The unassuming city of Americus, Georgia, is a thriving historical and educational hub in this part of the state.
It’s home to two academic institutions, the Georgia Southwestern State University and South Georgia Technical College.
Because of this, there’s a young and diverse community welcoming all types of curious travelers.
It has a storied past, reflected in its past nickname, "The Metropolis of Southwest Georgia.”
The city was once the cotton distribution center in the region, making it a bustling town that led to many innovations in transportation, architecture, and other sectors.
As years went by, development slowed down.
But traces of the past can still be seen in the city’s historic district, community parks, and local practices.
So if you want to immerse in the colorful past of Southwest Georgia, this is the place to be.
Here are the 20 best things to do in Americus, GA:
Tour the Interiors of Windsor Hotel
The majestic Windsor Hotel is the highlight of the Americus Historic District, a grand, Queen Anne-style building that you definitely won’t miss.
With the attraction’s regal architecture, you’d almost feel like entering a castle when you arrive.
It has turrets, towers, balconies, an open atrium lobby, and other features in an area that occupies almost an entire city block.
Then there are the 53 guest rooms, which were originally a hundred.
So if you have money to spare, you can use the attraction as your base for your Americus adventures.
Otherwise, you’re welcome to tour the hotel, try the in-house restaurants, and make a stopover at the Americus Welcome Center, located in front of the hotel.
Visiting the attraction will make you feel like royalty, so make sure the hotel is on your itinerary.
Stroll Along the Americus Historic District
Back in 1976, the entirety of the city center was placed under the National Register of Historic Places.
This particular section was the hub of activity back in the day, resulting in many infrastructures that have stood the test of time.
These buildings were instrumental in the cotton trade, so they were preserved to remember this part of the city’s history.
While walking the streets, you’d find Classic Revival and Romanesque architectural styles in many age-old structures.
From residential buildings to retail shops, from restaurants to post offices, the buildings have been repurposed for modern use.
But the rustic ambiance is still there—strolling here is like walking into a simpler, less stressful time.
Play a Few Rounds at Griffin Bell Golf Course
Whether you’re a professional or an amateur, you’ll find yourself having a great time at the Griffin Bell Golf Course.
This scenic, 18-hole course is under the care of Georgia Southwestern State University, making it a public attraction open to everyone who wants to try golf.
With the manicured greens and fairways, undulating terrain, and gorgeous treeline, the facility has scenic vistas that will elevate your experience.
The layout is fairly manageable, with a few holes made difficult by the rolling hills.
But if you have excellent course management and putting skills, these shouldn’t be an issue.
So book a tee time during your trip to Americus and enjoy the excellent gameplay of the course!
Feel the Communal Spirit at Koinonia Farm
Koinonia Farm is arguably one of the kindest and most welcoming places in this part of Georgia.
Founded in 1942, the place became a refuge that promoted love and acceptance in the city when racism and discrimination were rampant.
The farm and its owners faced harassment and property damage back then, but they’ve now emerged as a sanctuary for everyone who wants to enjoy simple living.
So if you want a tranquil space where you can celebrate love and humanity, this is the place to be.
Many people come to stay for a few days on the farm and enjoy the communal living practices.
There are also many sights to see in the verdant grounds and forested areas, but you’d feel compelled to get involved and help out in the day-to-day activities.
It’s a spiritually satisfying feeling to be in a place like this, so if you want to practice the teachings of Christianity, the farm is a good place to start.
Watch Airplanes at Lindbergh Memorial
Charles Lindbergh was an adventurous spirit who was the first person to cross the Atlantic solo.
He flew nonstop from New York to Paris in 1927 aboard a monoplane, a feat that took him 33.5 hours.
But his journey can be traced back to Americus, where he made his first solo flight.
On a verdant space next to the Jimmy Carter Regional Airport, a statue celebrating this achievement stands like a solemn piece of art.
The Lindbergh Memorial serves as a remembrance of the skilled aviator, with a life-like statue of him smiling serenely at visitors.
Make a quick stopover here during your trip to the city and read about his complete story.
You’ll also get a chance to watch thundering airplanes land or take off at the airport in front of the park.
Board the SAM Shortline Excursion Train
The SAM Shortline Excursion Train is a unique way to travel in Southwest Georgia, at least by today’s standards.
There was a time when trains were the main mode of transport in the region, as seen in the expansive railroad networks.
Today, the last remnant of this industry is the SAM Shortline Excursion Train, which is based in Cordele.
But it makes a stop at Americus, allowing visitors to get on board the vintage cars and head to the many iconic spots in the vicinity.
While inside, you’d be treated to a similar level of luxury that passengers in the past enjoyed, albeit with a few modern additions like air conditioning.
