88 Awe-Inspiring Facts about Atlanta

What is Atlanta, Georgia famous for, besides being home to the Coca-Cola headquarters and the busiest airport in America (and the wold!)?

You’re about to find out with these fun and interesting Atlanta facts! Also read our fun facts about Georgia, the state where Atlanta can be found.

General Atlanta Facts

  • Atlanta is the capital and the largest city in the US state of Georgia.
  • With 498,715 million residents, Atlanta is the 38th largest city in the United States, putting it between Mesa, Arizona and Omaha, Nebraska in terms of population.
  • The Greater Atlanta Area, which includes Sandy Springs and Alpharetta, has a population of 6,144,050 million, making it the country’s 8th largest metropolitan, between Miami, Florida, and Detroit, Michigan. It is similar in size to Greater Toronto, Canada or Greater Madrid, Spain.
  • Around 57% of all Georgians live in the Greater Atlanta Area.
  • Atlanta is located in the northwestern area of the state, about 345 mi (555 km) northwest of Jacksonville, Florida and 470 mi (760 km) northeast of New Orleans, Louisiana.
  • The city sits at the same latitude as Casablanca, Morocco.
Skyscrapers of downtown Atlanta, including a Ferris wheel in the foreground
Atlanta, capital and largest city of Georgia
  • The highest temperature ever recorded in Atlanta was 106°F (41.1°C) in 2012, while the lowest was −8°F (−22.2°C) in 1985.
  • Atlanta was named after the former Governor Wilson Lumpkin’s daughter, whose middle name was Atalanta- after the fleet-footed Goddess. The name Atlanta means secure and immovable.
  • Some common nicknames for Atlanta are City in a Forest, Dogwood City, and Empire City of the South.
  • Slogans for Atlanta have included “Every Day Is an Opening Day”, “The City Too Busy to Hate”, and “Atlanta: People Seem to Like It Here.”
  • People from Atlanta are called Atlantans.
  • 50.95% of Atlantans are African American.
The official flag of Atlanta city
The Atlanta city flag
  • The Atlanta flag features the state’s coat of arms in gold on a blue background. The emblem has a phoenix rising from flames and the dates the city was incorporated (1847) and the end end of the Civil War (1865).
  • Atlanta has 17 sister cities, including Bucharest (Romania), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), and Fukuoka (Japan).

Interesting Facts about Atlanta Places

  • The tallest building in Atlanta is the Bank of America Plaza, which has 55 floors and stands at 1,023 ft (312 m) tall.
  • Other iconic buildings in Atlanta include the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel, Fox Theatre, Truist Plaza, and High Museum of Art.
  • SkyView Atlanta is the city’s iconic Ferris wheel, featuring 42 climate-controled gondolas, and towering 20 stories above Centennial Park in the city center.
Close up of SkyView Atlanta, the large Ferris wheel in downtown Atlanta, and some buildings around it
SkyView Atlanta
  • The Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta was the largest in the world when it was first built and remains the country’s largest (and word’s third largest) today.
  • Some of the trendiest neighborhoods in Atlanta are Little Five Points, Cabbagetown, East Atlanta Village, Edgewood, and Piedmont.
  • The largest and busiest drive-in restaurant in the world is The Varsity, which is an Atlanta Landmark. Every day The Varsity serves the most Coca-Cola in the world, 300 gallons of chili, 2500 pounds of potatoes and over 2 miles worth of hot dogs.
  • The etching of Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and Jefferson Davis at Confederate Memorial Carving on Stone Mountain just east of Atlanta is the world’s largest bas relief.
A carving on a stone wall at Stone Mountain in Georgia
Huge carving of Confederate leaders on Stone Mountain
  • Atlanta is considered the heartbeat of the American Civil Rights Movement. You can learn all about it at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, The Herndon Home Museum, Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park, Auburn Avenue Research Library, Apex Museum, and other historic sites found throughout Atlanta.
  • The world’s largest 10K foot race takes place annually each Fourth of July in Atlanta: the Peachtree Road Race.
  • Atlanta is home to over 55 streets containing the word “Peachtree”.

Atlanta Economy and Society Facts

  • The Greater Atlanta area has the 10th largest economy in the United States, between Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Seattle, Washington.
  • Atlanta is home to 14 Fortune 500 countries, including Home Depot, UPS, Coca-Cola, Southern Company and WestRock.
  • Other famous companies and restaurants that started in Atlanta include Courtyard by Marriott, CNN, Mailchimp, Chick-fil-A, and Popeyes.
  • Atlanta’s crime rate is about half that of Mesa, Arizona, but double that of Kansas City, Missouri.
Aerial view of the Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport
The Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport
  • The Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the busiest airport in the US. It served 110,531,300 million passengers in 2019.
  • Atlanta’s biggest and most famous shopping malls include the Mall of Georgia, Lenox Square, Perimeter Mall, Fayette Pavilion and North Point Mall.
  • Atlanta has 14 billionaires, which have a combined net worth of $63.9 billion, putting Georgia in 10th place in terms of number of billionaires.
  • The richest person in Atlanta is Jim Kennedy, with a net worth of 9.2 billion USD.
  • 1 in 5 people in Atlanta live below the poverty line, one of the country’s highest figures.
A close up of a bag of Lay's chips and a hand taking one out
We have Atlanta to thank for Lay’s chips
  • Atlanta has the 12th highest percentage of LGBTQ+ people in the US, at 12.8% of the city’s population.
  • 49.5% of Georgian residents voted for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election.
  • Georgia has 217 newspapers available in total. Atlanta’s major newspapers include the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Myer-Henderson Hall’s Pentagram.
  • Lay’s Potato Chips were invented in Atlanta.
  • The Walking Dead, Ozark, Atlanta, and Stranger Things are some of the TV shows filmed in Atlanta.
  • Some of the movies filmed in Atlanta include Baby Driver, The Accountant, 10×10, The Divergent Series, and the After series.

