Athens Vacations

Thousands of Ohio University students call this city home during the academic year, but its cultural offerings and scenic settings entertain visitors year-round. 

Located on the scenic Hocking River in southeast Ohio, Athens is a lively college town. Since it was established in 1804, Ohio University has called Athens home. Experience a bustling city full of cultural attractions and events. 

With just over 20,000 enrolled, Ohio University’s student body is almost as large as the population of Athens. Stroll among the brick buildings and manicured lawns on campus. The main entrance, which opens to the college green, is located at Court and Union streets. Explore the collections at the Kennedy Museum of Art, located on Ohio University’s campus. The museum hosts a variety of fascinating exhibits from all over the world. 

Court Street and its many cross streets make up the heart of downtown. Enjoy a coffee at a local café or eat dinner at one of many restaurants. Boutiques, antique shops and convenience stores line the streets. The area gets even busier after the sun goes down, when students fill restaurants and bars.

The National Arbor Day Foundation recognizes Athens as a designated Tree City USA, which means the city is devoted to planting and caring for its plant life. Appreciate the greenery as you walk along Athen’s shady, tree-lined streets.

Visit Athens County Historical Museum. Photo essays, artifacts and various exhibits focus on Athens County through the 19th and 20th centuries. 

Go hiking, biking or running on the Athens Trail Network. Begin at Sells’ City Park and take one of the 12 trails that make up the network. Walk through the woods and end at Strouds Run State Park. Go boating on Dow Lake or try fishing at Sells Pond.

Visit Dairy Barn Arts Center just south of downtown. This converted dairy barn hosts exhibits, events, programs and more that promote the area’s artists. Check a calendar on the official Dairy Barn Arts Center website to find out what’s on.

Athens is just over a 1-hour drive from Columbus, Ohio and just over a 3-hour drive to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Get around the city easily on foot. If you don’t want to walk, take a bus or rent a car.

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Guide to Exploring Athens


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