Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson airport is huge and most people consider it just a hub to get to their next destination. However, if you want to (or if you’re stranded and looking for something to do), you can actually walk the entire length of the concourse underground (where you typically catch the trains)- which I recently did. I found three delightful things in doing this: 1) It’s very quiet and can be relatively quick as there are moving sidewalks and very few people (quite a departure from the chaos going on just above your head in the main concourses) 2) Whether you use the moving sidewalks or not (as I generally don’t), you can actually get a little walking workout. Which is nice if you’ve been sitting in a meeting all day and are getting ready to board a plane and sit for several more hours. 3) There are some interesting and beautiful art and history installations between several of the concourses. Even if you don’t take the entire pedestrian walkway, consider walking between a couple of the concourses to see some of these exhibits. – Between the terminal and concourse A is a permanent collection of twenty contemporary stone sculptures from Zimbabwe. This collection debuted in 2001 and is one of the largest publicly owned and exhibited collections of its kind. – Between concourses B and C you can take a “Walk Through Atlanta History” According to the website this is a multi-media installation that provides a glimpse into the rich history of the City of Atlanta. Approaching from Concourse B your journey starts with a section devoted to the Native Peoples who lived here for thousands of years, progresses through six key time periods, and ends with Atlanta’s entry onto the global stage. These are just two examples of interesting exhibitions that you can find at the Hartsfield-Jackson airport – So, if you’re ever stranded or are not literally “running” to catch your flight, take a look at the website (offered free) ,type “art” or “Atlanta history” into the search box and go on a treasure hunt to find the permanent and rotating art exhbitt that this airport has to offer.
If you’re stuck at an airport for a long layover, the Minneapolis/St Paul Airport (MSP)isn’t too bad.
Scattered throughout the terminals you can find full service local and national chain restaurants such as Ike’s Food and Cocktails, Axel’s Bonfire, Friday’s, Chili’s and Rock Bottom Brewery. All welcome respites for airport-fast-food-weary road warriors.
As far as shopping, MSP offers shops such as BOSS HUGO BOSS, Erwin Pearl, Wilson Leather, as well as gift and novelty shops like The Body Shop, ZoZo, and Tech and Trek.
The Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) has also teamed up with the American Heart Association’s nationally recognized Start! Walking program to offer a way for travelers to stay fit and healthy while traveling. You can walk the official 1.4-mile walking path or add a few more concourses for a longer workout.
Go to www.mspairport.com to find out more about restaurants, shops and how to get information and maps for the walking path.