By Andrea Kjaer
There’s a road in Atlanta that can transport you to some of the best parts of the old world and the new—but there’s a catch.
No cars allowed.
You’ll have to bike or walk on your own two feet.
Around the Atlanta BeltLine, you can experience A Midsummer Night’s Dream in a Shakespearean-style theatre, walk in the childhood home of Martin Luther King, Jr. and see contemporary art born in a city where these influences collided.
As one of the most innovative projects the city has ever seen, the 22-mile BeltLine trail runs around the heart of Atlanta and has a vein running through the old neighborhoods the city was built upon. Restaurants, venues, parks, art exhibits, and museums line the route, all set amongst Georgia’s irrepressible treescapes and natural outdoor beauty.
Here’s how to take advantage of everything happening on and around the BeltLine this summer.
Your Summer To-Do List
✓ Bicycle Tours of Atlanta offer guided rides around the city. Some routes are themed and will take you through the path of the Great Atlanta fire, historic and cultural neighborhoods, or off the beaten path to view the evolving art landscape of Atlanta. You can even customize your route, depending on your interests and group size.
✓ Cool off at the Atlanta Summer Beer Fest, Historic 4th Ward Park, Sat. June 17 from 4-9 p.m., 665 North Avenue, Atlanta, GA. This park is also open year-round, has a skate park and a seasonal splash pad.
✓ See the lush seasonal blooms at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. With a host of events all season long, there is something for everybody at this park, nestled on the Eastside BeltLine trail next to Piedmont Park at 1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta, GA.
✓ Find garden-fresh organic vegetables straight from the producers at Ponce City Farmer’s Market in the BeltLine Shed on Tuesdays from 4-8 p.m., 675 Ponce de Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA. (Plus, you can snag one hour of free parking in the Mountain High Outfitters lot by choosing zone 22200 and inputting code FARMERS2017 in the Park Mobile app.)
✓ The city hosts free fitness classes throughout the summer. Break a sweat at FitWit Boot Camp, Sat., June 17 at 9 a.m. D.H. Stanton Park, 1052 Martin St., Atlanta, GA.
✓ Enjoy dinner and drinks at The Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse over a showing of A Midsummer Night’s Dream from July 8-30 at 499 Peachtree St NE, Atlanta, GA. Prices and show times vary—see website for details.
✓ Take the kids to the Center for Puppetry Arts or enjoy a whimsical date at this charming museum, but hurry—Jim Henson’s must-see Labyrinth movie exhibit is here until Sept. 3 at 1404 Spring St. NW, Atlanta, GA.
What else is on your list? Let us know!
Lead photo courtesy of Marc Merlin