Marietta, a city in northern Georgia is one of Atlanta’s most populated suburbs.
Marietta, the state capital, is only 20 miles southeast. However, Marietta is rich with history and culture, especially from the state’s Civil War and Antebellum periods.
Marietta was established from a historical courthouse and main square from the 1830s. It grew rapidly even after the main hub of the Western and Atlantic Railroad was moved to Atlanta.
Six historic districts are home to survivors of multiple fires and the traumas of war. They also have a number of museums and heritage buildings. Kennesaw Mountain is also nearby.
Let’s take a look at the top 15 things to do in Marietta Georgia.
1. Ghosts of Marietta Tour
Joining the Ghosts of Marietta Tour is a great way to get an overview of Marietta and discover its many landmarks.
Your guide will take you on a tour of the city’s oldest streets and burial grounds, telling the stories of some ghosts from Civil War soldiers to residents of the nineteenth century.
These tours take place after dark and offer a great deal of atmosphere. They are either led by a lantern on foot or aboard a historic trolleybus that allows you to see more of the historic city.
These tours, even if you aren’t convinced by stories of the supernatural they offer a great introduction to all Marietta has.
2. Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art
The Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art was opened in 1990. It is housed within a grand Greek Revival-style building with a portico of columns. This portico used to be the city’s main postal office.
It was used for scenes in the courthouse of Selma, a film released in 2014. The gallery space has a warm and familiar feel.
This museum is the only one that focuses on American art in the Greater Atlanta area. It has a permanent collection that spans the entire history of America from the 18th century, through modern sculpture and paintings.
3. Marietta Confederate Cemetery
You may have been to the Confederate Cemetery on the Ghosts of Marietta Tour. However, you might want to spend more time at this sacred site in Georgia’s history.
The Confederate Cemetery is located next to the City Cemetery. It is also the largest cemetery for many hundred miles.
It is home to approximately 3,000 Confederacy soldiers who fought during the American Civil War. These were the rebel states that split from the Union.
The cemetery is divided into sections according to state and houses a 6-pound (3-kg) field gun that was used in the war. It was captured by the union forces of Savannah, Georgia.
4. Oakton House
Oakton House, Marietta’s oldest continuously occupied house, was built in 1838 right at the beginning of the city’s history.
It was used as a Confederacy headquarters building in the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain, 1864. Union forces led by Sherman marched on Atlanta from there.
The large gardens can be used partly as formal gardens with box hedging. Additionally, the property boasts an original barn, smokehouse, well and milkhouse.
5. Marietta Museum of History
The Marietta Museum of History, also known as Kennesaw house, was constructed of red bricks in 1845 to store cotton.
The museum covers the two upper floors and has an extensive collection covering a broad range of topics from the city’s early two centuries.
The Civil War period is well represented. However, there are displays that detail the lives of native Americans in the area before they were forced from ancestral territories and the history of Georgia’s gold rush.
Exhibits include a rare Cherokee Bible, as well as militaria displays from the Civil War to more recent conflicts.
6. Kennesaw Mountain
Kennesaw Mountain rises to just over 500m above the ground. It is just short of Denali (Mount McKinley), which reaches 6,900m and is the highest peak of the United States.
It is however the highest point of the Atlanta metropolitan area. This makes it an appealing proposition for anyone looking for views across the region.
You can also enjoy the numerous hiking trails that run through the wooded slopes of Little Kennesaw Mountain.
We’ve seen the importance of this mountain as part of the Appalachian Mountains. It is now part of a battlefield park that preserves the site and recreates artillery positions.
By road, the park and mountain are located approximately 20 minutes north of Marietta.
7. The Big Chicken
The Big Chicken, a large representation of a 17-metre-high chicken, is a well-known landmark that exudes southern charm and wit. It has been advertising a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in the area since 1956.
You’ll find street directions to Marietta based on the Big Chicken if you spend any time in Marietta. Pilots, unbelievably use the structure to reference points when landing at Atlanta’s international airport.
