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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Fernbank Science Center

Gaze at stars through one of the biggest public telescopes in the U.S. then explore the beautiful surroundings of this free, family-friendly attraction.

The Fernbank Science Center is a small museum on the edge of the Fernbank Forest, east of midtown Atlanta. It has a 500-seat planetarium and an observatory which houses one of the largest telescopes for public viewing in the U.S. There are domestic and companion animals on display, and exhibitions that demonstrate scientific concepts, such as electricity. 

The main exhibit hall is split into two levels. Permanent exhibits are on the top floor and temporary exhibitions are on the bottom floor. The whole area is 9,000 square feet (836 square meters) and can be covered easily in a few hours. Leave extra time to visit the planetarium, or make another visit in the evening to see a demonstration at the observatory.

One of the most popular exhibits is the Apollo 6 space capsule, on display in the permanent gallery. Watch a short video of the last unmanned Apollo mission’s takeoff and journey. 

Kids will love the snakes, frogs, turtles and spiders on display, safely behind glass. One exhibit that’s always busy is the beehive that’s attached to the outside of the building and extends through to a glass case inside. It’s fascinating to watch the bees as they work to produce honey.

The planetarium is one of the biggest in the country, with a 70-foot (21-meter) dome and 500 seats. You’ll feel as though you’re traveling through space thanks to 100 special effects projectors. (Check online for a schedule of presentations.)

Look at real stars through a high-powered telescope in the observatory. Astronomers work the telescope and run question and answer sessions on Thursdays and Fridays (weather permitting).

The science center is open every day except Sunday and some national holidays. The exhibit hall and conservatory are free, but there’s a small entrance fee for planetarium shows. (Check the museum’s website for show times.)

Come by bus from central Atlanta. If you drive, there’s plenty of free parking.


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Have FUN in Midtown Atlanta!
Have FUN in Midtown Atlanta!

Have FUN in Midtown Atlanta!

Decatur, GA
     
    0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in Decatur, this guesthouse is within 2 mi (3 km) of Decatur Courthouse, Emory University, and Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Little Five Points and Variety Playhouse are also within 3 mi (5 km). Decatur Station is 18 minutes by foot and East Lake Station is 26 minutes.

    Luxury Comfort Walkable to Emory, Hospital, CDC
    Luxury Comfort Walkable to Emory, Hospital, CDC

    Luxury Comfort Walkable to Emory, Hospital, CDC

    Atlanta, GA
       
      0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in East Side, this vacation home is within 3 mi (5 km) of Emory University, Fernbank Museum of Natural History, and Little Five Points. Decatur Courthouse and Decatur Square are also within 3 mi (5 km).

      The University Inn at Emory $116
      The University Inn at Emory

      The University Inn at Emory

      1767 North Decatur Road, Atlanta, GA
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in East Side, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Emory University, Fernbank Museum of Natural History, and Little Five Points. Variety Playhouse is 3 mi (4.9 km) away.

        Hampton Inn & Suites Atlanta Decatur/Emory $99
        Hampton Inn & Suites Atlanta Decatur/Emory

        Hampton Inn & Suites Atlanta Decatur/Emory

        116 Clairemont Avenue, Decatur, GA
           
          2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Downtown Decatur, this hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Decatur Courthouse and within 3 mi (5 km) of Emory University and Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Decatur Square and Agnes Scott College are also within 15 minutes. Decatur Station is only a 3-minute walk and Avondale Station is 18 minutes.

          Courtyard Atlanta Decatur Downtown/Emory $95
          Courtyard Atlanta Decatur Downtown/Emory

          Courtyard Atlanta Decatur Downtown/Emory

          130 Clairemont Avenue, Decatur, GA
             
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Downtown Decatur, this hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Decatur Courthouse and within 3 mi (5 km) of Emory University and Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Decatur Square and Agnes Scott College are also within 15 minutes. Decatur Station is only a 4-minute walk and Avondale Station is 19 minutes.

            Intown Craftsman
            Intown Craftsman

            Intown Craftsman

            308 Oxford Place NE, Atlanta, GA
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in East Side, this vacation home is within 2 mi (3 km) of Fernbank Museum of Natural History, Little Five Points, and Variety Playhouse. Emory University is 2.7 mi (4.4 km) away. East Lake Station is 19 minutes by foot and Edgewood-Candler Park Station is 24 minutes.

              Holiday Inn Express Atlanta - Emory University Area $129
              Holiday Inn Express Atlanta - Emory University Area

              Holiday Inn Express Atlanta - Emory University Area

              2183 N Decatur Road, Decatur, GA
                 
                2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Situated in Decatur, this hotel is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) from Emory University and 2.6 mi (4.1 km) from Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Decatur Courthouse and Decatur Square are also within 2 mi (3 km). Decatur Station is 28 minutes by foot.

                Charming Decatur Apartment
                Charming Decatur Apartment

                Charming Decatur Apartment

                Decatur, GA
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Great Lakes, this apartment building is 0.7 mi (1.2 km) from Decatur Courthouse and within 3 mi (5 km) of Emory University and Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Decatur Square and Agnes Scott College are also within 2 mi (3 km). Decatur Station is 16 minutes by foot and Avondale Station is 30 minutes.