Where to Find Pokémon in Georgia

Have you gotta catch ’em all in Georgia? We scoured the Peach State to bring you the best places to catch Pokémon and battle for the honor of your team.

Pokémon at Georgia Visitor Information Centers

If you’re roadtripping around Georgia, make sure to stop at one of our 12 visitor information centers. Every center has either a PokéStop or a PokéGym. Our Ringgold Center on I-75 South, coming in from Tennessee, and our West Point Center on I-85N, coming in from Alabama, have both!

georgia pokegyms

Left: PokeStop and PokeGym at Ringgold VIC, Right: PokeGym at West Point VIC

Pokémon in Atlanta

If you’re visiting the capitol of the South this summer, check out the user-friendly Google Map created by Atlanta Reddit users. They’ve tagged over 200 Pokéstops across metro Atlanta.

Before you even get out of the airport, you can take advantage of Pokémon fever. Select locations at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport are now offering a Pokémon inspired cocktail to thirsty travelers. Grab a Pikachu Colada Sangria from these eating and drinking destinations in the world’s busiest airport: The Piano Bar on E – located on Concourse E, Varasano’s Pizzeria in the food court on Concourse A, Cat Cora Kitchen by gate A24 and the Atlanta Hawks Bar & Grill near gate A34.

Six Flags Over Georgia is literally swarming with Pokémon! With three PokéGyms and over 15 different PokéStop scattered all over the park, Six Flags Over Georgia is one of the best places to find and train all of your Snorlaxes, Jigglypuffs, and Ponytas.

Marietta, Georgia, just north of Atlanta, is a particularly great place to catch rare Pokémon. The Marietta Square is teaming with Pokéstops and members of the three teams regularly get together to battle it out at the many PokéGyms.

Flowery Branch, Georgia is getting in on the craze with a screening of Pokémon:The First Movie Mewtwo vs. Mew at the Flowery Branch Train Depot on July 23rd.

A Venonat Pokémon in front of the fountain in Marietta Square, courtesy of the Marietta Daily Journal

A Venonat Pokémon in front of the fountain in Marietta Square, courtesy of the Marietta Daily Journal

Already on a team? Follow the Atlanta teams Valor, Mystic and Instinct on Twitter for the most recent meet-ups and Pokémon sightings.

Pokémon in Athens

The college town is being overrun with Pokémon. Check out this round up of PokéStops and PokéGyms from Visit Athens, GA and follow UGA’s newspaper, The Red & Black, on Twitter for the latest sightings. While you’re exploring make sure to check out Creature Comforts Brewing Co., home to the famously hard-to-find Tropicalia IPA.

Pokémon in Toccoa

The North Georgia Mountains aren’t just for hiking and waterfalls anymore. Downtown Toccoa has reported sightings of dozens of PokéStops- the City Hall historic plaque and the Belk-Gallant Building plaque, among others.

13690615_1230168890360891_6546528996921527680_n

While you’re happily hunting, don’t forget to stop for lunch or a snack at Victoria’s Sweet Treats. They have a series of rewards based on your Go level- Level 30 players get a cupcake!

Pokémon in Macon

Macon may be known as “where Soul lives,” but it’s also home to some great PokéStops including restaurants like The Rookery and Parish on Cherry Street. Even the Museum of Aviation at Robins Air Force Base is getting in on the action.

Pokémon in Valdosta

Close to the Florida-Georgia border, V-Town is full of “Wild Adventures” and apparently rare Pokémon. Downtown Valdosta created this map to help you navigate the PokéStops and PokéGyms. You HAVE to check out Jessie’s Restaurant and Catering– they serve amazing chocolate chip pancakes during breakfast and a killer pimento grilled cheese sandwich during lunch.

