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Cradled in Downtown Birmingham, the Civil Right District is the center point of the state's long-standing history. The very site where several important events of the Civil Rights Movement were birthed, this historic district sprawls across six blocks. The district has witnessed many of the most significant happenstances of the Birmingham arm of the movement, including the fateful bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church. Kelly Ingram Park, which is also a part of the district, was the location of many demonstrations during the Civil Rights Movement. Numerous sculptures in the park commemorate the historical protests. Some of the most important sites in the district include the statue of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Carver Theater, which has now been transformed into a live music venue, and the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. Harboring several historical sites, the Civil Rights District reads out America's most significant chapter out loud.
Located at 16th Street North across the street from Kelly Ingram Park and the 16th Street Baptist Church, this fascinating gallery tells the story of Birmingham's tragic and triumphant contributions to the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. This state-of-the-art facility utilizes multimedia presentations, photographs and other artifacts to document the African American struggle for racial equality, and relates this history to other human rights struggles around the world. Admission is free on Sundays.
Located on Reverend Abraham Woods, Jr. Boulevard at Lynn Park, the Birmingham Museum of Art is recognized as one of the finest art museums in the Southeast. Its collection includes more than 18,000 ancient and modern works of art. In addition to the various galleries, the museum also houses a library, cafe and sculpture garden. The Birmingham Museum of Art offers a wide range of programs including gallery lectures, special exhibitions, films, and concerts. Admission is free, and guided tours are offered for groups of eight or more.
A hands-on science museum, the McWane Science Center allows visitors to test physics principles, explore aquatic habitats, simulate space exploration and more. Interactive exhibits allow you to make your own animated movie, build a roller coaster or ride a bicycle along a wire 30 feet above the ground! There is also the IMAX Theater, a gift shop, and a food court that offers a variety of fast food and snack options. See website for event calendar, movie showtime, admission details and more.
Five Points South is a district located right next to the University of Alabama Birmingham. The district is well known and popular for its wide array of restaurants, clubs and nightlife. The area is also home to several city landmarks including the Storyteller Fountain, Pickwick Plaza and the Brother Bryan statue.
Based on the Greek god Vulcan, the god's statue is the tallest cast iron statue in the world in the center of Birmingham’s Vulcan Park & Museum, which features educational tours and a soaring observation deck overlooking the city. The park also allows special events including marriages and other cultural events.
The Avondale Brewing Company has made it a mission to combine the quirky and fascinating history of Avondale with the art of brewing craft beer. All of the beers are named after important locations or events in the history of the area, like the Battle Field IPA or the Spring Street Saison. The brewery offers tours several times a week which include some Avondale Brewing swag, and a beer or four tasters and a pint glass or taster glasses in addition to the actual tour itself. The brewery also hosts special events and live music from time to time.
See more than 1000 different animal species from around the globe, from the Siberian tiger to the San Esteban Island chuckwalla. Of course, there are lions, tigers and bears, as well as giraffes, geckos, a white rhinoceros and gorillas. If your feet get tired, hop aboard the Zoo Express Train. ZooSnoozes, their overnight camping program, is available by reservation. Also, check out the zoo's many classes, which are fit for visitors of all ages.
Birmingham's warm climate ensures that something is always blooming at the Botanical Gardens. Enjoy spring azaleas, summer roses, fall leaves and winter camellias as you tour the extensive grounds. Or, step inside the Southeast's largest clear-span glass greenhouse to enjoy orchids and other tropicals. Visit the Japanese Tea House and Garden and the Southern Living Garden, plus vegetable, fern, iris and other special gardens. Other attractions include the Gatehouse Gift Shop, a café and a library. Lectures, demonstrations, concerts and other events occur almost daily; inquire for a schedule. Admission is free. All paths are wheelchair and stroller-accessible.
Explore eight decades of winged history with such historic aircrafts as Huff Daland crop duster, the first Delta Airlines plane, a 1910 Curtis Pusher and an F4 jet fighter. See artifacts from the Red Baron, the Tuskegee Airmen (World War II black fighter pilots), notable female pilots and other aviation pioneers. The museum is conveniently located near the Birmingham International Airport. Group rates and family memberships are available.
Red Mountain Park consists of 1500 acres (607.02 hectares) full of outdoor fun and excitement. In addition to the 11 hiking trails in the park, there are also zip-lining facilities, historic mines, three tree houses and the Hugh Kaul Beanstalk Forest and Kaul Adventure Tower. The park is one of Birmingham's favorite destinations for outdoor adventure.
Considered one of the top three motorsports museums in the world, this structure holds nearly vintage 600 motorcycles in its collection. Inside, there are motorcycles as far as the eye can see. This museum was the largest single lender to the Art of the Motorcycle exhibition, which drew record crowds to the Guggenheim museums in New York City and Bilbao. The Barber also houses a restoration shop and library.