10 Things To Do In Birmingham, Alabama

10 Things To Do In Birmingham, Alabama

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Birmingham, Alabama is the state’s largest city. With a metropolitan population of well over 1 million, it is a big city but still has a unique, Southern flair. Birmingham is the county seat of Jefferson County and is in the northern part of the state, about 100 miles from the Tennessee state line. Birmingham is the state’s centre for medical care, and the University of Alabama at Birmingham boasts top-notch medical care, as well as sweeping research programs.

Things To Do In Birmingham Al

A visitor could spend all day, poking around Birmingham, looking for things to do, and probably wouldn’t come to the end of the attractions in a week. Here, however, are the top 10 things to do and/or see in Birmingham, Alabama — the “Magic City.”

Things To Do In Birmingham, Alabama

Vulcan Park

This park atop Red Mountain pays tribute to Birmingham’s steel industry history. Vulcan, the god of the forge, is a cast-iron statue and is the second-largest statute in America, second only to the Statue of Liberty in New York.

Birmingham Zoo and Botanical Gardens

Birmingham does not have the largest zoo in the country, but it is a good one. It’s also an old zoo, laid out in the old style, and well-beloved by residents and tourists alike. Recent renovations have improved habitats and all other aspects of the zoo, and it’s well worth a visit. The neighbouring Botanical Gardens feature a Japanese teahouse and gorgeous walking trails that are in spectacular bloom for much of the spring and summer months. The autumn foliage is gorgeous as well.

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and Sixteenth Street Baptist Church

These attractions pay tribute to Birmingham’s role in the Civil Rights Movement and remember the four girls who were killed in the church bombing. The church is open to visitors and features a memorial to the slain children.

Things To Do In Birmingham, Alabama


This park is actually two amusement parks in the city of Fairfield, which merges with Birmingham proper. There is a traditional amusement park featuring a large wooden rollercoaster and a water park next door.

Rickwood Field

This stadium is the oldest baseball park in the country. Built-in 1910, it has hosted many games, and even stars in a few movies, when a real old-style park was needed. The stadium has a historical museum, as well.

Sloss Furnaces

Sloss Furnaces started producing iron in 1882 and finally closed in 1971. The compound hosts concerts, art festivals and metalworking classes, and also has a museum paying tribute to the steel industry and its role in Birmingham’s growth and economy. The place is reputed to be one of the most haunted sites in the state, and every year, the Fright Furnace attraction opens in October and runs through Halloween, giving visitors some of the scariest moments of their lives.

McWane Center

This science-oriented attraction is geared toward kids, but adults will have a good time, too, as they go through the museum with their children, and take part in the hands-on exhibits.

Things To Do In Birmingham, Alabama

Alabama Theatre

This restored old-time movie palace is a graceful grande dame and is home to numerous cultural events during the year. Yes, they still show movies there, and it is the home of the Sidewalk Film Festival each year. The centrepiece of the theatre is a huge, 1930s-era Wurlitzer movie organ that still thrills audiences.

Downtown Birmingham

Birmingham still has an active, thriving downtown, helped along, no doubt, by the presence of the sprawling UAB campus, which is smack in the middle. There are clubs, shops and restaurants by the score. The Wallace-Jefferson building is the oldest part of University Hospital and is worth a look inside. The first floor still features some beautiful Art Deco design that has not been altered much by the passage of time.

Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame

This museum pays tribute to some of the jazz musicians from the state who made names for themselves, as well as the state’s role in the jazz era.

Birmingham also features some beautiful antebellum homes, good shopping and great restaurants. It is served by the Birmingham International Airport and Interstates 65, 20 and 59 converge downtown. Tourists going to Birmingham as a destination or just passing through are bound to find some interesting things to do. The above 10 ideas will just get you started.

Image Credit: Depositphotos

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