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Athens (Georgia)

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Classic Heartland : Athens
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Athens in the Classic Heartland Region of Georgia.

Get in

By air

  • Athens-Ben Epps Airport (IATA: AHN), 1010 Ben Epps Drive, +1 706 613-3420, +1 706 613-3417 (fax), [1]. The Athens-Ben Epps Airport is the first airport in Georgia. It was named named for Georgia's first aviator, Ben T. Epps Sr., who opened the airport in 1917. Commercial, charter, and private flights are available. Commercial service is provided by GeorgiaSkies, serving Athens with flights from Atlanta.

By bus

  • Groome Transportation, [2]. Service to Athens several times daily from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. $34 one-way or $63 round-trip.
  • megabus.com, 1-877-462-6342, [3]. Express bus service to/from Atlanta. Mondays through Saturdays, buses stop at the Athens Multi-Modal Transportation Center (775 E Broad St); on Sundays, buses stop at the East Campus Parking Deck on the University of Georgia campus. Double Deck Coaches with WiFi, Restrooms, Power Outlets and seats starting at $1. Onward connections from Atlanta to Orlando, Memphis, New Orleans, Mobile, Montgomery and Nashville.

Get around

By taxi

  • United Taxi Cab, 1121 Mlk Jr Parkway, +1 706 549-0808.
  • Your Cab CO, 714 Oglethorpe Avenue, +1 706 546-5844.

By limousine

  • Bulldog Limousine, Airport and door-to-door service, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, (706) 613-5206, Email: bulldoglimo@aol.com, [4].
  • Embassy Limousine Service, Inc., +1 706 227-3255, [5].
  • Stephens Limousine Service, Inc., 2375 West Broad Street, +1 706 353-6002.
  • The Limousine Co., LLC, +1 706 548-8546, [6].
  • Athens Town Car Service, 706-255-9643, [7]. Airport, Senior Citizen Transportation, Weddings, Proms, Nights out on the Town, Sporting Events, Business, DUI Free Service. 24/7 athenstowncar@aol.com

By Bus

Athens Transit can get you around pretty good for $1.60/ride, but not on Sunday [8]. Live bus locations:[9]

By Walking

This is a very pedestrian friendly city (if you stay out of the suburbs).

See

  • Double Barreled Cannon, Corner of College and Hancock (outside City Hall), [10]. What better way to defeat the Yanks than to give it to them with both barrels! This cannon was designed to shoot twin cannonballs connected by a chain. The designers didn't take into account the impossibility of synchronization, and the cannon was never used. Free.
  • The Tree That Owns Itself, Corner of Dearing and Finley, [11]. Colonel W.H. Jackson willed a tree on this spot to itself many years ago. Note: the original tree fell over in 1942; this is its son. Free.
  • University of Georgia Old Campus, South of Broad Street downtown. Stroll the grounds of America's oldest state-chartered university. Of particular interest are the Arch, Demosthenian and Phi Kappa Halls, the Chapel, Old College, and the Library.

Do

  • Ciné, 234 W. Hancock Avenue, (706) 353-7377, [12]. Ciné is a two-screen, independent and art house movie theater which recently opened in downtown Athens in April 2007.
  • Georgia Museum of Art, 90 Carlton Street, (706) 542-4662, Tues, Thurs, Fri, Sa 10AM-5PM, W 9AM-10PM, Su 1PM-5PM, [13]. Located on the University of Georgia's south campus, the Georgia Museum of Art offers a small, permanent collection focused on American painting as well as Wednesday night film screenings and other traveling exhibits. Admission is free (a donation of $2 is suggested) and there is a small parking lot available for visitors.
  • J & J Flea Market. Visit Georgia's largest flea market for a taste of the bazaar.
  • Athica. 160 Tracy Street, (706) 208-1613, [14]. Conceived of as an 'alternative art space,' the Athens Institute for Contemporary Art is dedicated to exhibiting challenging, provocative and innovative contemporary art in a non-commercial setting, solely for the cultural enrichment of the Northeast Georgia community.
  • Georgia Museum of Natural History.
  • Walking Tour. Take either the Downtown Athens Walking Tour or the Athens Music History Tour. Both start from the Athens Welcome Center at 280 East Dougherty Street, (706) 353-1820.
  • Georgia Botanical Gardens. 2450 S. Milledge Aveune, (706) 542-1244, [15]. This 313-acre preserve features five miles of trails that wind to the garden’s farthest boundaries, a stunning three-story tropical conservatory, and themed gardens showcasing native and international flora. Special events and programs are held year-round. The Garden has recently been named an Important Birding Area by the Georgia Audobon Society. Also on the grounds: the lovely Day Chapel and the headquarters of the Garden Club of Georgia. Gift shop, gallery, and Café Trumps at the Garden.
  • Athens Welcome Center - Classic City Tours, 280 E. Dougherty St., 706-353-1820, [16]. Mon. - Sat. 10AM - 5PM, Sun. noon - 5PM. Located in the historic Church-Waddel-Brumby House, considered the oldest surviving residence in Athens, this Federal-Style house museum and welcome center has undergone a recent restoration that features authentic period decor and furnishings. Pick up brochures, maps, expert advice; plus guided, self-guided, or audio tours of Athens. Welcome Center Free. Tours of Historic Athens, $15 - $20. (33.961657,-83.374472)
  • Hike. Besides the above named Botanical Gardens 4 miles of trail, there is a beautiful greenway that goes through parks and by the river, from the UGA Campus all the way up to:
  • Sandy Creek Nature Center which has an interpretive center, 4+ miles of trails, including some handicap accessible trails. From there you can pick up:
  • Cook's Trail, a primitive trail up through wetlands, across many boardwalks, about 4 miles long up to:
  • Sandy Creek Park. Which has a lake, and a trail around that, and other fun things to do.

