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Christmas tree and stage decorated with lights and wreaths.
Six Flags as a winter wonderland.
Photo courtesy of Six Flags Over Georgia.

Top 10 places around Atlanta to celebrate the holidays

From light shows and skating rinks to family-friendly yuletide bonanzas, the ATL overflows with seasonal entertainment.

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Six Flags as a winter wonderland.
| Photo courtesy of Six Flags Over Georgia.

The holidays are in full swing, and there’s no shortage of yuletide entertainment to be found for celebrating the season around Atlanta.

Whether it’s an evening out with a significant other or a few hours with the entire family, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. In fact, many of these events are turning into holiday traditions that both residents and visitors lap up year after year.

To help you, Atlanta, on your merry way, we’ve compiled the following, informative map. Now grab a coat and scarf—or, well, a light jacket—and go ring in the holidays!

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1. Garden Lights, Holiday Nights

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1345 Piedmont Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30309

The Atlanta Botanical Garden welcomes the holidays with its seventh annual “Garden Lights, Holiday Nights” display, which features 2 million holiday lights throughout the 30-acre property.

Running through Jan. 7, this year’s event revolves around a “Nature’s Wonders” theme, with lights, music, and sound choreographed together to emulate the wonders of nature. Think ocean waves, thunderstorms, snowfalls, rainbows, sunrises and sunsets, meteor showers, and more. Returning visitors will find favorites like the “Orchestral Orbs” on the Great Lawn and the “Tunnel of Light.” Other activities include s’more-roasting fire pits, cash bars, and dining at the onsite restaurants.

The event takes place every night from 5 to 10 p.m., with extended hours to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets start at $14.95 for children ages 3 to 12, and $19.95 for adults. Prices vary for members and nonmembers, as well as for day and time purchased. See website for full fee schedule.

Red and green lighted balls and tree shapes. Photo courtesy of Atlanta Botanical Garden/Jason Getz Photography

2. Skate the Sky

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675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30308

Through Feb. 14, hit the ice while enjoying Atlanta skyline views at Skate the Sky on The Roof at Ponce City Market.

Traditionally a private event space, PCM’s Rooftop Terrace has been transformed into a winter wonderland where skaters can work on their figure 8’s as they glide around the ice. In addition, visitors can enjoy seasonal treats as they take a break from skating.

The venue is open Monday through Wednesday from 3 to 10 p.m., Thursday and Friday from 3 to 11 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 9 p.m.

Skating tickets are $15 for adults and $8 for kids ages 5 to 12 years old. Tickets include skate rental. Skating is not suitable for children younger than 5; also, skating times begin every hour and last 50 minutes. FYI: You must be on the roof 30 minutes prior to your skate time.

Roof admission (not included) is $10 for anyone age 13 and older, and $7 for kids ages 3 to 12.

3. Holiday in the Park

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275 Riverside Pkwy
Austell, GA 30168

Now in its fourth year, Holiday in the Park at Six Flags Over Georgia continues to expand its offerings to celebrate the season. This year, there are 29 holiday rides in 16 themed areas, as well as a full schedule of live entertainment.

Starting at the park entrance, “Main Street Christmas” welcomes visitors to the park with a canopy of 165,000 twinkling lights and periodic snow showers. Other attractions include the North Pole Express train ride, which transports guests to the North Pole and a visit with Santa; the “Because It’s Christmas” live show at The Crystal Pistol; and the park’s iconic 1908 Riverview Carousel, which is covered with more than 100,000 lights and 250 luminary candles.

Open select dates through Jan. 3, hours vary by day, but generally run from 2 to 10 p.m. Check the full calendar on the website for exact hours and days of operation. Admission starts at $48.99 per person, but check the website for special ticket prices and deals.

Front of train next to building covered in white and blue lights. Photo courtesy of Six Flags Over Georgia.

