While visitors often flock to cities like Birmingham or Montgomery, our state is also home to several smaller towns full of Southern charm and rich history. WorldAtlas, the original online geography resource, listed these six underrated Alabama towns in their publication this month– keep reading to see which ones made the list.
Who is WorldAtlas?
WorldAtlas is one of the largest publishing resources in geography, reaching over 165 million readers worldwide. It was launched in 1994 in the early days of the world wide web, when there were only about 2700 websites on the internet. Today, WorldAtlas serves as a top resource for geography as well as other topics like sociology, environment and travel.
Let’s see which Alabama towns WorldAtlas named the state’s most underrated:
According to WorldAtlas, Abbeville is one of the “best-hidden gems” in the state. Located in Southeast Alabama, this town populated by some 2,350 people is full of old-town charm.
The town was home to civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks and also houses the county’s oldest building, the Bethune-Kennedy House. Its downtown is mostly unchanged from its original structure, giving it a retro and historic feel.
If you’ve only ever driven past Childersburg on 280, you may not think there’s much there. While it may not seem like it at first glance, Childersburg is full of history and natural wonders.
One of its most awe-inspiring attractions is the Majestic Caves of Desoto Caverns Park, where you can explore the cavern’s beautiful stalagmites and stalactites. Another of the town’s most picturesque landmarks, Kymulga Grist Mill Park, features an old wooden mill which is over 150 years old.
According to WorldAtlas, Childersburg holds the title of “Oldest Continually Occupied City in America”. This refers to the fact that the first recorded history of the area dates back to 1540 when the Coosa Indian Nation occupied the area until 1836 when Europeans settled there.
3. Dauphin Island
One of Alabama’s most charming small towns, Dauphin Island is an island town located in Mobile Bay. Home to white sand beaches and stunning views of the gulf, this is a quaint place for visitors to wind down and enjoy the gorgeous landscape.
The town is also home to Fort Gaines, a historic fort established in 1821. For the nature lovers, Dauphin Island hosts the Dauphin Island Sea Lab where visitors can explore a living marsh boardwalk and aquarium.
Because Dauphin Island is the first land encountered by many birds as they migrate north from South America, many species can be found there before continuing their journey. Visitors can observe all kinds of birds at the Audubon Bird Sanctuary.
4. Magnolia Springs
Housing a population of less than 900 people, Magnolia Springs is one of Alabama’s smallest hidden gems. Voted “prettiest town in Alabama” by the Daily Meal, this town is straight out of a Hallmark movie.
Magnolia Springs, located along the Magnolia River in South Alabama, features old-world architecture and trees that form tunnel-like canopies as well as a variety of quaint restaurants and shops. One of their most charming and quaint attractions is the Victorian-style Magnolia Springs Bed and Breakfast.
According to WorldAtlas, Magnolia Springs is also the only town in the United States to have a still-running postal mail delivery water route.
Mentone, located in Northeast Alabama, is a beautiful state gem for outdoors lovers. Boasting the highest vantage point in the state, its remote location makes it the perfect getaway for camping, hiking and recreation.
Enjoy snow and summer sports at the Cloudmont Ski and Golf resort or Shady Grove Dude Ranch or take a scenic walk through Desoto Falls, this place has it all. Rent a cabin or cottage for the weekend and enjoy the retreat of this quaint town full of natural beauty.
Known as the “Literary Capital of Alabama”, this small town was home to two of the country’s most prominent authors Harper Lee and Truman Capote, who were childhood friends in the 1930s. Monroeville was not only home to Lee, but also the inspiration for the fictional town of Maycomb featured in both of her works.
Housing an impressive Historic District on Main Street and Old Court Museum, Monroeville is a small town with a rich history and prominent figures.