Although it’s lots of fun to get out and spend some of your hard earned cash, they do say that some of the best things in life are free. So, we decided to test the theory that you can have lots of fun without spending lots of cash, tracking down 10 great things you can do in Huntsville without having to spend a cent.
#1 Big Spring International Park
This is the perfect place to spend a relaxing afternoon with your kids, giving them a chance to watch the human-friendly ducks and geese do their thing. There are Japanese Cherry Blossom trees here, and a Japanese-themed bridge too, with Koi happily zipping around in the lake surrounding it. Even better is the fact that the park is open day and night, so you can visit whenever you want to.
#2 Healthy Huntsville Exercise Classes
Are you tired of paying for expensive gym memberships, and feel like you’re getting nowhere? Thanks to the Healthy Huntsville initiative you can now enjoy learning how to get in shape, and eat well at the same time every Saturday at Big Spring Park between now and the end of August this year. These classes cost absolutely nothing, and lead on to other events like The Mayor’s 100-mile Walking Challenge. More information is available here: http://www.huntsvilleal.gov/healthyhuntsville
#3 Dog Parks
Those of you lucky enough to have a canine friend know just how important a part of your family they are. Fortunately, Huntsville has a number of great dog parks for you and fido to enjoy, including Creekwood Park, the Huntsville Dogspot and Mill Creek Dog Park. Each of these parks is designed specifically for dogs of all size, with some of them featuring smaller play areas for dogs under 25-pounds in weight. You’ll also find the other dog owners very friendly, and almost everyone tidies up after themselves.
#4 Lucky Duck Scavenger Hunt
Here’s a great way to spend some time with your kids, stay active, and learn a lot more about Huntsville than you probably imagined there was to know. There are 14 ducks cleverly hidden around Huntsville, and it’s your job to track them down using a set of clues provided to you in advance. If you can find all the ducks you can pick up a special prize from the Huntsvile/Madison County Visitors Bureau.
#5 North Alabama Birding Trail
Going bird watching might not sound like the most thrilling way to spend an afternoon or two, but it’s only when you get to see wild birds in their natural habitat that you can begin to appreciate things like their individual songs, and their habits. You will need to spend some money on gas to visit each of the locations on the Birding Trail, but it’s worth every cent. Discover more here: http://www.northalabamabirdingtrail.com/
#6 North Alabama Railroad Museum
Hands up – who wanted to be a train conductor when you were a kid? Okay, put your hands back down now. Although we can’t promise you a future career as a railroad engineer, we can share that fans of everything railroad will love what’s on display at the North Alabama Railroad Museum – the smallest train depot of its kind anywhere in the country. The museum opens from 8am to 8pm each day, but you can explore the grounds around it free of charge.
#7 Ditto Landing
You can find this landing just off Hobbs Island Road, about halfway down the Tennessee River. Although the marina area is home to yachts and boats of all shapes and sizes, you can still wander along the riverbanks, which is even more beautiful in the autumn than during the summer. While the weather is still warm you can enjoy swimming in the river, or fishing from its banks, and maybe even enjoy a picnic as you watch the sun go down. http://dittolanding.org/
#8 Kids Space Playground
If you’re looking for a great place for your kids to have fun in complete safety then you’ll love Kids Space Playground in Huntsville. There’s a whole range of play equipment for toddlers and older kids to enjoy, picnic benches to snack at, plus lots of shaded areas for your kids to rest in when they’ve overheated from having too much fun. Even active kids will have a tough time getting bored at this playground.
#9 Bridge Street Town Center
Located at 365 Bridge Street, you can enjoy a stroll around the 5-acre lake, admire the three waterfalls, and you can bring your dogs along too as long as they’re leashed, and there’s even bicycle racks available if you decided to take a bike ride to get here. You’ll find musical entertainment outside during the weekend, and there’s even free Wi-Fi so you can stay connected during your visit.
#10 Antique Hunting
This trip is for grown-ups only, especially any adults who are fans of programs like Storage Wars, or any of the “Picker” shows. There are a number of great antique shops and markets in Huntsville, including Riverbark and Roper Antiques, Southern Cottage Designs, The Antique Market, and Willowbrook Shoppe. So, why not take in some of this olde worlde charm, and you might even come across something valuable you’d like to pass down as an heirloom.