Located on the campus of Emory University in Atlanta is the Carlos Museum, an excellent, low-cost museum for all things ancient history. This lesser visited history museum is worth a tour and the only history museum for ancient history in the greater Atlanta area.
Atlanta in the Druid Hills area about 15 minutes east from downtown
Tuesday-Friday 10 AM – 4 PM; Saturday 10 AM – 5 PM; Sunday 12 PM – 5 PM
⏳How much time do I need?
2-4 hours; depends on your kids attention span
- Relatively cheap compared to many museums: adults $8, seniors $6, youth (6-17) $6.
- Check online for the calendar and free Sunday FunDays.
- Ask at your local Georgia public library about checking out a museum pass for free admission.
There are many different levels of membership. For our family, I upgraded to the Doric level to get reciprocity for free membership to 1000s of museums across the country who are under the NARM, ROAM, and SEC memberships. If you travel, this makes up for the higher price of membership.
- This is the stickler. Even with a membership, you still have to pay for parking every visit unless it’s the weekend.
- Fishburne Deck and Oxford Road parking is free on weekends when Emory doesn’t have students in class.
- There is not a parking lot right next to the museum.
- Allow for 15 minutes to find the parking garage and walk over to the museum.
Leave your food in your car and plan to get it to eat a picnic on the Emory Campus. There is a big, shaded, grassy area right outside the main entrance to the museum. Leave time to visit the coffee shop in the museum.
Inside the museum
- While most of the museum is part of the permanent collection, check online for information of their current visiting exhibit.
- Visit their collection on their website to make a scavenger hunt or introduce artifacts before your visit.
- Look online for information about public tours, teacher resources, and online activities.
- Ask about renting an audio guide for only $2. These are free to members.
- Pencil sketching is permitted, but make sure it’s in a small bag.
- For families, ask about a smARTy pack or family guide to do at home.
- Don’t leave without checking out the bookshop (currently closed because of Covid) for a large selection of gifts and books. You can even order books through their store online and see suggestions for children’s books that they think would make a great follow up to your museum membership.
- While I always advocate taking kids of all ages to museums, this one has Greek busts and Egyptian vases out on pedestals – aka “don’t bring your three year old for his first museum experience”.
- Big bags aren’t allowed; I had to put my crossbody bag in a locker (for free) behind the main desk.
- 🦠Usually field trips are offered but not currently. Also closed in the bookstore.
The Egyptian, Nubian, Near East, Grecian, Roman, Ancient Americas, African, and Asian galleries have artifacts from so many ancient cultures from around the world. A large part of the museum is Egyptian with mummies, sarcophagi, and relics. See Grecian pottery, Mayan artifacts, and Sumerian cuneiform. There are coins from Roman civilization, Native American vessels, Roman sculptures, and interactive displays of reconstructed ruins.
- While many of the buildings on campus will be off limits, it’s a lovely campus to explore.
- Take time to walk over to an Emory Village restaurant or the Barnes and Noble bookstore on campus.
- So much to see downtown !