Alabama’s largest city of Birmingham was an industrial center focused on steel but today is known rich cultural center. Birmingham played a pivotal role in the Civil Rights Movement and is filled with historical landmarks, museums, attractions, and outdoor activities. Whether visiting Birmingham for the first time or looking for new things to do, make the most of a vacation with the best travel guide to Birmingham 2020.
McWane Science Center
Visitors of all ages will enjoy hands-on learning at McWane Science Center. Explore four floors of interactive exhibits covering topics from dinosaurs to space exploration. Dig for dinosaur bones, pet stingrays, play in a giant water table, and dance on a floor piano. The science center features a five-story, 280-seat IMAX theater that has daily film screenings. With plenty of hands-on displays about motion, energy, light, and sound, everyone will find exciting things to see and do at McWane Science Center.
Barber Motorsports Park And Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum
Racing enthusiasts will feel at home at Barber Motorsports Park. The 930-acre park features a 16-turn road course used by Grand-Am Racing Series, and several schools of racing, like the Porsche Driving Experience. Also on the grounds is the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum, founded by race driver George Barber. The museum houses an impressive collection of over 1,400 vintage and modern motorcycles from more than 200 manufacturers. Also within the collection are rare race cars, including Lotus among other noteworthy models.
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In the 1800s, Birmingham’s main industry was iron production. Sloss Furnaces was once the world’s largest producer of pig iron and operated from 1882-1970. It was the longest continually running blast furnace in Birmingham, and today this National Historic Landmark is the only blast furnace that is federally preserved. Visitors can learn about the city’s industrial heritage by exploring the pipes, stoves, materials, processes, and products involved in operating the furnaces. The museum is free to the public and visitors can take self-guided tours during the week or opt for guided tours on the weekends.
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Southern Museum Of Flight
The Southern Museum of Flight is one of the Southeast’s largest aviation museums dedicated to civilian, military, and experimental aircraft from the earliest days of flights. The 75,000 square foot museum is home to over 100 aircraft, engines, artifacts, and photographs. Life-size dioramas depict topics related to the history of aviation in the military and feature exhibits about Korean War Jets, the Tuskegee Airmen of WWII, and Vietnam War Helicopters. The Southern Museum of Flight is also home to the Alabama Aviation Hall of Fame and features biographies, aviation art, photographs, and murals.
Vulcan Park And Museum
Standing tall over the city of Birmingham from the top of Red Mountain is Vulcan statue. The world’s largest cast-iron statue is 56-feet tall and contains 100,000 pounds of iron. Visitors of the statue, made in the image of the Roman god of fire, will enjoy breathtaking views of Birmingham while learning about the city and the statue’s history through interactive exhibits.