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Alabama enjoys a sub-tropical climate with long hot summers and mild shorter winters. It is bordered by Georgia in the east and Mississippi to the west. Tennessee is to the north, while Florida and the Gulf of Mexico lie to the south. Despite the fact that Mobile is the state's only seaport, Alabama still has one of the finest water-based networks in the United States.
The Alabama landscape varies from low-lying rolling grassland and agricultural areas in the south to dense pine forests and hills in the north. The Mobile-Delta region adjacent to the beaches is characterized by swamplands and shallow channels of slow-moving water. Around it lie stunning beaches.
Today cotton plantations no longer underpin the state's economy, having been largely replaced by corn, soybeans, peanuts, melons, and some livestock. Alabama with its rich deposits of iron ore, coal, and limestone has also emerged as an industrial heartland with rivers for flood control and the generation of hydroelectric power. Almost a quarter of the workforce is employed in the construction and manufacturing sectors and the state benefits from a prosperous textile industry and around twenty million acres of commercial forests.There is a great deal to see and do in Alabama and everybody will find things that interest them.
United States Space and Rocket Center
Alabama has played a major role in America's space industry being host to Redstone Arsenal, Marshall Flight Center, and the United States Space and Rocket Center. The Space and Rocket Center is open to the public and has a large collection of spacecraft and space rockets on display. It also provides opportunities for hands-on experience at the astronaut training exhibits.
Children in particular, will finds lots to do in Alabama, so charge your camera and take a family day out at one of these great destinations:
Montgomery ZooThe Montgomery Zoo in Birmingham is a must for every family with over seven hundred animals roaming free in their natural environments throughout a beautiful forty acre setting. You will see exotic creatures including giant anteaters, giraffes, bison, tropical birds, poisonous snakes, lions, and zebras, to mention but a few. There is a miniature train ride that is fun and great for tiny tots and older folk.
MooseumThe Mooseum also in Montgomery is an interactive children environment dedicated to the history of beef and ranching from the 1500's to the present. Slim's Buckaroo Cattle Club has exhibits depicting the life of cattlemen, while the Rodeo area offers excitement for all.
Birmingham hosts the McWane Science Center that is bursting with exciting kid's stuff like building roller coasters, taking part in a Space Mission, and lying on a Bed of Nails. Everything is beautifully presented and educational too – bring walking shoes as the area is vast.
Birmingham Children's TheaterWhile in Birmingham don't forget the Birmingham Children's Theater which has fun performances and lots of other things to do as you discover the wonderful world of dramatics, like making props and costumes.
DeSoto Caverns ParkThe DeSoto Caverns Park in Childersburg has many great rides and other attractions and also provides open space where the kids can play while the adults chill out.
Wildlife Expeditions in Creole provides swamp boat tours through breathtaking scenery where you will see wild alligators as well as ospreys, other birds, and a whole lot more.
Many famous people have lived and worked in the State and are recalled in a variety of museums and other exhibits. They include Martin Luther King Junior, Rosa Parks who refused to give up her seat in a bus, George Washington Carver who discovered many new uses for peanuts and sweet potatoes, and Helen Keller, the famous lecturer and author who proved that blind and deaf people are still capable of great achievements. Areas of special interest include:
King CenterThe King Center established in 1968 is the official living memorial to Doctor Martin Luther King Junior. It is visited by over a million visitors a year from across the world and contains thought provoking exhibits illustrating the great man's life and teachings.
Rosa Parks Museum and Library
The Rosa Parks Museum and Library in Montgomery provides great opportunities for research into the struggles for equality in the State of Alabama.
The Gulf Coast shoreline of Alabama has many tourist attractions that capitalize on the freely available sun and sandy beaches. Special attractions include:
Orange BeachOrange Beach features pure white sand and sparkling water and offers many family attractions and championship golf courses for dad.
Perdido Key BeachPerdido Key Beach includes a national park and boating and swimming areas. Attractions include excursions, restaurants, and an active nightlife.
National Shrimp Festival
The National Shrimp Festival in Gulf Shores is a yearly beach party with live entertainment, food, crafts, and much more.
Alabama has even more to offer, including:
Bellingrath Gardens and HomeBellingrath Gardens and Home in Theodore was developed by the president of Mobile’s Coca-Cola bottling plant and today showcases a classically-styled residence set in a huge expanse of manicured gardens.
Alabama's State ParksAlabama's State Parks feature many attractions such as DeSoto, Cheaha, Lake Guntersville, Joe Wheeler, and Oak Mountain.
At the Battleship Memorial Park you can literally walk the decks of the perfectly preserved USS Alabama, climb down into an American World War II submarine, view cockpits of combat aircraft, climb into a tank, and view a North Vietnam River Patrol Boat.
Alabama offers a lot to its visitors, from fun filled family days to sober memories of times gone by. Do not put off your trip – you will be glad you stopped by in the Land of Dixie.