Top 10 Alabama Attractions


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Planning for a vacation in Alabama this Year? Looking for fun things to do? We have been asked many times: What are the top places to see in Alabama? So here is our list of top 10 "Must-See" attractions in Alabama.

1: The US Space & Rocket Center

The US Space & Rocket CenterThe US Space & Rocket Center
Photo courtesy: Steve Karg (commons.wikimedia.org)

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Interesting facts:
- US Space and rocket centre is a museum operated by the government of Alabama which contains rockets, space camps and other artifacts of the US space program.
- It also exhibits the awards received by the US space camp.
- It has the most inclusive hardware related to space camp.

Things to do:
The museum is divided into areas like the space dome theatre, the rocket park and the education and training centre controlled under the supervision of NASA. There are number of missions that are presented in interesting ways and shuttle programs are also held. The moon story is also visualized in the museum. You can visit all of these places and learn a lot about Space Shuttle program, the International Space Station and NASA's future missions.

Website:

www.rocketcenter.com

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2: Noccalula Falls

Noccalula FallsNoccalula Falls
Photo courtesy: Thejammer (commons.wikimedia.org)

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Interesting facts:
- Noccalula falls are located in Gadsden, Alabama. The Noccalula falls were named after the princess in the famous story princess Noccalula.
- The story is about a girl who committed suicide at one of the most famous landmarks of Alabama. The story revolves around, love, hatred, revenge and eventually a girl killing herself by jumping into these falls. She is marked with a bronze statue there.
- Noccalula falls is located near the local park called the Noccalula Falls Park spread across 250 acres of land.

Things to do:
The park has extensive botanical garden. The height of the waterfall is 90 feet and if you are lucky you can observe a rainbow of colors in the mist at the bottom of Noccalula Falls. You can do nature sightseeing while camping, hiking and picnics can also be done in the public park there.

Website:

www.noccalulafalls.info

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3: Cathedral Caverns State Park

The Caverns ParkThe Caverns Park
Photo courtesy: goodfreephotos.com

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Interesting facts:
- The Cathedral Caverns has widest entrance of any commercial cave in the world - measures 126 feet wide and 25 feet high.
- Inside the cavern, you will find Big Rock Canyon, Mystery River and some of the most beautiful formations Mother Nature has ever created.
- Cathedral Caverns is home to the largest stalagmite in the world. Called as “Goliath”– it reaches the ceiling of the cave some 45 feet above.

Things to do:
In addition to cave tours with tour guides, the caverns park offers gem mining, picnicking, and tent camping. Children can learn a lot about formation of different stones and minerals inside the earth.

Website:

www.alapark.com/cathedralcaverns

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4: Birmingham Zoo

Birmingham ZooBirmingham Zoo
Photo courtesy: publicdomainpictures.net

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Interesting facts:
- The Birmingham Zoo is a zoological park opened in 1955 in Birmingham, Alabama.
- There are more than 500,000 visitors annually. The 122-acre (49 ha) zoo is home to 800 different kinds of animals with more than 200 species, including many endangered species from six continents.
- In 2005, Birmingham Zoo was awarded Alabama's top tourist destination by the state's Bureau of Tourism and Travel.

Things to do:
Watch more than 1000 different animal species from around the World, from the Siberian tiger to the San Esteban Island chuckwalla. Also you can see lions, tigers and bears, as well as giraffes, geckos, a white rhinoceros and gorillas. The zoo also opens a temporary exhibit with fifteen animatronic dinosaurs known as "Dino Discovery".

Website:

www.birminghamzoo.com

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5: Cheaha Mountain

Cheaha MountainCheaha Mountain
Photo courtesy: Amann09 (commons.wikimedia.org)

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Interesting facts:
- Cheaha Mountain is known for climbing, hiking and mountaineering.
- The Cheaha itself means the highest place and it is one of the highest points of Alabama with a height of 2400 feet.
- The mountain was open to public in 1939. There is also a lake located on the base of mountain adding more to scenic beauty.

Things to do:
The mountain itself is a campground with its base full with hotels, restaurants, swimming pool, vacation cottages, chalets, picnic area and pavilions so the tourists can stay and enjoy. Numbers of competitions are also held on this mountain. There is also an observation tower located on the top of the mountain called Bunker Tower. At 2,407 feet (734 m) above sea level, it is the highest point in Alabama. You can visit these places and even stay there with pleasant weather.

