Athens, Georgia City Guide

FIND YOURSELF IN ATHENS, GEORGIA.

Athens is a city with a progressive, relaxed and eclectic reputation. Known for its collaborative community and culture, it's no surprise I am leaving this town, very very happy! 
"Nestled in the northeastern reaches of the Peach State, Athens, Georgia is an unmistakably southern city steeped in vibrant college culture." Whether you’re planning a romantic trip for two, visiting the UGA campus, or just passing through, you'll find Athens is quite unique and SO charming. 

GETTING TO KNOW THE UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA

Your trip to Athens wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the University of Georgia campus. The campus is beautiful with many attractions that are so worth-while visiting.

Georgia Museum of Art: Established in 1945, this complex serves as the official art museum of the state of Georgia. Inside, you’ll find more than 10,000 works alongside a host of temporary exhibitions, while the museum’s outdoor property features a sculpture garden highlighting women sculptors.

State Botanical Garden of Georgia: This generously sized botanical garden, measuring a total of 313 acres, allows you to explore five miles of nature trails, where you’ll see the Flower Garden, International Garden, Shade Garden and other beautiful exhibits. 

Founder's Memorial Garden
We discovered the garden by accident because we weren't looking for it. At first, I just noticed the beautiful house and we noticed it was open, so we went through the back and discovered this garden. WOW! This is probably my favorite spot on the UGA campus.  This garden is a living memorial to America's first Garden Club, founded in Athens in 1891, so amazing! A trickling fountain, beautiful flowers, winding walkways, and ornamental shrubbery are a grand memorial to the founders of America's first garden club. It's FREE to visit.

T.R.R Cobb House
It's an understatement to say there are some BEAUTIFUL houses in Athens. Maybe this one is the prettiest? but I honestly can't pick. We didn't get to go inside this historic house because it was Memorial Day. However, I learned that T.R.R. Cobb was a UGA graduate, co-founder of its school of law, Confederate General, and principal author of the Confederate Constitution. pen to the public as a house museum, it is being restored to reflect the styles of 1852-1862 when Thomas Reade Rootes Cobb was at the peak of his career.
HOURS: 10 a.m - 4 p.m. Tues. - Sat. Closed Sun. and Mon.
Admission: $2 donation per adult suggested but not required. 

IMG_5289.jpg

Ware Lyndon House
The Ware-Lyndon House, 1856, became Athens' first city recreation center and has been completely restored as both a house museum and the centerpiece of the Lyndon House Arts Center complex. The interior has been restored and arranged with decorative art and furnishings of the period.

WHERE TO GO FOR FOOD & DRINKS

Cali-N-Tito's
One of my favorite spots we tried in Athens. It was our first dinner in Athens and it did not disappoint! Their Cuban sandwich, tacos, and quesadillas are delicious. The location Puerta del Sol is a really cool concept that looks like a Spanish or European plaza with many different shops. You have to check it out.

The Grit
The Grit was our second dinner in Athens. I loved it so much. If you are a vegetarian, you will fall in love. If you are not a vegetarian you will not even miss the meat! I loved their Mid E. (Mediterranean) Platter and the veggie golden bowl. It’s worth it to also stop in and choose a dessert item from the case. We tried the death by chocolate and OMG it was so good. The service was perfect and their prices were very good!

The Place
This trendy restaurant offers some of my favorite southern food. I also loved that they serve mini pints which are the perfect size for dinner! I ordered their buttermilk chicken sandwich with a side of mac n cheese and everything was delicious.
Photos by @theplaceathens

Tlaloc el Mexicano Restaurant 
An authentic Mexican restaurant that offers quite a variety of delicious Mexican food. I ordered the crunchy tacos and they were so yummy! Their prices are also very awesome.

Jittery Joe's
Since I had to work remotely all this week, I hopped from coffee shop to coffee shop. Jittery Joe's was great. I ordered their cappuccino and it was delicious. From what I hear, Jittery Joe’s is one of Athens’ pride and joy. 
Photos by @jitteryjoescoffee

Franklin House Cafe
Inspired by coffee, entrepreneurship, and traveling, Franklin House Cafe brings world-class experience to downtown Athens. The scones are locally sourced, the coffee and smoothies are refreshing, and the toasts are simply delicious. Franklin wraps everything you'd want.

