One of the original thirteen colonies, Georgia is the 24th largest state in America. It's situated in the southeastern region of the country, with borders to Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, and Florida, with a portion of the state of Georgia also on the Atlantic Coast. In terms of physical size, Georgia covers an area of 59,425 square miles.

Nicknamed the 'Peach State', Georgia was originally named after King George II of Great Britain. The state has a rich history, being one of the original Confederate states and playing a major role in the American Revolution and Civil War. The capital city of Georgia is Atlanta, which is also the largest city in the state. The Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell Metropolitan Statistical Area is the biggest metro area in the state of Georgia. Here are some key details and overviews on the largest cities of Georgia.

1. Atlanta

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Situated mostly in Fulton County but also stretching into DeKalb County in the northwestern part of the state, Atlanta is the capital city of the state of Georgia. Atlanta is also Georgia's biggest city, covering an area of 134 square miles and having an estimated population of 486,000 people, with over 5.7 million in the surrounding metropolitan area.

This city was founded in the 1830s and originally called 'Terminus' due to its situation on the Western and Atlantic Railroad. The name of the city was changed to Marthasville in 1843 and then Atlanta in 1847. The city of Atlanta is the 38th most populous in the United States and is the major commercial and cultural hub of Georgia. It is well-known for having lots of green spaces, earning the nickname 'City in a Forest', as well as being home to the busiest airport in the world: Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

2. Cities in Georgia: Augusta

Cities in Georgia: Augusta
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Located on the Savannah River in the Piedmont part of Georgia, Augusta is the second biggest city in the state. It can be found on the eastern border with South Carolina and covers a very large area of 306.5 square miles due to its status as a consolidated city-county. Augusta has an estimated population of 197,000 people, with over 600,000 in the surrounding metropolitan area.

The city was founded in 1736 and named after Princess Augusta, the Princess of Wales. Augusta is best-known for hosting one of the four major PGA golf tournaments: The Masters. The city also notably enjoys a warm climate, helping to set it apart as one of the key resort towns in Georgia.

3. Cities in Georgia: Columbus

Cities in Georgia: Columbus
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Located on the Chattahoochee River on the western border of Georgia, not far from the Alabama city of Phenix City, Columbus is Georgia's third largest city. It's the county seat of Muscogee County and, like Augusta, forms a consolidated city-county. Columbus was named after the world-famous explorer of the same name and was founded in 1828.

This city covers an area of 220.8 square miles and has an estimated population of 194,000 people. Columbus is known as a key transport hub for the state of Georgia, having close ties with Alabama and being just 100 miles away from Atlanta. The city is also known as a key tourism site, with many museums and historical landmarks, along with the Chattahoochee River which is very popular for whitewater rafting and kayaking.

4. Cities in Georgia: Macon

Cities in Georgia: Macon
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Like Augusta and Columbus, Macon forms a consolidated city-county and is the fourth biggest city in the state of Georgia. It is known as the 'Heart of Georgia' due to its central location in the state, and is situated just over an hour away from the state capital of Atlanta.

Macon covers an area of 255.13 square miles and has an estimated population of 152,000 people, with around 228,000 in the surrounding metropolitan area. The city of Macon is known as a strong educational zone, as well as being a popular tourism site for the state of Georgia due to its many museums and historical buildings.

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5. City in Georgia: Savannah

City in Georgia: Savannah
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Situated in Chatham County, of which it is the county seat, Savannah is the fifth biggest city in the state of Georgia. It was founded in 1733 on the Savannah River and played a key role in major events like the American Revolutionary War and Civil War.

Savannah is located in the eastern part of Georgia and covers an area of 108.7 square miles. It has an estimated population of 146,000 people, with 387,000 in the metropolitan area. Savannah historically had one of the most important ports in the country and is now a popular tourist location.

Attraction Spotlight: Michael C. Carlos Museum

The Michael C. Carlos Museum is located on the historic quadrangle at the Emory University in Atlanta and is dedicated to collecting, exhibiting, interpreting, and preserving artworks and artifacts from antiquity to the present day. The Museum aims to provide to promote interdisciplinary research and teaching at the University and provide exclusive opportunities for educational enrichment in the community.

Founded in 1919 as the Emory University Museum due to a growing collection of art, which was started in 1876, the Michael C. Carlos Museum has been serving scholars, students, art-lovers, and history buffs for generations. Housed in the Michael Grave’s building, the Museum’s collections comprise over 16,000 works and feature works ranging from nineteenth-century acquisitions of Asian works to early twentieth-century and more recent acquisitions of African, Latin American, Classical, and Middle Eastern works. In addition to outstanding collections, the Museum also offers a variety of educational programs and academically rigorous projects for scholars and students, as well as performances, lectures, symposia, workshops, and festivals.

The Carlos Museum also offers a community outreach program called Art Odyssey for school children in Georgia by bringing art, history, and archaeology to the classroom, and operates a teaching laboratory and conservation center.

