Athens is one of the oldest cities in Alabama, with a history dating back to 1818. It was originally named after Athen on, but was later renamed after the ancient Greek city. It is famous for its early railways and cotton cities, has a rich heritage and has become a paradise for history lovers. It has a rich selection of civil war sites, museums and pre-war buildings, exuding the charm of the south, there are several natural parks nearby, and offers a variety of activities for everyone to enjoy.Let’s explore the best things about Athens: The museum is located in the heart of downtown Athens, Alabama, and houses collections from the Revolutionary War
Athens is one of the oldest cities in Alabama, with a history dating back to 1818. It was originally named after Athenson, but was later renamed after the ancient Greek city.
It is famous for its early railways and cotton cities, has a rich heritage and has become a paradise for history lovers.
It has a rich selection of civil war sites, museums and pre-war buildings, exuding the charm of the south, there are several natural parks nearby, and offers a variety of activities for everyone to enjoy.
Let’s explore The best things in Athens:
1. Alabama Veterans Museum and Archives
Located in the heart of downtown Athens, Alabama, the museum houses a large collection of cultural relics from the Revolutionary War to today.
Discover military uniforms, weapons and medals, and listen to the famous quotes and stories of all those who have experienced it.
The museum is one of the most popular attractions in Alabama, with guided tours, gift shops and a monthly coffee morning, where locals and tourists can exchange their stories.
It receives an average of 10,000 tourists per year. If you live in or pass through Athens, this is a must-see attraction.
2. Isom’s Orchard
The farm started growing cotton on its land more than 100 years ago. Today, the 259 acres of verdant land is still rich, not cotton, but fruit.
No matter what season you visit Alabama, there will always be fresh fruit to pick.
Whether you like crispy apples, juicy peaches, plump plums or blueberries, you must bring a full bag.
During the fall months, take the kids to raid the fabulous pumpkin field and don’t forget to try the mouthwatering cider silt before leaving.
3.Joe Wheeler State Park
The scenic Joe Wheeler State Park is located on the shore of Lake Wheeler, about 22 miles from Athens, Alabama.
Surrounded by emerald green forests, seaside cottages, an 18-hole championship golf course, hiking trails and restaurants, you can easily spend a few days exploring the area.
The Tennessee River runs through the park, dividing it into two.
It attracts anglers throughout the year, who come to fish for fish, perch and sea bream.
If you feel energetic, you can take a stroll along the excellent hiking and mountain biking trails, or enjoy a beer or local wine in the restaurant by the river.
4. Athens Saturday market
Every Saturday, the Athens market is alive in the city center.
It helps support local businesses, bringing artisans, farmers, and creatives together to purchase goods from locals and tourists.
Visitors can browse fresh produce, baked goods and handicrafts, and barbecue and enjoy live music on specific days throughout the year.
5. Richard Martin Trail
Outdoor adventurers and nature lovers will enjoy a day exploring the Richard Martin Trail.
This trail is located just outside Elkmont, 10 miles north of Athens, and has a variety of activities suitable for all ages.
During the journey, you will see refurbished old trains, historic warehouses and rich flora and fauna.
You can ride a bike, hike or horseback, because this trail will take you through homes, bridges and scenic cotton fields.
There are several famous attractions worth exploring, including the Civil War battlefields, memorials and wetlands full of wildlife.
6. The pre-war trail
The Limestone County Pre-War Trail takes you on foot or by car to explore the cities of Athens, Mooresville, and Belle Mina, showing the delightful houses and buildings of the post-Civil War.
Visitors can venture into some buildings during opening hours, including the Morsville Post Office and the National University of Athens.
Although this is a self-guided tour, if you want to learn more about the pre-war residence and its asylum during the trip, you can purchase an audio CD from the Athens-Limestone Visitor Center to pass on local history.
7. Robert Beatty Historic District
Robert Beaty was an Irish immigrant who later came to the United States and initially settled in Virginia.
He arrived in Athens, Alabama in 1818, when he purchased land for development and became one of the founders of the city along with John Coffee, John Carroll and John Reid.