Website:

www.alapark.com/cheaharesort

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6: USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park

Alabama Battle ShipAlabama Battle Ship
Photo courtesy: Thomas Stephens (landmarkhunter.com)

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Interesting facts:
- The Alabama battleship was built in 1942 in the memory of World War II.
- The USS Alabama measures 680 feet from stem to stern, half as long as the Empire State Building is tall.
- The Alabama battleship is also called Lucky A because during World War II, she lost no American lives and it shot down 22 planes.
- This was the fifth newest battleship ever built and one of the last battleships ever to be built.

Things to do:
Take a tour of the Battleship USS Alabama which will take you through all the levels of the ship which can be an amazing experience. You can also visit the airplanes, warships and submarines. Photography and video is encouraged. You can also visit ship’s store where you will find exclusive clothing, souvenirs and other military-themed items.

Website:

www.ussalabama.com

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7: Gulf Shores

Gulf ShoresGulf Shores
Photo courtesy: Infrogmation at commons.wikimedia.org

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Interesting facts:
- Whatever the season is; the Gulf Shores in Alabama will always welcome you with enough activities for a fun vacation.
- The recorded population of Gulf Shores in 1956 was 120, by contrast the population estimate for 2010 is 9,741.
- There are number of recreational places like the Coast Zoo being home to 290 animals. Waterville another attraction has been one of the top destinations for 20 years now.

Things to do:
There are number of fascinations waiting for you. Your trip can include a tour to Orange Beach Cruise. You can take your family to the fun filled vacation and can enjoy ocean fishing, dolphin watching, visit beaches, visit coast zoo, boating cruises, play golf and do shopping.

Website:

www.gulfshores.com

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8: Russell Cave National Monument

Russell Cave National MonumentRussell Cave National Monument

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Interesting facts:
- It is one of the oldest places to visit for prehistoric cultures of southeast.
- The cave was created by a collapse of boulders and the entrance was closed. This event is more than 100 centuries before which were home to prehistoric people.
- This cave was formed in 1000BC and the North American inhabitants living there till 1650BC.

Things to do:
The cave is 210 feet long and requires lot of walking. If you plan to visit the entire cave; you must be wearing comfortable shoes for long hikes. Visit the monument visitor center where the artifacts from the cave are preserved. Explore the great mysteries of the prehistoric Native Americans.

Website:

www.nps.gov/ruca

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9: Dauphin Island

Dauphin Island Dauphin Island

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Interesting facts:
- Dauphin Island is a town in Mobile County, Alabama. The area of the Island is 166.1 square miles with almost 96%, 159.9 square miles of water on the island.
- As of 2010, the total Dauphin Island population is 1,238, which has shrunk 9.70% since 2000.
- From 2012, the Dauphin Island beach started charging fees for public access. West end beach is one of the very famous beaches in town.

Things to do:
There are number of places to visit on Dauphin Island; which can make your vacation worthwhile. These places include: Fort Gaines, Bird Sanctuary, Dauphin Island public beach, Bay Ferry, Sea Lab Estuarium, Shell Mound Park, and Dauphine Golf Club.

Website:

www.townofdauphinisland.org

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10: Bellingrath Gardens and Home

Bellingrath GardensBellingrath Gardens
Photo courtesy: Altairisfar (commons.wikimedia.org)

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Interesting facts:
- Bellingrath gardens is one of the historic sites mainly an attraction for walking tours and scenic beauty.
- The Bellingrath gardens are formed on the 65 acre estate land with cultivated flowers and 900 acre land in total.
- The gardens are full of natural beauty with different flower types including azaleas, camellias and other flowering plants.
- The home of the Bellingrath was built in 1935 and is listed on national register of Historic Places.

Things to do:
While visiting Bellingrath Gardens you will feel scenic beauty and fragrance of flowers all around you. Taking a walk of the park is in itself a path to tranquility and peace of mind. You can take the tour of blossom boat while enjoying fishing along. The visit to the Bellingrath home is a charm as well.

Website:

www.bellingrath.org

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For top 10 attractions in Birmingham, Alabama check out our page here.





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