The Michael C. Carlos Museum has grown into one of the most esteemed institutions in the Southeast with more than 17,000 artifacts, art and objects from ancient Africa, Asia, Egypt, Greece, Rome, and Nubia, as well as an impressive collection of paper works dating back to the Renaissance.

Covering the full spectrum of the Nile Valley’s civilization, the collection of Ancient Egyptian and Nubian antiquities and artifacts spans historical periods from the early Prehistoric to Roman times. Highlights of this fascinating collection include the oldest Egyptian mummy in the world, as well as 10 other sarcophagi, one of which is thought to be the lost pharaoh, Ramesses I. Other objects include nine coffins, and funerary material from the 21st Dynasty (ca. 1070–946 BC).

The collections of Greek and Roman Art span over four millennia from the early Neolithic period to the 4th and 5th centuries during the Roman period, including semi-precious stones, works in gold, silver, bronze, ivory and bone. Highlights of the Greek and Roman collection range from one of the earliest bathtubs in the world and a marble Roman sarcophagus from the 5th century to an over life-size portrait of Tiberius and the garnet head of Berenike II.

The Carlos Museum's collection of art from the Americas consists of more than 2,300 pieces representing all three principal cultural centers, namely Central America, Mesoamerica, and the Andes, including works from the Maya and Aztec to the Inca and Chavín. The collection also features over 600 works from ancient Costa Rica.

The South Asian art collection represents some of the major religious cultures in the world today and their ancient roots, such as Buddhism and Hinduism. Dating back to periods between the 1st to the 17th-century works and objects in the collection include a magnificent late 2nd-century sandstone Buddha from Mathura (Indian Buddhism), a 14th-century Tibetan gilded bronze statue (Buddha Shakyamuni), and an 11th-century sculpture of Vishnu (Hindu). The ancient Indian religious tradition Jainism is represented by a 10th-century bronze altar.

The works on the paper collection were begun in 1967 and consist of more than 4,000 drawings, prints, and photographs encompassing French and Italian drawings, Renaissance and Baroque etchings and engravings, American Regionalist prints, 19th and 20th-century photography, and contemporary works.

The Michael C. Carlos Museum offers a wide variety of educational programs for children, scholars, students, and adults, as well as informative docent-led group tours. Programs include group tours adult’s, student’s and children’s workshops, homeschool days, student research blogs, and chamber music concerts. Other programs and events range from AntiquiTEA, Artful Stories at the Museum, Carlos Reads Book Club, and family concerts to lectures, gallery talks, and symposia about the Museum’s permanent collection and evolving exhibitions.

The Michael C. Carlos Museum is located at the Emory University at 571 South Kilgo Circle in Atlanta 130 and is open Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and Sunday from 10:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Visitors can enjoy free docent-led tours of the Museum every Sunday at 2:00 pm and group tours of 10 people or more must be booked in advance. The Museum also offers special tours for people with mild cognitive impairment or dementia called Museum Moments that offers a unique and unforgettable experience.

Emory University, 571 South Kilgo Cir NE, Atlanta, GA 30322, Phone: 404-727-4282

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Attraction Spotlight: Centennial Olympic Park

Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta, Georgia is the highlight of the Iconic Centennial Park District and is surrounded by world renowned fine dining, unique hotels, and a plethora of entertainment options, in a family friendly, vibrant environment.

Visiting Centennial Olympic Park

Centennial Park was the official gathering place of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, opening to the public on July 13th, 1996. More than 5 million people visited the park during the Olympics.

Centennial Olympic Park is one of the top attractions in Atlanta, open daily from 7am-11pm. The park is pet friendly, but dogs must be kept on a leash always. Please see the park website for a list of prohibited recreational activities including sports, grilling, and other activities.

A map on the park that can be downloaded in PDF form is available on the website. This map also offers detailed parking information for the many event spaces in the Centennial Park District.


Centennial Olympic Park has 13 exhibits, A Visitor’s Center, Pavilions, tons of lawn space, plaza’s, fountains, and a Googie Burger location for dining.

Allen Family Tribute- This statue memorializes the three generations of the Allen family that have lead the city of Atlanta through the Civil Rights Movement, brought economic development to the city, and brought the Olympic games to the city in 1996.

Gateway of Dreams- This 15-foot sculpture was created by Raymond Caskey and depicts the founded of the modern Olympics, Baron Pierre de Coubertin.

Androgyne Planet- This 26-foot tall sculpture was brought to the park to represent the continuity of the Olympic games and was commissioned for the 1996 Games as a gift from Barcelona, site of the 1992 games.

Children’s Garden and Playground- An area for children near Baker street that pays tribute to agriculture and Georgia’s thriving gardening culture.

Paralympic Legacy- A Stainless Steel monument that honors the 3,310 athletes that participated in the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games where 268 world records were set.

Water Gardens/Quilt of Nations- A professionally landscaped water garden with cascading water paths, model after Panther Creek, and honor all 197 nations that participated in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. This was the largest number of countries to ever participate in the games.

