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Situated on the northern edge of Alabama near the state’s border with Tennessee lies Monte Sano State Park. This park covers over 2,140 acres and offers breathtaking views of Monte Sano Mountain. The land was once a sought-after destination during the 1800s due to many believing that its fresh air and mineral springs had impressive health benefits.
Temperatures tend to be warm year-round, although they can start to drastically dip in the winter. Monte Sano State Park is about an hour away from Birmingham, AL.
You’ll discover many outdoor activities to do at Monte Sano State Park. One to try out is hiking. The park features many pathways that allow you to explore the land in a unique way. A few trails hikers can trek down include the North Plateau Loop Trail, Stone Cuts Trail, and Land Trust Loop Trail. Many of these trails will give you stunning views of the local landscape and take you at the base of the nearby mountains. Keep in mind that during the warmer months, the grounds are sometimes visited by poisonous snakes and spiders. Due to this, it’s best to use caution when hiking through the park during this time of the year.
Birdwatching is yet another thing to do while visiting Monte Sano State Park. Thanks to the park containing a massive hardwood forest, birdwatchers will find many raptors and songbirds living within it. Some species you might see while here include owls, hawks, eagles, bluebirds, and goldfinches.
Visitors could also try wildlife photography. The park is home to a vast amount of wildlife, including a group of feral goats. A few other species you might be able to catch with your camera are rabbits, armadillos, deer, and bats. In addition to wildlife, photographers can also capture some of the park’s stunning flora, like honeysuckle, dogwoods, and azaleas.
When you book an RV in Madison County, you will find plenty of options to stay while visiting the area. Mountain Breeze RV Park is only a few minutes away from the state park and has 23 RV sites. This option offers amenities such as electric and water hookups, and laundry room access. You’ll also find a dumping station, restrooms, and showers on the grounds. This campground is pet-friendly.
Another nearby RV campground is Honeycomb Haven RV Park. The motorhome sites offered here come with amenities such as electric, water, and sewer hookups. There’s also a pool and a laundry facility campers can use.
There are numerous destinations nearby you can travel to with your camper should you like to explore the surrounding area. In Birmingham, AL, there’s the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. This 67.5-acre piece of land is filled with many different types of gardens, some of which are the Crape Myrtle Garden, Fern Glade, Ireland Iris Garden, and Jemison Lily Garden. This attraction also has an art gallery, a cafe, and a library. In addition to this, there are numerous events held here throughout the year, such as birding tours, plant sales, antique festivals, and movie nights.
Drive your RV to Florence to check out the Helen Keller Birth Place. Also known as Ivy Green, this historic home is where Keller was born and lived during her childhood. Tours can be taken of the house where you’ll be able to view Keller’s bedroom, a dining room, parlor, and back porch. Visitors can also step outside to explore the grounds which contain cottages and a worn-out pathway that connects an outdoor kitchen to the main house. During the spring and summer, the home also puts on a performance of The Miracle Worker, a play that tells more about Keller’s relationship with her teacher Anne Sullivan.
About two hours away in Tuscaloosa is Moundville Archaeological Park. Located near the Black Warrior River, this park tells of the area’s intricate Native American history and about some of the ruins left behind by various tribes. Visitors will also find 29 mounds that were built as ceremonial structures. The park is listed on the National Register of Historic Landmarks and has a museum that showcases artifacts found on the grounds, such as pottery and stone palettes.
In Decatur, AL, there’s Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge. This massive refuge rests along the Tennessee River and is home to a variety of different wildlife, especially birds. In fact, the refuge is believed to be home to over 300 different bird species and 47 types of mammals. A few you might see here include cranes, eagles, beavers, and chipmunks. This refuge also contains numerous pathways that will take you near swamps, marshes, and caves.