4. Candlelight Nights

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130 West Paces Ferry Rd NW
Atlanta, GA 30305

Step back in time during the Candlelight Nights at the Atlanta History Center.

Held on Dec. 15 and Dec. 22, this event transports visitors back to Christmas past, where they can experience the holidays during a simpler time. Activities include a Christmas Market filled with wares by local artisans, a visit with Santa Claus, holiday music, and tours through the center’s three historic houses. Food by Souper Jenny and drinks will be available for purchase. Members can experience the Candlelight Nights Lounge, which includes family activities such as cookie decorating, ornament making, and light refreshments.

Event hours are 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.; the members-only lounge is open from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for the general public, $15 for members, and $10 for children.

Woman in period costume lighting candles on a Christmas tree. Photo courtesy of Jason Hales/Atlanta History Center

5. Holiday Festivities at the World of Coca-Cola

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121 Baker St NW
Atlanta, GA 30313
404-676-5151 
Visit Website

The World of Coca-Cola is in full holiday mode with a number of seasonal activities.

Well-known for its own recognizable Santa Claus, the World of Coca-Cola is taking a look back at the evolution of St. Nick’s look in “History of the Coca-Cola Santa” exhibit. Another special exhibit, “A Coca-Cola Christmas Celebration,” examines how Coca-Cola has been included in Christmas celebrations around the world. For a taste of the season, head to the Taste It! room to sample seasonal beverages like Coca-Cola North Pole Magic, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar Arctic Chill, and Chocolate-Covered Cherry Coke. To get a head start on next year’s holiday card, have your picture taken with the Coca-Cola Polar Bear, pile into Santa’s sleigh, or gather ‘round the giant holiday ornaments scattered around the grounds outside the building.

Hours of operation vary by day, but generally run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Check the website for exact times on specific days. General admission tickets are $17 for adults ages 13 to 64, $15 for seniors ages 65 and older, and $13 for children ages 3 to 12.

A red wall with various circular images of Santa. Photo courtesy of The World of Coca-Cola.

6. Stone Mountain Christmas

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Robert E Lee Blvd
Stone Mountain, GA 30083

At Stone Mountain Park, visitors are invited to have a Holly Jolly Christmas filled with two million sparkling lights, plenty of holiday music, and visits with some of their favorite holiday characters from “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

Activities include a nightly tree-lighting ceremony with the Snow Angel, a Christmas parade that heralds the arrival of Santa Claus, a trip around the mountain on the Singalong Train, and plenty of entertainment. In fact, shows include a theatrical production of “It’s a Wonderful Life” on a 36-foot-tall video Christmas tree, an abbreviated showing of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” in 4-D, and story time with Mrs. Claus.

Stone Mountain Christmas hours vary on select dates, but generally run from 2 to 10 p.m. Check the calendar on the website for exact hours on specific dates. Tickets start at $31.95 for adults and $29.95 for children ages 3 to 11; check the website for exact pricing and special deals.

Stone Mountain Park entrance decorated with Christmas lights. Photo courtesy of Stone Mountain Park/Steven Bridges

7. Lenox Square

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3393 Peachtree Rd NE
Atlanta, GA 30326

Lenox Square continues to be a holiday destination for both residents and visitors in Atlanta. 2017 is no different.

Families return year after year to visit Santa, including for their special furry family members. Everyone also comes to see the Macy’s Great Tree, which has been a mainstay of Atlanta’s holiday scene for 70 years. Another Atlanta holiday tradition is a ride on Macy’s Pink Pig, Priscilla, which has been a Christmas favorite for more than 50 years.

Tickets to ride the Pink Pig costs $3 for an individual ride; multi-ride tickets are available for $5.50 for two rides and $7.50 for three rides. Hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

FYI: The ride will close at 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve and will be closed on Christmas. Hours to see Santa generally are 9 a..m. to 9:30 p.m., but do vary, so check the website for an up-to-date schedule. Photo costs vary by package and are available at the mall.

