The Antebellum Trail is a 100 mile trek through seven different communities. You will be guided to: Athens, Watkinsville, Madison, Eatonton, Milledgeville, Clinton and ending in Macon. One of the wonderful things about this day trip is you can divide it up into several days, so you may want to write an itinerary.
Athens, Georgia is the northern gateway to the Antebellum Trail. Beginning this trail is almost like stepping into a time machine. There are 16 historic districts and four house museums that consist of guided and self guided tours. You will able to take a glimpse into several Confederate leaders lives, and will able to experience a Victorian town housed with a lot of different retail stores. You will have the chance to visit some music clubs that brought to life some famous artist such as B-52 and R.E.M. just to mention a couple. Another great stop would be the State Botanical Gardens of Georgia.
Within minutes of heading south of Athens you will reach Watkinsville and Oconee County. Beginning this tour you will step into a time machine that will stop at an 1801 tavern called Eagle Traven that remains on its original site. Heading south of Watkinsville, you will see a covered bridge build by Nathaniel Richardson in 1897 called the Elder Mill Covered Bridge. There are a lot of antique shops for you to visit and on the way to your next stop, you will have the chance to purchase some fresh produce along the side of the road.
Before the war Madison was considered the most cultured and aristocratic town on the stagecoach route between Charleston to New Orleans. For centuries Madison has been welcoming visitors from all over the world. Recently Madison was named as being top 10 best southern towns of Southern Living. In Madison you will see well over a hundred different antique dealers, over forty five specialty shops, parts and recreation sites
Eatonton is filled with a lot of different tales from fisherman tales to ghost stories. Eatonton has a very rich history and has produced two famous authors, Alice Walker and Joel Chandler Harris. The town sits between two lakes, Lake Oconee and Sinclair and the Oconee National Forest. In this historic town, you can see antebellum architecture on every street.
When you reach Milledgeville you will see a lot of southern mansions and beautiful gardens. It is very well known for its impressive architecture, glistening lakes and historic venues. You can stroll the town or take a trolley ride. There is a lot to see in Milledgeville such as museums, art galleries and so much more.
In Clinton, you will experience life on an 1850s cotton plantation. The Battle of Griswoldville’s battlefield has been well preserved and is well marked for you to view. There are many 19th century homes and public building now on the National Register of Historic Places.
The final destination is historic Macon. Downtown Macon is the Georgia Music Hall of Fame where you will see life size statues of many famous artists including the Allman Brother, Little Richard, R.E.M. and many more.