Monday, March 28, 2016

Weekends in Augusta, GA

We enjoy traveling - a lot. And, we are thankful to have the opportunity to be able to charter a plane in lieu of driving. One thing we have learned in our travels is we have a knack of finding great places to see and we always feel like some lists we come across lack some love for a city. In other words, travel the new city as if it was a place you truly love. Let it shine on its own. Augusta is one of those smaller cities that boasts a lot of history it is proud of. While it may be small, it is big in places to see and things to do. And, with its charms and quirks, it makes for a great weekend away. Here are the things you should go see and do - simply because we loved it so much, we know you will too!
Historic Augusta- Green Street
  1. The Downtown River walk - The river walk is one of the best places to visit in Augusta. Locals take to this strip of land right on the water for dates, picnics or just a morning jog. At the main bridge, it shows where the water levels of the Savannah River was so high, this stroll was completely under water. During the summer, you will find tons of bike enthusiasts trek down its path, boat rentals and even children enjoying the playground. Simply, it is like a park on the water. Along the river walk, you will find local museums and eateries to fill you with historic charm to make you want more of all Augusta offers.
  2. Historic Augusta Canal- Augustan's are proud of their canal. They have a museum completely dedicated to her history, from the conception of the idea to building of the canal, and all the way to her current usage today. She gives so many electric power to the grid for the city the museum runs off her water power alone! If the museum is not enough, they have canal boat tours where guides give you a background of her as you glide down the canal basin itself.
  3. Historic Green Street- One thing great about Augusta is as small of a town as she is, a lot of Augusta's history was once in flames due to war. However, some of the beautifully historic homes remain along Green Street. Take a walk and view her beauty and imagine what life was like when the canal was new and times were simpler.
  4. Dining on Broad Street - You cannot come to Augusta without sampling local fare. We really enjoyed Farmhauus Burgers, New Moon Cafe, and The Bees Knees. There are so many food options along the way there is something for everyone.
  5. James Brown Statue - One of the unique things on the list of things to do we found was posing with the King of Soul himself- a real like replica of James Brown. There is an actual cam setup where you can text it to activate- and it will take your photo with his statue which can easily be posted on Social Media.
  6. Augusta Museum of History- Much like the Augusta Canal museum, the Augusta Museum of History is a great place to go back in time of the entire timeline of Augusta herself. This museum is interactive - it has an entire train inside. It has her history from golf to music and industry as well. If you love history and want to dig deeper into what made Augusta what it is today, it is a must stop!
  7. Morris Museum of Art - I am a fan of art galleries. There is so much to be seen and this particular museum is dedicated to southern artists (not just ones from Augusta, but the entire south). It has pieces that are interchanged often and also has a traveling exhibit. While this place is not expensive at all, go on a Sunday when it is free! Kids can utilize the scavenger hunt to help them enjoy the museum too! 
  8. J Strom Thurmond Dam- While this is a tad far compared to most of the other options on this list, it is just as important. This is the infamous dam which makes the Augusta Canal what it is today. Stop in the visitors center to view all about it. 
  9. Shopping on Broad Street - If you want a memento of the city, there are a ton of boutique's to see and view. One of our favorites is a local bookstore called The Book Tavern that is readers' dream come true. With books of all types, there is literally something for everyone. If reading is not for you, Head to the River walk on Saturday for their Saturday outdoor farmers' market with vendors and local crafty items for sale. It is packed but for the right reasons. If you love antiquing, there are tons of small stores around to find a trinket or two.
  10. Augusta National Golf Course - No Augusta list would be complete without mentioning Augusta National. While you will not be allowed to come in (it is invitational only), the golf course has gone tenfold on turning the main strip of Augusta as beautiful as the course itself. With a lot of renovations being made to expand her, the city has been listed as one of the best places to visit for quite some time. During the tournament (which happens in mid-April), you can rub elbows with the famous golf pros of today around town.
  11. Phinizy Swamp Nature Park. I love the outdoors and if you love being outside and exploring just as much, this hidden gem is just the perfect opportunity to experience the wildlife in Augusta firsthand. You will find everything from alligators, osprey's, and even wild boar on occasion to wander about this park. It is a great place for a walk or to take the kids. 
While Augusta may not be on every one's list, it surely is a wonderful place to enjoy and see all she has to offer. Augusta boasts a lot of history and she is as charming as she is quaint.

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