Pokémon in Rome

In Rome, Georgia you’ll find PokéStops at the Rome-Floyd Welcome Center and The Partridge on Broad Street. If you’re lucky enough to have a Snorlax, The Partridge will even give you a free dessert! The statue of Romulus and Remus outside of Rome City Hall is a PokéStop and Las Palmas Mexican Bar & Grill is a PokéGym- probably the only place in Georgia where you can go to the gym and sip a margarita at the same time!

Pokemon: Eevee

Tommy Romanach finds an Eevee near the Rome Clock Tower.

Pokémon in Canton

“Where metro meets the mountains.” Canton, Georgia is less than an hour north of Atlanta and it in the embodies small-town charm while moving at a big-city pace. The local Patch recently reported that the Cherokee County Animal Shelter is a Pokémon Gym. What a great opportunity to volunteer to walk some pups and battle some Pokémon!

Pokémon in Dillard

At the very tippy top of Georgia, sitting close to the North Carolina boarder, is Dillard. Known for its endless outdoor recreation options and thousands of acres of natural wonders, it’s now a place where you can also find Pokémon galore. If you’re ambitious, you can hit the PokéStops at the Tallulah Falls Railway Museum, Cindy’s Dragonfly, and end at Cupboard’s Cafe for an ice-cold glass of sweet tea and a snack. You’ll also hatch a 2km egg at the same time!

While you’re in Dillard we highly recommend you take time to visit the Foxfire museum, a truly unique glimpse of what life was like for the mountaineers who settled the area.

These are just a few of the places in Georgia to capture Pokémon. Don’t forget to tag your post with #ExploreGeorgia so we can share other hotspots!

**As the app warns at the start of the game, always “watch your surroundings” and be aware of what’s happening around you. Never Pokémon and drive!**

katie christofKatie Christof is the Senior Digital Strategist for Explore Georgia. When she’s not scouting out the newest Georgia restaurants and breweries, she’s scuba diving the nearby quarries or taking her cat Jane for a walk (it’s totally and thing). Keep up with all her travels over on Explore Georgia’s Snapchat @ExploreGeorgia.

Spend a Day Exploring Atlanta by Bike

Take a ride through Atlanta on two wheels and see the city through new eyes. Biking through this day trip will not only get you from destination to destination, but this bike tour will take you through some of the best cultural, natural and culinary attractions Atlanta has to offer!

Prep your wheels

Make sure that your tires are properly inflated and your bike is in good working order before you roll out. Atlanta Trek and Fresh Bike Service are certified beginner-friendly bike shops and offer tune ups as well as bike rentals to make sure you’re ready to ride. If you’re checking up on your own bike, check the maintenance section of the free Atlanta Bikes app for free tutorials on DIY bike maintenance. But first, coffee…and breakfast!

Highland Bakery

Photo courtesy Highland Bakery, Facebook

Photo courtesy Highland Bakery, Facebook

The Zagat-rated Highland Bakery is the perfect place to start your day. They brew local beans and specialty drinks for your morning eye-opener. A muffin is non-negotiable, even if you have to take it for later. Cilantro corn pancakes and ricotta pancakes are just two winners on a menu from which everything could be your favorite. Considering that cycling is part of this restauranteur’s backstory, there’s no better place to start your bike tour day!

Choose Your Adventure: Museum or Garden

High Museum of Art

High Museum of Art, Atlanta

High Museum of Art, Atlanta

The High Museum’s award-winning architecture and collections of fine art from classical to contemporary make this stop a must for any art lover. The High has a first-class collection of art from around the world, including pieces by artists from the Southern United States.

Getting there (0.360 miles): Turn left out of Highland Bakery to head west on 14th Street NE. At the intersection with Peachtree Street NE, make a left. You will pass the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra on your left just before arriving at the High Museum of Art.

Atlanta Botanical Garden

Photo courtesy Atlanta Botanical Garden, Facebook

Photo courtesy Atlanta Botanical Garden, Facebook

Atlanta Botanical Garden is a peaceful paradise filled with blooming flowers, flowing water features, and winding walkways. “Stop and smell the roses” in the rose garden that peaks in May and June. Transport yourself to desert, the tropics, the mountains and the surreal orchid house as you meander through almost 20 unique gardens and plant houses.

