If you were to ask any of my kids what the best thing we did in Atlanta was, they would quickly answer the aquarium. Each had a different favorite thing about it, from the sea lion show to the penguins to the whale sharks. In my opinion it was hands down the whale sharks.
Tickets can be expensive, but there are deals available. Check out the various offerings on their website. When we visited they offered Early Bird Admission (anytime before 11), after 4pm deals and a Mommy and Me Passes. The Mommy and Me admitted up to 4 children under 5. Combining offers we saved over $50. If you are hitting up more than one tourist hotspot check out the City Pass Atlanta . It offers 5 attractions for one discounted price.
The Georgia Aquarium has you enter into their general hub, each section begins and ends there. You can explore the Ocean Voyager section and say hellllllooooooo to the whale sharks in their language, or head to the Tropical Diver area to explore coral reefs (look for all your friends from Finding Nemo there). Or you could pop on over to the Cold Water Guests and waddle with the penguins. There are sea lion and dolphin shows, a 4d movie and sometimes you might be lucky enough to see a penguin waddle down the walkway in the hub. All the areas, movies and shows are included in your ticket price. You can also add-on more in-depth tours for an additional fee.
If you get hungry there are snacks and meals available. But if you can hold out until you leave I highly recommend the Atlanta Breakfast Club across the street from the aquarium parking garage. It was one of the best meals we had in Atlanta. Service was great, the location was perfect, the decor was cool and the food was amazing. They serve breakfast and lunch. We had it all. My husband ordered the ABC Burger, it was heart stoppingly delicious, not to mention huge. My daughter went for the Peach Cobbler French Toast. I had the BLT Biscuit, I savored every bite. The boys indulged in pancakes and french toast and everything was top notch. I can’t recommend this place enough.