Birmingham Railroad Park#2 in Best Things To Do in Birmingham
Known as "Birmingham's Living Room," the 19-acre Railroad Park is where locals gather for recreational activities, concerts and special events. The park features a lake, jogging trails, skate bowls, an outdoor gym, playgrounds and the partially covered 17th Street Plaza, which offers restrooms and the Railroad Park Dining Car.
Recent travelers said this local favorite is a gorgeous green space. Reviewers commented on the clean restrooms, beautiful gardens, picnic facilities and scenic trails. Parents noted that their kids loved watching the trains go by at the adjacent railroad yard.
The park is located in downtown Birmingham, less than 2 miles southwest of the Birmingham Museum of Art. The park is open daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Entrance is free, as is the street parking that surrounds the park's perimeters along First Avenue South. Rangers patrol the park around the clock. Visit the website for details on park facilities and special events.
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#1 Civil Rights District
To learn more about Birmingham's role in the civil rights movement, plan a visit to the Civil Rights District. This six-block area in downtown Birmingham encompasses several historic sites, including the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the 16th Street Baptist Church, Kelly Ingram Park, the A.G. Gaston Gardens and the Fourth Avenue Business District, among other points of interest.
Perhaps the most significant site is Kelly Ingram Park, which played host to civil rights rallies, demonstrations and confrontations in the 1960s, including the Children's Crusade. You can take a self-led walking tour through the park to learn about the notable protesters and the significant incidents of this turbulent time in the city's history, detailed by markers along the Freedom Walk route. The park is also home to the Four Spirits statues, which honor the four African American girls killed in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church. To fully experience the walk, you can access a free audio tour from your cell phone by calling 205-307-5455.
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