The Robert Beaty Historic District is the site of the earliest buildings in Athens, exhibiting the various architectural styles designed during the Greek and Commonwealth periods to the Italian period, the Spanish colonial revival period and the Victorian period.
The area is now part of the National Historic Site of the United States, if you are in Athens, you must not miss it.
8. Mallard Water Park
If you travel with children and visit the Athens area in summer, you can spend a happy day at Point Mallard Water Park.
This fabulous park is located 19 miles south of Athens and is perfect for family outings.
The home of America’s first wave pool, with several water slides and a scenic lagoon, you can splash around and absorb the sun from dawn to dusk.
If you don’t want to engage in any overly energetic activities, you can also choose.
Just go rafting along the Lazy River, relax on the man-made beach, or go to the picnic pavilion for a bite to eat.
9. South Gales Golf Course
Golf enthusiasts traveling to Alabama can choose the original championship track on the Robert Trent Jones golf course, but if you stay in Athens and don’t want to risk too far, you can play south Gales Golf Course.
This fun par 72 course starts from the longest teeing ground, has a golf course of more than 6,700 yards, and includes a driving range, putting green and snack bar.
It is open to the public, so you can stop and play at any time.
10. Oizumi Park
If you don’t want to go too far and don’t like family picnics or leisurely walks, then Big Spring Park is your ideal choice.
There are many turf and shaded areas, and there is a pond in the middle with ducks and two large fountains.
You can challenge friends or locals to play tennis, or have a picnic in the gazebo, where you can buy fresh produce from the Athens Saturday market.
Young tourists are not in Big Spring Park, but there is also a fun playground where they can relax and run for hours.
11. Khmer Art
Let your creation flourish in the “Khmer Art” in the center of Athens.
The fabulous art incubator provides artists and creatives with various art activities, education courses and gallery spaces to release their talents.
Pack up brushes and imagination, and then enter the studio.
You will meet new people and be able to explore new and diverse methods and techniques with like-minded people in a warm and friendly atmosphere.
12. 306 BBQ
Founded in 2011, this family-run restaurant is located in Athens and is designed for those who like authentic southern style barbecue. This friendly restaurant offers you more food with slow-cooked grilled meat and homemade side dishes.
Rub all the meat dry and cook it slowly on a bed of pecan wood.
Their beef, poultry and pork dishes are very juicy and very fragrant. They don’t even need a sauce, but if you want to further enhance the flavor, they do provide special dipping sauces.
If you feel hungry, try a whole rib or a whole chicken, or try it and eat some salad and fluffy eggplant and potatoes.
13. Houston Memorial Library and Museum
The Houston Memorial Library and Museum was once the residence of Governor George Smith Houston (George Smith), a famous figure and citizen of Athens.
After his death, his estate donated his house to the city and was instructed to use it as a museum and public library.
It is now the flagship building in the historic district of Athens, displaying a lot of reading materials, historic furniture and photos.
The building is open to the public and can host special events.
14. Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge
Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge is one of the many bird watching locations in Alabama, just like winter vacations and migratory bird resorts.
There are currently more than 300 documented species in the reserve, including bald eagles and cranes. For keen ornithologists, this is a great opportunity.
Bring binoculars and you may observe the Northern Cardinal and the Red-bellied Woodpecker during the trip.
The wildlife sanctuary is located 23 miles south of Athens and is an ideal place for a day trip.
So bring a picnic, your walking shoes and a camera, and spend a great day in the beautiful Alabama wilderness with many feather-spotted friends!
15. UG white merchant ship
If you want to buy the perfect souvenir or gift for your loved ones, please go to UG White Mercantile in Athens.
This old world gift shop is the epitome of Alabama’s old shopping experience.
Since 1917, this shop has catered to the needs of cotton factory workers, farmers and developers, who previously bought everything from cast iron frying pans to horse-drawn plows.
Today, visitors can browse clothing, sweets, gifts and kitchen supplies at home.
Therefore, if you are nostalgic, you can enter the center of Athens or Hansville and find that this old hardware store has become a gift shop. You will not be disappointed.