The Single Family's Guide to ATL
So many things change when you start a family. There are literally so many things to consider regarding each gang member. Where are the kids going to go to school? What's the best school in our neighborhood? How long is the commute from home to work? Are there any good barbers near? What's the closest grocery store? Are there any good GYNs near? The list goes on and on…and on. But what many people never tell you is that finding all of the necessities will eventually fall into place as you get acclimated to your family setting. No one tells you about seeing things that the entire family would enjoy or even some cute “finally get a date night away from the kids” spots. I struggled to have fun with a toddler for a while because he was not interested in being anywhere with a lot of noise, y'know, like ..outside, for instance. But not to worry, I’ve cried in the shower from boredom, so you don't have to. Here’s the single family’s guide to ATL.
1. Top tier kid-friendly restaurants
Initially, one of our main struggles as toddler parents was finding places that were ok with the occasional deafening squeal and having to clean up a small order of fries and chicken tenders or whatever the baby had from the floor. Atlanta can be quite the party city, and just about every place has a child cut-off time where they no longer allow children inside to turn up the music and outpour the strawberry Hennessy. Trying to find places to enjoy the fresh air and a meal you didn't have to cook can get overwhelming!
Original El Taco-Great Tex-Mex and Oaxacan specialties and margaritas.
The best part is they have street corn!
Punchbowl Social- American food, punch bowls, amusement, and games like bowling and foosball.
Perfect for a birthday dinner!
BurgerFi is a hidden gem in a charming neighborhood! 100% grass-fed burgers and drinks. Four words: Dr. Pepper BBQ Sauce
2. Fun family activities
Amid a pandemic, I know we’re supposed to stay in the house and just stare at the wall, but when we got tired of doing that because the kids were driving us coo coo we masked up, packed our sanitizer, and got really cute to head back out into the world. It took us a while to find places that were open and practiced effective cleaning habits and social distancing, but it was all worth it. One of the most extraordinary things about Atlanta is the plethora of outdoor places with many open areas. We all understand that COVID has altered our way of life forever, but it doesn't completely ruin the fun.
Skyline Park- Located in the beautiful area of Ponce City Market, they have all of the old school games like skee ball and the one where you knock the clowns down for a prize! It gives kinda’ like a Coney Island feel, equipped with mini-golf, a really high tower carousel that offers the best view of the city at night and so much more. This is a fun family activity or date night! They serve food and have a full bar.
The Battery - This is the newest home of the Atlanta Braves! So plan accordingly because it can and will get pretty packed, and traffic is chaotic on any game day until it is over. Roughly 10 miles northwest of downtown Atlanta near Cumberland mall. It has many great places here, from restaurants to ice cream shops. If you're in the mood for a massive, yummy Taffy Apple made with natural caramel and pecans, this is the place to be. Equipped with bars and a plethora of food choices, and easy highway access!
Piedmont Park- Think Sex, and the City’s Central Park meets Art Basel. It’s along the Beltline near Trader Joe’s and an ice cream shop with a premium selection of Cake Batter. A little under a mile from Atlanta’s busy downtown area! This park is in close proximity to some of the best sites in the city and is a perfect place for a light jog or walk to enjoy a lovely sunny day. There’s an excellent smoothie shop along the trail if you need to cool down after the Yoga in the Park troupe gives you all a complete workout. There are numerous playgrounds on every corner with lots of comfortable swing seating and a gorgeous lake filled with ducks, turtles, and fishes!
3. Cute couples activities
We love our kids endlessly, but what do we also love? Our partners and the tiny glimmer of fun and freedom we get when we finally get a kid-free weekend. After searching high and low to find things to enjoy, we get tied up in parenting. Believe me, I’ve been there. But here are a few places to pull out your most Instagram-ready outfits.
CMX Luxury Theater- Welcome to dinner and a movie 2.0! This premier dine-in experience is readied with leather laz-e boy reclining lounge chairs, in-seat service, and classically trained chefs list New American cuisine. We had the steak and potatoes and recommended it. The drinks were good, and popcorn!
Little 5 Points- Little Five Points is one of Atlanta’s best-kept secrets. Anything you're into is almost a guaranteed find. They have the cutest crystal shop, Crystal Blue, where you can grab your favorite stones and palo santo to keep away the bad juju. Located on Moreland Avenue, they have a ton of throwback hippie-type stores filled with the best vintage clothing, vinyl, and artistry. If you're into Black art, this is the best place to locate Atlanta’s purest talent. Feel free to hang out at the dive bars, burger joints, and Ethiopian and vegan eateries line the surrounding streets.
The Painted Pin is an upscale bowling boutique and entertainment for the grown and sexy only! The Painted Pin is 21+ and abides by a dress code so pull out your date nightclothes. A quick tip: You don't necessarily need a reservation, but this is located in Buckhead, one of Atlanta’s most popular areas, so this spot is almost always packed! Complimentary bowling is available for 1 hour, on 1 lane that can accommodate up to 6 guests. While you wait for lane availability, you and your love can play skee -ball or ping pong!
I hope this guide helps you get accustomed to the city and what it’s like to live here. One of the best things about Atlanta is that there’s almost always something to get into, no matter the weather, location, or budget! These are just a few of my family’s favorite spots to have a good time, but the list is endless. No, seriously. You’ll seldom run out of things to do on any given day! Have fun, and welcome to the A!