Atlanta Atlanta Moving Guide

A Guide to Living in Decatur, GA

street corner view of Church St in Decatur, GA

Decatur is a fabulous place to live, so congratulations on making this Atlanta suburb your new home. Besides the fact that it's considered an area of Metro Atlanta and about six miles from downtown, Decatur is its own city with a population of approximately 24,000 and the seat of Dekalb County.

A host of Decatur neighborhoods and historic districts such as Oakhurst, Adair Park, and Ponce De Leon Heights, each with a distinct personality, exist within the city. No matter which area of Decatur you choose to live in, you won't need to venture very far from your address to find some of Atlanta's best shopping, dining and nightlife options. The truth is Decatur has it all. It’s easy to understand why it’s one of the best cities to live in Georgia. Let's take a look at things to do and the highlights of living in Decatur, GA.

Anges Scott College

You may not realize it, but the city of Decatur is a college town. Agnes Scott College, a private women's liberal arts school sits on College Avenue in downtown. Along with the beautiful historic homes surrounding the college, Agnes Scott is one of Decatur's many historic districts. It's celebrated for its tight-knit community– the college has fewer than 1,000 students, and its student to teacher ratio is about ten to one. Taking a drive past, you'll gather why the campus's 100-acre wooded grounds are often used for photo shoots and movie filming – the parcel is absolutely stunning.

Decatur Public Art

Art is everywhere in Decatur, GA! The Decatur Artway sculpture exhibit curates ten unique works around the city, rotating the pieces every two years. You'll see these works in Decatur Square and also in Oakhurst. Find out more about Decatur's public art scene on the Arts Alliance website.

Decatur Festivals

Street parties of all kinds take place in Decatur. With Georgia's mild weather much of the year, that is no surprise! An arts festival on Memorial Day weekend, book festival on Labor Day weekend, beer tasting festival in October, wine tasting festival in November, and a holiday tour of homes in December, are just a sampling of the events happening in town. No matter your interests, you'll find something fun (and often outdoors) to do in Decatur.

Decatur Restaurants and Bars

Café Lily

Cafe Lily (308 W Ponce De Leon, Suite B) highlights Mediterranean cuisine with dishes like salad Nicoise, gyros, pasta, and Jerusalem falafel. Pleasing locals for several decades, the cafe is a wonderful place to celebrate a special occasion or even take a first date.

Sweet Melissa’s

Sweet Melissa's (127 E Court Square) has been serving Decaturites since 1989. The breakfast and lunch staple cooks up omelets, huevos rancheros, sandwiches, and salads. Big breakfast eaters should order the Mad Platter: two pancakes or a slice of French toast, two eggs any style, home fries or cheese grits and a choice of bacon, ham or sausage.

customers eating in restaurant
Image via Inka W./Yelp

Brick Store Pub

Brick Store Pub (125 E Court Square) offers rotating beers on draft served alongside comfort food with a southern twist.  House favorites include butterbean hummus, Brunswick stew, and chicken pot pie.

Eddie’s Attic

Eddie's Attic (515 N McDonough St) is one of Georgia's premier music venues. Up and coming and accomplished musicians take to the stage in the listening room, where audience members silence their cell phones and revel in the music.

Kimball House

Oyster lovers flock to Kimball House (303 E Howard Ave), a farm-to-fork restaurant focusing on seasonal ingredients and southern hospitality. While the raw bar is a major draw, Decaturites also go for the caviar, prime steaks, and the delicious Rohan duck, available in half and full-size portions.

The Iberian Pig

Immerse yourself in the flavors of Spain at The Iberian Pig (121 Sycamore St). Cured meats, cheeses, tapas, flatbreads,signature cocktails, and wines from Spain, Argentina, and Chile pair perfectly with the eatery's stellar service.

Decatur Shops

HomeGrown Decatur

Peruse the trove of unusual novelty items at HomeGrown Decatur (412 Church St). Community-driven, the award-winning store sells food items, cute magnets and pins, home goods, funky jewelry, bath and body products, and one-of-a-kind gifts, all crafted by local artisans.

Dancing Goats Coffee Bar

Anyone living in Decatur should check out Washington-based Batdorf & Bronson's outpost: Dancing Goats Coffee Bar (419 W Ponce De Leon). The industrial space is ideal for coffee, cappuccinos, lattes, tea,and other caffeine-fueled beverages as well as tasty homemade donuts. You can also purchase a bag of java to brew at home and get a free hot or iced coffee with it.

Worthmore Jewelers

It's easy to understand why Worthmore Jewelers (117 E Court Square) was named "Best All-Occasion Jeweler in Atlanta" by Atlanta Magazine. The Decatur boutique not only sells engagement rings, wedding bands, watches, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets but takes pride in providing excellent customer service. The shop offers buyers 12-month financing too, so don't fret when you eye that gorgeous princess-cut diamond ring in the case.


You could spend hours browsing SQ/FT (149 Sycamore St), a fun store that's become a favorite among locals. Founded by a group of women in 2012, the spacious shop stocks clothing and shoes, blankets, candles and other housewares, snarky greeting cards, mugs, puzzles, and tons of other quirky things that work well for gifts and souvenirs.

store front of SQ/FT in Decatur, GA

Wahoo! Wine & Provisions

Pop into Wahoo! Wine & Provisions (1036 W College Ave) to pick up wine, charcuterie, cheese, and other gourmet food stuffs. Bottles of wine start as low as $9 and the shop features a 10 for $60 deal with more than 30 to choose from. Catering to both wine novices and enthusiasts, Wahoo! sells Old World classics and New World bottles from emerging producers.

With so many things to do in Decatur, GA, it's hard not to love living here. This Atlanta city has something for everyone.

About the author

Tracy Kaler

Tracy Kaler is a ballet dancer turned interior designer turned lifestyle and travel writer who blogs at tracysnewyorklife.com. A former Atlantan, you can now find her byline in The Telegraph, IN New York Magazine, TravelMag, National Geographic, Mabuhay Magazine, am New York and others. When she's not glued to her laptop, you'll find her wandering the streets of New York City or off discovering another part of the planet.

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