Athens is located in northeast Georgia about an hour east of Atlanta, and is the home of the University of Georgia and the unique four year medical school campus – the AU/UGA Medical Partnership. Athens is one of the nation’s quintessential college towns, with a lively restored Victorian-era downtown bustling with shops, dining, and nightlife. Atlanta is just 70 miles away, and the scenic north Georgia mountains are only a short drive up Highway 441.
Athens is home to a thriving music community and has an esteemed place in American music history. Downtown is alive with a variety of venues and bars that offer entertainment suited to every musical preference. Though Athens does accommodate those who enjoy franchises and fast food joints, it is known best for its unique, independent restaurants. From Downtown to Normaltown, you can find southern soul food, sushi, steak, Tex-Mex, Italian, and locally-grown options. The ambience varies as much as the cuisine; whether you’re looking to lounge around and sip wine on an outdoor patio, or to quickly get in, eat, and get out, Athens is the place to be.
Saturdays “between the hedges” have been a Georgia Bulldogs tradition since 1929; if you’ve never experienced southern collegiate tailgating and football, this is definitely something that must be done. Though football is the most popular sporting event on campus, there are plenty of other exciting athletic events to choose from in Athens as well. Tickets also can be purchased for UGA’s gymnastics, basketball, baseball and hockey matches. All other sports – including soccer, equestrian, tennis, and swimming and diving – are free.
Quick Facts about Athens
- Athens is located along the North Oconee River in Clarke County and is known as Georgia’s “Classic City of the South”
- Located 70 miles from Atlanta, below the scenic Blue Ridge mountains in North Georgia
- Home to the University of Georgia, Jittery Joe’s coffee, R.E.M., the B-52s, Drive-By Truckers, and Widespread Panic
- Clarke County Area: 122 square miles, the smallest county in Georgia
- Population: 116,714 (according to 2010 U.S. Census)
- Weather: July: 90ºF average high, January 33ºF average low
- Excellent school systems in the public and private sectors
- Southern hospitality at its finest
The Classic Center Theatre • The Georgia Museum of Art • State Botanical Garden of Georgia • UGA Athletics • AthFest • Athens Twilight Criterium • Ciné • Morton Theatre • Georgia Theater
Athens Restaurants & Coffee Hits
Jittery Joe’s • The Last Resort • The Grit • Viva! Argentine Cuisine • Clocked • Transmetropolitan • Mama’s Boy • Pouch • The Globe • Amici’s • Automatic Pizza • Siri Thai • 2 Story Coffeehouse • 5 & 10 • The National • Porterhouse Grill • Creature Comforts Brewery • Terrapin Brewery
- America’s 10 New Best Craft Beer Cities (Fortune Magazine March 2016)
- Top 17 Most Affordable Cities (Mint.com June 2016)
- Best College Football Towns * No 2. Among Top College Towns in the SEC (Travel + Leisure Sept. 2015 and 247Sports April 2015)
- Athens: Georgia’s Gourmet Destination (CultureTrip May 2014)
- America’s Coolest Music Towns (DreamPlanGo April 2014)
- America’s Prettiest Towns (Forbes August 2013)
To learn more about what Athens has to offer, visit: