Alabama has 11 bonded wineries and most are located in the central part near Birmingham. The climate of the northeastern region is good for growing grape vines, but throughout most of the state, the climate is hot and humid and not suitable. Most wines produced in the state are made from native grape varieties, such as muscadine and Norton, fruit wines from peach and blueberry, and French-American hybrids such as Chardonel and Chambourcin. Alabama's wineries are all part of the Alabama Wine Trail, which is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Alabama in spite of the fact that about one-third of Alabama's counties are dry. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
3.Corbin Farms Winery
4.Fruithurst Winery Co
5.Hidden Meadow Vineyard and Winery
6.High Country Cellars
7.Hodges Vineyards & Winery
8.Jules J Berta Vineyards
9.Lewis Lakes Vineyards
10.Mad County Winery LLC
11.Maraella Winery and Vineyard
13.Morgan Creek Vineyards
14.Ozan Winery & Vineyard
16.South Ridge Wine
18.Wills Creek Winery and Vineyards
18 Best Alabama Wineries
- Bryant Vineyard, Photo: Bryant Vineyard
- Cat-n-Bird Winery, Photo: Cat-n-Bird Winery
- Corbin Farms Winery, Photo: Corbin Farms Winery
- Fruithurst Winery Co, Photo: Fruithurst Winery Co
- Hidden Meadow Vineyard and Winery, Photo: Hidden Meadow Vineyard and Winery
- High Country Cellars, Photo: BillionPhotos.com/stock.adobe.com
- Hodges Vineyards & Winery, Photo: Hodges Vineyards & Winery
- Jules J Berta Vineyards, Photo: photopixel/stock.adobe.com
- Lewis Lakes Vineyards, Photo: losonsky/stock.adobe.com
- Mad County Winery LLC, Photo: Mad County Winery LLC
- Maraella Winery and Vineyard, Photo: Aunging/stock.adobe.com
- Maria's Vineyard, Photo: Roberto Vivancos/stock.adobe.com
- Morgan Creek Vineyards, Photo: Ilshat/stock.adobe.com
- Ozan Winery & Vineyard, Photo: New Africa/stock.adobe.com
- Perdido Vineyards, Photo: Perdido Vineyards
- South Ridge Wine, Photo: Lukas Gojda/stock.adobe.com
- Whippoorwill Vineyards, Photo: nton84/stock.adobe.com
- Wills Creek Winery and Vineyards, Photo: Wills Creek Winery and Vineyards
- Cover Photo: lunamarina/stock.adobe.com
More Ideas in Alabama: Chewacla State Park
Alabama’s Chewacla State Park offers close to 700 acres of recreational outdoor space in the near the Auburn-Opelika area of Eastern Alabama.
Chewacla State Park is home to the 27-acre Lake Chewacla, perfect for swimming and fishing. With no boat ramp, traffic is limited to small craft such as canoes and kayaks, and the lake is home to bass, bream, catfish and crappie. A small lakeside beach area is used for swimming. The dam’s spillway, built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the 1930’s creates the picturesque Chewacla Falls. Three covered open-air pavilions are located throughout the park. The Beachside Pavilion is located adjacent to the lake. The Lower Pavilion is the most secluded of the three, and is adjacent to the playground, while the Upper Pavilion, the only one with electricity, is located next to a small field perfect for a game of kickball or soccer.
Hiking for all levels runs through the park’s varied terrain. Visitors can hike through the short interpretative Sweet Shrub Trail, which runs alongside the Moore's Mill Creek from the Lower Pavilion, or challenge themselves with longer hikes such as the Troop 30 Boy Scout Trail, a longer trail that follows Moore’s Mill Creek to the park’s boundary, and then loops back to it’s starting point at Murphy Drive. Eagle Scout Trail is a wide, easy to follow trail that follows the shore of Lake Chewacla in some parts. The Deer Rub Trail follows Chewacla Creek to Walnut Shelter. The trail takes hikers past large gneiss boulders that are estimated to be billions of years old.
Mountain biking trails throughout the park are maintained by the Central Alabama Mountain Pedalers (CAMP). CAMP is an official member of the International Mountain Biking Association and is committed to improving the lives of visitors to the park by maintaining a network of safe, well maintained trails, and educating the public on mountain biking and its benefits. Close to twenty miles of cycling trails in the park include everything from flat loops around the campgrounds to intermediate single-track trails and advanced technical trails with jumps, dips and vertical climbs. The NORBA National Trail is a historic trail and home of the first ever NORBA National mountain bike race to be held east of the Mississippi River.
Accommodations at the park include six stone cottages built in the 1930’s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The recently renovated cottages now have modern kitchens and bathrooms, hardwood flooring, stone fireplaces and central heating and air conditioning. The cottages are available for rent year round, and linens are provided. Additional camping options include thirty-six RV hookup sites, and ten primitive camping sites. Each campground is equipped with shower and toilet facilities.
Wildlife at the park includes chipmunks, squirrels, red foxes and deer. Among the park’s birds are wild turkey and waterfowl such as Kingfishers and Blue Herons. In the spring, native Rhododendron and mountain laurel are in full bloom along many of the park’s trails. Chewacla State Park is one of a handful of Alabama State Parks that allows falconry as a method of hunting during squirrel and rabbit season.
History: In the late 19th century visitors were flocking to the water surrounding Wright's Mill for swimming and recreation. By the 1930’s the Civilian Conservation Corps had built the park’s six cabins, along with a network of trails and additional facilities, including a stone arched bridge, and the dam that created Lake Chewacla. In 1939, the state of Alabama took possession of the area, and designated it a public park.
Ongoing Programs and Education: Alabama State Parks offer an online video series on outdoor skills. Videos include information on selecting the proper footwear for outdoor recreation, and basic gear needed for camping.
The iNaturalist program is a downloadable app that helps visitors identify native flora and fauna in the parks. Visitors can also record their observations by uploading photographs of wildlife they see in the parks, which helps contribute to the species list for each of the parks.
The Alabama State Park system is part of the Alabama 100 Miles Challenge, a non-profit initiative designed to encourage Alabama residents to walk, hike, bike, boat or swim 100 miles each year. Participants log their mileage via the 100 miles app and share their progress on social media platforms.
What’s Nearby: Chewacla State Park is located just 5 miles from Auburn University, and just 15 miles from Opelika’s historic downtown.
124 Shell Toomer Parkway Auburn, AL 36830, Phone: 334-887-5621
More Ideas in Alabama: Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art
Auburn University’s Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art is among the best art museums in the State of Alabama. The collection of over 2,500 works represents a range of traditional and contemporary fine art, with a focus on 19th and 20th century American and European works. The permanent collection is complemented by visiting works on display in temporary exhibits. Works are regularly rotated through the galleries to provide visitors with an ever-changing look at the museum’s permanent collection.
Permanent collections include the Advancing American Art collection of 117 modern American paintings. The collection is based on a group of 32 works that were originally displayed throughout Eastern Europe, Latin America and East Asia immediately after World War II in an effort to exhibit the artistic freedoms available to artists in America. When the exhibit was halted due to outcry over the multi-cultural background of the artists and the theme of some paintings, the works were sold at auction. Recent acquisitions made to complement the original group came from the 1072 Society, a group of donors who have been giving to the museum’s acquisition fund since 2008. The number 1072 represents the amount paid for the museum’s original 32 works of American painting, as well as the amount members of the society donate annually.
Among the museum’s cornerstone collections are over 100 prints by John James Audubon, a naturalist known for his scientific illustrations of birds, and over 300 pieces of Belleek porcelain from Northern Ireland, which were donated to the museum in 1958. Highlights of the diverse fine art collection include a 1901 drawing by Edvard Munch, a 1902 etching by Käthe Kollwitz, a 1975 etching by Jim Dine, photographs by William Wegman from the 1990’s, a 1930 lithograph by Diego Rivera and 1930 oil on canvas by Georgia O’Keefe.
The museum itself is a 40,000 square foot facility with travertine exterior, surrounded by a formal English garden, a wooded landscape, and an outdoor sculpture garden. Inside are six rotating exhibit galleries, an auditorium, gift shop and café, and terrace overlooking a small lake.
History: The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art is the only art museum in the state of Alabama to be accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, a designation it has had since 2013. The museum first opened ten years earlier in 2003. Jule Collins Smith is the spouse of Albert Smith, a 1947 graduate of Auburn University. His $3 million donation to the museum project was a gift to his wife for their 50th wedding anniversary.
Ongoing Programs and Education: The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art hosts approximately 200 free public programs for 30,000 visitors annually. Educational programs include art studio programming for children in grades kindergarten through twelve. Poetry readings, music performances, artist’s talks, films and tours are also on the agenda.
Art Café takes place Thursday evenings, offering a live music performance or artist’s talk. Third Thursdays are reserved for poetry readings, by Auburn University Students, or visiting poets. Student Practicum Talks are given by students of art or art history, and offer educational background and history of items in the permanent collection.
Group tours are available by appointment, with trained docents leading groups through the current exhibits.
Past and Future Exhibits: Past exhibits have included “Celebrating 125 Years of Auburn Women.” The exhibit of works from the permanent collection ran from 2014 through 2017 and highlighted works by female artists to celebrate Auburn University’s admittance of women since 1892. “Audubon’s Last Wilderness Journey” ran from January through May of 2018 and focused on The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America, a three-volume work published between 1845 and 1848.
