Atlanta is known as the "Crossroads of the South."
That's a beautiful sentiment until holiday season. This time of year people from all over the southeast pour into our city to shop, visit, and simply pass through and all that volume means one thing: Traffic. Tis the season for road rage, fender benders, and traffic tickets in Atlanta and there's only one way to avoid it. Stay home!
Just kidding - we know you've got Christmas shopping to do. But if you're planning on being out and about for any length of time (especially over the weekend) try and avoid the most heavily-trafficked areas of the city this time of year.
Lenox Square Mall
There is no pain like the pain of spending an hour trying to go one mile past Lenox. The Buckhead area as a whole is a nightmare this time of year but Lenox and Phipps Place are the epicenter. If possible, avoid Peachtree Rd. altogether and don't get off 400 at Exit 2. Your best bet is to use Roxboro Rd. NE to come in towards the back of Lenox Mall and shell out the money to valet so you don't drive around for hours.
Atlantic Station has quickly become one of the biggest shopping destinations in the city and the area's adorable holiday lights and packed skating rink aren't helping. Nearby IKEA adds to the trafffic woes here. If possible, avoid unpredictable 75 altogether and use Northside Drive or Howell Mill Road and 17th to cut through to Atlantic Station. The less you can be on the highways, the better.
Lake Lanier Light Show
The Magical Nights of Lights at Lake Lanier is truly a sight to behold, and we love that it's right outside our city! But unless you absolutely, positively have to go we advise you to stay home. This place is a traffic nightmare no matter how you get there or what time you go - but avoiding 985 is a smart bet (we'd suggest Hwy 19 instead.)
Mall of Georgia
Speaking of Buford, do we even have to tell you to steer clear of Mall of Georgia? If you can find a way around the traffic light disaster that is I-20 you'll be in better shape; Financial Center Way runs parallel to 20 and might be worth a shot. We suggest you hit the mall as early as possible and check the website for special holiday hours which can be as early as 8:00 a.m. to as late as 11:00 p.m.
What did we miss?
We know you've been stuck in some epic holiday traffic in the Atlanta area...tell us about your experience and protips in the comments.
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