Due to its location inland on the Savannah River, Augusta was a city of major strategic importance by the end of the Civil War. It was spared most of the destruction of many other southern cities, so there are many old buildings and landmarks. There are some areas of town that the tourist might be advised to avoid, but they should be obvious upon inspection. There is a significant presence of military personnel who visit the city on personal business from nearby Fort Gordon. Augusta is also home of the Masters golf tournament.
Augusta is on I-20, between Atlanta and Columbia, South Carolina. I-520 circles the city. Private car is usually the best way to get around town, so it's often easiest to drive in. Augusta is located equidistant between the ATL Atlanta airport and the CLT Charlotte airport, so check both airports for the most suitable flights.
Augusta Regional Airport (AGS) is serviced by Delta Connections with service to Atlanta, GA, US Airways Express with service to Charlotte, NC and Washington, DC, and American Airlines with service to Dallas/Fort Worth.
Augusta is serviced by Greyhound Bus Lines . The bus station is located at 1128 Greene St in Downtown.
Augusta Public Transit, a public bus system, is available and services many popular destinations. However, it may be easier to rent a car to access areas not served by the bus system. Information on Augusta Public Transit can be found here http://augustaga.gov/index.aspx?NID=232.
Augusta Canal Authority, 1450 Greene Street (Interpretive Center), ☎ 706-823-044 (firstname.lastname@example.org). Tours, seasonal events, hiking, biking, canoeing, and kayaking are available. There are several locations to access the canal area.$6 adult admission.
Fort Discovery/National Science Center, 1 7th St. (7th St. at the river walk), ☎ 706-823-044, . Lots of science exhibits, fun for students. If you're on the river walk, stop by to see the marble sphere on a fountain in front of the building. Closed permenantly in 2010.
The Boyhood Home of President Woodrow Wilson, 418 Seventh St (at Telfair St), ☎ +1 706-722-9828, . 10AM - 4PM Tu-Sa. Georgia's oldest Presidential home where Woodrow Wilson and his family lived during the Civil War. See fourteen rooms furnished to the 1860s Victorian period, service building with kitchen, and carriage house. The house museum contains thirteen original pieces of furniture used by Woodrow Wilson and his family, as well as other period pieces.$5 Adults $4 Seniors $3 Students (K-12).
Lake Olmstead Park, Milledge Road. Park designed by Frederick Law Olmstead includes a lake for fishing and sports, a disc golf course, and facilities for events. Beautiful place for a picnic or afternoon stroll. Directly across the street from Lake Olmstead Stadium, the home of the Augusta Greenjackets. Area east of the park can be dangerous.
Historic Downtown, (Broad St (GA-28/US-25 Bus.) any where between E. Boundary and 13th St.). Lots of old buildings, shops, and monuments.
Augusta GreenJackets, Lake Olmstead Stadium, . Augusta's minor league baseball team in the South Atlantic League and a Class A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants.
Augusta Riverwalk, Augusta, GA (just north of Reynolds street). a paved path along the riverfront
Masters Golf Tournament, Augusta National Golf Club, Washington Road, . Major PGA golf tournament held annually during the first week of April. Badges for the tournament (as tickets are known) are difficult to acquire and allow admission for play Thurs-Sun. Practice round tickets which allow admission earlier in the week are easier to snag. The golf course is beautiful and the event is traditional. Overall, this is the crown jewel of golf tournaments and events in Augusta.
Arts in the Heart of Augusta, Augusta Common, Broad Street, . Held each fall for 32 years (2012: Sept 13-16), this is a multicultural arts festival which features food, music, and visual arts from groups in the region. Often voted festival of the year for the metro area.
Westobou Festival, 540 Telfair Street, Old Academy of Richmond County, . New annual arts and music festival (2012: Oct 3-7) which brings in international performance art acts.
Rock Fore! Dough, the First Tee of Augusta, . Annual rock music benefit concert held to coincide with the Masters Golf Tournament (2013: April 9th).
12 Bands of Christmas, Imperial Theater, Broad Street, . Annual benefit concert held each December where local bands cover Christmas favorites in their individual styles.