Boy riding pink train that looks like a pig. Photo by John Amis/AP Images for Macy's/FR69715 AP

8. Aquafina Rink at Park Tavern

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500 10th St NE
Atlanta, GA 30309

For more icy fun, head to the Aquafina Rink at Park Tavern for a few hours of skating.

Housed inside a climate-controlled tent, the 85-by-40-foot rink accommodates up to 200 skaters at a time. Seven days a week, the rink is open to the public with the exception of scheduled private events.

Tickets range from $15 to $20 and can be purchased for “all day skating.” Hours are Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 8 p.m. for all ages and 8:30 p.m. to midnight for ages 16 and older, and Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. for all ages and from 8:30 p.m. to midnight for ages 16 and older.

Parking is available for $3 on weekdays and $5 on weekends.

Girl ice skating on rink in a tent. Photo courtesy of Park Tavern.

9. Atlantic Station

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1371 Market St NW
Atlanta, GA 30363

At Atlantic Station, visitors can finish their holiday shopping as well as enjoy a number of holiday activities and events.

At the Christkindl Market, find a variety of handcrafted German gifts and food, or say hello to St. Nick at Santa’s Cottage. For a white Christmas, go to Central Park for a daily snow show, then don your ice skates to skate the station.

On select dates through Jan. 29, many more special events will keep ringing in the holidays. Check the calendar on the website for a full operating schedule and any related ticket prices.

People ice skating at Atlantic Station. ©Raftermen 2015

10. Holidays at SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta

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Battery Avenue Southeast
Atlanta, GA 30339

Last but not least, here’s a new option: SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta are filled with holiday spirit and plenty of activities and events to keep visitors busy.

Grab your skates and hit the ice at the rink on SunTrust Park plaza, or plan your visit with Santa at the SunTrust OnUp Experience at The Battery Atlanta (this free event includes a free photo!). Inside SunTrust Park, enjoy carnival games, zip lines, a batting cage, and more at Hope and Will's Sandlot. Located in The Battery Atlanta plaza, guests can listen to live music, see live performances by The Atlanta Braves Heavy Hitters drumline, visit holiday craft activity stations, and more.

Hours, activities, and prices vary by event and day, so check the website for full details.

1. Garden Lights, Holiday Nights

1345 Piedmont Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Red and green lighted balls and tree shapes. Photo courtesy of Atlanta Botanical Garden/Jason Getz Photography

The Atlanta Botanical Garden welcomes the holidays with its seventh annual “Garden Lights, Holiday Nights” display, which features 2 million holiday lights throughout the 30-acre property.

Running through Jan. 7, this year’s event revolves around a “Nature’s Wonders” theme, with lights, music, and sound choreographed together to emulate the wonders of nature. Think ocean waves, thunderstorms, snowfalls, rainbows, sunrises and sunsets, meteor showers, and more. Returning visitors will find favorites like the “Orchestral Orbs” on the Great Lawn and the “Tunnel of Light.” Other activities include s’more-roasting fire pits, cash bars, and dining at the onsite restaurants.

The event takes place every night from 5 to 10 p.m., with extended hours to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets start at $14.95 for children ages 3 to 12, and $19.95 for adults. Prices vary for members and nonmembers, as well as for day and time purchased. See website for full fee schedule.

1345 Piedmont Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30309

2. Skate the Sky

675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30308

Through Feb. 14, hit the ice while enjoying Atlanta skyline views at Skate the Sky on The Roof at Ponce City Market.

Traditionally a private event space, PCM’s Rooftop Terrace has been transformed into a winter wonderland where skaters can work on their figure 8’s as they glide around the ice. In addition, visitors can enjoy seasonal treats as they take a break from skating.

The venue is open Monday through Wednesday from 3 to 10 p.m., Thursday and Friday from 3 to 11 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 9 p.m.

