The Auburn Tigers are returning to Atlanta on Monday—after losing the SEC title game to the Georgia Bulldogs earlier this month—to face UCF in the Peach Bowl.
New Year’s Day will mark the 50th matchup for the storied game, but it won’t be the last college game in the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the season. Two teams will advance to the College Football Playoff National Championship on Jan. 8.
It’s been an epic opening year for the stadium, following the implosion of the Georgia Dome, as it has already hosted the SEC Championship. More than 70,000 fans are expected at the game, with tickets still available for just over $200.
For those who plan to come and party, here are some helpful hints:
The game will be played at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium at the western edge of downtown Atlanta. Kick-off is scheduled for 12:30 p.m.
With more than 30 hotels in downtown Atlanta, comprising tens-of-thousands of rooms, there’s no shortage of places to stay. A quick search reveals that plenty of rooms are available to meet almost any budget. Here’s a few of our favorites, mapped.
Traffic downtown on gamedays can be a nightmare. Plain and simple.
To make it to the game on time, with minimal effort, catch a westbound MARTA train (Blue or Green lines) to Dome / GWCC / Philips Arena / CNN Center Station. A ride will cost $2.50, and those staying in Midtown or other areas to the north or south of downtown will need to take a Red or Gold Line train to Five Points and transfer to a westbound train.
Those staying in downtown hotels can also make a 15 to 20 minute walk across Centennial Olympic Park to access the stadium.
THINGS TO DO:
Falling on New Year’s Day, game attendees will have a chance to partake in one of many events happening in the city for New Year’s Eve. Those staying downtown will be in the middle of Atlanta’s annual Peach Drop, slated to happen in Woodruff Park this year.
The event’s free. For a list of performers, specific times, and security 411, see this rundown.
For those making a weekend of the game, a slew of special events start on Saturday, and the ATL has no shortage of attractions to occupy visitors.
No trip to the Peach Bowl would be complete without a few hours at the College Football Hall of Fame, located just a few blocks from the stadium. Other attractions in the Centennial Park district include the Georgia Aquarium, The World of Coca-Cola, the Center for Civil and Human Rights, SkyView Ferris Wheel, and the Atlanta Children’s Museum.
For a more comprehensive list of Atlanta-area attractions, check out our pocket guide of the city’s biggest draws.
Of course, for those who can’t snag a ticket to the game, it will be aired on ESPN.