Getting there (0.716 miles): Turn left out of Highland Bakery to head west on 14th Street NE. Continue on 14th Street NE until you cross over Piedmont Avenue NE into Piedmont Park. Continue riding on the paved path, going left you’ll ride around the ball and soccer fields, and then pass the tennis center (all on your right). Continue on the path to arrive at the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

Take a Lunch Break

Kwan’s Deli and Korean Kitchen

Centennial Olympic Park, Atlanta

Centennial Olympic Park, Atlanta

Work up an appetite on the ride over to this local favorite at Centennial Olympic Park. If your taste buds aren’t so adventurous, there’s plenty of reliable “deli” basics on tap as well as a kids menu, but the Korean Kitchen menu is not to be missed. The Galbi (short ribs in Korean BBQ sauce) and the crispy tofu are so good that they attract visitors from out of town!

Getting there (3.51 miles): If coming from the Botanical Garden, return the way you came, but when you reach Peachtree Street NE make a right and head north. If coming from the High Museum of Art, make a left onto Peachtree Street NE to head north. At the intersection with 17th Street NE make a left. Follow 17th Street to State Street NW and make a left. Follow State Street NW into the beautiful Georgia Tech campus. When you reach Ferst Drive make a right and follow Ferst Drive around the loop. Bear right just before the aerospace engineering department building (if you reach Cherry Street you’ve gone a little too far) and use the paved path to cross onto Tech Pkwy. NW. Cross over North Avenue NW and continue south on Luckie Street NW. Ride down Luckie Street all the watt to Centennial Olympic Park where you can park your bike and walk to lunch and your next adventures.

Choose Your Adventure: Aquarium or CNN

Georgia Aquarium

The Georgia Aquarium is located at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta. Photo courtesy of the Georgia Aquarium.

The Georgia Aquarium is located at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta. Photo courtesy of the Georgia Aquarium.

Enter another realm where playful and peculiar creatures will captivate you. The Georgia Aquarium is an underwater wonderland where the smallest jellyfish to the mammoth whale shark dwell. Learn about each fascinating species and how humans can help conserve aquatic environments around the world. The Georgia Aquarium is located at the north end of Centennial Park.

Inside CNN Studio Tour

Inside CNN Studio Tour

Inside CNN Studio Tour

Atlanta is the global headquarters of news juggernaut CNN and the largest of its 48 news bureaus around the world. The Inside CNN Studio Tour will take you behind the scenes with interactive exhibits and a backstage glimpse at the network’s studios and newsrooms. Keep your eyes open – you may run into one of your favorite news anchors! The Inside CNN Studio Tour is just south of Centennial Park.

Next Stops

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Hop off your bike and walk with the dinosaurs at the Fernbank Museum. Plenty of hands-on activities will teach you about science, culture and natural history. The IMAX theater will immerse you in “the biggest screen in town,” and the permanent “Giants of the Mesozoic” exhibit will introduce you to a life-size skeletal cast of the Argentinosaurus, the largest dinosaur ever classified!

Getting there: From Centennial Park, head west on Baker Street NW. Cross over Piedmont Avenue NE and on the other side you’ll find the paved Freedom Park Trail. Hop on the Freedom Park Trail for a nearly car-free cruise to the Fernbank. Follow the Freedom Park Trail alongside Freedom Parkway. You’ll eventually ride into Freedom Park, where you’ll pass the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum. Continue on the path’s twists and turns. The path will turn into the Stone Mountain Trail after crossing over Candler Park Drive NE and continue to Dellwood Park. At Clifton Road, you’ll follow the path left to arrive at the Fernbank Museum on your right.

