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The Ultimate Weekend Guide to Athens, GA

weekend guide to Athens Georgia travel blogger

Ahhh southern college towns, there really is nothing like them! Even in the summer or middle of winter, there is always a pulsing energy and eclectic mix of things for old and young alike.

I’ve spent the last 3 years living in Atlanta and have always heard great things about Athens. Everything from amazing food to unique shopping, and of course fall tailgating. So the VGB squad decided to take a weekend road trip and we couldn’t wait to get back and share some of our faves! Everything you need to know for the perfect weekend in Athens is below.

How to spend a weekend in Athens, GA!

Where to stay in Athens

Having never been to Athens, we wanted to stay relatively close to campus and downtown. Our friend Ally May of Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby’s International Realty hooked us up with the cutest condo in the 5 points area! The beautiful 2 bedroom condo had a fenced in patio and was stocked with tons of guide books and recs for the perfect introduction to Athens! You can see more pics of the condo and book your weekend getaway on VRBO here. It’s the perfect home away from home.

Where to taste local bevs and bites

After browsing through some of the tour guide books in the condo, we decided to set out and start exploring. The condo was walking distance to downtown and some of our top places we wanted to check out. After our drive we were craving a beverage so we set out to explore some of the local breweries. Athens is full of creative local spots, one is particular is the Creature Comforts brewery. The perfect chill spot to start your weekend with friends over some locally crafted brews. They have a large indoor and outdoor space which would make the perfect party venue or just weekend hang out with a group of friends. We easily could have spent all afternoon here but after sampling a few brews and talking with some of the friendly staff, but we set out for our next stop.

I’m a total foodie and before checking out a new spot I love to read the menu and get pumped up for my meal. I’ll be the first to admit, when I looked over the menu for The National I only saw one or two items I got excited about. I say that because I love when I am completely surprised by how much I love a new place! The National definitely lived up to it’s reputation as a must try in Athens! We pulled up stools in the back cozy bar area and decided on the anchovies on tomato garlic toast, the pizzette with ham, apple, cheese and honey. I feel bad including our favorite dish since it was the nightly special and not sure how often they make it, but I have to because it was probably our favorite thing we ate while in Athens! House made agnolotti pasta filled with beef short rib in a parmesan, butter, sage sauce. I’m basically drooling as I’m reliving eating this dish, it was so amazing. Needless to say, when you go, if they have a nightly pasta special, you have to try it!  They also had great cocktails, naturally I had to try the Mississippi Queen and it was delicious. Once again we could have spent countless hours trying bites and cocktails, but we mad more to explore and set off for our next stop.

You can’t be a foodie and go to Athens without stopping by Hugh Acheson’s restaurant, Five & Ten. What looks like a modest home on a quiet street is a restaurant filled with tons of charm, mouth watering bites and yummy bevs. We grabbed seats at the bar, ordered up some oysters and cocktails while we looked over the menu. We decided on caesar salads and broccolini, but the star of the show was definitely the halibut. The ambiance and food was amazing, a must try in Athens!

When we finally couldn’t possibly try any more food, we decided to explore downtown some to walk off everything we ate. We checked out the roof top patios at Allgood and Blue Sky before calling it a night since we had another packed day of exploring ahead.


Where to brunch

Brunch is probably my favorite meal so when we heard about two awesome brunch spots we had to try them both! We started at Marker 7 Coastal Grill to get our Bloody Mary and fries fix. The weather was a little rainy, so we definitely want to come back and spend an afternoon on Marker 7’s outdoor patio. The staff was so friendly and welcoming, and our breakfast sandwich, fried oysters and Bloody Mary definitely hit the spot.

Next we headed to Big City Bread Cafe! A cozy cafe with tons of pastries and bottomless coffee, what else could you want on a rainy Sunday afternoon? One of the reasons I love brunch so much is because it’s totally acceptable to eat tons of sweets and call it a meal! Everything looked so amazing at BCBC so we had to try an array of all the baked goodies. The pastries, cakes, and cookies were all divine, but the flourless chocolate stars were our absolute favorite! The line was pretty long so I recommend coming later for an afternoon treat or be prepared to wait and try not to get too hangry.

Where to shop

With our sugar rush and coffee fix in high gear we had to visit some of the cute shops downtown before heading out of town. We heard we had to check out Cheeky Peach so we made that our first stop. When we walked in we knew we had to set a time limit for ourselves, because if not we could easily have spent countless hours trying on clothes, shoes and jewelry, everything was adorable!

I love vintage stores and exploring them in new cities. You never know what you will find, but it will always be something unique and interesting. Athens has several vintage and consignment shops, and luckily several are pretty close to each other like Atomic and Dynamite Vintage clothing. It’s fun to mix up your shopping sessions with a mix of new trendy and vintage to mix and match your styles.

Sadly our weekend in Athens had come to a close but luckily we had a box full of sweets from Big City Bread Cafe to make the drive back to Atlanta a little easier. All in all we had a blast exploring all the awesome restaurants and shopping in Athens. Definitely plan on coming back in the fall to experience a game weekend and can’t wait to eat at some of our favorite places again!


Did I leave out some of your favorite things to do in Athens? Let me know in the comments below or tag us on social @VerbalGoldBlog #VGBsquad!

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Thanks to Ally May for hosting us in her AirBnB!

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  • I’ve only been to Athens once, for an art festival last year. We didn’t explore too much outside of the festival itself, but it was fun!

    • Yeah it’s a great time with so many awesome restaurants! Would definitely recommend visiting again 🙂

  • Creature Comforts sounds like my kind of place! Loved your guide. 🙂 I, too, love the excuse for a sweet tooth that is called brunch! Haha

    • Haha I could definitely live off of just brunch food! Glad you enjoyed 🙂

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