Atlanta offers a plethora of reasons to return to our city, but, for now, here are 20 to start the wheels turning for your next trip to the ATL.
1. Final Four
The 2020 NCAA Men's Final Four comes to Atlanta April 6 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
2. Making Music
Music festivals abound all year, every year. Catch Music Midtown (September), ONE Musicfest (September), SweetWater 420 Festival (April), A3C Festival (October) and Atlanta Jazz Festival (May).
3. Annual Festivals
(📷 Gene Phillips, AtlantaPhotos.com)
Make plans around the Atlanta Dogwood Festival (April), Atlanta Film Festival (April), Inman Park Festival (April), Sweet Auburn Springfest (May), Atlanta Food & Wine Festival (June), Atlanta Ice Cream Festival (July), BronzeLens Film Festival (August), Grant Park Summer Shade Festival (August), Yellow Daisy Festival (September), Pumpkin Festival (September) and Taste of Atlanta (October).
4. Exciting Exhibitions
High Museum of Art welcomes "Paa Joe: Gates of No Return" featuring large, painted wood sculptures representing models of Gold Coast castles and forts, which provided way stations for more than six million Africans sold into slavery.
(📷 Georgia Aquarium)
Atlanta's favorite underwater odyssey is planning a major expansion expected to debut late in 2020. We're talking one million gallons of floor-to-ceiling sharks.
6. Out of Africa
(📷 Scott White)
Zoo Atlanta's new African Savanna creates a beautiful new habitat for the resident African elephants, giraffes, zebras, warthogs, bird life and more.
7. Traveled PATH
PATH 400 runs along the GA-400 highway in Buckhead and connects neighborhoods, retail and more for cyclists and pedestrians, now with a new extension.
8. History in the Round
The Atlanta Cyclorama is preserved at the Atlanta History Center and features a 132-year-old-circular painting entitled "The Battle of Atlanta."
9. Hollywood South
Atlanta has a huge film-making scene. Check out Atlanta Movie Tours to see filming locations around the city.
10. Huge Thrills
Six Flags Over Georgia debuts two heart pumping rides: Catwoman Whip and Poison Ivy Toxic Twister. Stone Mountain Park's thrills start at the top of the mountain with a day of attractions below.
11. City of Civil Rights
View Atlanta's civil rights legacy at the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park and the nation's civil rights history at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.
12. Something's Brewing
(📷 New Realm Brewing Company)
Check out a local brewery or brewpub, whether it's on a city street or on the popular Atlanta BeltLine: SweetWater Brewing Company, Monday Night Brewing, STATS Brewpub, New Realm, Bold Monk, Scofflaw, Cold Beer, Max Lager's Wood-Fired Grill and Brewery, and Wild Heaven Beer.
13. Check out that View
Rooftop restaurants and lounges include SkyLounge downtown, Skyline Park amusement park on top of Ponce City Market, the rooftop at Hotel Clermont or even a ride on SkyView Atlanta Ferris Wheel.
14. Hail the Halls
(📷 Ponce City Market)
Many award-winning chefs helm restaurants in Atlanta, and many have outposts at food halls. Try Krog Street Market, Ponce City Market, Sweet Auburn Curb Market and The Canteen.
15. Diminutive Doors
Tiny Doors Atlanta is a public art project where tiny seven-inch doors are located throughout the city and most are free and accessible to the public.
16. Magical Murals
Check out murals at the Glenn Hotel, STATS Brewpub and the 135 Walton Building, to name a few.
17. Linger for Brunch
Meeting for brunch, preferably on a patio, is tops in Atlanta. Mingle like a local and order signature dishes such as shrimp and grits, fried green tomato Benedict and pair with a Bloody Mary.
18. Centennial Olympic Park
Newly renovated, this centerpiece legacy of the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games hosts annual events all year. Nearby, visit Children's Museum of Atlanta, Georgia Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola, CNN Studio Tours, National Center for Civil and Human Rights and Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame.
19. New Voyages
Watch for the next Atlanta.net Voyager production series of three episodes and a new cookbook, tentatively scheduled for a February 2020 launch and themed around Atlanta's innovative and diverse culinary scene.
20. Proud to be 50
(📷 Peter DeMoore, AtlantaPhotos.com)
The 50th anniversary of the Atlanta Pride Festival celebrates in October with the parade down Peachtree Street and citywide music and art events.
Check here for more new things to do in Atlanta in 2020.
Liesl Merkel is editor of Atlanta Now, the official visitors guide of Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.