Cacao Cafe

Photo courtesy Cacao Cafe, Facebook

Photo courtesy Cacao Cafe, Facebook

End your day on a sweet note at Cacao Cafe (1046 North Highland Avenue Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30306) on your way back. This signature Atlanta chocolaterie will have you melting in hand-crafted artisan chocolates. Taste your way through “health chocolates,” caramels and confections — and make sure to try the sipping chocolate!

Getting there (4.63 miles): As the sun begins to set on your bike touring adventure, be sure that you have flashing front and rear lights on your bicycle! Follow the Stone Mountain Trail/Freedom Park Trail the same way you came from Centennial Park earlier today. Just past the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum where the Freedom Park Trail meets back up with Freedom Parkway NE, there is an intersection with the Eastside Beltline Trail. Cross Freedom Parkway NE to ride north on the Eastside Beltline Trail all the way to Virginia Avenue NE. Make a right to head east on Virginia Avenue NE, then make a left onto North Highland Avenue NE. Cacao Cafe will be on your left.

Call it a Day

To return to the starting point of your adventure, make a right out of Cacao onto North Highland Avenue NE, and another right onto Virginia Avenue NE. Turn right onto the Eastside Beltline Trail and follow it into Piedmont Park. Find your way to the north side of the park, where you’ll see the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Make a left to ride the paths west from here. You’ll ride around the tennis center and soccer fields. Exit the park at 14th Street NE and ride 3/10 of a mile to return to Highland Bakery.

T-bike-webThis is a guest blog from Tina Schmidt, spokesperson for My City Bikes public health alliance. My City Bikes‘ mission is to help people discover better health and quality of life through biking.

Funky Former Georgian Headlines Atlanta Jazz Festival

The genre-bending, queen of funk, JOI, headlines the Atlanta Jazz Festival on Friday, May 27. A member of OutKast’s extended Dungeon Family and once a staple of the Atlanta music scene, JOI relocated to L.A. in 2012, but still thinks of Atlanta as home. Below, JOI talks about her excitement for the festival and her favorite things to do when she’s in town.

See JOI perform Friday, May 27 at the Atlanta Jazz Festival in Piedmont Park.

See JOI perform Friday, May 27 at the Atlanta Jazz Festival in Piedmont Park.

Are you excited to perform at the Atlanta Jazz Festival?

“I’m so excited to come back to Atlanta, and it is extremely mentionable that I’m coming back and doing Jazz Fest. They always have amazing entertainment, but it’s usually pure jazz. Maybe some world music.”

Is performing in Georgia different than performing elsewhere?

“Yeah it’s different. Because it became my home for the second half of my adult life up until 2012. The various things that I would I experience [in Georgia] would prove to shape me into a better artist.”

JOI

JOI

What is your favorite thing to do in Georgia?

“Visit with my loved ones and family. Atlanta has changed a lot. I love Tropical Cuisine, which is off of Old National [Highway, College Park]. It is very delicious Caribbean [food]. There’s lots of different places that I like. There’s a nice variety of things to do.”

Do you still identify as an ATLien*?

“I spent 20 years there, I definitely still identify in that way.”

(*The name of OutKast’s second album and a widely accepted term for Atlanta residents.)

The Atlanta Jazz Festival is one of the largest free jazz festivals in the country. The festival takes place annually over Memorial Day weekend at Piedmont Park in Midtown. JOI takes the stage at 9 p.m. on Friday, May 27. To see the rest of the lineup and for more information, visit http://atlantafestivals.com. For other Memorial Day music festivals, check out Music Explorer Glen Sarvady’s picks.

nicole-webBorn and raised on collard greens and sweet tea, Nicole Rateau also identifies as an ATLien. She provides marketing and communications support for the Georgia Department of Economic Development, but would gladly sing backup for the Dungeon Family.

Atlanta in 50 Objects – and Its Music in Two

The Atlanta History Center recently extended its “Atlanta in 50 Objects” exhibit through year-end. Its concept is self-explanatory, and the display offers a great snapshot of the city’s history. But naturally, my curiosity immediately gravitated toward which musical icons made the cut.

