Life Unleashed

Top 5 Things to Do on a Football Weekend Road Trip to Athens

A football weekend in Athens involves much more than action at Sanford Stadium and tailgating. When the dust clears at Sanford Stadium, what else is there to do in Athens? A road trip weekend visit to Athens should include some of these "Top Five" attractions and activities:

*2020 Update: We know, we know. Football looks a little (well, a LOT) different this year. UGA and Athens want football fans to Go Safely this season. If you're headed to the stadium, wear your mask. If you're watching from a bar or restaurant's outdoor patio, bring your mask there, too. Keep up with UGA campus and Athletic Association updates at Gameday Gameplan.

1. Live Music

No visit to Athens would be complete without sampling a bit of Athens' renowned music scene. Known worldwide as the birthplace of R.E.M. and the B-52's, hundreds of bands still call Athens home. Venues throughout downtown like the famous 40 Watt Club and Georgia Theatre attract rising stars and old favorites.

2. Tour Bulldog Heritage

  • Head into town a day early and take part in the UGA Special Collections Libraries' Friday Football Tours. A variety of tales and memorabilia will have you in awe. 
  •  Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall houses the Georgia Bulldog Hall of Fame as well as a plethora of memorabilia that is a must-see for any die hard Bulldog fan.
  • Revel in all the Bulldog Traditions, from Dawg Walk to calling the dawgs! 

3. Craft Breweries

Looking to sample a beer in the city it is brewed? Visit one of Athens's craft breweries to see how award-winning craft beer is made! All breweries are family friendly and tours are open to all ages (21+ to taste, of course.)  Check the brewery websites, at the links above, for gameday hours. 
For the 2020 football season, you'll find new curbside pickup options due to the Covid pandemic.(a small silver lining?)

4. Good Eats

Athens has always served up good fried chicken, barbeque, and shrimp and grits. Recently, the food scene has grown and matured, bringing visitors from across the Southeast to sample food from chefs and restaurants making a name for themselves on the regional and national scene. Don't miss a chance to try them out when you're in town, whether as a celebratory meal after a Georgia Bulldog Victory or a decadent brunch on Sunday prior to heading home.

There are also plenty of Athens restaurants with great outdoor patios!

5. Athens Attractions

Who says a football weekend has to be nothing but football? Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course, but we highly recommend taking a little time on Sunday, or staying an extra night, to see some sights you may not have seen before, or have changed -- a lot -- since you were a student. 

  • Athens Welcome Center and Classic City Tours offer guided and self-guided tours of Athens heritage.
  • Georgia Museum of Art is the state's official art museum and has an extensive permanent collection plus acclaimed traveling exhibitions.
  • State Botanical Garden of Georgia, the state's official garden, has five miles of nature trails, expansive gardens, a stunning conservatory, and is a designated birding area.

Visit our Things to Do page for more ideas!