Atlanta ranks among best cities in America for recreation

When it comes to staying active, whether you’re more interested in leisurely strolls through Piedmont Park or prefer an adrenaline-boosting workout at Sky Zone Trampoline Park, Atlantans have a variety of options.

» RELATED: 7 Atlanta festivals not to miss in July

In fact, according to personal finance website WalletHub, Atlanta is one of the country’s top cities for recreation. To determine the best and worst for the 2018 ranking, WalletHub analysts compared the 100 most populated U.S. cities across four key dimensions: entertainment/recreational facilities, costs, quality of parks and weather.

They further assessed the four categories using 45 relevant metrics, including number of attractions, public swimming pools, hiking trails, average gym fees, quality of parks and more.

» RELATED: This is the best family attraction in Atlanta

Data for the study came from a variety of reputable sources, such as the U.S. Census Bureau and Council for Community and Economic Research.

Of the 100 largest cities in the nation, Orlando earned top honors, followed by Las Vegas and San Diego.

The worst large American city for recreation? Irving, Texas, according to WalletHub.

» RELATED: 9 Georgia swimming holes that have just as much splash as the pool

Atlanta came in sixth on the list. Here’s more on how the city fared:

  • Overall rank: 6
  • Entertainment/recreational facilities: 9
  • Costs: 63
  • Quality of parks: 28
  • Weather: 41
  • Most tennis courts per capita: 5
  • Highest movie costs: 100

While Atlanta’s numerous attractions, trails, ice cream shops and food festivals likely boosted the metro up to the top 10, the city’s dead-last score in high movie costs likely kept it from earning a coveted top-five rank.

» RELATED: 5 easy hikes to Atlanta's hidden waterfalls

In fact, according to reports from the National Association of Theatre Owners, average movie ticket prices have increased by 3.96 percent between 2015 ($8.25) and 2017 ($8.97).

And while Atlanta is no major exception, there are some ways to avoid paying full price at the theater. You may consider heading to a matinee show at Midtown Art Cinema, enjoy $5 movies on Tuesdays at Movies ATL and take advantage of senior, military and student discounts.

» Atlanta Events 2018: Your guide for things to do all year long

In addition to scoring a spot on the best cities for recreation this year, Atlanta was also recently recognized as one of 2018’s best summer travel destinations, named one of the top 50 foodie capitals of the world and last year, it ranked among the nation’s healthiest cities.

Explore the full best and worst cities for recreation in 2018 ranking at

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.