The Big Chicken has become so well-known that there is a gift shop where souvenirs, such as a board game or T-shirts, can be purchased.
8. Gone with the Wind Museum
The Gone With the Wind Museum is located within the walls and basement of Brumby Hall. It was constructed in 1851. It evolved from a private collection that contained memorabilia relating the book of Margaret Mitchell of Atlanta and the resulting 1939 film starring Clark Gable and Vivien Lee.
It includes Leigh’s cream-and-black Bengaline honeymoon attire, as well as copies of the book by the author.
The film’s cast of black actors, including Hattie McCDaniel, are told through displays. For her role as Mammy, she was the first African American woman to win an Oscar. Due to segregation, she was unable attend the Oscars ceremony or the film premiere.
9. Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History
The Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History is located in Kennesaw, approximately 6 miles from Marietta. Its contents may need to be explained more.
Visitors will be able to spot the General, a steam locomotive engine used in the Great Locomotive Chase (1862), among the extensive collection of civil war artifacts and items.
Another significant moment in the civil war was the chase. A group of Unionists were chasing the Texas, while Confederate soldiers chased them along the tracks.
The French Merci boxcar (French Merci) is another exhibit. It arrived in 1949 with gifts from France and was sent to America as a thank you for their work in Europe during World War II.
10. Farmers market
Marietta’s Farmers Market is open every Saturday from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m.
There are many vegetables available, most of which are grown locally by small-time producers. Shoppers can also enjoy freshly-baked breads and freshly-squeezed Lemonade. They can also take home homemade honeys and preserves.
The market is situated in central Marietta, in a free-of-traffic lot on Mill Street.
11. William Root House Museum & Garden
The William Root House Museum & Garden is one of several buildings that has been deemed the oldest in Marietta.
The museum has been restored to its 1845 original appearance. It contains information about the Root family’s life and times, as well the slaves who served in their home.
The interiors are set up as if they were just being moved. They feature authentic pieces of furniture from the region.
The original cookhouse was recreated outside and includes a stove from the construction era.
William Root would be proud to have the garden planted with vegetables and medicinal herbs.
12. Strand Theatre
The Strand Theatre is also located in downtown Marietta. It was built in 1935 and is an unusual relic from the city’s art deco period when it was used as a cinema complex.
The building has many uses today, including a busy calendar of events. The building hosts classic films, such as Gone With the Wind, and also offers concerts, comedy nights, and live theater performances.
The Brew with a view bar is also located on the fourth floor.
13. Marietta Square Food Tour
This food tour is a great alternative to the Ghosts of Marietta Tour if you are considering a Marietta tour.
It is located in the heart of the city at Marietta Square. The tour takes members to seven restaurants.
You’ll find a whole new world of delicious food at local-owned and operated restaurants, bakeries, food stores and other food outlets.
Each stop lasts approximately three hours and is accompanied with the kind of knowledge only locals have, providing further insight into the city.
You will be served a variety of Colombian specialties and traditional southern dishes as part this tour.
14. Six Flags White Water
Six Flags White Water is suitable for all ages. For toddlers, there are age-appropriate pools. For those who have more experience, you can enjoy the full range of slides designed to pump the adrenaline.
This is one of America’s top water parks, covering 280,000 square meters.
Six Flags offers a variety of slides-based attractions as well as a wave pool, the Atlanta Ocean, as well as a lazy river, Little Hooch, named after the Chattahoochee.
Six Flags White Water is located on the west side of Marietta and is only five minutes from downtown.
15. Chattahoochee river
When planning a Marietta trip, the Chattahoochee river is an important green space that both humans and native species should not miss.
It flows throughout metropolitan Atlanta and is easily accessible at Johnson Ferry.
Visitors can choose from approximately 2 miles of hiking trails, a covered pavilion for picnicking, or a boat launch if they are interested in exploring the area from the water.