5 Reasons to Visit Atlanta for the Holidays
The Christmas season can get chaotic. There are meals to make, families to visit, gifts to purchase, decorations to put up…you know the drill. Taking a time out to visit a city full of holiday lights and sounds can really change this time of year from hectic to happy. These are the Atlanta holiday events that you just can’t miss. They’ve become wonderful traditions in our household. Maybe some of them will become your traditions, too.
Here are our Altanta top five.
The historic and palatial Fox Theatre could not be a more perfect place to present the Nutcracker ballet. The music, dance and sets will make you nostalgic for the Christmases of your own childhood. First-timers must splurge on a seat in the ‘snow row’ to complete the experience. You can guess what happens there!
See the classic 1964 television special come to life on stage. My children look forward to the Santa and Rudolph puppets every year; it’s one of our favorite traditions. Make time to stay afterward. Your kids can craft an Abominable Snow Monster hand puppet.
If light shows are your favorite holiday treat, indulge in lights galore at Callaway Gardens, just about an hour outside of Atlanta. Drive your own car or hop on the Jolly Trolley for a display of more than 8 million twinkling lights. National Geographic named it one of the top 10 places in the country to see holiday lights.
If you want to stay closer to town, million twinkling lights decorate the gardens here. Plus there’s s’mores for the kids and hot buttered rum for mom and dad. Nighttime is glorious because of all the lights. But don’t skip a daytime visit, especially with smaller kids. You can see a model train, take photos with and old-world Santa and more.
The reason for my family to to go is the holiday parade, complete with a flying Snow Angel. It brings a smile to the faces of everyone in my family. There’s also character meet-and-greets with Rudolph and Bumble, the sing-along train, live holiday shows, visits with Santa Claus, a 4D Rudolph movie and lots more lights. We love dinner at the Campfire Grill with cookie decorating for dessert, and a gondola ride down the powdery hill at Snow Mountain!
Tip: If you are visiting for the weekend, consider a stay at the Atlanta Evergreen Marriott, which is located within the park and has a heated indoor pool.
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Lesli Peterson is owner, editor & CEO of 365AtlantaFamily.com, a digital resource for families who believe that life begins at the end of your comfort zone. She also serves as the Family Travel Ambassador for Georgia and freelances for several national publications. When she’s not traveling, she’s hiking in the mountains or checking out Atlanta’s culinary scene. Find her Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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