Just 75 miles southeast of Dallas/Fort Worth, Athens combines the charm of a small southern town with many amenities offered by larger cities. With its rolling hills, lakes, and streams, Athens is a favorite getaway for picnics, country walks, fishing and boating, scuba diving, or relaxing. Enjoy aquatic displays, interactive exhibits, tram rides, and more at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, or dive in at the Athens Scuba Park, a perfect place for novice and experienced divers. Learn about early life in East Texas at the historical museum or walk through the East Texas Arboretum. For those trivia-minded folks, the first hamburger is said to have originated in Athens, and even McDonald’s University says so.

For more information, come by the Visitor Center on the square, call (888) 294-2847 for a free brochure, or visit

Explore the Natural Charm and Heritage of Athens, Texas

Athens is known for its scenic landscapes and friendly locals, providing a warm welcome to all who visit. Here’s your guide to the top attractions and hidden gems in this quaint Texas town:

1. Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center

A highlight of Athens is the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, where visitors can learn about water ecosystems and native fish species through interactive exhibits and a dive show in a huge aquarium. You can also try fishing in the well-stocked ponds. Insider tip: Check their feeding schedule to see the fish being fed by hand.

2. The East Texas Arboretum & Botanical Society

Explore over 100 acres of beautiful gardens and historic structures at the East Texas Arboretum. The arboretum offers a tranquil setting with walking trails, a pioneer village, and a natural spring. Insider tip: Don’t miss the spring bloom when the arboretum is most vibrant.

3. Athens Scuba Park

For an adventure beneath the surface, visit the Athens Scuba Park. This unique park features a dive site with sunken planes, boats, and other structures. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced diver, the park offers a thrilling experience. Insider tip: They offer Saturday night dives for a more adventurous underwater experience.

4. Henderson County Historical Museum

Dive into the local history at the Henderson County Historical Museum located in the historic 1896 Faulk-Gauntt Building. The museum features exhibits on indigenous history, early settlers, and the development of Athens. Insider tip: The second floor houses an extensive antique clothing and textiles collection.

  • Contact: Henderson County Historical Museum, Phone: +1 903-675-6350

5. Cain Center & Park

The Cain Center is the community’s heart for recreation and events, featuring a gym, meeting rooms, and a large indoor pool. Adjacent to the center, Cain Park offers beautiful walking trails and picnic areas. Insider tip: Check out their calendar for local events like arts and crafts fairs.

  • Contact: Cain Center, Phone: +1 903-677-2000

6. Tara Vineyard & Winery

Tara Vineyard & Winery, the oldest winery in Henderson County, provides a picturesque setting in which to enjoy fine Texas wines. Take a vineyard tour, enjoy a tasting, and perhaps dine at their on-site restaurant. Insider tip: Stay overnight at their charming bed and breakfast for a complete getaway.

7. Athens Farmers Market

Visit the Athens Farmers Market to sample local produce, homemade goods, and crafts. It’s a great place to meet locals and experience the community’s spirit. Insider tip: The market often features live music and cooking demonstrations, making it a lively weekend destination.

  • Contact: Athens Farmers Market, Facebook Page for updates

Athens, Texas, may be small, but it is rich with activities that glimpse Texas’ natural beauty and cultural heritage. Whether exploring underwater, enjoying local wines, or delving into history, Athens provides a peaceful yet engaging escape in East Texas. Enjoy your visit to this charming locale!