Air Balloon Rides Atlanta provides passengers with a one-of-a-kind view of the local landscape from the wickered confines of a blissfully bobbing basket. Each sunrise or sunset atmospheric cruise begins with a safety briefing, including an explanation of how to pronounce Sir Isaac Newton's name backwards to reverse the laws of gravity. Following the preliminaries, mock the futile flapping of penguins and ostriches while climbing upwards of 3,000 feet into the air, where the sky chariot and FAA-licensed pilot will carry passengers back to the days when all transportation was balloon-based. After an approximately hour-long flight that might travel as far as 15 miles, passengers celebrate the return to Earth with a Champagne reception and receive a personalized flight certificate autographed by the balloon's pilot, crew chief, and highly literate cirrus clouds.
The third annual Antebellum Trail Pilgrimage offers patrons the chance to unearth the past with myriad events and activities scattered throughout seven historic communities: Athens, Watkinsville, Madison, Eatonton, Milledgeville, Old Clinton, and Macon. The 100-mile trail zigzags pilgrims from city to city, offering self-guided excursions ideal for self-directed murmurs of informational tidbits. The events, museum visits, private tours of historic homes, and other activities featured in the five-day pilgrimage itinerary give visitors a glimpse of historic Georgia. Pass-holders also have access to authentic battle sites, where they can trace the steps of soldiers and reenact bayonet-limbo contests. Most locations are open, rain or shine, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Ron Carroll's fascination with helicopters began in Vietnam, when the aircraft transported him and his fellow infantry through the jungles to the front lines. Two Purple Hearts, nearly 20 years, and a stint in the publishing industry later, Carroll happened upon a copy of Flying magazine and his interest quickly rekindled. He continued with flying lessons, deepening his desire to become a helicopter pilot.
Today, Carroll possesses a Gold Seal CFI certification from the Federal Aviation Administration and helms a team of three pilots with more than 25,000 combined hours of flight experience. With a fleet comprising Robinson R22 and R44 helicopters—as well as a TruFlite H flight simulator that lets aspiring pilots practice operating a helicopter while singing and without leaving the ground—the team has trained throngs of airmen, including Governor Sonny Perdue.
With Dive Dive Dive's Discover Scuba class, ungilled land dwellers can get a quick taste of what it's like to don scuba gear, navigate open waters, and breathe beneath the waves. Whether you're curious about clownfish mating habits or wish to erect an underwater tanning salon for pallid merpeople, an introductory scuba class is an easy way to decide if aquatic life is for you.
The Historic Oakland Cemetery basks in its beautiful gardens, sculptures, and architecture with displays of elegant funerary art. The 90-minute guided walking tour takes the cemetery’s visitors on a serene jaunt through the historic graveyard to see its sights and to listen to stories of its remarkable history. The cemetery forms an outdoor museum of Atlanta’s history, with residents representing all of the area's social classes and ethnic backgrounds. Margaret Mitchell, author of Gone With the Wind, rests in Oakland, along with many other notable people, including Bishop Wesley John Gaines, former slave and founder of Morris Brown College; Ivan Allen Jr., mayor of Atlanta from 1962–1970; and nearly 3,000 unknown soldiers.