Quilt of Olympic Spirit- This monument honors the 10,000 athletes that participated in the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games and the 842 medalists are inscribed on granite. The United States won the most medals during these games.

Quilt of Origins- This 8-ton sculpture is a tribute to Olympia and represents the athletes in the first Olympics, modern Olympics, and a female athlete to represent the Atlanta Centennial Park Olympics.

Quilt of Remembrance- This quilt is a mosaic of stone that commemorates the 111 people injured during the bombing that happened at the 1996 Olympic Park bombing. The 111 stones are from 111 different countries with an eternal light to honor Alice Hawthorne who was killed in the incident.

Quilt of Dreams- A statue of Billy Pain was created by Mike Matoba to symbolize Billy Pain’s efforts to bring the Olympics to Atlanta.

Hermes Towers/ Centennial Plaza- This plaza is surrounded by the official flag of the Olympic Games and 23 national flags that represent other cities that have hosted the games. There are also plaques commemorating the first 100 years of the Olympic host cities as well as towers that are 65 feet high and named after Hermes, a mythical Greek God of events. Centennial Tree, The Garden Walk, and a reflecting pool are all located directly behind the plaza.

Fountain of Rings- Featuring 4 daily shows, the Fountain of Rings is one of the most sophisticated fountains in the world and performs to popular songs while children play in the water. This iconic attraction is free and plays 365 a year.

Southern Company Amphitheatre- This Amphitheatre as completed after the Olympics and completed through resources from the Southern Company. The Amphitheatre seats 1,200 people and hosts open air concerts and other outdoor events. 186 days of programing in the Amphitheatre is family friendly and free.

Visitor Center- Start your visit at the Visitor Center where families can find interactive kiosks where they can learn more information about Centennial park and the Olympic Games, docents to answer questions, and volunteers happy to show you more information about the many commemorative stature and displays in the park and grounds. Googie Burger is located near the visitor’s Center and the Fountain Rings are adjacent.

Googie Burger- This futuristic themed diner serves made from scratch burgers, fries, and fried chicken through a walk-up window with creatively themed dipping sauces.

265 Park Ave W NW , Atlanta, Georgia, 30313, Phone: 404-223-4412

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Attraction Spotlight: Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Fernbank Museum of Natural History first opened its doors in 1992, and is now among Atlanta's most iconic and popular cultural attractions. The museum contains the largest dinosaurs in the world, the largest movie screen in the city, and one of the greatest collections of urban Piedmont forest in the country. Among its many exhibitions are a glimpse of the natural history of Georgia, dinosaurs that include ones that once lived in the region, and look at how personal adornment described who people are and their culture.

A Walk Through Time in Georgia is the museum's signature exhibition, which tells the story the natural history of Georgia. Combined with dioramas and theaters, the fifteen galleries explain the fascinating and complex tale. The exhibition starts with the state's oldest rocks in the Piedmont region and ends with the youngest area, the Coast and Barrier Islands. Visitors will learn about a variety of plants and animals, as well as the geographical regions where they live. Highlights of the exhibit include the Gray's Reef diorama, the Ruling Dinosaurs Gallery, and the Ridge and Valley diorama's walk-through cave.

Visitors to the Fernbank Museum can explore a multi-level clubhouse in the NatureQuest exhibit. Other highlights include exploring the insides of a large oak tree by climbing up spiraling netting, and walking through a virtual waterfall to investigate the world behind it. The exhibit is an immersive experience designed to turn children into adventurers, scientists, and explorers as they explore the natural world.

In Reflections of Culture, the exhibition aims to show how what people wear tells who they are. It focuses on how people share information about themselves, such as cultural identity or economic, political, or social information, through different forms of personal adornment. Visitors can learn about what culture is and how people express it through an array of historic and contemporary objects.

Fernbank Museum's Conveyed in Clay: Stories from St. Catherines Island uses pottery to show 5,000 years of human history. The exhibition explores how Native American adapted to cultural and natural changes through their pottery's evolution. The collection ranges from the oldest pottery discovered on the continent to the mission era's Spanish majolica, from basic pinch pots to coil pots.

The Dinosaur Plaza contains an array of features, such as an outdoor gathering area filled with flowers, trees, and other plants. The highlight of the plaza is a family of bronze dinosaurs that greet visitors to the museum. These hadrosaurs are a species that once lived in the Georgia region, and information about them and their environment is displayed in the plaza.

Giants of the Mesozoic replicates life that once existed in the badlands of Patagonia, where the world's largest dinosaurs were unearthed. Visitors can gaze up at the largest dinosaurs in the world immersed in a snapshot of a clash of prey versus predator. Among the dinosaurs showcased is the first fully mounted Argentinosaurus in the world. The Argentinosaurus is the largest dinosaur that has ever been classified. The interaction between different species of prehistoric reptiles that existed during the Cretaceous Period can also be observed at the exhibit.

767 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, Georgia, Phone: 404-929-6300