Updated: Jan 20
On The Road To Dunwoody, GA
[Thank You Discover Dunwoody For your hospitality]
Have you ever visited a place and it automatically felt like home? That’s what Dunwoody, GA did for me and my family this summer. Nestled right above Atlanta, Dunwoody is your home away from home. With top dining options, a shopping experience in the Southeast’s 2nd-largest mall, family fun activities, and more. My family and I were invited out to experience the Dunwoody area ourselves and it’s the perfect mix of knowing there is a major city a few miles away while still getting that small local experience.
WHERE TO STAY
Ideally located in Atlanta’s Perimeter Business District of Dunwoody, Hyatt Place Atlanta Perimeter Center offers the modern traveler an experience like no other. You can walk to eat and shop and there is even a skywalk to the transportation line to get you to the airport if needed. The rooms are more modern with vinyl wood flooring and breakfast is served daily as well. I was surprised to see that there wasn’t a pool but a posh outdoor patio space instead. With our short stay not having a pool didn’t hinder the trip and my kids didn’t seem to miss it too much. The hotel is definitely book-worthy if you want a modern contemporary feel in the heart of the city.
THINGS TO DO
Visit the Dunwoody Nature Center to get up close and personal with butterflies at the Butterfly Experience with food vendors and live music! This was such a great time for us, we got to experience the butterflies in a new way being in a netted tent while they fluttered about, a very magical experience and if you love butterflies it’s the perfect place to see them. The nature center also had activities, and crafts for all ages - of course, the bubble section was the biggest hit for my kids- there is just something about bubbles that makes kids beam with excitement.
Lemonade Days is a premier Dunwoody signature event. As Dunwoody’s largest annual fundraiser it has become a highlight for the city and it is the most popular family event of the year. Check out the petting zoo or take a pony ride for the littles. For the thrill-seekers, check out the 30 full-scale carnival rides, and for the foodie enthusiasts like myself dive right into the famous lemonade or all the carnival foods. With over twenty food and beverage vendors, the hardest thing will be choosing what to purchase! Lemonade days are free for all to attend but rides and food are ticket purchased items.
Have a picnic at Donaldson- Bannister Farm. We seemed to stop by at the perfect time as the farm was empty and we had it all to ourselves. Rich in history this farm is accessible daily from sunrise to sunset. The home and the barn that sit on the two-plus acre land have been totally rehabilitated with modern modifications for comfort and accessibility. It’s well taken care of and a great place to let the kids run wild in the meadow.
Go Shopping at the Perimeter Mall truly is the center of Dunwoody, you can spend a full day just exploring all the shops and dining within the perimeter. I can see why it is the second-largest mall in the southeast.
Spruill Gallery A place to cool down from the summer heat and to see some artwork created by local artists. located in a historic 1867-1905 home on Ashford Dunwoody Road. The Gallery’s exhibits promote emerging artists & established artists alike.
With quirky designs throughout the property, it’s easy to get lost in the uniqueness of it all. The gallery also has a gift shop with all handmade items created by the area artist, a must-stop when visiting Dunwoody.
WHERE TO EAT
With discovering Dunwoody over the 3-day summer weekend my family and I were able to hit up some of the most talked-about spots in and around the Dunwoody area. Driving around you will see the dining options are endless but these are just a few to highlight:
Looks can surely be deceiving and at NFA Burger you’ll be blown away! Some have crowned it the best burger in ATL but go for yourself and find out. The restaurant is tucked away in a chevron gas station (a what? I know just stay with me!) There is no seating inside but they have a few picnic tables in the back with a shaded area. The menu is small but mighty, they stick to burgers, tots, chili, and hotdogs. No ketchup on these items but they will gladly provide it. However, I challenge you to try it without it -trust the NFA Burger process! They even have options to switch up the bun to a waffle and that special sassy sauce they use rounds it all out! A locally owned family business ( Billy & Nancy the brother and sister duo) with customer service to match I will be back!
If you’re looking for a surprise when it comes to brunch/breakfast Crema Espresso is your match. With a name like that you don’t expect the food to be just as delicious as the coffee selection but I was wrong. The gourmet pastries are crafted with care, to the Individual French-style quiches, and of course, their coffee selections are all made from 100% Arabica Beans. If you have the urge for some exceptional coffee or tea, or you are craving a fresh and delicious meal, stop in next time you’re in the Dunwoody area.
From start to finish the customer service was top tier at Novo Cucina, and not to our surprise Novo is the most talked-about dining spot amongst the locals. Italian cuisine in an intimate atmosphere, our table felt like we were in our own home.
The chic and spacious look gives a mix of both being in an open-air Italian cafe to being in a 5-star dining restaurant. Balance.
At Novo, ingredients drive the menu, fresh Italian and locally sourced food, which include artisanal pizza, hand-made kinds of pasta, fresh salads, and alluring appetizers. If that wasn’t enough the dessert is —dare I say, award-wining gelato with it being made by hand and spun in-house every day.
The Last spot on my highlight is Breadwinner Cafe & Bakery as soon as you walk in the fresh made bread and mixture of food aromas immediately make you hungry. The “it spot” with a farm to ladle concept is the right way to do lunch. The homemade loaves of bread that put them on the map, to the soups, salads, and sandwiches made fresh and in-house daily. I really loved the farmers market feel inside, it was difficult not to put everything that was on the shelf in the cart.