Alabama – More Than Just A Sunny State

Places to visit in Alabama

Did you know that the only US state to have an alcoholic beverage as their official drink is Alabama? If this surprised you, one can also be amazed at the places to visit in this state. Whether planning for a short stay or a couple of weeks, there are plenty of travel destinations in Alabama that you should visit.

Here are some of the top Alabama travel destinations.

Huntsville Botanical Garden

Flowers at the Huntsville Botanical Garden Places to visit in Alabama
Flowers at the Huntsville Botanical Garden

Get ready your feet ready to explore the 112 acres of Huntsville Botanical Garden. It is open all year round where people of all ages can join their exhibitions, events, and activities. The garden showcases its diverse ecosystem of different natural environments, which includes plants, trees, and even an open-air butterfly house. The place can also hold special life events such as weddings or educational trips. The entrance fee starts at US$12 for seniors, military personnel, and student. Can’t go there physically? A 360 Virtual Tour is available on its official website.

Wetumpka

Coosa River - Beautiful Broad Street Bridge in Gadsden, Alabama Places to visit in Alabama
Coosa River – Beautiful Broad Street Bridge in Gadsden, Alabama

This small town in Alabama is dubbed as ‘The City of Natural Beauty’. It is not hard to see why – it has plenty of attractions that will let you marvel at the beauty of the outdoors. It was featured in a  television show, that transformed the city into an ultimate tourist destination. Did you know its name comes from a Native American Muscogee Creek term that meaning “rumbling waters“? It describes the neighboring Coosa River’s sound – where the said river offers both relaxing and adventurous activities. Thrill-seekers will find the variety of scenic trails perfect for either biking, running, or even just walking.

Birmingham

Birmingham Zoo Places to visit in Alabama
Birmingham Zoo

Being the most populous place in the state, Birmingham offers several fun activities for the family. To name a few, it includes the Vulcan Park and Museum, McWane Science Center, and the Birmingham Zoo. This is also the place where you can visit the historic museum of Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. It is also considered as a cultural and educational research center, with the aim for visitors to understand the struggles of the civil rights movements from 1950 to 1960. Apart from occasional exhibitions, they also offer educational trips for students. As of writing, an advanced online timed ticketing will be required to visit this museum.

Gulf Shores

Aerial view of Gulf Shores
Aerial view of Gulf Shores

With more than 200 sunny days in a year, you can find great beaches with white sands and warm waters in Alabama. One of them is the city of Gulf Shores, which is popular for its Southern Hospitality. Visitors can enjoy outdoor activities like water sports, golfing, nature trails, and strolling in an amusement park. The place is also popular for the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, where you can find exotic animals, domestic barns, and animal shows. Prepare for a culinary adventure as one can also find some award-winning restaurants in this resort community. Now, it’s up to you whether to have a relaxing or an adrenaline-filled day in this place.

Lake Martin

Lake Martin
Lake Martin

This is the largest manmade reservoir in the United States and is included in the biggest ones in the whole world. You’ll definitely enjoy boating, fishing, water skiing, and camping. Many families from the South visit this lake for a weekend retreat. It also hosts events all year round such as a fireworks show on the Fourth of July, a jazz festival in the Lake Martin Amphitheatre, and fishing tournaments. Aside from these events, you can also find different landmarks and tourists attractions like the large rock formation called Chimney Rock. A number of prominent people own a residential property in this place, considering its beauty and activities. This is also where the Martin Dam is located, where it generates hydroelectric power and acts as a water supply as well.

Fort Payne Depot Museum

"Depot Museum IMG_3754" by OZinOH is marked with CC BY-NC 2.0.
Depot Museum IMG_3754” by OZinOH is marked with CC BY-NC 2.0.

This one-of-a-kind Richardsonian Romanesque structure made of locally mined pink and white sandstone was built in 1891. For about 85 years, it was a depot for the Alabama-Great Southern Railroad then became a museum in 1986. The property is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places, and the management tries to preserve the collections found in this museum, considering its age. Entrance to the museum is free for 6 years old and below and offers discounts for military personnel, veterans, senior citizens, and group tours.

Florence

O'Neal Bridge over the Tennessee River between Florence and Sheffield Alabama
O’Neal Bridge over the Tennessee River between Florence and Sheffield Alabama

Being included in ‘The Shoals’ area, Florence is a great city where one can find many parks and celebrates a number of festivals. The tourism campaign promises that there is an activity in this city perfect for everyone. For example, shopaholics will love this area with the malls and unique shopping establishments scattered throughout the city. The oldest college of the State – the University of North Alabama- can also be found in this city. Experts can find proof of life as early as 500 BCE in Florence, so don’t be surprised if you find plenty of museums there.

Chewacla State Park

Waterfall at Chewacla State Park new Auburn, Alabama
Waterfall at Chewacla State Park new Auburn, Alabama

Whether for relaxation or recreation, the Chwacla State Park has a perfect spot whatever you prefer. There are areas dedicated to camping, mountain biking, multi-use trails, and other exciting outdoor activities. Advanced reservations to enter the park is preferred, where it can be done online via the Alabama State Parks website. The entrance fee price starts at US$2 per person and is free for those who are in the military and kids under 4 years of age. Annual park passes are also available with individual and family passes.

Orange Beach

Perdido Pass, Orange Beach, Alabama
Perdido Pass, Orange Beach, Alabama

Are you into water sports? The Orange Beach in Alabama is for you. It is located nearby the beautiful city of Gulf Shores, so you can expect the same hospitality and background when it comes to its beaches. You will also find the legendary Backcountry Trail in this city but only open during the daylight hours based on the city’s official website.

Alabama proves itself that it can deliver more than just an exciting outdoor adventure and historical sites. The whole family will surely enjoy visiting this state and have a worthwhile trip. Don’t just the travel destinations listed here – ensure that you also explore the attractions that can be found in each one!

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