My college roommate moved to Atlanta last Fall and I was due for a visit. I didn’t know that much about Atlanta. I’ve only been to Atlanta once as a kid. My family went on a road trip to Disney world in Florida and Atlanta was one of our pit stops. I have to be honest, Atlanta wasn’t on my list of must go-to places but I really wanted to spend time with Justine in her new town. After a weekend in Atlanta, I realized just how perfect this city is for a weekend trip. The flight is only 1 hour and 40 minutes from New York, there are flights virtually every half hour, and Atlanta is an affordable city. I was surprised at how much I ended up loving Atlanta. Because the standard of living is so much lower than New York, going out to dinners at nice restaurants were not as expensive. There are all these up and coming neighborhoods that have the best foodie spots and shops; making for endless opportunities for exploring. Every weekend there are dozens of events and concerts going on in Atlanta. There’s an endless amount of things to do and it seems like the city is packed with young professional thirty-somethings. They don’t call it HOTlanta for nothing. This is what I did in Atlanta in 36 hours.
Friday evening I arrived from New York at 5:00 pm. Justine picked me up at the airport. I checked out her massive 2 bedroom apartment in Buckhead which is one of the nicest neighborhoods in Atlanta. Her walk in closet is the size of my bedroom in New York (I’m not kidding). We had dinner reservations at Miller Union, a Southern inspired farm-fresh restaurant. The best thing to get here is the farm egg which is basically a runny egg in some type of veggie cream that you spread over grilled bread. It’s pretty damn good. Atlanta is actually a city that is more my speed. Dinner starts at 6:00 pm, maybe drinks post dinner then off to bed at 11:00 pm because nothing is really open past 1:00 am. What can I say I’m an old lady now!
The next morning we woke up leisurely and went to brunch at One Eared Stag in Inman Park. For the short time I was in Inman Park, I got the impression that it’s a cute little suburb with lots of beautiful Victorian houses. I also know that there are a lot of amazing restaurants in Inman Park. I loved the donuts and the fried chicken and biscuits at One Eared Stag. Not exactly the healthiest brunch. We walked from brunch to Krog Street Market, an indoor food hall. You know how I love my food halls. I didn’t get to try any of the food but I loved XOCOLATL who make small batch chocolate. From there, we walked on the beltline. The beltline is a former railway system that is now a multi-use trail. Visually, it’s a huge circle that connects all of the neighborhoods in Atlanta. On the beltline, there are a bunch of fun outdoor bars and restaurants. We didn’t get very far onto the Beltline because we stopped at Ladybird for drinks. Ladybird is exactly what you want to do with your friends on a warm Saturday afternoon. You want to sit outside on picnic tables, drink redneck mimosas (orange juice and miller high life), and hang out with your friends.
We walked all the way to Piedmont Park where there was a free concert and a carnival going on at the time. Piedmont park was planned by the same architect as New York’s Central Park. When you’re walking through Piedmont Park, you will notice the similarities. For dinner, we went to Bartaco in Midtown which is their little version of New York’s Midtown. It wasn’t so much that Atlanta had more to offer than a city like New York, it was the ease of everything. Getting reservations at a nice restaurant isn’t a big deal. Getting around the city is pretty much a breeze. I guess it’s because most people drive. Atlanta is a fun city with lots to offer at a fraction of the price as cities like New York and San Francisco. I think that’s why so many young people are moving there. I want to have full disclosure here, Atlanta doesn’t have the beautiful Southern architecture like Charleston, the live music like Austin, the vibe of New Orleans but it’s a quaint Southern city where you can go eat great food and chill with your friends. My experience in Atlanta far exceeded my expectations and now that I have my college roomie there, I will be able to explore Atlanta more frequently.