Arts & Culture

Historic Walking Tour Of Atlanta

June 9, 2014 8:00 AM

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Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Walking tours are a great way to get outdoors while having an educational experience in Atlanta. There are a number of colorful locations where guided tours provide information or where visitors can simply roam at will. From the sculptures of the Oakland Cemetery to the historic birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr., walking tours are a great springtime activity.
Martin Luther King Jr Historic Site
450 Auburn Ave. N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30312
(404) 331-6922
www.nps.gov

The childhood home of Atlanta’s favorite son, Martin Luther King Jr., is an historic site that you can visit for free. The National Park Service provides “Birth Home Tours” which allows you to see into the Civil Rights leader’s early life. Meanwhile, there are many related attractions within walking distance. Visitors should be advised that while admission and parking are free, reservations must be made in person, the day of the tour.

Marietta Square
Visitors Center
4 Depot St. N.E.
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 429-1115
www.mariettasquare.com

Marietta Square has many historically relevant curiosities pertaining to the Civil War and just as many options for guided tours. Thankfully, among these options is a the do-it-yourself path. Simply stop by the visitors center for a free brochure and then set your own pace while enjoying the sites. “Ghost Tours” are an especially popular seasonal attraction. Of particular interest, The Root House Museum is a must see. Built in 1845, the architecture is typical of the “frame houses” of that era. Inside the house, there are period furnishings and fashions, and outside there is a period-style garden. The museum is open Wednesday through Saturday with hourly tours starting at 11:30 a.m.

Oakland Cemetery
248 Oakland Ave. S.E.
Atlanta, GA 30312
(404) 688-2107
www.oaklandcemetery.com

The Oakland Cemetery considers itself “a secret sanctuary” because it is an undeveloped piece of Atlanta history tucked in the middle of a downtown sprawl. Founded in 1850, this property is actually quite lively and beautiful. Daily tours will allow visitors to see flowers, sculptures, as well as the final resting place of the city’s famed citizens. There are many seasonally specific tours and themed celebrations so visitors should consult the website for current information. Perhaps the most celebrated of events at Oakland Cemetery is its annual “Sunday in the Park” event held on October 5th. Sunday in the Park is a Victorian era-themed festival with storytelling, live reenactments, food, artists and more.

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Grant Park Historic District
840 Cherokee Ave. S.E.
Atlanta, GA 30315
www.nps.gov

Grant Park is another historic Atlanta location, maintained by the National Park Service. This considerable area is full of green recreational space as well as perfectly preserved mansions. For those looking for an educational experience, Grant Park’s itineraries offer a variety of cultural exhibitions with local importance. Though it is something of a cliche, Grant Park is also home to the famous Cyclorama.

Inman Park
Euclid Ave. and Elizabeth St.
Atlanta, GA 31136
www.inmanpark.org

Inman Park’s claim to fame is that is Atlanta’s first suburb, as of 1890, or at least the first planned one. The Victorian-style houses in this neighborhood were the toast of the elite, trolley-riding members of Atlanta society. Thanks to the restoration efforts conducted in the 1970s, contemporary visitors can still appreciate the unique architecture of the bygone days.

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With a BFA in Digital Media, Sean Mills has worked for design firms with clients across the United States. He has worked as an illustrator and visual designer, and has shown paintings in juried exhibitions. He currently works as a studio artist and writer in Atlanta, Georgia. His work can be found at Examiner.com.
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