Athens Travel Guide

  • Athens
    by msbrandysue
  • Athens
    by msbrandysue
  • Athens
    by msbrandysue

Athens Things to Do

  • Walk Downtown

    Downtown Athens is fun to walk along to people-watch and do a bit of shopping. It's also the setting for many of the more special events in Athens: Black Eyed Pea Festival, Fiddler Festival, etc. They have some shops you can go into and some eateries. I just like how everyone is so friendly. The big lawyer of the town came walking out of the bank...

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  • Tara Vineyard and Winery

    After eating (our mistake) we headed to the Tara Vineyard. Unfortunately, we were really full and had already had a LARGE margarita. That Saturday night the Winery was putting on a concert and charging about $10 for it. When we got there we waited in the Winery to do some wine tasting for about 10 minutes. But the one guy there was helping some...

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  • Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center

    I heard of the Fishery from the Visitors Center brochure. My aunt and I went on a hot, sunny day. When we walked up the tram was in the front of the building and asked if we wanted to go get on as it was the last go-around for the day. We told the friendly park rangers that we hadn't paid but they said we could just pay later. From that moment on,...

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  • Visitor's Center

    While walking around the square in downtown we stopped in the Visitors Center. What a welcoming place! The woman manning the desk was so friendly and helpful. She let me take all of the flyers I would like while striking up a conversation with me and my aunt. Make sure to stop in and find day trips or ask about things going on around the town.

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  • 1913 Henderson County Courthouse

    In Downtown Athens the local court house makes up the center stage. Inside are the fully functioning local courts and pictures of the town lawyers and judges. Outside, on the grounds, are the fiddler statue, honoring the artform. It also has plenty of benches to enjoy those nice days or a picnic.Historical Plaque:Henderson County was established in...

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  • East Texas Arboretum and Botanical...

    I requested the Athens Visitors guide online and it mentioned about three-five main things to do. One of them was the East Texas Arboretum. So my aunt and I had a "stay-cation" and explored Athens one weekend.The Arboretum is very beautiful and a nature lovers dream. It is FREE but they like to ask for a $2 donation. However, it's simply a post at...

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  • Visit the Lake

    My favorite things to do at the lake:1) Watch the sunset2) Rent a boat3) Rent a jet-ski4) Feed the ducks5) Read a book on the pierThere is not a whole hell of a lot to do in East Texas except treasure the simple life and relax. Lake Athens is a great place to do this (as long as the weather is good).This is also a great place to fish for those...

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  • Fiddlers Statue

    This cute bronze character was sculptured by Albert Stewart and was erected for the Sesquicentennial Project 1839-1986. The statue is in dedication to the Athens Fiddlers Association. This style of music once brought courage to the starving troops at Valley Forge and was also an admired instrument of great men such as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas...

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  • East Texas Arboretum

    The East Texas Arboretum spread over 100 acres incorporating marsh and swampland to pastureland plus an 80 foot high elevation. They are still developing areas and broadening the garden into what will become one of the most lovely sites in East Texas.

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  • First Tree Was A Magnolia

    The garden first began in 1993 with the purchase of the land. The very first tree planted there was a 40ft Magnolia. Each year, the Arboretum hosts it's Annual Fair on the first Saturday in May.Entrance is by donation at the gate - $2.00 per car.

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  • Palestine Jail House

    As far as I can tell, this jail was built in 1856 for the amount of $375.00. The county had been without a jail for nearly 3 years following Athens becoming the permanent seat.

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  • Henderson County Historical Museum

    The museum is located in the old Faulk-Gauntt building which was constructed in 1896. The first floor imitates exhibits from the turn of the century dry goods store. On the second floor is a reconstruction of an early law office, parlour, bedroom, bath, kitchen, and schoolroom. Open Fridays and Saturdays, 10am until 3pm

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  • Athens City Cemetery

    The unofficial burial ground was closed in 1857 after residents petitioned for its closure. Later in that year a prominent local resident died and was buried on a one acre piece of land donated by Pleasant Tannehill to the Masonic Lodge. Another piece of land was set aside for the burial of a girl named Ward who was not able to be buried in the...

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  • First Factory in Athens,

    These historical markers sit along Hwy19 (Palestine St) as you are coming into Athens. It marks the site of the first factory in Athens which was established 1882 by local planter H. M. Morrison, to make building brick. Their original machinery consisted of the press which was hand operated and a mule operated swivel than ran the plunger. The...

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  • Bushrod W J Woffod Home

    This was a good example of early Texas architecture. The house was built in 1851 for Bushrod W J Wofford who came to Texas in 1851 and bought land in Fincastle (19 miles southeast of Athens). Originally it was only a 2 room log house with had a ‘dogtrot’ (breezeway) built between the two rooms. Over time additions were added as the family grew....

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Athens Hotels

See all 6 Hotels in Athens

Athens Restaurants

  • Good Mexican Food

    So, I think there's a curse on small, East Texas independent restaurants. I mean, even some of the fast food joints can't always make it. That being said, I've eaten at many a Mexican restaurants in Athens, Texas and I think The Jalepeno Tree is here to stay. Not only because they are a strong chain in East Texas but the food is good and the...

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  • Reliable Deli

    McAlister's Deli is a chain that spans many states but I'm always surprised what Athens has, being a smaller city in East Texas. I love going to McAlister's because it's easy, laid back, and tasty. When you walk into the restaurant you go place your order at the counter. They have a range of sandwiches or you can kind of make your own with...

