Fun Things to Do in Alabama with Kids

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best alabama beaches - Gulf Shores - Orange Beach

Alabama has much to offer if you’re looking for the perfect family trip in the Southeast. Inside Alabama’s borders, you’ll find four national forests. Further south, enjoy more than 60 miles of coastline. From learning about space and technology to basking on some of the most family-friendly spring break beaches around, you’ll find plenty of fun things to do in Alabama with kids.

You’ll find lots of indoor and outdoor activities across the state, so no matter the season or what pastimes you enjoy, there is always something to do in Alabama.

Gulf Shores-Orange Beach. Photo credit: Visit Gulf Shores-Orange Beach Tourism

Things to Do in Gulf Shores, Alabama, with Kids

If your idea of the best family vacation is a beach vacation, Alabama has some of the best beaches in the southeast. Gulf Shores and nearby Orange Beach are located near the Florida and Alabama border and have a variety of fun things to do. The crystal clear waters and the white sand beaches on the Alabama gulf coast might fool you into thinking you’re in the Caribbean. Gulf Shores is also a popular family spring break destination.

1. Gulf State Park

The park spans 6000 acres of Alabama Gulf Coast and has nine different ecosystems. The park has three lakes, hiking trails, dining and lodging. Popular pastimes in the park include biking, paddling, kayaking and swimming.

2. Historic Fort Morgan

If you’re seeking to insert that educational component into your vacation and want historic sites to balance family fun, plan on spending half a day at Historic Fort Morgan. Take a self guided tour of this former outpost, located 22 miles west of Gulf Shores, where soldiers protected and watched over Mobile Bay. The fort was active during the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, World War I and World War II.

3. OWA

OWA in nearby Foley is the ultimate family fun spot. Sitting on 520 acres, OWA offers a 23-attraction amusement park, a water park, dining and live entertainment. Want to take a roller coaster ride in Alabama? This is your place.

4. Looking for another great Alabama Beach? Check out Dauphin Island

Dauphin Island is located 33 miles from Mobile. Access Dauphin Island from the three-mile Dauphin Island Bridge or take a ferry from Fort Morgan. If you want something to do on this 166 square foot mile island in Mobile Bay besides enjoy swimming at the beach, check out historic Fort Gaines, go bird watching at the Audubon Bird Sanctuary or visit the Alabama Aquarium at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab.

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Civil rights for kids travel discovers art devoted to stories about kids of the movement.
Four little girls died in a church bombing and Birmingham adds inspiration and hope in telling that history with sculpture. Photo credit: Christine Tibbetts

Things to Do in Birmingham, Alabama, with Kids

Many visitors come to Birmingham to explore the Civil Rights Trail. There are other cultural and family fun aspects of the city to discover, too.

5. McWane Science Center

The McWane Science Center is a place for kids to explore science in a hands-on way. The interactive exhibits allow guests to explore paleontology, ecology and more.

Admission includes World of Water, Birmingham’s best and only aquarium, and access to the IMAX Dome theater.

6. Birmingham Zoo

See the American Black Bear, African Elephants, Red Pandas and more at the Birmingham Zoo. Check the website for any available behind-the-scenes animal encounters.

7. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

This Birmingham museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and is a cultural and educational research center that promotes a comprehensive understanding of the significance of civil rights developments in Birmingham.

Also, check out the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument.

8. Up for a road trip from Birmingham? Drive to Majestic Caverns

Majestic Caverns, formerly Desoto Caverns, is 36 miles southeast of Birmingham. Sign up for a tour and learn all about past cave residents, from prehistoric Native American people to Confederate soldiers mining gunpowder to moonshine runners during prohibition. Majestic Caverns also has surface attractions, such as a train ride, maze, archery and more.

Fun fact: Majestic Caverns is just 15 miles from Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, AL. If you have motorsports fans in your family, this might be a stop to put on your list.

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Things to Do in Huntsville, Alabama, with Kids

Huntsville offers a full range of experiences for parents to share with their children.

9. U.S. Space & Rocket Center

Spend a day at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (USSRC) and learn all about space exploration. The USSRC has one of the largest collections of rockets and space memorabilia on display anywhere in the world.

Check out displays, a digital planetarium, hop in one of the simulators to for a shuttle launch experience and more.

10. EarlyWorks Children’s History Museum

EarlyWorks Children’s History Museum is the children’s hands-on museum that teaches younger children the history of Alabama’s people and cultures in a fun and educational way.

11. Want to explore more? Check out Cathedral Caverns State Park

Cathedral Caverns State Park is 31 miles southeast of Huntsville. Camp, hike or take a tour of the caverns to see Goliath, one of the largest stalagmites in the world. If you want to take a tour, book your reservation in advance.

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Civil Rights Trail icon Rosa Parks better understand with visit to Montgomery.
Montgomery, Alabama is the Civil Rights Trail place to dig deep into the lasting impact of Rosa Parks. Photo credit: Christine Tibbetts

Things to Do in Montgomery, Alabama, with Kids

Montgomery is a great place to learn about the American civil rights movement. Montgomery has many must-see museums and monuments telling the stories of our society’s change-makers.

12. Rosa Parks Museum

The Rosa Parks Museum is located in downtown Montgomery at the site where Ms. Parks was arrested in 1955 for refusing to comply with segregation laws and moving to the back of the bus. This unique museum is the only museum in the United States dedicated to Rosa Parks.

13. Cheer for the Biscuits

Although biscuits are a staple in southern country cooking, Montgomery has another type of biscuit to get excited about. The Montgomery Biscuits are the local minor league baseball team. The Biscuits are a AA affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays.

14. Want more family fun in Alabama? Check out the Alabama Safari Park and Zoo

Alabama Safari Park and Zoo is in Hope Hull, AL, 10 miles south of Montgomery. This 350-acre drive-through safari park has animals from all around the world. There’s also a village walkabout with a petting zoo area and other up close and personal animal encounters, such as giraffe feeding and sloth experiences.

Find Places to Stay Near Montgomery

Jill Robbins is a freelance writer covering lifestyle, travel, health, and commerce. Her writing has appeared in SheKnows, HuffPost, Tripsavvy, Insider, AARP, and other publications. Jill lives in San Antonio with her husband and two youngest kids, although she’s usually somewhere else. You can find out what Jill is up to by reading her blog, Ripped Jeans and Bifocals.
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