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Getting Outside in Augusta, GA

Getting Outside in Augusta, GA

Augusta is in the state of Georgia, located along the banks of the Savannah River. The Savannah River forms a natural border separating Georgia from the neighboring state of South Carolina, and there are multiple ways to enjoy its beauty and adventure. With that in mind, while Augusta, GA, may not be thought of as a destination for outdoor activities, there are many ways to get outside and experience nature.

If you want to take to the water, a good place to begin is Savannah Rapids Park. This park is home to the historic Augusta Canal headgates, and some of the buildings date back to the 1880s. During your visit, you’ll want to wear your tennis shoes so you can explore the nearby trails running alongside the Savannah River Canal. The trails are open to runners, walkers, cyclists and the youngest of nature explorers, so you might pass – or be passed by – a few folks while you enjoy the trails. Curious where you’re going? From the park, the most prominent path takes you to historic downtown Augusta. There are other entrance points for the Augusta Canal trails include Water Pump Station, at the end of Riverlook Drive; Lake Olmstead, at the end of Milledge Road (this single location gives you access to three trails – River Levee, Towpath, and Mill Village); Mill Village Trailhead, at Grace Street near the Kroc Center; Discovery Center at Enterprise Mill; and Old Turning Basin at 13th Street, near the Walton Rehab Hospital. If you’re more interested in being on the water than alongside it, you can rent a kayak or canoe from one of multiple businesses catering to river enthusiasts, and spend the afternoon appreciating the river from a different perspective.

There’s plenty more to enjoy away from the Savannah River, including Phinzy Swamp & Nature Park. Located near the Augusta Regional Airport, this park comprises more than 1,100 acres, and the adjacent swamp is estimated to encompass more than 7000 acres. There are multiple ways to explore Phinzy, including Floodplain Boardwalk and Observation Deck, the Bridge Through the Woods, the Beaver Dam Trial, Pond Trail, Mayor’s Fishin’ Hole – a popular Augusta fishing spot (proof of fishing license is required), Pfizer Pavilion, Wetland Cells, the Windshear Tower, and Rain Garden Deck & Boardwalk – where it’s often possible to spot multiple species of turtles and waterfowl. There’s so much to see, so Phinzy Swamp & Nature Park is an Augusta location you’ll want to plan to visit multiple times.

You can also spend time outside playing golf. As any golf fan knows, Augusta is home to the internationally acclaimed Masters Tournament, hosted at Augusta National each April. Though Augusta National is not a public golf course, you can play golf at one of the Augusta area’s other golf courses, including the River Golf Club, Augusta Country Club, Forest Hill Golf course, Jones Creek Golf Club, West Lake Country Club, to name a few. (Just but sure to call ahead to get a tee time.)

But, we get it. Not everyone wants to spend their time outdoors, especially if it’s too hot or too cold. If you’re not outdoorsy, try exploring some of the local restaurants, shops and businesses nearby (complete with heating and air conditioning!) in downtown Augusta or Surrey Center.
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