Four Fat Cows
Come to Four Fat Cows for some delicious ice cream flavors including Strawberry Balsamic, Blueberry Buttermilk Pie, and Coffee Almond Fudge on a waffle cone or cake cone. All of their bakery items including cupcakes and brownies are gluten-free. They even serve calzones! 
Photos by fourfatcows_athens

Independent Baking Co.
If you yearn for breakfast truly continental style— with a croissant and a modestly portioned cappuccino—  Independent is what you need. To start your day there, surrounded by the bounty of their fresh, fragrant, delicious breads, is to set yourself up for success.

Last Resort Grill
Even before what this place was, I noticed the bright mural right outside. From reviews we read, it seems to be an iconic Athens favorite. Now I know why -  the food is very yummy and they cook most of their dishes in-house. I tried their veggie quiche and loved it.

Hendershot’s
Among other things, I learned that Athens is known for its music venues, restaurants, and unique culture; Hendershot’s is an impressive culmination of these. You can grab a cup of coffee and meet a friend in the morning. With their cozy interior and nice, big patio, this is an easy place to relax or work. 

Trappeze Pub – Probably one of the best pubs around, Trappeze has a massive draught list and some of the most creative and tasty food in town. The Pub Burger or Asian Pork Taco are great choices. 

BREWERIES

Terrapin Beer Company
Take a tour, grab a beer, and enjoy discovering more about nationally renowned Terrapin Beer Co. They have a freshly renovated interior and a great outside area adjoined to the brewery. You can bring your friends, listen to live music, play corn-hole, and taste great beer simultaneously.

Creature Comforts Brewing Company joined the Athens brewing community in spring 2014, right in downtown Athens in an expertly-renovated tire plant. Creature Comforts offers a range of styles, including IPA, pilsner, and their award-winning Berliner Weisse, Athena. My favorite was the Tropicalia. SOO GOOD.

Southern Brewing Company is the latest Athens craft brewery to open in the spring of 2015. They've jumped right in with tasty beer plus fun games. 
 

EXPLORING ALL AROUND

Consider beginning your day with a stroll along Memorial Park’s 1.25-mile Birchmore Trail. After you’ve finished the route, check out the Bear Hollow Zoo at the same location. The small zoo houses a range of animals, from birds to amphibians and beyond.

Sandy Creek Nature Center: Ideal for the adventurous traveler, this wildlife hub boasts more than four miles of trails along with an indoor Education and Visitor Center featuring live animals and other exhibits.

Trail Creek Park: This 113-acre park is packed with exciting features, including mountain bike trails, soccer fields, and a playground. For $1, visitors can enjoy the new splash pads, which offer an easy opportunity for little ones to cool off on a sunny day.

Firefly Trail: Home to the world-famous Athens Twilight cycling event, it’s no surprise that Athens offers plenty of cycling paths. The Firefly Trail is the latest addition, and while it’s still under construction, its first segment (along with many other trails throughout the area) is open for use.

SHOPPING

Avid Bookshop
A wonderful little red-and-yellow shop with a great selection of books. Avid is one of those places I really loved in Athens and it was because of its amazing ambiance. They have just about every book you could want and are always happy to discuss their picks. 

Frontier
Carrying candles, kitchen wares, jewelry, cards, etc. Frontier is a great place to stop in and buy yourself a little something. It would also be a perfect place to find a cute and unique gift.

Community
A brilliant clothing and goods shop. Community carries jewelry, soaps, cleaners, prints, etc. from local creators. They also design their own clothing and carry vintage clothing. Community embodies local artists coming together to create community. 
Photos by CommunityAthens

It's fair to say, Athens took me by surprise. I knew it was gonna be a nice college town with a beautiful campus. I didn't expect it to be so unique and special. Have you been? What's your favorite part?