Skating tickets are $15 for adults and $8 for kids ages 5 to 12 years old. Tickets include skate rental. Skating is not suitable for children younger than 5; also, skating times begin every hour and last 50 minutes. FYI: You must be on the roof 30 minutes prior to your skate time.

Roof admission (not included) is $10 for anyone age 13 and older, and $7 for kids ages 3 to 12.

675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30308

3. Holiday in the Park

275 Riverside Pkwy, Austell, GA 30168
Front of train next to building covered in white and blue lights. Photo courtesy of Six Flags Over Georgia.

Now in its fourth year, Holiday in the Park at Six Flags Over Georgia continues to expand its offerings to celebrate the season. This year, there are 29 holiday rides in 16 themed areas, as well as a full schedule of live entertainment.

Starting at the park entrance, “Main Street Christmas” welcomes visitors to the park with a canopy of 165,000 twinkling lights and periodic snow showers. Other attractions include the North Pole Express train ride, which transports guests to the North Pole and a visit with Santa; the “Because It’s Christmas” live show at The Crystal Pistol; and the park’s iconic 1908 Riverview Carousel, which is covered with more than 100,000 lights and 250 luminary candles.

Open select dates through Jan. 3, hours vary by day, but generally run from 2 to 10 p.m. Check the full calendar on the website for exact hours and days of operation. Admission starts at $48.99 per person, but check the website for special ticket prices and deals.

275 Riverside Pkwy
Austell, GA 30168

4. Candlelight Nights

130 West Paces Ferry Rd NW, Atlanta, GA 30305
Woman in period costume lighting candles on a Christmas tree. Photo courtesy of Jason Hales/Atlanta History Center

Step back in time during the Candlelight Nights at the Atlanta History Center.

Held on Dec. 15 and Dec. 22, this event transports visitors back to Christmas past, where they can experience the holidays during a simpler time. Activities include a Christmas Market filled with wares by local artisans, a visit with Santa Claus, holiday music, and tours through the center’s three historic houses. Food by Souper Jenny and drinks will be available for purchase. Members can experience the Candlelight Nights Lounge, which includes family activities such as cookie decorating, ornament making, and light refreshments.

Event hours are 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.; the members-only lounge is open from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for the general public, $15 for members, and $10 for children.

130 West Paces Ferry Rd NW
Atlanta, GA 30305

5. Holiday Festivities at the World of Coca-Cola

121 Baker St NW, Atlanta, GA 30313
A red wall with various circular images of Santa. Photo courtesy of The World of Coca-Cola.

The World of Coca-Cola is in full holiday mode with a number of seasonal activities.

Well-known for its own recognizable Santa Claus, the World of Coca-Cola is taking a look back at the evolution of St. Nick’s look in “History of the Coca-Cola Santa” exhibit. Another special exhibit, “A Coca-Cola Christmas Celebration,” examines how Coca-Cola has been included in Christmas celebrations around the world. For a taste of the season, head to the Taste It! room to sample seasonal beverages like Coca-Cola North Pole Magic, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar Arctic Chill, and Chocolate-Covered Cherry Coke. To get a head start on next year’s holiday card, have your picture taken with the Coca-Cola Polar Bear, pile into Santa’s sleigh, or gather ‘round the giant holiday ornaments scattered around the grounds outside the building.

Hours of operation vary by day, but generally run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Check the website for exact times on specific days. General admission tickets are $17 for adults ages 13 to 64, $15 for seniors ages 65 and older, and $13 for children ages 3 to 12.

121 Baker St NW
Atlanta, GA 30313

6. Stone Mountain Christmas

Robert E Lee Blvd, Stone Mountain, GA 30083
Stone Mountain Park entrance decorated with Christmas lights. Photo courtesy of Stone Mountain Park/Steven Bridges

At Stone Mountain Park, visitors are invited to have a Holly Jolly Christmas filled with two million sparkling lights, plenty of holiday music, and visits with some of their favorite holiday characters from “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

Activities include a nightly tree-lighting ceremony with the Snow Angel, a Christmas parade that heralds the arrival of Santa Claus, a trip around the mountain on the Singalong Train, and plenty of entertainment. In fact, shows include a theatrical production of “It’s a Wonderful Life” on a 36-foot-tall video Christmas tree, an abbreviated showing of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” in 4-D, and story time with Mrs. Claus.

