It is just about summer here in Athens and that means we get the city back! The students have gone home and now we get to enjoy our favorite watering holes, restaurants and our general activities without much fuss. Life gets a little bit slower, a little more relaxed, and a little less crowded.
So what is there to do around here? Plenty!
For starters tis the season for patio dining and we are a huge fan of eating al fresco in the Classic City. Take the fam to Ted’s Most Best, or snag a table for two outside The Globe. Many of our favorite places offer outdoor dining so take advantage of the beautiful weather and enjoy!
This is also the perfect time of year for hiking and biking! There are plenty of trails that are easy day trips from Athens and you can find them here but if you want to stay local, check out the trails at The State Botanical Gardens of Georgia. With several spurs to choose from and definitely an easy to moderate hike, the Botanical Gardens is a great place to get started if you are new to hiking or are just feeling low key. Cooling off indoors and grabbing a bite at Donderos Café afterwards is the perfect treat after your hike!
Take your wheels over to Trail Creek Park or up to Heritage Park if you are looking for some down and dirty mountain bike riding. Trail Creek is a great beginners ride, not too technical if you are just starting out, and there is a great group of riders that frequents the trails if you ever need a hand. Heritage Park in Bishop, GA is a owned by the county and has some pretty technical trails for those feeling a bit more daring (and with more experience please). There are 8 miles of trails within the park and they are frequented by hikers, bikers, and even horseback riders, so be mindful and on the lookout.
Our personal favorite is water activities, and the Athens area has plenty of places for you and your fellow paddlers to dip your toe in the water or go for a float. Sandy Creek Park and Fort Yargo both offer rentals for use at their lakes, or Big Dogs on the River and Broad River Outpost will rent you gear and send you down river for the afternoon. If you have your own gear you are not alone and there are plenty of paddlers that meet up and would be happy to share their favorite place with you. Just ask!
What would summer be without some dirt? Getting dirty and planting your summer garden is a must do and Athens has some fabulous local garden shops that are always happy to help you decide what to plant and when. Or head down to the Farmers Market on Saturday mornings at either the Athens or Watkinsville location and pick up a few tips from the local farmers that sell their bounty at these locations.
If you are into music you are in luck! Athens is known for its great music scene and we urge you to check out Flagpole Magazine for a weekly rundown of who is playing where. AthFest is a great time to check out local tunes and if you are a little more laid back The Sunflower Music Series is returning to the Botanical Gardens again this summer.