Augusta Southern Nationals, Savannah River, Downtown Augusta, . Annual drag boat racing event (2012: July 20-22), held on the Savannah River. Billed as the "World's Richest Drag Boat Race" it is an exhilarating and dangerous event full of excitement. A must see at least once!
Historic Down Town, (Broad St (GA-28/US-25 Bus.) any where between E. Boundary and 13th St.). Shops are all up and down this stretch. Walk and browse.
Augusta Mall, 3450 Wrightsboro Road (From I-20, exit onto I-520 East. At Wrightsboro Road (Exit 2), turn left towards Daniel Field. Augusta Mall will be visible on right.), . Augusta Mall is a super-regional mall anchored by Dillard's, JCPenney, Sears, Macy's, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Barnes & Noble.
Surrey Center, (From 1-20, take Washington Road exit (Exit 199) and head east (towards downtown Augusta) on Washington Road for one mile. Turn right onto Berckmans Road and go straight for 1.8 miles. Surrey Center will be on your right.), . Contains many specialty stores, restaurants, and nightclubs. Within walking distance of the Augusta National.
This guide uses the following price ranges for a typical meal for one, including soft drink:
$20 to $35
Augusta has many of the national chain restaurants found in other cities, however the city has many excellent local eateries including:
Bee's Knees Tapas, 211 Tenth St, ☎ (706) 828-3600, . Tue-Thurs 5PM-11PM, Fri - Sun 5PM-12AM, Bar open until. A hip restaurant in Downtown Augusta with a fusion-style multi-cultural menu. Other features include a bar with a wide range of drinks and a selection of many vegetarian-friendly dishes. This is an ideal location for a date and may not a good choice for small children.Mid-range.
La Maison on Telfair, 404 Telfair St, ☎ (706) 722-4805, . 6:00PM - 10:00PM, Wine Bar & Tapas Lounge 5:00PM-Till. A rather expensive but classical French restaurant in the heart of downtown Augusta. Expect to pay beyond 60$ per person for a normal dinner, and far beyond that for a good night out.Splurge.
Tako Sushi, 437 Highland Ave, ☎ (706) 736-9191. 2-11 p.m. Mon-Sat. A fusion restaurant offering a mix of Sushi and Mexican-inspired dishes. This combination is actually very successful and keeps the small restaurant constantly busy.Mid-range or higher.
Manuel's Bread Cafe, 505 Railroad Ave (take 13th street bridge into SC take left on buena vista, then take 3rd left on crystal lake dr. Follow into Hammond's Ferry), ☎ 803-308-1323, . Tue-Fri 9AM-10PM SAT 8AM-10PM Sunday Brunch 11:30-3:00PM. The menu features breads and pastries, sandwiches, French Mediterranean dishes, vegetables and grilled meats. Chef Verney-Carron uses vegetables grown at Hammond's Ferry's organic Blue Clay Farm which is steps from the restaurant.
Luigi's, 509 Broad Street, ☎ 706-722-4056, . M-Sa 5pm-10pm, F 11:30am-2pm. Italian restaurant and locally-owned landmark, opened in 1949. Located across from the Augusta Museum of History on the far end of Downtown's restaurant district. Also has Greek cuisine, including the best baklava in town.Mid-range.
Sconyers Bar-B-Que, 2250 Sconyers Way, ☎ 706-790-5411, . Th, Fri, Sat 10am-10pm. Located in South Augusta, this is the best BBQ joint in town and has been listed by People Magazine as one of the best BBQ restaurants in the United States. The portions are large and the sauces are made in-house. The Plantation Platter gives you a taste of everything, and should feed around four comfortably. Pork is their specialty, but they also serve smoked turkey and beef BBQ. If you're vegan, forget about it (unless you really like potato salad and cole slaw). Mid-range.
Rhinehart's Oyster Bar, 3051 Washington Road, . After 5pm, those under 21 must be with a parent or guardian. Seafood with a beach-shack atmosphere. Food is great and atmosphere is relaxed. It gets packed on Friday and Saturday nights. There is no list to get in, so you have to hover around the tables and grab one when it frees up.Mid-range.
