AthFest in Athens, GA

#8. Athens

Athens, Ga., is a picture-perfect postcard of the American South. Home to the University of Georgia, the city is a mix of Southern charm and cutting-edge art, music, and entertainment.

The Georgia Museum of Art and Georgia Museum of Natural History offer a peek into the state’s rich culture. Or, relive the glory days of Georgia’s sports at the Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall Sports Museum, home to Herschel Walker’s Heisman trophy and other Georgia sports memorabilia.

Wear the kids out at the World of Wonder Community Playground, Georgia’s largest community-built playground. The grounds include almost two acres of playscapes, mazes, slides, swings, bridges, tunnels, and climbing walls, plus an enclosed toddler area, gardens and outdoor children’s art.

Teens and 20-somethings will be drawn to the undeniably hip vibe of Athens. Rated the No. 1 College Music Scene in America by Rolling Stone magazine and No. 1 on our own Top 10 Cities With the Best Music Scenes, Athens boasts world-famous venues at prices even a college kid can afford. Many headliners can be found at AthFest, a late-June music festival featuring more than 175 bands on indoor and outdoor stages. Or, take Athen’s Music History self-guided walking tour, and learn all about the birthplace of R.E.M., the B52s and Widespread Panic.

Hotels: 27

Restaurants: 139

Other Attractions: Athens Razors (pro basketball), Athens Institute for Contemporary Art, Middle Oconee River, Piccadilly Farm, Sandy Creek Nature Center


See where Athens ranks on our other lists:

Top 10 College Towns

Top 10 Green Cities

Top 10 Cities With the Best Music Scenes

Explore other cities like Athens, GA, great college towns with vibrent music scenes:

Chapel Hill, NC

Gainesville, FL

Champaign, IL

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