Exhibit Co-Curator Don Rooney explained that the selections were based entirely on community submissions, which amounted to over 300 nominations. Of those, the Fabulous Fox Theatre ranked near the top of the list. The Egyptian architecture-inspired showpiece is represented by a “Save the Fox” t-shirt from its 1975 preservation campaign. Last fall, the Fox celebrated its 50 millionth attendee. Marketing Director Jamie Vosmeier estimates more than half of those have come since that campaign.

A "Save the Fox" t-shirt from 1975 is included in the Atlanta History Center's "50 Objects" exhibit.

A “Save the Fox” t-shirt from 1975 is included in the Atlanta History Center’s “50 Objects” exhibit. Photo courtesy: Atlanta History Center.

It’s hard to fathom how this landmark came so perilously close to a date with the wrecking ball, but Vosmeier confirms it was spared only by “the largest grassroots effort to that date to save a theater.” Originally designed as a Shriner’s temple, by its Christmas 1929 opening, The Fox was repurposed as a grand movie palace. Eventually, live performances entered the picture. “Elvis played two shows there back in 1956. You can’t get more rock & roll than that,” Vosmeier laughs.

The Fox Theatre. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

The Fox Theatre. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Vosmeier credits recently departed rock promoter Alex Cooley with fueling the Fox’s 1970s revitalization. “Alex was the mastermind; he saw its value as a rock & roll space and made people care about it again. Everyone has a Fox story — ‘I came here to see x,’ whether it was a Disney movie, Aerosmith, James Taylor. That’s when you see the passion come out. It’s an 87-year-old building that’s still relevant to rock & roll.” This theme was reinforced after our conversation, when tragedy left the Fox as the venue that hosted Prince’s final two performances.

Three days each week, the Fox conducts hour-long theater tours with backstage access and plenty of anecdotes — no doubt including Phantom of the Fox” Joe Patten, who restored its renowned “Mighty Mo” pipe organ and lived in the theater for 40 years until his recent death.

The exhibit’s other musical entry is less straightforward. Rooney acknowledges votes for the Allman Brothers, the fondly remembered Great Southeast Music Hall, and the billboard for Jermaine Dupri’s So So Def record label that for years graced the I-85 landscape. The History Center aggregated several nominations spanning Atlanta’s influential and burgeoning hip-hop scene and chose Outkast as its standard-bearer.

Atlanta native Andre 3000 represents the city's hip-hop scene in the Atlanta History Center's "50 Objects" exhibit.

Atlanta native Andre 3000 represents the city’s hip-hop scene in the Atlanta History Center’s “50 Objects” exhibit. Photo courtesy: Atlanta History Center.

The display includes a spectacular photo by Zach Wolfe of Andre 3000 reclining on the floor of Little 5 Points’ legendary Wax n’ Facts Records, as well as a framed copy of Outkast’s eleven-times platinum “Speakerboxxx/The Love Below.” It’s a fine symbol of the duo’s world domination. (I’d make a strong argument for “Hey Ya” as THE signature song of the new millennium to date, but the purist in me thinks the more city-specific “ATLiens” or the wildly inventive “Aquemini” would have made for a better representation.)

“Atlanta in 50 Objects” is a quite entertaining speed tour through local history, even if I can’t shake the feeling that music deserved more than two nods out of fifty. I’m sure every subject matter zealot has their quibbles; however, I’ll be looking to place my own stake in the ground in coming weeks….

glen-headshotGlen Sarvady is Georgia’s official Music Explorer. He has lived in Atlanta for more than 20 years, and has written about music both locally and nationally for at least as long. More recently, he has written regularly for the music/arts publication Stomp & Stammer as well as GeorgiaMusic.org.

Georgia Drummer Keeps the Beat for Cirque du Soleil

Cirque du Soleil's KURIOS - Cabinet of Curiosities

See Cirque du Soleil’s KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities in Atlanta through May 8, 2016.

