The Best Museums and Galleries to Visit in Atlanta
Atlanta, Georgia, is a cultural feast for the traveler, offering an abundance of excellent museums and galleries showcasing a collection of great exhibitions. You can spend a delightful day wandering from art gallery to museum, taking in some amazing exhibits and then enjoying an evening of great food and entertainment. Here is a guide to some of the best museums and galleries to check out during your visit.
1. The High Museum of Art
This museum, located on Atlanta’s famous Peachtree Street, is one of the most visited art museums in the U.S. This impressive cultural institution has showcased some truly influential and significant works of art throughout the years, including the Chinese Terracotta warriors and even a Monet. The building itself was featured in the 1983 film “Manhunter,” by Michael Mann, starring Brian Cox and William Petersen of “CSI” fame. The perfectly white and pristine building, designed by world-famous architect Richard Meier, makes a dramatic contrast to the older brick buildings that surround it. The museum holds an impressive 11,000 works of art in its collection, from modern photography to European paintings.
2. The Atlanta History Center
If you’ re interested in stories of Atlanta’s past, this museum offers insightful and detailed exhibits, which offer you a glimpse into the way things used to be. The museum is home to the biggest collection of Civil War memorabilia in the Southeast and hosts lectures by prominent historians including Micheal Beschloss and Doris Kearns Goodwin. After your tour, you can visit the attached Swan House mansion. This gorgeous old building lets you see what life would have been like for an architect’s family in Atlanta in the 1920s and 1930s.
3. The Margaret Mitchell House and Museum
This is the home where Margaret Mitchell wrote “Gone With The Wind,” and if you visit this great historical attraction you can take a guided tour of the apartment where she lived. This museum is operated by the Atlanta History Center, and it does a great job of illustrating the life of one of America’s most beloved authors. Throughout the year there are a number of excellent programs presented by Margaret Mitchell House Literary center designed to preserve and honor Mitchell’s legacy. If you’re lucky, you might catch a creative writing workshop, author’s lecture, poetry reading or other great event that brings the community together in the name of great literature.
4. Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
This is the ideal place to learn about the fascinating life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his influence on the world. This site is operated by The King Center, the National Park Service and by Ebenezer Baptist Church. Along with the museum, you will also find the Peace Plaza, which is the beautifully landscaped “I Have a Dream” World Peace Rose Gardens. These tranquil gardens are filled with peaceful and inspirational messages submitted by local Atlanta students. You can get a GPS ranger multimedia device, which will provide you with a moving and informative commentary as you walk through this historic site, complete with Dr. King’s messages of equality and social justice.
5. The Michael C.Carlos Museum at Emory University
If you’re interested in Egyptian art, this museum is a must-see during your trip to Atlanta. This museum has a world-class collection of Egyptian art and artifacts. There are even some pretty impressive mummies, including one of a cat! The museum also holds many beautiful masks, vases and coins, which give a glimpse into what life was like during the days of ancient Egypt. The Michael C. Carlos museum has free entry and it can be found on the campus of Emory University, which is very beautiful and worth a visit on its own.
Atlanta, Georgia, is a city rich with culture and history, making it the perfect destination for gallery and museum hopping. Enjoy soaking up all the great attractions of this exciting Southern metropolis.