Some of the destinations you can visit include the Georgia Rural Telephone Museum, Georgia Veterans State Park, and President Carter’s Campaign Museum.
The journey is already worth the trip, as you’d be treated to views of the vast plains and rugged landscapes on each side of the track.
Catch a Show at Rylander Theater
The magnificent Rylander Theater is another highlight in the city’s historic district.
As the hub of performance art in the city, this attraction holds many performances that showcase the talent and skill of local artists.
While it may look unremarkable on the outside, the facility's interiors have been extensively renovated to reflect the Art Deco style that it originally had.
The restorations also added modern comforts and amenities.
So enjoy the comfortable seating, well-designed lighting, and engineered acoustics that combine to elevate your theater-going experience.
You can watch thought-provoking plays, bombastic live music performances, and intriguing dance recitals by some of Americus’ best.
Check out their website today and see the upcoming events so you can plan ahead.
Sample Fine Drinks at Wolf Creek Plantation
There’s an emerging wine scene in this region of the US, and Americus has a handful of wineries in its countryside.
One of the most well-known is the beautiful Wolf Creek Plantation, a flourishing local business standing in what was once a golf course.
Today, the fields are green with various varieties of grapevines whose fruits the owners harvest to produce their award-winning drinks.
You can visit the tasting room and sample their fruity reds, full-bodied whites, and incredible roses.
On occasion, the winery holds themed celebrations that bring together the community, such as their much-anticipated Spring Festival.
But if you arrive there on a regular day, you can simply take a tour of the vineyard and enjoy the rustic and tranquil scenery.
Cruise the Gentle Waters of Muckalee Creek
As one of the main sources for irrigation and nutrient-rich sediment for the farms of Americus, Muckalee Creek is of great importance to the whole city.
This small body of water starts that spans 76 miles, with a large segment passing the western borders of Americus.
So aside from its agricultural importance, Muckalee Creek is known locally as one of the best places to try water-related activities.
Its waters are often calm, so many people enjoy kayaking or canoeing.
Nonmotorized watercraft is ideal for exploring the hidden areas of the creek, as the loud engines of boats might scare the birds, insects, and occasional otters swimming in the shallows.
But if you’re more interested in catching wildlife, you can go fishing on the deeper segments.
There are many largemouth basses, Channel catfish, and northern pikes swimming in the depths.
Shop Fresh Produce at Lenny's Farmers Market
While Americus doesn’t have an official farmers market, Lenny's Farmers Market more than makes up for it.
This small, open-air facility is where you can purchase the bounty from the city’s nearby farms.
Here, local growers bring their fresh harvests so that residents and visitors can get access to healthy and delicious food.
So take your pick from the seasonal vegetables, various fruit cultivars, and quality root crops.
There are also stalls with freshly baked goods, artisanal furniture, preserves, handmade crafts, and other products made by local businesses.
So take your time, smell each fruit, and feel the quality of the produce so you’d bring home the best quality ones.
Go Restaurant Hopping Downtown
Being part of Georgia, Americus has the comforting Southern cuisine that tastes like home.
Lamar Street in the city’s downtown is where you’d find most of the establishments serving this cuisine as well as others from all over the world.
So tour the area and try some of the tasty meals offered by local favorite restaurants.
The Station offers American staples in a cozy establishment, with steak, stuffed mushrooms, and appetizing salads on their menu.
If you’re looking for fusion dishes, The 1800 Mexican Restaurant has a classical Mexican menu with a touch of Southern flavors.
Then there’s Gyro City Mediterranean Grill for those who want international cuisine.
They offer classic Greek dishes, Middle Eastern staples, and delicious American burgers.
Stop by Americus-Sumter Tourism Welcome Center
In Americus, Georgia, the Americus-Sumter Tourism Welcome Center can be found at 101 W. Lamar Street and is a great place to start your exploration of the city.
Visit the welcome center to get the scoop on all the city's exciting activities.
As soon as you go in, you'll find a wall covered in local attractions, restaurants, and shops, as well as some swag from the city of Americus.
The staff is kind and willing to offer advice.
Take a picture of yourself in our designated selfie area, and feel free to assist yourself with a free cup of coffee.
While in the welcome center, inquire about local deals and exciting activities.
Relax at Rees Park
The property for this park was first donated to the city of Americus in 1846 by Dr. Albert Rees, a pioneering local physician.
Twenty years after Lt. Lucius Gibson Rees, his son, was killed in action, this park has served as a permanent memorial.
In the Civil War, Lt. Rees served under General Robert E. Lee as a member of the "Sumter Flying Artillery," also known as Company A, 11th Georgia Artillery.
