Welcome to Huntsville, Alabama
The Huntsville known around the world today launched in the 1950s with the U.S. space & rocket industry. It was in Huntsville that a team of scientists, led by Dr. Wernher von Braun, designed and tested the rockets that put man on the moon. A sense of exploration and adventure from that period remains in every nook and corner of Huntsville. Home to NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and the second largest research park in the United States (fourth largest in the world), Huntsville still pulses with innovation as teams work to surpass expectations in the fields of science, aerospace and manufacturing.
Surpassing expectations has been a theme for Huntsville and extends to what the city offers to visitors. Home to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center and the world-renowned Space Camp, the city’s skyline is quite literally defined by a 36 story-tall Saturn V moon rocket – it’s how visitors know they’ve arrived in the Rocket City.
When in the Rocket City, visitors have plenty of options for fun. The arts and sciences collide here, as Huntsville is home to the southeast United States’ premier arts festival, Panoply, as well as the nation’s largest private arts facility, Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment. You’ll find a plethora of STEM-related (Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics) attractions including Sci-Quest Hands-on Science Center and the U.S. Space & Rocket Center.
The real question is where to start. Should visitors begin at Burritt on the Mountain complete with breath-taking views of the Tennessee Valley? Or what about exploring downtown Huntsville’s new Arts & Entertainment Districts? How about visiting the Huntsville Museum of Art, which was recently named one of the top 10 destinations in Alabama? Whether partaking in a downtown scavenger hunt or trying out one of the area’s many local breweries or food trucks, visitors will have fun no matter where they begin.
Did you know?
• Huntsville boasts the largest collection of antebellum homes in the State of Alabama.
• The Huntsville Botanical Garden is home to the nation’s largest open-air butterfly house.
• The Huntsville Museum of Art is home to the largest collection of art by American women, the Sellars Collection, in the U.S.
• The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail begins at Hampton Cove in Huntsville and winds 342 miles south to the gulf – eleven venues and 468 holes later.
• Ditto Landing in Huntsville is the midpoint of the Tennessee River.
• Huntsville and Madison County offers dozens of spa spaces and close to 7,000 hotel rooms.
• Unique lunch experiences abound including a dining experience in an old jail cell at Main Street Café, in downtown neighboring Madison (a 15 minute drive from Huntsville). Main Street Café is located in a restored City Hall and jail.
• Huntsville was ranked the 4th Geekiest City in America by the U.S. National Science Foundation (August 2011).
• Huntsville was ranked the 4th most optimistic city in America by Gallup (September 2011).
• Huntsville was named one of the nation’s top ten leading creative class metros by the Atlantic Cities Place Mattes (July 2012).