Suggestions needed - Atlanta, Dallas and maybe Florida

Discussion in 'Other U.S. Destinations' started by MissBurrill, Oct 16, 2011.  |  Print Topic

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How should MissB fill in her time?

Poll closed Oct 30, 2011.
  1. Visit the Unclaimed Luggage Centre

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  2. Hang out in JAX, visit Harry Potter Land then road trip to ATL with friends.

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  3. Road trip with friends from Iowa to Chicago to ATL

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  4. Visit Dollywood

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  5. I can't believe you're flying that far to attend a knitting convention

    1 vote(s)
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Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. MissBurrill
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    MissBurrill Gold Member

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    I'm lucky enough to be visiting the USA in April. Flights are booked, leave has been approved. Now to fill in the gaps. To be honest I've never had a desire to visit Atlanta but I'll be attending a knitting convention there. Ok, you've stopped laughing? What's your must do in Atlanta? I will be staying with friends and they are talking about a wine country tour.

    I have to fill in a few days and have a couple of options. I can fly to JAX and stay with a friend. There's talk of a couple of days at Harry Potter Land then a road trip back to ATL. Another idea is to rent a car and visit the Unclaimed Luggage Centre. I don't know why but it's somewhere I really want to visit. There's also a road trip from Iowa to Chicago to ATL that I can gatecrash.

    On the way home I have 36 hours-ish in Dallas. I know I have months to plan but expedia are offering opening specials at the Omni Dallas Hotel on 555 S Lamar Street. I'm thinking a new hotel would be great but is that the best part of Dallas to stay for such a short visit? Is Fearing's at the Ritz Carlton worth dining at?
     
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  2. JennB
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    JennB Gold Member

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    IMO, not really the prettiest or most fun places in the states. Have you been to other parts of the country before? Also, what things interest you? Food, art, history?

    Here in Atlanta, I would suggest the Aquarium. It's our biggest attraction and it is quite nice. We have a nice art museum, a lot of good food and some great shopping. Other than that, Atlanta doesn't have the depth you'll find in some other cities. I always have a hard time finding attractions to suggest. I can suggest a lot of okay things to do, but very few must-do's. As for wine country, the wine isn't the best in the USA by any means, leaps and bounds behind Napa or the Willamette Valley but the land they are on is pretty and it can still be relaxing and fun.

    The Unclaimed Baggage Center is interesting, but it's not that great. I have seen some really odd stuff there before but it's in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere and it's just sort of a large box building with a bunch of stuff thrown in it. I have heard that it's better on the days when stuff arrives but last time I went (out of curiosity) all of the electronics were ancient and everything else was very picked over. It was just slightly above a thrift store. But I have heard that some people get some great stuff there if they happen to be there at the perfect time.

    If you're set on the South, I think our most endearing cities are Charleston, Savannah and Asheville. All of those are beautiful and have plenty to do, especially Charleston.

    Harry Pottter Land is in Orlando. Not terribly far from J-ville but it's not in that city. Florida is... Florida. Some part of it like Amelia Island, the Keys, etc are beautiful and nice places to spend time but Orlando is a very, very tourist focused place. Some people love that, me, not so much.

    Chicago is worth seeing. It's such a huge city and if you're into architecture, it's a gold mine. I adore the city.... when it's warm. Awesome museums as well. The Field, the Museum of Science and Industry... fabulous. A few years ago, S&I had a huge Harry Potter exhibit but I think it's gone now, I believe they have a Dr. Suess exhibit now.

    That's just my opinion though, I'd have to know your interests to really know what to suggest.
     
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  3. MissBurrill
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    MissBurrill Gold Member

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    Thank you for the long reply JennB. I appreciate it. The places I'm visiting are fairly fixed but the good news is I haven't been to the south before. Among the places I have been are LA, NYC, DC and Chicago. My itinerary has Atlanta and Dallas as fixed but I do have a few days to fill.

    I think I've built up the Unclaimed Luggage Centre to be so fantastic that I would hate to be devastated by it. Part of me is thinking when else will I be that close but what if I don't like it? It would be nice to just cruise around in a rental car for a few days.

    I could keep an eye out for sale fares and see where I end up for a few days. The plan for Harry Poter Land is to drive from Jax in the morning, rides all day. Overnight in a hotel, more rides then roadtrip back to JAX.

    I'd love some restaurant suggestions. Art or history? A bit of both I guess.
     
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  4. JennB
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    JennB Gold Member

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    I"ll try to think of some restaurants.

    As for unclaimed baggage, it could be fun with the right mindset. There is some weird stuff there. I didn't buy anything when I visited, nothing I really wanted, but I definitely had some laughs.
     
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  5. miles and smiles
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    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    I'll add my vote for Charleston and Asheville. I grew up in the first and live in the second, so would be happy to help you with ideas for either. And both are within 300 miles of Atlanta. April is a wonderful time to visit the South - very beautiful with lots blooming and temps still mild.
     
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  6. spesalvi

    spesalvi Gold Member

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    The only thing I can think of to do in Atlanta is the Coke (Coca Cola, southerners call most soda coke) museum/factory
    and for Dallas well TX is a big state and in the cities itself it's very spread out, so it can take 30+mins just to get to point a to b
    I don't hear much about Dallas, except for great BBQ but hey Houston is 4 hrs away and Austin is in between
     
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  7. JennB
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    JennB Gold Member

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    It's called World of Coke. I've never been there, it's a museum. Definitely a tourist thing. Though it does look quite nice from the outside and is right next to the Aquarium.