French Market Grille, 425 Highland Avenue, ☎ 706-737-4865, . M-Th 11:30am-10pm, Fri and Sat 11:30am-11pm. New Orleans-style seafood and other dishes. Great service and rich food. Try the jambalya and the lamb, they are especially good. Good place to go celebrate a special occasion! Located in Surrey Center. Splurge.
Wife Saver Restaurants, various, . Locally-owned chain of fast food restaurants. Serves Southern cooking and soul food. Along with the usual suspects like fried chicken and fish, local specialties like fried okra, livers, and gizzards are also featured on the menu. Great biscuits and hush puppies. A good place for a locally-inspired lunch!Budget.
Bee's Knees Tapas, 211 Tenth St, ☎ (706) 828-3600, . Tue-Thurs 5PM-11PM, Fri - Sun 5PM-12AM, Bar open until. A restaurant with a large bar area and a wide range of drinks and small dishes.Mid-range.
Cotton Patch Bar, 816 Cotton Lane (just off the river walk, off 8th St.), ☎ 706-724-4511, . Located next to the River Walk, live music on weekends.$5-$10.
Metro Coffee House, 1054 Broad St. A coffee shop by day, but it becomes a bar at night. Live jazz on Saturday nights.$5-$10.
Ramada Hotel and Convention Center Augusta, 640 Broad Street, ☎ 866-790-8512, .
Ramada Augusta, 2650 Center West Parkway, ☎ 866-790-8512, .
Ramada Limited Augusta Fort Gordon Area, 2154 Gordon Hwy, ☎ 866-790-8512, .
Fairfield Inn & Suites - Augusta, 2175 Gordon Highway, Augusta, GA 30909, ☎ 706-733-2121, . The newly opened Fairfield Inn & Suites Augusta hotel is a great Augusta lodging option. The hotel has 82 beautiful guest rooms and the fresh cleanliness you would expect from a brand new property. Guest of the hotel can enjoy a complimentary breakfast daily as well as an indoor pool, high-speed Internet and free on-site parking.
Holiday Inn - Augusta, 2155 Gordon Highway, Augusta, GA 30909, ☎ 706-732-2300, . The Holiday Inn - Augusta, Georgia hotel features 150 comfortable guest rooms with a convenient location to all that Augusta has to offer. The hotel is only three miles from the main gate of the Fort Gordon Army base and only one mile from the Augusta Mall. Guests can enjoy a free full breakfast buffet, an outdoor swimming pool, shuttle service and complimentary on-site parking.
Courtyard Augusta, 1045 Stevens Creek, Augusta, GA 30907, ☎ 706-737-3737, . Set in the "Garden City of the South," the Courtyard Augusta is located minutes from the revered Augusta National Golf Club, by I-20 in the heart of golf country, near a wealth of historic downtown landmarks, fine dining, scenic Riverwalk and museums.
The area code for the city is 706. All local numbers require 10-digit dialing, including the area code.
Every branch of the public library system has internet access, but a library card is required to use it. There is also a free Wi-Fi hot spot area provided by the city in the Augusta Commons on Broad Street. Many local restaurants and coffee shops also provide free wireless internet access, especially those localed on Broad Street.
Clarks Hill Lake (also known as Strom Thrumond Reservoir)- large dammed lake located just northwest of Augusta in Columbia and McDuffie Counties. Known as "the Lake" in town, it is ringed by mostly Army Corps of Engineering land, who provides public access to the water. There are many marinas, public "beaches," and pavilion facilities for enjoyment just for the day. Camping is fairly cheap at many of the sites, and those at Amityville and Modoc are especially nice. Fishing is great, as are other water sports. Make sure to ask locals about the lake levels, as during drought years, the lake may be difficult to navigate or unpleasant to swim in as you get further away from the Dam.
Modoc Speedway- located in the suburb of Grovetown, this is a 1/4 mile dirt-track raceway which holds events most weekends throughout the summer. Races last a few hours, but are individually short in duration. Many racers are local amateurs, but the faster semi-professionals also race. Great for people watching and getting a taste of racing culture in the South. The track often changes ownership, making events somewhat unpredictable in timing. Check their website or call ahead to make sure.
Carolina Dragway- located across the Savannah River in Aiken, SC, this is a drag racing venue that holds events every Sunday in the summer.
This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!