Buy

  • Agora 260 W. Clayton St. +1 706 316-0130. Vintage and antiques.
  • Helix 146 E. Clayton St. +1 706 354-8631. Gifts and local crafts.
  • Toula's 225 W. Clayton St. +1 706 353-7339. Upscale home accessories.
  • Georgia Square Mall, 3700 Atlanta Highway, 706.549.5470, [17].
  • Tyche's Games (Athena Anime), 1056 S. Lumpkin St, Athens, GA 30605, 706-354-4500, [18]. 11AM-6PM M-Sat. Specialty games store dealing with board games, card games and roleplaying games. Also anime rentals and anime/manga related items.

Eat

The epicenter of Athens culinary and bar scene is "Downtown". This area is roughly defined by Broad Street in the South and Dougherty Street (which becomes Prince Avenue) in the North. The majority of restaurants will be located in this area, just north of UGA's campus. There is also a small collection of restaurants, bars and stores centered around the area called "Five Points", where Milledge Avenue and Lumpkin Street intersect. Finally, the normal American chain restaurants are scattered throughout Athens, with concentrations of them around the Beechwood Shopping Center (at the intersection of Baxter Street and Alps Road), near the Georgia Square Mall (at the intersection of Athen's circumnavigating perimeter highway, Loop 10 and the Atlanta Highway), and finally at the College Station Shopping Center (near the corner of Barnnett Shoals Road and College Station Road).

  • Five & Ten, 1635 S. Lumpkin Street, (706) 546-7300, Dinner: Su-Th 5:30PM-10PM, F-Sa 5:30PM-11PM, Brunch: Su 10:30AM-2:30PM, [19]. $25+. One of the finest southeastern restaurants is located in the Five Points neighborhood of Athens. There are not too many places in Georgia that serve sweetbreads in the first place, but Hugh Acheson shows his respect for place by serving them atop a grits custard.
  • The National Recently started by the acclaimed chef at Five and Ten, the National offers inventive Tapas style dining. Next door to Cine, sample wine, cheese and meats before catching a movie.
  • Mama's Boy, 197 Oak Street, (706) 548-6249, Mon thru Su 7AM-3:30PM. [20]. $8+. For a twist on Southern diner food, check out Mama's Boy. The crispy Buttermilk Fried Chicken Breast is served with a creamy bacon gravy. It is so good that you will sop it up with one of their dense, rich biscuits.
  • The Last Resort, 184 W. Clayton (Downtown). $12+. A diverse menu of newer takes on traditional southern classics is supplemented by daily soup, quiche, fish and pasta specials. Though the Last Resort is a great choice for dinner, it is perhaps the best Lunch spot in Athens. The Fried Green Tomato sandwich topped with Vidalia-bacon salad dressing is a lunchtime favorite, while the praline chicken provides an excellent sweet yet savory dinner. The wide array of cakes and pies are also of local fame and should certainly be sampled by visitors.
  • DePalma's An Athens institution that offers traditional (if unspectacular) Italian fare. Try the stuffed mushrooms for an appetizer followed by mix and match pasta of your choosing. The calzones and pizza are also good. A good choice for a group, the waiters and waitresses will keep the wine flowing.
  • Weaver D's 1016 E. Broad. Meat and three vegetables, made famous by REM.
  • The Taco Stand 247 E. Broad. Quick Mexican that is thoroughly Athens. Less quirky than it once was, but still a great dive. Try their speciality, the Fried Chicken Tacos. There's also another branch at 670 N. Milledge and 2270 Barnett Shoals.
  • The Grit, 199 Prince Ave, (706) 543-6592, [21]. M-F 11AM-10PM, S-S 10AM-3PM (brunch), 5PM-10PM (dinner). A few dishes of many cuisines: Indian, Italian, Mexican, and Middle Eastern, along with soups, salads, sandwiches, and many homemade desserts. Fully vegetarian with many vegan options. $6+.
  • White Tiger, 217 Hiawassee Ave, 706-363-0713.
  • Cali-N-Tito's A swanky mixture of Cuban and South American food, they have great sandwiches and other options. Their lunch special is a great deal, with a side and a drink. For drinks, they have good sweet tea or Coke. If you want beer or wine, you have to bring your own, this restaurant is BYOB. 1427 Lumpkin Street, this restaurant is located near the area called "Five Points".