Stone Mountain Christmas hours vary on select dates, but generally run from 2 to 10 p.m. Check the calendar on the website for exact hours on specific dates. Tickets start at $31.95 for adults and $29.95 for children ages 3 to 11; check the website for exact pricing and special deals.

Robert E Lee Blvd
Stone Mountain, GA 30083

7. Lenox Square

3393 Peachtree Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30326
Boy riding pink train that looks like a pig. Photo by John Amis/AP Images for Macy's/FR69715 AP

Lenox Square continues to be a holiday destination for both residents and visitors in Atlanta. 2017 is no different.

Families return year after year to visit Santa, including for their special furry family members. Everyone also comes to see the Macy’s Great Tree, which has been a mainstay of Atlanta’s holiday scene for 70 years. Another Atlanta holiday tradition is a ride on Macy’s Pink Pig, Priscilla, which has been a Christmas favorite for more than 50 years.

Tickets to ride the Pink Pig costs $3 for an individual ride; multi-ride tickets are available for $5.50 for two rides and $7.50 for three rides. Hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

FYI: The ride will close at 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve and will be closed on Christmas. Hours to see Santa generally are 9 a..m. to 9:30 p.m., but do vary, so check the website for an up-to-date schedule. Photo costs vary by package and are available at the mall.

3393 Peachtree Rd NE
Atlanta, GA 30326

8. Aquafina Rink at Park Tavern

500 10th St NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Girl ice skating on rink in a tent. Photo courtesy of Park Tavern.

For more icy fun, head to the Aquafina Rink at Park Tavern for a few hours of skating.

Housed inside a climate-controlled tent, the 85-by-40-foot rink accommodates up to 200 skaters at a time. Seven days a week, the rink is open to the public with the exception of scheduled private events.

Tickets range from $15 to $20 and can be purchased for “all day skating.” Hours are Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 8 p.m. for all ages and 8:30 p.m. to midnight for ages 16 and older, and Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. for all ages and from 8:30 p.m. to midnight for ages 16 and older.

Parking is available for $3 on weekdays and $5 on weekends.

500 10th St NE
Atlanta, GA 30309

9. Atlantic Station

1371 Market St NW, Atlanta, GA 30363
People ice skating at Atlantic Station. ©Raftermen 2015

At Atlantic Station, visitors can finish their holiday shopping as well as enjoy a number of holiday activities and events.

At the Christkindl Market, find a variety of handcrafted German gifts and food, or say hello to St. Nick at Santa’s Cottage. For a white Christmas, go to Central Park for a daily snow show, then don your ice skates to skate the station.

On select dates through Jan. 29, many more special events will keep ringing in the holidays. Check the calendar on the website for a full operating schedule and any related ticket prices.

1371 Market St NW
Atlanta, GA 30363

10. Holidays at SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta

Battery Avenue Southeast, Atlanta, GA 30339

Last but not least, here’s a new option: SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta are filled with holiday spirit and plenty of activities and events to keep visitors busy.

Grab your skates and hit the ice at the rink on SunTrust Park plaza, or plan your visit with Santa at the SunTrust OnUp Experience at The Battery Atlanta (this free event includes a free photo!). Inside SunTrust Park, enjoy carnival games, zip lines, a batting cage, and more at Hope and Will's Sandlot. Located in The Battery Atlanta plaza, guests can listen to live music, see live performances by The Atlanta Braves Heavy Hitters drumline, visit holiday craft activity stations, and more.

Hours, activities, and prices vary by event and day, so check the website for full details.

Battery Avenue Southeast
Atlanta, GA 30339