ATLANTA WITH KIDS – Shortly after arriving in Atlanta and checking into the Embassy Suites, we knew our family only had 24 hours on the ground to take in the city. So what is a family to do with three young boys who just spent a day and a half in a vehicle?
Centennial Olympic Park
The most convenient first stop for our family was to casually stroll around Centennial Olympic Park. The large plaza had several distinct areas that families could enjoy. Among them were a splash pad in the shape of the Olympic rings. Occasionally, the area was cleared by security, and the rings were set to music for the crowds. Then when the signal was given, the mass of kids rushed back into water.
Also in the park were large open lawn spaces, as well as beautifully manicured gardens with water features. At the far end, adjacent to World of Coke was also two different playground areas, which were perfect for our little ones.
After a couple hours in the park, our family was looking to grab a casual late bite to eat. Unfortunately, by 8-9:00 PM on a weeknight, most places were closed. Fortunately, there was the Biergarten German restaurant around the corner.
The atmosphere was casual, and we selected a picnic table out on the balcony. My wife and I decided to share an order of the wiener schnitzel served with lemon, parsley, and spätzle. I had no idea what to expect, coming from a German family and being used to eating fine food at Hofbrauhaus Newport (original review) and other fine establishments.
However, the wiener schnitzel with spätzle from the Biergarten had to be one of the best versions I have ever eaten. Perfectly cooked with hints of lemon. The meal was fantastic, and had it not been for their only being one cook in the kitchen that night, I wanted to personally thank him for the amazing meal.
This restaurant was truly a gem and the perfect cap to our day.
World of Coke
One of our families dilemmas on this trip may have been lack of time, specifically in Atlanta. Having only 24 hours on the ground meant for very limited time to actually see things. Plus we were really excited to meet up with friends in Ponte Vedra Beach for the next portion of our trip.
We had narrowed the focus down to wanting to see the Georgia Aquarium and/or World of Coke. The original plan was to do one the day/night we arrived and the other the following morning before we left. However, both close rather early, and there was no way to fit both into the trip due to the limited amount of time between our arrival and departure into the city.
Ultimately, both my wife and I really wanted to see the World of Coke since it required less time and money to visit.
The museum starts out with a brief walk through of some of the many artifacts Coke has collected from its many years of existence. Then guests are ushered into a short marketing video before being let loose in the museum to explore.
The museum had areas dedicated to the history of the company, along with interactive displays. Guests could see a typical bottling assembly. There was also an interactive 4D movie. However, this was our kids first time at the experience, which they did not enjoy, and kind of scared them from doing them later in the trip at Disney.
Everyone’s favorite portion of visiting the World of Coke was sampling product from all over the world, as well as letting guests use the Coke Freestyle machines. This was also where I learned of an amazing product called Fanta Pineapple. AMAZING! Not to mention, if you look hard enough, you can also find it at Disney!
Guests leaving the World of Coke were also given a souvenir bottle to take home.
I was glad we got to see World of Coke, and there was enough there to keep our little ones entertained. Though I question whether there would be any need to return. The interesting piece I took away, besides the tremendous marketing arm, was that the exhibits must get updated quite often. Notably, the movie you watch upon initial entry had a new popular song from the radio, as well as certain elements that must get updated with the newest marketing efforts.
Our family really enjoyed Atlanta, as there were many family friendly activities downtown. The area was very walkable and secure, with police noted throughout the area. Missing out on the aquarium this round gives us a reason to return in the future.
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