Athens is a medium city with a major university (population 26,000 -2010) and county seat of Athens County(population 68,000 2010 Southeast Ohio, best known for being home to Ohio University 22,000 students. The university was the first founded west of the Appalachian Mountains in 1804.
- Port Columbus International Airport (CMH), take US-33, approximately 70 miles, from Columbus.
SR 33 and SR 50 intersect at Athens.
Many of the local taxi companies in Athens also offer a shuttle service.
Bus service from Columbus / Columbus airport. www.gobus.com
- Athens is a small town that can be easily traversed by foot.
- There are many different taxi companies servicing Athens, all with easy numbers to remember.
- (740)-594-7433 (RIDE) Has been servicing Athens for over 10 years. The types of car include 2007-2008 Aveos and Limos. Great service.
- (740)-594-4686 (GOTO) Fast service, but GOTO only has mini-vans, which are in very poor condition.
Arts and Culture
- Ohio University School of Theatre Features six mainstage productions a year as well as a series of Lab Shows
- The Seabury Quinn, Jr. Playwrights' Festival Graduate playwrights' festival held each year, usually at the end of May. Features readings, staged readings, and full productions of graduate work.
- Midnight Madness Every Friday at Midnight in the Hahne Theater, School of Theatre Building. Each week the graduate playwrights write a ten minute play based on a theme they receive that Monday.
- Lost Flamingo Company Ohio University's student run theatre company. Features nine to twelve productions a year, as well as yearly productions of The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Fall Quarter), The Vagina Monologues (Winter Quarter), and Short Stack, a collection of ten minute plays written by Ohio University students (Spring Quarter).
- Comedy for the Masses Ohio University's student sketch comedy group. Features six shows a year, as well as an annual Stand-Up Showcase. Founded in 2001, in part by Michael Busch (the original Sprint guy from the Alltel commercials).
- The 48-Hour Shoot Out An annual competition sponcered by the School of Telecommunications in which students are given two days to write, film, and edit a short movie based on a line of dialogue, a prop, and a genre.
- The OU Bobcats compete in the Mid-American Conference of NCAA Division I-A College Athletics.
- If you know how to fence, you should check out the Ohio University Fencing Club http://www.ohio.edu/orgs/fencingclub/
- Halloween Block Party, date varies. The annual Halloween block party is arguably the biggest deal and the most fun. There are many creative costumes and plenty of debauchery to get into.
- Moms Weekend, dates vary, but usually near Easter or Mother's day. The moms of the students come into town and they come to PARTY! Sometimes parallels the Halloween block party in terms of craziness. The campus is also very pretty this time of year.
Companion Plants - Possibly one of the finest plants stores in the country. With an amazing array of plants from across the world this very difficult to find but wonderfully kept secret is reason in itself to go to Athens. Wonderfully friendly and helpful staff and a must for plant people. Check their website for directions and hours.
NOTE: restaurants tend to close or stop ordering fresh food when school is not in session. Thus, expect lower quality and less availability during summer months and during school breaks.
- Millers Chicken, 235 West State St. Family owned and operated for over 60 years.
- Casa Nueva, 4 W. State St., . Great "Mexican" (non-authentic) food, vegan and vegetarian options, dedicated to using local resources. Restaurant has been worker-owned since 1984.
- Lam's Garden, 934 E. State St., (740) 594-4424 for takeout. Excellent American Chinese cuisine, the best General Tso's Chicken in the universe.
- Lui Lui's 8 Station St. Decent Asian and American fusion.
- The Oak Room 14 Station St. Nice small bar with OK food for lunch, dinners are overpriced. Has a nice selections of local microbrew and premium beers on tap for its size.
- O'Betty's Red Hot 15 W. State St. Burlesque themed hot dog joint.
- Court Street Diner 18 N. Court St. Greasy spoon diner, only restaurant in Athens that serves Cherry Kool-Aid
- Peking Express 5 N. Court St. Commonly known to locals and college students as "$3.95 Chinese", it is precisely that, a giant heap of Chinese food, although now it'll cost you about $4.50.
- Avalanche Pizza 329 E. State St. Cheap, internationally award winning pizza. Insanely great deals (especially if you pick-up rather than get delivery) and an obscene amount of topping choices and specialty pizzas.