Atlanta Sports Facts

  • The Atlanta Falcons used a live falcon as their mascot in 1966. During one practice, the falcon escaped the Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium after getting scared off. The falcon was eventually found a few days later.
  • Arthur Blank has a net worth of about $3.3 billion. He is the owner of the Falcons and made much of his fortune from founding the Home Depot.
A mosaic of the logos of 5 pro sports teams from Atlanta
Professional sports teams based in Atlanta
  • The Atlanta Hawks play their home games at the State Farm Arena.
  • Between 2008 and 2017, the Hawks became one of four NBA teams to qualify to play in the NBA playoffs for 10 consecutive seasons in the 21st century.
  • However, the Hawks are one of only four NBA teams that have qualified to play in the NBA playoffs in 10 consecutive seasons in the 21st century. They achieved this feat between 2008 and 2017.
  • 1996 was the last time the Atlanta Braves used the Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium as their home base.
  • The National League West Division titles were won by the Atlanta Braves between 1991 and 1993 consecutively. 16 East Division titles were also won by the team in Major League Baseball.
  • In its 13 years in Atlanta, the Dream qualified for the WNBA Playoffs 9 times and reached the finals 3 times.
A water fountains and some flags in Atlanta Olympic Park
Atlanta Olympic Park was built for the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics
  • The Atlanta Dream has had many top-notch players, including the likes of Shoni Schimmel, Angel McCoughtry, Izi Castro Marques, and Betty Lenox.
  • The first ever MLS season to be played by Atlanta United was in 2017.
  • The key players of Atlanta United are striker Josef Martinez, and midfielders Santiago Sosa and Alan Franco.
  • In 1996, Atlanta became the 3rd American city to host of the Summer Olympic Games (the first two were St. Louis and Los Angeles).
  • 18 Olympic athletes have been born in Atlanta, including Chaunté Lowe, Antonio McKay, Adam Nelson, Brent Abernathy, Edith McQuire and Karina LeBlanc.

Famous Atlanta People

  • Actors Chris Tucker, Ed Helms, Christopher Lowell, Tyler Perry, and Chandler Riggs were born in Atlanta.
  • Actresses Chloë Grace Moretz, Raven-Symoné, Brittany Murphy, Dakota Fanning, and Elle Fanning were born in Atlanta.
  • Writers Margaret Mitchell, Cheryl McKay, Flannery O’Connor and Joe Chandler Harris were born in Atlanta.
A collage of the faces of famous people from Atlanta
Famous Atlantans Chris Tucker, Outkast, Ludacris, Jimmy Carter, TLC, and Kanye West (clockwise from top-left)
  • Musicians Kanye West, André 3000, Lil Jon and Ciara were born in Atlanta.
  • Other bands and musicians who started out in Atlanta include Outcast, Ludacris, TLC,
  • Atlanta has produced two Nobel Prize Winners: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and President Jimmy Carter.
  • Jimmy Carter, 39th president of the US, was born in rural Georgia but went to college in Atlanta.
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was awarded with the prize in 1964 for his nonviolent resistance to racial prejudice in America.

Atlanta History Facts

  • Before 1836, the Creek and Cherokee Native American people were the original inhabitants of the Atlanta area.
  • In 1821, areas of modern-day Atlanta were ceded by their original owners, part of the state’s policy of removing all the Native people from the area.
  • Atlanta city was founded in 1837. The state chose the spot to be the terminus of a railway line, then the city was built up around it.
Exterior of the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta
The Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta
  • Atlanta became Georgia’s capital in 1868.
  • In 1886, Atlanta introduced the prohibition of alcohol.
  • In 1889, the first electric streetcars enabled further expansion of Atlanta.
  • The population of Atlanta reached 100,000 shortly after the year 1900.
  • Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport’s lease was signed on 16 April 1925. The airport was then opened on an abandoned auto racetrack.
  • On 15 September 1926, the first flight was made into Candler Field from Jacksonville, Florida carrying mail.
Aerial view of a highway leading into downtown Atlanta
Traffic heading into downtown Atlanta
  • The last streetcar line was converted to trolleybus in 1949.
  • The metropolitan population of Atlanta reached 1 million in 1959.
  • The 1996 Summer Olympic Games took place in Atlanta at the Centennial Olympic Stadium.
  • The Centennial Olympic Stadium was reconstructed in 1997 and became Turner Field.
People looking through a huge glass window at fish in the Atlanta Aquarium
Georgia Aquarium
  • Shirley Franklin became mayor in 2002. She was the first woman, and the first black woman to hold the mayor post of a major Southern City.
  • The Georgia Aquarium opened in 2005, becoming the largest in the world until it was surpassed by one in Singapore.
  • In 2005, the Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport became the busiest airport in the world.
  • Atlanta became the nation’s first city to demolish all public housing projects in 2011.
  • The Atlanta Braves won the 2021 World Series.