Moss Rock Preserve


You'll find about 12 miles of trails webbing across this 349-acre nature preserve, which is thick with streams, forests and dramatic rock outcroppings that look plucked out of a national park. The best example of the latter landscape is Boulder Field, popular with local rock climbers. This green escape is in Hoover, about 13 miles south of downtown Birmingham.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Birmingham attractions

1. Oak Mountain State Park

6.08 MILES

Alabama's largest state park sprawls over some 9940 acres of hill and valley terrain located about 20 miles south of Birmingham. There are over 50 miles…

2. Vulcan Park


Imagine Christ the Redeemer in Rio, but made of iron and depicting a beefcake Roman god of metalworking. Vulcan is visible from all over the city – this…

3. Railroad Park

9.09 MILES

Credit where it's due: Birmingham's Railroad Park, which constitutes some 19 acres of downtown real estate, is a stroke of planning brilliance. As urban…

4. McWane Science Center


This science museum, full of all manner of interactive exhibits, is primarily set up for families; if you have kids in tow, it's one of the most…

5. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

9.42 MILES

A maze of moving audio, video and photography exhibits tell the story of racial segregation and the Civil Rights movement, with a focus on activities in…

6. Kelly Ingram Park

9.44 MILES

When Bull Conner was the sheriff, civil rights activists, led by Dr King, embarked on a desegregation campaign downtown. Their strategy was to flood the…

7. 16th Street Baptist Church

9.45 MILES

This church became a gathering place for organizational meetings and a launchpad for protests in Birmingham in the 1950s and ’60s. During a massive…

8. Birmingham Museum of Art

9.86 MILES

This fine museum boasts an impressive collection, especially given Birmingham's status as a mid-sized city. Inside, you'll find works from Asia, Africa,…