- Bagel Street Deli 23 S. Court St. Charming deli featuring nearly 200 different bagel sandwiches and other fares, ranging from vegan to ultra-carnivore. Walls are decorated with tin foil sculptures and chalk signatures of past customers. Home of the annual Pickle Fest (pickle eating contest).
- Donkey Coffee 17 1/2 W. Washington St. Rated Best Coffeehouse in the state by Ohio Magazine. Features calming music, great coffee, board games, open mic nights, poetry nights, local art, and is open 24 hours during finals week.
- Souvlaki's Restaurant and Deli 9 W. State St. Late night gyros and baklava.
- Big Mamma's Burritos 10 S. Court St. A local option for those who loathe Chipotle. Many burrito and salsa options. Chipotle Ranch is a customer favorite.
- Burrito Buggy A stand that sells amazing burritos at the intersection of Court St. and Union St. It's bright orange, yellow, and purple; you can't miss it.
- DP Dough 374 Richland Ave. Open to 3AM on the weekend, serving more than forty different types of calzones. Some of the best drunk food in Athens.
- Grand China Buffet 1002 E. State St. Amazingly great buffet with waitresses who glare at you in every attempt to will you to your own death.
- Hungry Howie's Pizza 235 W. Union St. Not just a national chain, but the only Hungry Howie's with an official bus and $5 mediums being sold on the sidewalk.
- Stephen's End of Court St. Amazing restaurant with a constantly changing menu
- Zoe, 24 1/2 East State Street, ☎ 740-592-4443, . Zoe features New American cuisine in a contemporary Setting. The ever changing a la carte menu features meat, seafood, poultry, and vegetarian options with an emphasis on local, seasonal ingredients. Please join us Tuesday evenings for half price wine and on Friday evenings for Prime Rib. Reservations recommended but not required.
- Village Bakery & Cafe, 268 E. State St., Athens, ☎ 740-594-7311, . At Village Bakery & Cafe, our goal is to sustain our community and provide exceptional dining by using locally grown organic vegetables, non-GMO meats, and free-range eggs. We serve delicious Fair Trade organic coffee, Herbal Sage teas, and bake with organic dairy, flour and sugar to create a unique variety of freshly baked hand crafted loaves, flaky quiches, sweet and savory pastries, breakfast pizza and a selection of tasty soups, salads and sandwiches for lunch. For dessert, you'll be tempted by delicious cookies, brownies, tarts, and cakes. Our Sunday brunch menu includes individual omelettes, French toast, and sides of locally produced sausages, ham, polenta or home fries.
- Fluff Bakery, 8 North Court St. Athens, Ohio 45701, ☎ 740-249-4286, . Fresh baked goods and sanchwiches
There are many bars on Court Street located near Ohio University's College Green.
- The Union 18 W. Union St. - Voted one of the best dive bars in America by Maxim Magazine. Features $1 Pabst Blue Ribbon, live indie rock of varying volumes, and Dance or Die, a monthly dance party. They shut down the grille, and the roaches left in protest. Rebuilt after a 2015 fire. Rooftop patio and smoking area is a great escape from the sometimes cramped interior.
- The Smiling Skull Saloon 108 W. Union St. - Known as Athens' biker bar. Great jukebox ranging from Johnny Cash to Dylan to The Clash. Open 365 days a year. Very reasonable drinks and nearly guaranteed to be free of frat and sorority types. Two dollar "Black and Tans" on Tuesdays. Your (well-behaved) dog is welcome to come inside!
- Cat's Den 110 W. Union St. - A bar for locals. Escape the college crowd here on most nights.
- Jackie O's 24 W. Union St. - Home of the only micro brewpub in Athens, offering live music, food and outdoor patio. A great alternative to the typical Athens bar scene. Power Hour every day from 8 to 9 PM - select beers are half price.
- Buffalo Wild Wings23 W. Union St. - Wings, beer, sports, trivia, and a wall dedicated to people who have eaten 12 Blazin' wings in five minutes. A chain, but it "feels" a bit local when there's a crowd.
