Looking for a fun weekend or midweek getaway from downtown Atlanta? We have what you need. Take an easy 2.5-hour drive on Interstate 20 to discover South Carolina’s Thoroughbred Country tourist region. Exit at one of the convenient access points on I-20, such as Aiken or North Augusta, SC to help you start your journey. As you travel through thoroughbred country, you may discover a love for the arts, a sense of adventure, peace with nature, and a newfound appreciation for all things equine. This region has so much to offer that it is impossible to make a single trip there. Here’s a taste of unknown South Carolina.
A good place to start would be the North Augusta Arts and Heritage Center. Located just off I-20 and a hop across the Savannah River from Augusta, Georgia, the Arts and Heritage Center offers insight into the area’s history as well as works of art. local artists. Stop at the gift shop for duty-free shopping on local produce.
If you prefer to stretch your legs, not far from the Arts & Heritage Center is an entrance to the Greeneway Trail. Once an abandoned railway line, this paved path invites walkers and cyclists to move along the river, near a butterfly garden or under a canopy of trees. Whether you’re looking for fine or casual dining, end your day with dinner at one of North Augusta’s many delicious restaurants.
Want to brighten up your evening? Why not catch a game at SRP Park, home of the Augusta GreenJackets, a minor league affiliate of the Atlanta Braves? Or just 40 minutes away, catch a double feature at Big Mo, one of three operating drive-ins in South Carolina.
When it comes to a place to rest your head for the night, Thoroughbred Country offers a variety of accommodations. Choose from historic hotels, cozy bed and breakfasts, your favorite hotel brand, cabins, campgrounds and hunting lodges.
After breakfast, travel to Barnwell to learn about South Carolina face jugs and purchase a unique souvenir at the Little Red Barn Pottery & Art Gallery. Don’t forget to stop along the way to check the time at the vertical sundial on the circle, it’s said to be the only freestanding vertical sundial in the United States.
Enjoy a plate of barbecue or a hearty sandwich for lunch before viewing 15,000-year-old American artifacts from the Topper Site exhibit at the USC Salkehatchie Library in Allendale. Next, head to Ehrhardt to walk through history on the Battlefield Interpretive Trail at the Battle of Rivers Bridge State Historic Site. Here you can observe a variety of birds, visit memorial sites of soldiers from several wars, and see parapets over 150 years old.
Then visit Denmark, the unique city in thoroughbred country, for a glimpse of America through the eyes of Jim Harrison or explore captivating antiques and more.
End the day in Aiken, rated one of the best small towns in the South by Southern Living, where you’ll find culinary delights accompanied by live music, captivating theater performances and, for the less shy, haunted tours.
Have breakfast to start Aiken’s Citywide Arboretum Trail from Colleton Avenue. Or embark on a charming Saturday morning tram tour to the Aiken Visitor Center and Train Museum to discover and see historic homes and churches, beautiful live oak trees, and take a guided tour of Hopelands Gardens (if time allows it).
Next, visit the Savannah River Site Museum to understand the importance of the SRS and why it was built. A replica of a Cold War fallout shelter and an exhibit on how the SRS helped the American race to the moon are some of the permanent exhibits featured at the museum.
Before heading home, commemorate your trip by sharing a photo with us #ThoroughbredCountrySC.
For more tour ideas, visit www.tbredcountry.org.