If you’ve ever tried to drive through Atlanta, Georgia, you know how terrible it really is. Even in a regular passenger car, the traffic in downtown Atlanta feels like it never lets up. Now imagine doing it while you’re pulling a trailer. No thank you. I’ll go the long way.
There are several alternate routes to avoid Atlanta GA, no matter which way you’re coming from, but the best way to avoid it will depend on your destination. Overall, the fastest way to get around the city while encountering minimal traffic is I-285.
The Best Alternate Route Around Atlanta
I-75 runs straight through the beating heart of Atlanta north and south while I-20 runs east and west. It’s best to avoid either of these altogether because they go straight through downtown, where it seems like the city never sleeps.
However, there are freeways surrounding the entire city, so depending on where you’re coming from and where you’re going, there’s a way around.
Making a loop around the outskirts of the city is I-285, so this is a great alternate route to avoid the congestion you’ll find downtown, but it’s not always free and clear either.
Sometimes the best way around is to take the scenic route, using smaller highways and side streets. Highway 6 and Georgia Highway 70 will take you around the west side of town, and it’s a longer haul, but you’ll deal with less frustrating traffic.
You can also take Highway 41 north and south to the west of downtown to get through Atlanta, but during certain times of the day, it can still be congested.
If you’re heading east to west or vice versa, Highway 78 may help you a bit, but the best alternate route will still be I-285.
How To Avoid Atlanta On I-75
Because I-75 runs north and south straight through town, you may want to avoid it altogether if you’re headed in that direction.
Highway 41 runs north and south to the west of town and connects with I-75 on either end. This is the most direct alternative route without having to swing too far outside of town.
However, I-285 is still probably the faster option.
How To Avoid Atlanta Going North
If you’re coming from Florida, south Georgia, you’ll likely hit I-75 going north. Even if you’re coming from Montgomery, Alabama, I-85 intersects with I-75 just south of downtown Atlanta.
In any of these cases, you will probably want to go around.
As I said before, once you get to I-285, you can take it around to the east or west of town and continue heading north until you meet back up with either I-75 or I-85.
If you’re going to continue taking I-75 north, it’s best to take I-285 around the west side of town, while getting to I-85 is easier from the east.
You may also choose to take Highway 41 straight north. After I-75 and I-85 intersect, you can hop off the freeway and take this highway all the way north to I-75. If you’re looking for I-85 north of town, you’ll have to travel back south a few miles to find I-85 north again.
if you really want to take the long way around, you can take Highway 23 through Athens, Georgia.
It may add a few hours to your trip, but it’s a fun place to stop over for the night and will offer some nice scenery without having to go anywhere near Atlanta at all.
How To Bypass Atlanta Going South
From Tennessee and north Georgia, you can head south on I-75 until you meet the outskirts of Atlanta. If you’re coming from North Carolina, you’ll likely be on I-85. From here, you can follow the reverse path of going north.
From I-75, take I-285 around the west side of town to meet up with either I-75 again or I-85 and continue south. You can also follow Highway 41 south to find either.
From I-85, it’s best to take I-285 to the east of town and meet up with either highway and continue south.
There are a few ways to get around Atlanta without having to go through the city. Depending on where you’re coming from and where you’re going, there’s an alternate route that will help you avoid the traffic.
If all else fails, take the scenic route and enjoy the ride.