Drink

One of the great drinking cities in the South, there are some truly great bars in Athens. Athens is a great place to waste away in a state of bachanallia . Some of the best bars are:

  • The 40 Watt Club, 285 W. Washington Street, (706) 369-8399, [22]. Anybody who is anybody in music in the past thirty years has played at the The 40 Watt.
  • The Georgia Theatre, 215 N. Lumpkin Street, (706) 549-9918, [23]. The Georgia Theatre is a premier music venue. The Theatre is on the Athens Music History Walking Tour which is sponsored by the Athens Convention and Visitors Bureau. 18+ Only/ID Required. The Theatre recently burned down in June 2009 and reopened in August 2011.
  • The Manhattan, 337 North Hull Street, Athens, (706) 369-9767. This dive is a a place for grad students and professors to hang out at. Their drinks are generally fairly cheap and the conversation and decor fairly trendy. The decorations look like they all came from random buys at a thrift store, and several pictures of MLK and JKF hang on the wall as a tribute to the liberal leanings of the proprietors. Try the signature drink which is Maker's Mark and Blenheim's spicy ginger ale. Also, they provide free popcorn in the corner.
  • The Max Canada, 243 W. Washington Street, (706) 543-6666. Formerly Room 13 and before that it was called The Engine Room. Bar room atmosphere with pool tables, darts, video games and pinball machines.
  • Nowhere Bar is a popular spot for pool players, yet large enough to accommodate their less recreational friends who simply desire a place to drink. The jukebox tends to alternate between classic rock favorites and Widespread Panic.
  • Georgia Bar A dive if one existed in Athens. While unassuming on the outside, it has a certain charm that only grunginess and cheap beer can provide.
  • The Pub at Gameday A relatively new arrival to the downtown Athens scene, it has become popular with students eager to avoid the Spring Break type atmosphere at "Bourbon Street" and "Generals." A large and accessible bar, multiple televisions and wood paneling has ensured Gameday's status within the Athens social scene.
  • Allgood Usually attracts a different crowd than the townies, fratboys, and the Freshmen. The greatest aspect is the outdoor patio bar in back of the second story. Though the the bar is large, it is a tad narrow, so overcrowding can be a problem.
  • The Globe A pub offering draft Belgium beers, English Ales and an extensive wine list that tends to attract an older, slightly more sophisticated crowd than nearby establishments. Tables, couches and rocking chairs makes this a good place for those who seek to rediscover the lost art of conversation or simply enjoy quality beer.
  • Trappeze Pub, 269 Washington St, 706-543-8997, [24]. Opened in 2008, Trappeze has 30+ beers on tap and well over 200 on their bottle menu. Trappeze doesn't sell any low-end domestic beers, such as Budweiser but does maintain an otherwise full bar and an extensive wine list. The food list is no less impressive with an interesting and delicious twist on typical pub-fare.
  • Inoko Japanese Steakhouse, 161 Alps Rd, 706-546-8589, [25]. Hibachi Restaurant thats been around since 1991. The restaurant is not fancy but you get a ton of food that is delicious for a reasonable price.

Sleep

  • America's Best Inn, 2715 Atlanta Highway, +1 706 549-1530, Fax: +1 706 369-8095, [26].
  • Athens Microtel Inn, 1050 Ultimate Drive, +1 706 548-5676, Fax: +1 706 613-5153, [27].
  • Best Western Colonial Inn, 170 N Milledge Avenue, +1 706 546-7311, Toll-free: +1 800 592-9401, Fax: +1 706 546-7959, [28].
  • Courtyard Athens Downtown, 166 North Finley Street, +1 706 369-7000, Fax: +1 706 548-4224, [29].
  • Holiday Inn, 197 E. Broad St., +1 706 549-4433, [30].
  • Holiday Inn Express, 513 West Broad Street, +1 706 546-8122, [31].
  • Hilton Garden Inn [32], 390 E. Washington Street, 706-353-6807.
  • Hampton Inn [33], 2220 W. Broad Street, 706-548-8268.
  • Bulldog Inn, 1225 Commerce Rd. 706-543-3611
  • Foundry Park Inn and Spa [34], 295 E. Dougherty St., 706-549-7020.
  • Country Inn & Suites, 236 Old Epps Bridge Rd. Athens, GA 30606 (Off of Broad St./Atlanta Hwy. behind McDonalds), 706-612-9100, [35]. checkin: 3PM; checkout: 11AM. 4-story atrium, heated indoor pool and whirlpool, fitness center, daily deluxe complimentary breakfast. All rooms are suites with 32" flat screen tv, microwave, refrigerator, iron/ironing board, hairdryer, coffee maker, and pull-out sofa bed. $109-$139.
  • UGA Hotel, 1197 South Lumpkin St, (706)548-1311, [36]. checkin: 4PM; checkout: 12PM. The UGA Hotel at the Georgia Center is a residential conference center and hotel on the campus of The University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. Start at $99/night.

Get out

Routes through Athens
AtlantaStone Mountain  W noframe E  WashingtonAugusta




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