- The J Bar 41 N. Court St. - Features the signature drink Junction Punch. Gin is probably an ingredient and one is more than enough.
- The Pub 39 N. Court St. - Well known for their Beer Cheese Soup, Aquarium Night (beer in obscenely huge glasses), and for being massively packed during the weekend.
- Pigskin Bar and Grill - Very well known for their signature drink The Black Widow, a one of a kind dark purple concoction that is a must have for any visitor to Athens.
- Pawpurr's 37 N. Court St. - A "dive bar" with a small (and mostly unused) dance floor.
- Crystal 34 N. Court St. - Very easily the #1 frat/sorority bar.
- The C.I. 32 N. Court St. - The Hockey Bar. Crowded on weekends, College to Locals.
- Red Brick Sports Pub 14 N. - Court St. Many flat screen TVs and a pretty decent menu
- Cat's Eye 12 N. Court St. A mix of locals and college kids.
- Lucky's 11 N. Court St. - The official Steelers bar of Athens. Very good daily specials.
- Tony's Tavern 7 W. State St. - Considered a "townie bar." Tony's is very well known for their 'Hot Nuts' shot. Daily specials on Killian's and a very laid-back, friendly dive bar atmosphere. Be there on Friday night for Tony's happy hour (free food!).
- Casa Nueva & Cantina 4 W. State St. - Great food, warm and friendly bar. The nation's oldest co-op restaurant.
- Broney's 7 W. Carpenter St. - The newest bar addition to Athens at the very end of Court Street. Kind of sterile compared to the rest of the bars in town.
- Courtside- Sports bar that has a beer garden ideal for day drinking on a spring day.
- Burr Oak State Park Lodge
Bed & Breakfast
- Burr Oak State Park and Resort Lodge, Athens County, north of Glouster and east/adjacent to the Wayne National Forest off of Route 13. A variety of overnight accommodations, lodge (Lodge closed in January 2012), cottages and campground. Lodge: Sixty guest rooms, five meeting rooms, a dining room, full-service lounge, gift shop, swimming beach, tennis courts, playground equipment, boat launch ramp and indoor pool. Cottages: 30 family cottages, air conditioning, cable tv, sleeps six people, bath/shower, living room, complete kitchen, dining area, screened porch. Linens, towels, cooking, eating utensils are furnished. Camping: 100 non-electric campsites, showers, flush toilets, twenty one primitive sites, pet camping. Fishing, hunting, swimming, beach, bathhouse, showers, changing booths, snack bar, twenty-eight miles of hiking trails, Burr Oak Backpack Trail, horseshoe court and playground.
- Lake Hope State Park, eastern Vinton County, approx. 20 miles west of Athens. Lake Hope State Park is entirely within the 26,824-acre Zaleski State Forest and adjacent to part of the Wayne National Forest. Dining lodge: destroyed by fire 2006. Being rebuilt. Cottages: 72 cottages, all cottages have linens, towels, complete kitchens, microwave ovens, heat, air conditioning, outdoor grills and fire rings. Camping: 219-site campground, heated showerhouses, pit latrines, waste disposal, laundry facilities, picnic tables, fire rings, forty-six sites have electric hookups, pet camping, three Rent-A-Camp units, one camper-cabin, one Rent-A-Tepee. Boats with electric motors only, 120 acre lake, canoes, kayaks, and rowboats, available for rent. Swimming beach, beachhouse, sun deck, restrooms, concession building, fishing, hunting, seventeen miles of hiking trails, 21-mile backpack trail with primitive campsites, thirty-three miles of bridle trail and 23-mile singletrack bike trail.
- Stouds Run State Park, Athens County, east of Athens, on Route 690 , inside of Wayne National Forest on Dow Lake. 75 non-electric campsites, picnic tables and fire rings, pet camping, three Rent-A-Camp sites, boating, fishing, hunting, fifteen miles of hiking trails, birdwatching, nature study, 8-1/2 mile bridle trail, 900-foot sand beach, change booths, drinking water, restrooms, scuba diving with proper equipment, picnic tables, cooking grates, three shelterhouses, basketball court, playground equipment, boat rentals, volleyball court and another playground.
Go to Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh or West Virginia.