An enslaved person with him in the war was responsible for bringing his body back to Americus, where his family laid him to rest at Oak Grove Cemetery.
Knowing how far a dad can go to keep his son's memory alive is touching.
Take a stroll, read the memorial, relax with a book beneath the canopy of trees, or set up a picnic with the family.
The park pavilion also hosts many fun activities, so don't miss out!
Sample Local Spirits at Thirteenth Colony Distillery
Georgia's first licensed distillery since Prohibition, the Thirteenth Colony, opened in 2009.
If you're searching for a fun and exciting destination to visit in Americus, go no farther than the Thirteenth Colony Distillery on North Dudley Street.
Fantastic drinks like Spiked Peach and Real Housewife are within your reach with the guidance of this guide.
It's useful for entertaining visitors or relaxing with a bottle of spirit after a long day.
Tasting Thirteenth Colony Distillery's offerings is one of the most enjoyable activities you may try with friends or your significant other if you're in Americus.
Wines and spirits from the Thirteenth Colony, whether they be bourbon, gin, or vodka, have a distinct flavor that is hard to describe yet hard to forget.
Shop at Perlis Plaza
You can find a store in the small strip mall that caters to your specific interests and demands.
You may find everything you might need at Perlis Plaza, from nail salons and spas to tiny electronics and clothes boutiques to a health and wellness center.
It is also close to other shopping options.
There are plenty of places to eat, gas up, get medicine, etc., all within walking distance.
The vendors will also show you genuine southern hospitality.
Grab a Gift at The Maze
Are you looking for a gift for a loved one or yourself?
Seasonal decorations, antiques, apparel, jewelry, and home improvement supplies are just a few of the many categories represented at The Maze.
There are several booths spread out across three floors of this large room.
Prices range from cheap to moderate but are all reasonable.
The owner is friendly and accommodating, too.
Snap pictures in front of the shop after you've looked around inside.
Impressive window decorations feel like you are back in the 1950s.
Other Things to Do Nearby
After your tour of Americus, check out these other places just a few minutes away.
Learn the Dark Side of History at Andersonville National Historic Site
The grim Andersonville National Historic Site may not be for everyone, but history buffs will have an enlightening time exploring the location.
This place was a Confederate prison that housed captured soldiers of the Union.
Because of overcrowding, health hazards, and unspeakable acts done by the personnel, many prisoners died or were severely malnourished while incarcerated.
These deaths are remembered at the site, with Andersonville National Cemetery containing rows and rows of tombstones, some of which are unmarked.
The National Prisoner of War Museum tells the stories of these men and their hardships.
Reading and learning about them helps future generations avoid atrocities like these from ever happening again.
Go Swimming at Georgia Veterans State Park
Sitting next to Lake Blackshear, Georgia Veterans State Park is one of the few places in the vicinity with waterside views.
This 1,308-acre attraction is located in Cordele, and it’s one of the favorite summertime getaways for residents of Southwest Georgia.
One of the most prominent attractions is the park’s museum, which was installed to honor the heroes who fought for the country.
Here, you’ll find aircraft, tanks, and other wartime vehicles and artifacts showcased in outdoor and indoor exhibits.
Then there’s the small beach, which offers sunbathing and swimming opportunities, and an 18-hole golf course where you can play a few rounds.
If you want to head into the lake, many launches and ramps are available on the banks of the park.
You’re welcome to go fishing, kayaking, waterskiing, and sightseeing on the scenic and expansive Lake Blackshear.
Marvel at the Artifacts of Georgia Rural Telephone Museum
There aren’t a lot of novelty places near Americus, so the Georgia Rural Telephone Museum in Leslie is definitely a stand-out.
This attraction has the largest collection of antique telephones and telephone memorabilia worldwide.
From rare and pioneering inventions to classic home telephones, you’ll find an array of artifacts in the 2,000+ collection.
Make a Stopover at Jimmy Carter National Historical Park
Former US president Jimmy Carter was born in Plains, a city less than fifteen away from Americus.
His legacy is showcased at the Jimmy Carter National Historical Park, an attraction encompassing 71 acres.
This includes his current home, but this section is off-limits as he is under the protection of the Secret Service.
But the rest of the park is open for those curious about his life back in the day.
You’re welcome to check out this boyhood farm, an engaging visitors center, and the Plains Train Depot, his former campaign headquarters.
Americus was once a bustling metropolis in the heart of the South, but it has retained its former grandeur with the many historical attractions to see.
There’s also a thriving agricultural scene that you can partake in through the wineries, farmers' market, and delicious cuisine.
So when planning your itinerary, check out this list and add the top spots of the vibrant city!