    As for driving from Dallas to Houston via Austin, that's a very round-about way to get between the two and will take you a whole lot more than 4 hours. There is a much more direct way between the two cities.

    Charleston would be a great place to weekend. I'm a native South Carolinian so I've spent a pretty good percentage of my life there and the city has never lost its appeal to me (and to countless others who have told me that they've been there over the years)
     
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  8. flyingdawg
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    flyingdawg Gold Member

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    I would have to chime in that the Unclaimed Luggage Center (Scottsboro, AL) would be a huge let down. Not really worth going our of your way to see.

    In ATL you may want to consider a tour of the Margaret Mitchell House, author of Gone WIth the Wind, in downtown ATL. http://www.margaretmitchellhouse.com/
    The MLK historic district with Martin Luther King's boyhood home, church and gravesite if that's of interest to you are also in downtown ATL. http://www.nps.gov/malu/index.htm
    For true southern soul food try Mary Mac's Tea Room on Ponce de Leon in downtown. The must have is cornbread and pot likker. http://www.marymacs.com/

    Happy Travels!
     
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  9. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Oh yeah, this could be an interesting thread. :)
    My first caveat is never go to Charleston without a room reservation. That city is extremely popular for small conventions. When 2 or 3 hit at the same times, the rooms disappear.
     
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  10. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Biltmore house in Ashville could be pleasant that time of year; as long as it wasn't crowded. Take a sweater. Google it.;)
     
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  11. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Once upon a time, I had an extra day on a road trip to Atlanta to fill. I stopped at Frank Lloyd Wright's Rosenbaum House in Florence, Alabama. Then I visited the Space and Rocket Center at Huntsville. Next I went on the Unclaimed Baggage Center. Amazingly, in a showcase they had a cup from my dear old granny's discontinued china pattern; which I purchased. I then drove south along Gunthersville Lake till I came to US431, which would take me over to the original Boaz outlet centers; before heading on home to Atlanta.
    That kind of trip is really the only way one can justify going to the Unclaimed Baggage Center.
     
  12. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Wine country? :confused:
    I'd say muscadine, if your lucky.:rolleyes:

    Still the old saying goes, "If you really like to swing the hammer, everything looks like a nail!":D
     
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  13. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    You can visit the Aquarium. Yes, World of Coca Cola is down there,too. (google it; and look for information on AtlantaCityPass). If you really are into animals, you can visit Zoo Atlanta in Grant Park. And that would put you close to an often overlooked attraction; the Cyclorama. (google it!)
     
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  14. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Oh, my yes! ; MaryMacs, absolutely!
    But don't forget The Colonnade. (google it.)
    And Atlanta's orginial drive-in; The Varsity (google it.) (What'll ya have?!!!)
    I've been eating eggs and pancakes at The Majestic Diner(google) since Nixon was President!
    And I'm proud to say the first meal I ever ate in the Great State of Georgia was at a Waffle House! (google,dearie.)

    Bon Appetit.;)
     
  15. miles and smiles
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    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    2soonold, has google taken over Georgia? :D
    Sure was a quieter invasion than Gen. Sherman. :rolleyes:
     
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  16. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Of the places you mentioned, I think LA is most like Atlanta, in that you really need a car to get around.
    Oddly enough, the first place I always recommend to a visitor is Savannah. I can be done in a day (a very long day, but even in my 30's we'd get to drinking and decide to run down there for a dip in the ocean.) but Savannah's springtime beauty will stay with you for a lifetime.:)
     
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  17. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Locally, I'd first recommend Stone Mountain Park. :)
    Walk up to the mountain's top.:eek: I did it last Easter for sunrise service in the dark! (and I'm a senior citizen:p).
    You must visit the park's Antebellum Plantation!
    And if you are lucky, you will get to hear the park's Carillon. It's from the 1964 World's Fair in New York!

    If you're just in the mood for a drive, check out Brasstown Bald (google). About 100 miles, and should be plenty cool and windy in April!
     
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  18. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    The other place that I like that most others overlook is The Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel(wikipedia this one). Atlanta is all about "rising from the ashes"; and for me, no other building in Atlanta exemplifies that spirit as well as The Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel!
    Call me hopelessly provincial, but nothing says home to me like a meal at the Sun Dial Restaurant.;)

    Be safe in all your travels, dear. Bon Voyage!
     
  19. MissBurrill
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    MissBurrill Gold Member

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    Thank you for all the replies! I am liking the idea of renting a car and seeing where I end up. I've decided I need to be back in Atlanta on the Thursday afternoon so I have the Monday - Thursday to explore.

    I'd still love to road trip with friends but I'll have to see if they are road tripping on the Thursday. It would also be fun to schedule a MP gathering while I'm in the USA.
     
  20. zshanlon

    zshanlon Silver Member

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    How great to see another North Carolinian on MP! Well, growing up in Charleston do you claim NC now that you live here or are you still a SCian at heart?
     
  21. miles and smiles
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    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    Hi zshanlon,
    I have noticed quite a few North Carolinians here on MP over the past year.
    I've lived about 17 years in NC (including a year in your neck of the woods - Chapel Hill) and about 20 years in SC, so both are dear to my heart. Fortunately my family still has a place in the Charleston area, so I remain connected to both.
    Asheville area is definitely my primary home and I feel very blessed to live here.
     
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