A man with accordion legs, a gentleman whose giant belly is the residence of a 3.2-foot tall woman, aquatic contortionists, an invisible circus, rola bola aviator… just a few of the quirky and diverse characters Georgia-born drummer Kit Chatham keeps the beat for in Cirque du Soleil’s KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities, showing at Atlantic Station through May 8.

Cirque du Soleil has visited Atlanta 17 times with 14 different shows since 1991. Based in Montreal, Cirque features some of the world’s most talented individuals who perform reality-defying feats to live music. 

Chatham, who has performed in six different Cirque du Soleil productions since 2005, graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in music education and taught in Cobb County before joining Cirque du Soleil. We caught up with Chatham to find out what he likes most about performing in his home state.

Chatam-web

Kit Chatham in costume for KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities

Having grown up here, are you excited to be performing back in Georgia?

“Definitely. The last time I performed here was 2007 with Corteo, also a Cirque du Soleil show. I moved out in 2009 to Las Vegas so I am super excited to be back.” 

This year, Georgia is celebrating the Year of Music, what does Georgia music mean to you?

“It depends on the area. I am an Athens boy, so R.E.M. and the B-52s, but then again I moved from Atlanta for my last years in high school and I was closer to Augusta, so James Brown. When I was in college, I used to record in Macon in the Allman Brothers studio. It’s widespread – Widespread Panic, they’re also from here. It’s tough to summarize Georgia music. It’s got roots in the South. It’s also got soul. It’s got everything — gospel, country, hip hop. It’s very cool to see how much music comes from Georgia that you wouldn’t expect.”

How does live music contribute to the overall Cirque experience?

“With every Cirque show, you’re dealing with things that can happen with acrobats at any given time. So, in order to flow with the acrobats, the music has to be able to adapt and change, maybe go back, maybe jump ahead. It changes every night.”

How does touring with Cirque du Soleil differ from touring with a band or as a solo musician?

“With arena shows or Broadway, you’re in a place one night, two nights, then you’re out. Your one day off is your travel day, which really stinks. With the tent show, we’re here 10 weeks, which is really great. I’m getting a lot of time to explore.”

Chatham performing in Cirque du Soleil's KURIOS - Cabinet of Curiosities

Chatham performing in Cirque du Soleil’s KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities

Does this cast rely on you in this location for input on what to do in Georgia?

“I gave them a long list of what to do in Georgia. You’ve got to go to The Varsity. You’ve got all the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. attractions, Ebenezer [Baptist Church]. The Georgia Aquarium. The World of Coca-Cola. Stone Mountain. The barbecue places to go to. Athens. Savannah. I gave them a huge list of things to try to guide them.”

What is your favorite thing to do in Georgia?

“I am a big barbecue fan. Brunswick stew — you can’t find Brunswick stew anywhere but in Georgia. Every time I come here, I get Chick-fil-A. I love how the brewing industry is starting to pick-up here. But, the biggest thing for me when I come to Georgia is usually family.”

How does this show differ from other Cirque shows you’ve toured with?

“The theme of this show [KURIOS] is steampunk, and it deals with the age of invention and creativity. Going from that steam era to electricity, everything is experimental. The scenery, the stage, all has that steampunk feel. The music is somewhat eclectic. There is a lot of presence of electro swing, which is associated with that theme. There are some more swing elements, classical, rock-and-roll. … With every show the music is different, the styles are different. That’s the one thing that drew me to Cirque, is there are so many different styles within the show and the uniqueness to the music, the overall characteristics to it in each show.”

KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities is at Atlantic Station until May 8. Shows are Tuesday-Sunday in the afternoon and evening. Individual tickets range from $35-$170. Visit www.cirquedusoleil.com/kurios for more information or to purchase tickets.

nicole-webNicole Rateau provides marketing and communications support for the Georgia Department of Economic Development. She would love to go on tour with Cirque du Soleil, but she would miss Georgia and collard greens!