“The Third Poetry” is on display through January 2019. The exhibit features watercolors, prints and ceramics by Mississippi coastal artist Walter Inglis Anderson (1903-1965), who is known for his contemporary artistry and craftsmanship in representing the native flora and fauna of the American south. The exhibit is complemented by “Mississippi,” which runs through December 2018. This exhibit features the work of Mississippi artists Maude Schuyler Clay and Ann Fisher-Wirth, who represent the state’s historic and diverse landscapes through poetry and photographs.
“Out of the Box” is a biennial juried outdoor sculpture exhibit, which began in 2013. The exhibit aims to engage and educate members of the community while contributing to ongoing growth of the permanent collection of outdoor sculpture. The most recent installment of the show featured eleven works selected from over 100 submissions.
901 South College Street | Auburn, Alabama 36849, Phone: 334-844-1484
More Ideas in Alabama: Delano Park
Delano Park, also known as Alabama’s Emerald Jewel, is a public park in northern Alabama managed by the City of Decatur Parks and Recreation Department. The 28-acre park in historic downtown Decatur is over 130 years old, and its landscape is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, as Decatur’s first landscaped City Park. The park is home to several heritage trees and offers a historic architecture, public sculptures and walking paths to inspire and relax.
Features of the park include several historic Works Progress Administration structures. These historic structures include the wall and columns surrounding the Rose Garden, a bathhouse, bandstand, and a Girl Scout Little House, which offers a kitchen, meeting room and restroom facilities. A stone bridge spanning a drainage ditch was moved to the park in the 1930’s from Decatur’s Ferry Street, and has been a favorite park landmark ever since. A former swimming pool has since been filled in, and is now used as a field at the east end of the park.
Delano Park’s centerpiece is the historic Rose Garden, which was built by the Civil Works Administration in 1934 and was refurbished between 2005 and 2006 as part of a master plan to bring the park back to its historically rich landscaping. When it was first planted, the Rose Garden contained over 2,000 roses planted to take full advantage of each viewing point. In addition to roses, crape myrtles and gladiolas were planted in the Rose Garden along with several trees transplanted from Bankhead National Forest in northwestern Alabama.
Delano Park’s Riverwild Garden is built on a site that was once occupied by an original WPA playground. Today, a new playground with accessible features and updated safety and play elements occupies the Riverwild Garden. Children in wheelchairs are able to play alongside their friends without having to leave their equipment. An adjacent splash pad is built on what was once a WPA wading pool. The splash pad’s bathhouse is a historic structure that now offers family friendly restrooms and changing facilities. Both the playground and splash pad are inspired by Alabama’s wild rivers, and include elements inspired by Alabama’s native flora and fauna.
Delano Park is home to a one-mile long walking trail. Additional recreational facilities include four tennis courts, a basketball court and two picnic pavilions. The Fort Decatur Recreational Complex within the park provides an indoor basketball court and conference room.
Public art within the park includes seven large-scale outdoor sculptures surrounding the Riverwild Garden. Sculptures reflect the theme of native Alabaman wildlife and were created by local artists Bruce Larsen and Frank Fleming. Two great herons top an archway over a walking path, a giant turtle and bullfrog rest on rock outcroppings, and a larger-than-life dragonfly made of steel and found objects perches above the park.
The Trail of History is a paved sidewalk that connects the park’s east and west ends. The trail is dotted with educational signage that outlines the history of Decatur and Delano Park from the late 1880’s to the mid 1930’s.
History: Decatur Park was designed in 1887 by famed American landscape architect Nathan Franklin Barrett who also designed parks in New Jersey, New York, Illinois, and Texas. He was a founding member of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Originally, the park was part of a master plan to revitalize Decatur’s downtown area after it had been devastated by the Civil War and an outbreak of yellow fever.
The historic Rose Garden was designed in 1934 by Carolyn Cortner Smith, one of Alabama’s earliest female architects. The Civil Works Administration project employed approximately 140 men at a time when Decatur was facing vast unemployment and the closure of businesses during the Great Depression. The name Delano is in honor of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whose New Deal helped fund the park, and who inspired municipal parks as focal points of downtown areas across the United States.
Delano Park underwent a massive restoration in 2005 under the direction of Alabama’s Paige Duke Landcape Architects. The park’s sculptures were installed between 2009 and 2011, made possible by private donations raised by Friends of Delano Park. The non-profit organization is in the midst of executing a master plan to refurbish and revitalize the park, including more properly connecting the park’s middle and west ends. Delano Park is managed by the City of Decatur Parks and Recreation Department.
825 Gordon Drive, SE Decatur, AL 35601, Phone: 256-341-4930