While at Stone Mountain Campground, we also took a day to explore Atlanta. Since we didn’t feel comfortable driving our large vehicle into downtown Atlanta, we took advantage of the MARTA public transportation system.
We drove about 30 minutes from the campground to the Indian Creek MARTA station. For only $6/roundtrip, we hopped on the Blue Line train and headed west toward Atlanta. We got off at the Dome/GWCC/Phillips/CNN Station. This dropped us at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, State Farm Arena, and CNN Headquarters. Perfect!
We walked to Olympic Park, site of the 1996 Summer Olympics. Seeing the Olympic Rings up close has been a goal of mine for a very long time, and I was thrilled! The park is centrally located with the World of Coca-Cola, Atlanta Aquarium, College Football Hall of Fame and CNN Headquarters all within walking distance.
This trip took us to the World of Coca-Cola first. We arrived close to the 10:00 AM opening time, and were actually the first ones there. We ordered our tickets online, so we didn’t have to wait in line. My advice is to get there early because when we left two hours later, it was quite busy.
There are plenty of interactive rooms throughout where you can learn about the history of Coca-Cola, how the drink came to be and how protective John Pemberton was about his secret formula, as well as the different promotions and countries where Coke is sold.
Probably the coolest part was being able to hold one of the Olympic torches that Muhammad Ali used during the 1996 Olympics Opening Ceremonies.
I think Mike would say his favorite part was the Tasting Room where we could sample over 100 different flavors from around the world!
There aren’t a lot of food options in this part of Atlanta, but there is a food court in the CNN building. This was also where we would begin the tour of CNN Headquarters, so we opted for lunch there.
We had purchased our tour tickets online, and chose a 1:00 p.m. tour time. Be prepared to go through same type of security as you would at an airport when touring CNN. This is a working newsroom, after all.
Our tour included stops at the studio where HLN is filmed, the national and international newsrooms, and other interesting facts about the news business in general. Our tour was about 50 minutes long.
By now it was late afternoon, and we were getting tired. As we made our way back to the camper, we talked about how much we experienced and how much we hadn’t seen. But the next day was a travel day, and we needed to get packed up for an early departure.
Stay tuned for our next destination – St. Augustine, Florida!
Jennifer Skinnell is also the author of the Hope Springs Romance Series available on Amazon.