Explore UAB

26 things to do in the Magic City

medical student shaking hands with patient 2

Culture & History

Experience the Civil Rights Institute

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is a cultural and educational research center that promotes a comprehensive understanding for the significance of the civil rights developments in Birmingham. You won’t want to miss an opportunity to visit and experience powerful, local stories.

Attend the Sidewalk Film Festival

The Sidewalk Film Festival is an annual favorite in Birmingham! Come by yourself or with a group to enjoy the films played at several different venues. The festival promotes a wide range of film genres, so there is something for everyone.

See Sloss Furnaces

What once was a bustling steel production facility is now a familiar city backdrop. Grab friends or family to visit this historic Birmingham landmark to take pictures, go on a tour, or take a trip through the haunted version of it during the Halloween season.

Visit the Museum of Art

From Baroque paintings to modern sculptures, The Birmingham Museum of Art has something for everyone. Entrance into the museum is free, so take a group of friends for an afternoon of culture. Let loose at Art on the Rocks, a concert series put on by the Birmingham Museum of Art every summer.

Attend Events at the Alabama Theater and The Lyric

The Alabama Theatre and The Lyric are Birmingham staples situated right across the street from each other. Beyond featuring beautiful architecture, they both offer space for performing arts as well as a unique cinema experiences So if you’re looking for a relaxed night out, head to Third Ave North!

Visit the Vulcan statue and overlook the city

You literally cannot miss this landmark! It’s a huge statue overlooking downtown Birmingham. You can take the elevator up to the viewing deck for amazing, un-matched views of the city. Plus, there’s an accompanying museum that shares the story of Birmingham’s development.

vulcan park statue overlookStudent standing atop the Vulcan statue overlooking downtown Birmingham


Attend Do Dah Day

Is your dog desperate to tag along on one of your adventures? Bring them to Do Dah Day! It’s an annual pet parade that has taken place in Birmingham since 1979. The event also features food and music and takes places in Caldwell and Rhodes Parks in the Highlands neighborhood of the city.


Watch the Birmingham Baron's play baseball

Visit Region’s Field to watch Birmingham’s very own minor league baseball team, the Barons, in action! Games are inexpensive and are played throughout most of the spring and summer. Every Thursday, guests can enjoy $2 off of domestic beer for Thirsty Thursdays—a fan favorite!

people watching baseball gameGroup of people watching a Birmingham Barons baseball game at Region Field


Cheer on the UAB Blazers athletic teams

Support the Blazers and cheer on our team during your favorite sport! Whether it’s football, basketball, baseball, or volleyball, UAB has something for everyone! Make sure to sport our green and gold at the games.

Watch a race at Barber Motorsports

Got a need for speed? Watch a race at Barber Motorsports, which was named the World’s Largest Motorcycle Museum by the Guinness World Records. Check out their calendar for races that are open to the public, or to get tickets to visit their impressive museum!

Catch a Birmingham Legion Match

Launched in 2018 as an expansion member of the USL Championship, Birmingham Legion FC is the Magic City’s first and only locally owned and operated professional soccer franchise. Legion FC finished their inaugural campaign in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals of the USL Championship playoffs!

Watch a Tragic City Rollers roller derby match

The Tragic City Rollers is a women's flat track roller derby league based in Birmingham. Founded in 2005, the league consists of two teams, which compete against teams from other city-based leagues. If you're up for something exciting and little bit off the beaten path, these bouts are sure to delight!

Golf at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail

One of the largest golf course construction projects ever attempted, the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail showcases a collection of public courses throughout the state of Alabama, including two courses in the Birmingham area.


Walk through the color tunnel

Take a stroll through the color tunnel, which was installed by artist Bill FitzGibbons. Located in the 18th street underpass, the tunnel is lit up with thousands of LED lights to create a rainbow effect. This is a can’t miss photo spot in the heart of downtown Birmingham!

bridge with neon lights underneath"LightRails", an LED Rainbow Light Color installation created in 2013 in an 18th Street underpass tunnel


Stroll around Railroad Park

Located in downtown Birmingham, Railroad Park features 19 acres of green lawn for recreational use.
Visit with friends for a picnic and a game of frisbee, or plan to attend one of the great events the park has scheduled year-round.

Hike at Ruffner Mountain Park

Looking for a chance to get some exercise in the great outdoors? Take a hike at Ruffner Park! The park boasts over a thousand acres of beautiful wildlife and 14 miles of trails for visitors to enjoy.

Zipline at Red Mountain Park

If you’re a thrill seeker, the zipline at Red Mountain Park is for you. Red Mountain Park offers visitors various recreational opportunities including trails, a dog park, and more!

Go tubing down the Cahaba River

Grab a tube and float for a while! The Cahaba River, Alabama’s longest free-flowing river, offers beautiful, scenic views, as well as many opportunities for recreational activities.

Climb at the Moss Rock Preserve

Is bouldering your thing? If so, then Moss Rock Preserve is the perfect place for you! The park also offers a variety of hiking trails for the public to enjoy the nature preserve. Plus, the Moss Rock Festival happens every November and celebrates local art, food, nature, design, and more!

Take a stroll around the Botanical Gardens

A large space featuring several gardens each with its own unique beauty, the Birmimgham Botanical Gardens are a great place to visit if you are looking for something free to do! Grab friends and take pictures next to the flowers, or pack a picnic to dine al fresco!

Jog down Jemison Trail

Looking for exercise but tired of the gym? Go for a jog down Jemison trail. The 3.4-mile loop is known for more than just a great spot to run. It also features a stream, beautiful wildflowers, and other natural elements that are sure to enhance your jog!


Food & Beverage

Shop the Pepper Place Market

Visit the Pepper Place Market on Saturday mornings for an array of local Alabama vendors! The market changes with every season so it’s always a good time to go. With 100 tents spread through two parking lots, there’s a little something for everyone. So whether you’re looking for fresh flowers, vegetables, pastries, or art, you are sure to find it here!

people and vegetables at farmers marketShoppers at Pepper Place Famers Market


Visit the “Father” of Birmingham Cuisine

Frank Stitt is known as one of the country’s best chefs, and he definitely helped put Birmingham on the foodie map! Visit one of his four restaurants for an absolute 5-star experience.

Eat at The Bright Star restaurant

Since 1907, The Bright Star restaurant has been serving generations of customers its specialty Greek- style snapper and steak, signature seafood gumbo, luncheon specials, and famous pies. Located in nearby Bessemer, Alabama, the restaurant has a regional following and draws patrons from all over the country.

Sip your way through Birmingham’s cocktail scene

In addition to being a foodie’s dream come true, Birmingham’s cocktail scene has also been growing in reputation over the past decade. The Collins Bar has helped generate a lot of that enthusiasm by offering completely custom cocktails for every patron who enters. Plus, you don’t want to miss the giant Birmingham-themed periodic table that sits behind the bar.

Eat at The Irondale Cafe (AKA The Whistlestop Cafe)

The Irondale Cafe has been around since 1928 and was the inspiration behind the location in Fannie Flag’s bestseller Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Cafe. You may be even more familiar with the movie version! Either way, they’re still serving up some of the best “meat and three” meals you can find in the Birmingham area.

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