticket.
With an IMAX theatre, fossils in the actual floor tiles, and an exhibit featuring the largest dinosaur ever discovered, the Fernbank Museum of Natural History is more than just another boring museum. The exhibits cover everything from dinosaurs to shells to Georgia’s natural history. While the Children’s Discovery Room is closed for renovation, the museum will continue to offer child friendly hands-on exhibits. Check out the special programming as there are a lot of family friendly events scheduled and things that appeal to the grown-up natural history enthusiast, like Martinis & IMAX nights.
767 Clifton Rd. Northeast, Atlanta, GA, 30307. Hours: Monday through Saturday 10am-5pm; Sunday 12pm-5pm. Admission: Adults: $15; students & seniors: $14; children ages 3 to 12: $13; children 2 and under free.