Who needs to travel to Greece when you’ve got a Texas version right here. While Athens, TX, may not have 7,000 years of history and the Acropolis, there is way more to do in this East Texas town than you might think.
Henderson County Historical Museum
To learn about the history of Athens start on the Henderson County square at the Henderson County Historical Museum. You’ll see flags from the Civil War, gentlemanly mugs with guards to protect your mustache, and details about how Athens became the “Black-eyed Pea Capital of the World.” You’ll also learn how an Athens native named “Old Dave” and/or “Uncle Fletcher” invented a little thing we call the hamburger. Yes! Right here in Athens.
Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center
The town biggest attraction is definitely the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center. This is the primary place where Texas Parks and Wildlife raises many of the fish to repopulate our Texas lakes and rivers. They give a really great tour and have tons of freshwater tanks filled with everything from alligators to catfish. Don’t miss the SCUBA show where an underwater divers feeds and talks about our native fish. You can also get a tour of the “Sharelunker” program aimed at raising the biggest large-mouth bass our state can stock.
Athens SCUBA Park
If you’re looking to get into the water, then head to this scuba park just a few blocks from the square. This Mediterranean-blue lake is full of sunken planes, boats and obstacles that make it one heck of a fun place to dive. You’ll love it! They have gear rental on site, and can even get you certified if you aren’t.
New York Texas Zipline Adventures
For a high-flying, thrilling adventure, head to nearby New York, TX for a zip line adventure. You’ll be amazed at this hidden mountain range in East Texas and feel free as a bird flying through the pines. I’ve zipped a lot in Texas, and this one is truly unlike any others.
When your stomach starts growling, head over for a hamburger at the Railway Cafe. Whether you’re eating the burgers, pasta, crab cakes or daily special, this modern and casual restaurant has some of the best food I’ve found in Texas. The pimento cheese bacon burger is knock-your-socks-off amazing and their desserts are always fantastic.
For the best pizza in town (and possibly East Texas) head over to Rounder’s Pizza. I recommend the “Hornet” with pepperoni, sausage, bacon and “bud-burner” wing sauce putting a little kick in each slice