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  • Lake Athens Marina & Restaurant

    The marina restaurant sits on the shores of Lake Athens. Dining is casual to formal so no set dress attire is expected and they serve American cuisine. There is an RV park next door as well as a full service marina.

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  • Ole West Steak House

    These two eateries sit side by side. The Steak House serves lunch and dinner has a good buffet, choice of three or four meats, lots of vegetables and a salad bar. On Wednesday and Fridays they have seafood. Free Blue Bell Ice cream, all you can eat.Hours: 11:00am to 9:00pm

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  • Ole West Bean and Burger Co

    Right on the Highway to Tyler, the West Bean and Burger Co was recommended by Texas Monthly and has also been voted as having the best burgers in Athens. They do lunch and dinner, have good short orders, with a bean bar, and free Blue Bell Ice cream, all you can eat. Hours: 11:00am to 9:00pm

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  • Hog Heaven Hams

    A catchy name if nothing else. They sell spiral sliced honey glazed hams and honey glazed turkey breast. They also make up deli sandwiches and Gift baskets.

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Athens Transportation

  • Exploring Athens

    Well, to get to Athens you're going to have to have a car anyway, because any other route would be extremely costly. And when you get here, you need a car to get around.Although the center of Athens is quite large compared to the surrounding areas, most of the roads are one lane. Therefore, getting behind a slower, elderly person (or any age...

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  • Getting There

    By Car : If you are travelling from Dallas you can take I-45 south through Ennis to Corsicana, then take Hwy 31 into Athens. Or you can take I-45 south, then US-175 east to Athens.

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  • Athens Hotels

    6 Hotels in Athens

Athens Shopping

See all 2 Shopping in Athens
  • Antique Shopping

    My aunt and I had both gotten a flyer to the Wagon Wheel. Outside there was a garage sale or two taking place. I got some childrens books for a pretty good price. When we went inside it was not a garage sale feel. They have this establishment set up in a small booths. Each little area/room is set up with a different person's antiques. Each of those...

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  • On the Square Antiques

    On of several antique stores on the courthouse square to wander through. This area is known as Athens Alley. Don’t bother visiting on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday because this store is only open Wed – Saturday, 10.00am – 5.00pm.

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  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

Athens Local Customs

  • The Fiddlin' Spirit

    Athens is home to the Old Fiddler's Contest that I've unfortunately never been able to attend. However, they honor this art form in the square, by the old courthouse. There stands a bronze sculpture of an old fiddler. Fiddlin' is no joke in this city. If you are in the area Memorial Day weekend make sure to stop by the contest on Friday night!From...

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  • Home of the Hamburger

    There have been many stories on who invented the Hamburger but it seems that Athens lays claim to the first ground beef being put between slices of bread, garnished with ground mustard, mixed with mayonnaise, a big slice of Bermuda onion and sliced cucumber pickles. After a reasonable amount of research and some substantial evidence including a...

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  • Black-Eyed Pea Festival

    Athens is known as the Black-eyed Pea Capitol of the World and the festival is held in July each year. There are of course various black-eyed pea dishes as well other things to eat, as well as pea shelling, pea eating, pea popping contests. Plenty of entertainment as well as an arts and crafts fair and a water melon eating contents. Lets not forget...

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Athens Off The Beaten Path

  • Palestine

    Palestine is around 34 miles to the south of Athens. The town has an abundance of historical building and homes, over 1800 in all and second only to Galveston. Davey Dogwood Park is alive with colour in Spring with the flowering of the Dogwoods. The old downtown area (Old Town Palestine) is filled with architecture from the 1800’s and the area is...

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  • Corsicana

    Corsicana is about 37 miles west of Athens on Hwy 31. Corsicana was known to have the first oil discovery west of the Mississippi. In 1897 a local company built the state’s first oil refinery. This company was called Magnolia Oil which is better known today as Mobil. The Texas Company (Texaco) was started up shortly after and Corsicana became one...

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  • Lake Athens

    Lake Athens lies about 4 miles east of Athens and covers about 1,500 acres. It was previously known as Flat Creek Reservoir. The impoundment is owned by the Athens Municipal Water Authority and supplies the city with their requirements. The lake is popular for boating, swimming and fishing for record setting largemouth bass, crappie, white bass,...

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Athens Sports & Outdoors

  • Free Family Fishing

    Texas Freshwater Fisheries has a free fishing pond as one of their attractions. Now, before you call me a liar, there is an admission price to the Fishery. Regular admission is $5.50 for adults, $4.50 for seniors 65 and older, and $3.50 for children ages 4 through 12. The fishing itself with rented poles and lures is FREE though. (Woohoo)However,...

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  • Calling all Water People

    Athens, though small, has a great water area and, great fishing. Many people here are retired and you'll find many boats. Many early fisherman here. There's also rental places for boats, jetskis, etc. Check the website out.....much more information than I could let you know. The usual fishing stuff (I'm not a fisherman/fisherwoman)

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Explore Deeper into Athens
Old Fiddlers Reunion and Contest
Local Customs
The Cain Center
Things to Do
Athens Visitor and Welcome Center
Things to Do
Courts Under the Oaks
Things to Do
Henderson County Courthouse
Things to Do
The Game Warden Memorial
Things to Do
Anglers Delight
Things to Do
Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center
Things to Do
Recreational Activities
Off The Beaten Path
Cedar Creek Reservoir
Off The Beaten Path
Malakoff Man
Off The Beaten Path
Malakoff
Off The Beaten Path
New York, TX Cheesecake
Restaurants
Map of Athens

View all Athens hotels