Birmingham Outdoor Activities

Birmingham Outdoor ActivitiesBirmingham's southern charm isn't just put forth by the people who live here, but it is also evident by the incredibly beautiful natural surroundings of the area. The expansive gardens, inviting parks and lush greenery throughout the city and its surrounding areas make it a true haven for nature lovers. So whether you prefer familiarizing yourself with the various plants and flowers in a botanical garden, enjoying an outdoor walk through a stunning natural landscape or just visiting a park for a picnic, Birmingham's undeniable appeal to nature lovers is everywhere you look.

Birmingham Botanical Gardens
When you walk through the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, you will see picturesque outdoor beauty at seemingly every turn. Enjoy the visual allure of a Japanese garden with an air of authenticity provided by the fourteenth-century teahouse reproduction. There are countless flowers and plants to marvel at, and if you want to learn more about what you are seeing, the staff on site will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

Address: 2612 Lane Park Road, Birmingham, AL - MAP
Phone: (205) 414-3920
Web: www.bbgardens.org

Ruffner Mountain
Nature lovers are not the type of people who can just admire natural beauty from afar—they enjoy getting as close as possible to various sites and areas in the great outdoors that attract their interest. One such place is Ruffner Mountain. This is a 1,000-acre nature preserve that is located just five miles from the center of Birmingham. This unique urban forest features 10 miles of hiking trails over ridgetops and through valleys that provide for stellar views of nature all along the way. The trail ends at a point that offers a spectacular view of the city. The forest not only features native plants and animals but also a small nature center with exhibits and a gift shop.

Address: 1214 81st Street, Birmingham, AL - MAP
Phone: (205) 833-8264
Web: www.ruffnermountain.org

Birmingham Zoo
The world's wild kingdom is only as far away as the Birmingham Zoo. This is one of the state's most popular attractions, and with good reason. The zoo, like its illustrious inhabitants, is always evolving. That spirit of progress keeps the zoo's presentation fresh and vital for visitors of all ages. In addition to seeing favorites like zebras, monkeys, tigers and lions, some of the most popular shows include the Rhino Encounter, the Giraffe Feedings, and the Lorikeet Aviary.

Address: 2630 Cahaba Road, Birmingham, AL - MAP
Phone: (205) 879-0409
Web: www.birminghamzoo.com

Oak Mountain State Park
Venture out into wide open spaces when you make plans to spend some quality time outdoors at Oak Mountain State Park. The popular attraction is the state's largest park and offers plenty for the nature lover to enjoy. In addition to offering some of the finest mountain bike trails in the country, you'll also find vacation cottages, golf, improved camping, picnicking, tennis, swimming, hiking, backpacking and horseback riding facilities. The park is also the home of the Alabama Wildlife Center.

Address: Birmingham, AL - MAP
Phone: (205) 620-2520
Web: www.alapark.com

Sipsey Wilderness Area
Get ready for a wild time when you set out for Alabama's Sipsey Wilderness Area. This is the third largest wilderness area east of the Mississippi and is located in the Bankhead National Forest. Located just 90 miles northwest of Birmingham, the outdoor area offers camping, fishing, hunting, horseback riding as well as numerous streams that are perfect for a canoe ride. The amazing canyons and bluffs range from 50 to 200 feet high, and the trails were created by Native Americans and offer a unique way to view this rustic pocket of nature.

Web: www.alabamatrail.org

Rickwood Caverns
See some of the earth's most amazing natural beauty from the inside out when you visit the Rickwood Caverns. Located in western Blount County, it contains some of the most massive and visually arresting underground formations in the state. If you visit during the summer, you can even go for a dip in the swimming pool and enjoy a ride on the miniature train. Year-round camping is available.

Phone: (800) 252-7275
Web: www.alapark.com