Things To Do In Alabama
A state in the Southeastern United States, Alabama is nestled between the mountains of the Tennessee Valley in the north and the Mobile Bay in the south. As such, the state features diverse geography that is home to many beautiful sites of nature.
Alabama has been nicknamed the Yellowhammer state after its state bird. It has also been known by names such as the “Heart of Dixie” and the “Cotton State”. The cities of Alabama are known to many across the world for hosting events that tourists flock to.
One of the most important of them is the Mardi Gras celebration, which has been traditionally continued in the city of Mobile since 1930. Other events hosted by Alabama include the Hangout Music Festival and the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.
There are a number of other significant attractions in the state such as parks and natural sites. The diversity of the Alabama landscape has made it one of the top places for filming movies.
This list will bring to you 15 of the best things you can do in Alabama as a tourist, so with no further delay let us begin:
The First White House of the Confederacy
When the Confederacy split up from the union and formed its own separate nation, they constructed various administrative buildings, etc in order to have a functioning government. They also created the White House of the Confederacy as a residence for their Chief Executives called the Executive Mansion.
Their Congress leased it on February 21, 1861. The Executive Mansion is the treasure of the city of Montgomery, and many tourists flock to it in order to enjoy the history of the state.
Vulcan Park and Museum
Cast from locally sourced iron, the statue named Vulcan was created in the city of Birmingham in 1904. It remains the largest cast-iron statue in the world and is the symbol of the city’s industry. The relevance of the statue is so huge that it has been preserved over the years with a park built around it known as the Vulcan Park and Museum.
The campaign that allowed for the park to be built is itself a symbol of the pride the city takes in itself. As such, the Vulcan has become not only a testament to the city’s history and culture but also a symbol for the entire region dedicated to the industry. Be sure to visit the Vulcan Park and Museum in your travels across Alabama.
Ave Maria Grotto
If you find yourself in the city of Cullman, then the one place that you absolutely cannot miss is the Ave Maria Grotto. There is only one Benedictine Abbey in the state, on whose grounds is the Grotto that features over 120 miniatures of shrines, churches, and the like.
This place is known to be a focal point for many visitors across the globe. They all flock to the site that is also dubbed as “Jerusalem in Miniature”. The Grotto, spanning over three acres, is the result of the hobby of Brother Joseph Zoettl who arrived at St. Bernard Abbey in 1892.
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Rosenbaum House
The famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright-designed the Rosenbaum House for families with low income. What is special about the place is that it is the only building designed by Wright in the state of Alabama.
It has been open to the public since 1999 when the city acquired it from the Rosenbaums. Tourists coming here can explore how the house was designed to grow with the household, with many additions made over the years.
U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum
The museum, located in Huntsville, is a testament to and a memoir of the accomplishments of the veterans of the US military. The focal point of the museum is the memory of those who served in the First World War.
This place has been designated by the state’s House of Representatives as the State’s own Veterans Memorial Museum. Many people who have been survivors of conflicts hold the museum in high regard as it preserves the cultural memory of their suffering.
A major attraction at the Veterans Memorial Museum is the collection of over 30 military vehicles from WWI to the present.
Rosa Parks Library and Museum
In 1955, Rosa Parks made a stand which led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott. The location, which was earlier the Empire Theater, has now become the Rosa Parks Museum that celebrates the civil rights movement around the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
There are six different areas you must visit within the museum that tells the story of the movement. There are also permanent exhibits, archives, classrooms, and more things for you to take in and learn about the civil rights movement in which the city was a focal point.
Birmingham Museum of Art
Home to one of the best collections of art in the entire region, the Birmingham Museum of Art is one place that must definitely be on your list of places to visit. There are over 25000 artifacts on display at the museum that represent the various cultures around the world.
From Vietnamese ceramics to paintings from the Renaissance, find yourself learning a lot about the arts of the world when you visit Birmingham.
Dexter Parsonage Museum
Featured on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982, many pastors of the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church have called it their home.
Another reason why this is a great place for tourists to visit is that Dr. Martin Luther King and his family lived here from 1954 to 1960. While you are here, be sure to check out the interpretive center featuring videos on his life. There are some permanent exhibits here as well.
Dauphin Island Sea Lab Estuarium
Located on Dauphin Island, the Estuarium has four areas featuring the various habitats of coastal Alabama. With more than 30 aquariums holding over 100 species of aquatic life.
The Estuarium also has a stingray touch pool and what is called the Living Marsh Boardwalk. The Estuarium helps educate its guests on the features of the Mobile Bay and is one of the largest and most famous places of its kind in the country.
Established in 2004, this place serves as a natural environment for alligators that have been rescued from dangerous areas. Take their guided tour of the place and view the magnificent animals from an elevated platform.
There is also a nature walk where you can also see animals such as owls, turtles, ospreys, and others. If you are feeling rather enthusiastic, make your way to the Gator Station, where you will be allowed to hold a baby alligator.
Southeastern Raptor Center
Located in Auburn, the Southeastern Raptor Center was founded in the 70s to rehabilitate injured birds. Since its founding, the place has expanded and is known to have released thousands of birds into the wild. Visit this place if you are with children, for they will be able to learn a lot about avian life.
Bellingrath Gardens and Home
This place will forever stay with you. No matter what time you arrive here, you will find the gardens to be in full bloom. Find Camellias in the winter, Azaleas in the spring, roses, and hydrangeas in the summer, with fall being the season for Chrysanthemums, The home itself is an architectural masterpiece that derives its artsy look from Alabama’s own architectural culture.
Huntsville Botanical Garden
Another place where you will be mesmerized by the beauty of flora. The place features many collections and gardens, along with wildflower and nature trails as well as an aquatic garden. Other attractions at the Huntsville Botanical Garden include the Nature Center and the Children’s Garden. There is also a dinosaur garden wherein you can take a walk.
The place remains open all year round and there are many family-themed festivals happening here. A few of them include Huntsville Blooms, Beaks, and Barks, the Galaxy of Lights, and more. Take a souvenir back home from the garden gift shop.
Fort Morgan State Historic Site Museum
This place celebrates the history of the state of Alabama. Come here to learn about the history associated with this place such as its construction from 1819 to 1834 and its takeover by Alabama in 1861.
Fort Morgan’s presence protected Mobile Bay by the use of underwater mines and it has even been the largest military base for the state. The fort was abandoned in 1944 and has now become a tourist attraction for people who want to learn about US history.
Located at the Battleship Memorial Park, the battleship was placed under commission in 1942. Its construction starting two years earlier. Learn about its history and its first major battle that happened in 1943 when you visit this place. This is one of the top attractions in Mobile and one that you absolutely cannot miss.
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