Things to do in Athens

Are you new to Athens, GA or planning a visit soon and don’t know what to do? Although Athens is considered a college town and UGA is a large part of the culture, there is still so much of the city to explore outside of the University. We’ve put together a guide in hopes of generating some ideas for you!

Athens Attractions 

Things to do in Athens

Whether you’re here for the weekend or here for four years, you might want to consider visiting some of Athens’ well-known attractions such as the Georgia Museum of Art or the State Botanical Garden of Georgia. The Georgia Museum of Art was founded in 1945 and has over 18,000 artworks for viewing. Although it is located on the UGA campus, it is available to everyone. Admission into the museum is completely free! You just have to reserve tickets through their timed ticketing system. In addition, they offer free educational tours by request, and they’re open from Tuesday to Sunday. The State Botanical Garden of Georgia is located on South Milledge Avenue and features eleven beautiful botanical and horticulture gardens. Like the Georgia Museum, they also have free admissions and parking!

Athens is also well-known and revered for having live music events. In fact, some events are even held at the State Botanical Garden, and you can find information about those on their site. The Georgia Theatre, however, is the spot that is best known for hosting live music events and is considered to be a historical gem within Athens. Located in the heart of Downtown, the Georgia Theatre regularly hosts concerts featuring up and coming bands and artists. Tickets can also be accessed through their site. Enjoying some live music could be a great way to spend your time in Athens and get more acclimated to the city and its culture. 

Shopping and Cuisine

A great aspect about Athens is that it is booming with many local businesses and restaurants that are there for you to explore. Downtown Athens, Normaltown, North Campus and Five Points are the areas best known for these features.

In Downtown Athens, you can find a variety of restaurants, bars, and local boutiques that are all within a walkable distance from each other. Some notable downtown businesses are Jinya Ramen Bar, Magnolia’s, Insomnia Cookies, and The Warehouse. There is also a Target, CVS, and Urban Outfitters–in addition to many other local boutiques and small franchises that are fun to shop in.

Normaltown, on the other hand, is a small neighborhood located on Prince Avenue that features a few different restaurants, cafes, specialty businesses, and stores. If you’re looking for a more lowkey and relaxed experience in Athens, then visiting Normaltown should definitely be in your consideration.

Lastly, Five Points is a well-loved area of Athens that is tucked within the intersection of South Lumpkin Street and South Milledge Avenue. Just like Downtown Athens and Normaltown, there are also several notable businesses and restaurants located in Five Points that you may want to consider visiting. Some of the businesses located in Five Points include a bakery, bookstore, antique shop, and a few restaurants and diners. You have many options!

There is always going to be something to do in Athens, so there’s no need to worry about having a lack of activities when you visit. Even if you don’t make concrete plans for your days spent here, Athens is the kind of city where you can just go out and explore–letting the day take you wherever it wants to–and still end up having a great time!


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