Birmingham, Alabama, is a historic city founded in 1871 by merging three pre-existing farm towns. Today it's the most populated city in the state, and offers plenty for visitors to see and do when they arrive.
Birmingham saw most of its growth by becoming an industrial center for the South. When the economy started to diversify in the late 20th century, many of these former industrial sites needed a new use. One such place, Sloss Furnaces, which produced iron for nearly 90 years, is now an arts and education center. Stop by for a tour and you can learn more about the industrial past of the area.
Another spot in Birmingham that offers an important glimpse into the city's history is the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. This interpretive museum shows the struggles of the Civil Rights Movement during the 1950s and 1960s. It attempts to showcase the lessons of the past in a way that encourages visitors to create a new direction for the future.
When you're searching for a hotel in Birmingham for your stay, you'll find plenty of options. Head to the downtown area and you'll find more modern and upscale choices. For affordable and mid-range hotels, concentrate your search away from the downtown core and toward the city's outskirts.
If you're looking to drive to Birmingham, Interstates 20 and 59 run east and west, and Interstate 65 runs north and south through the area. To fly to Birmingham, you'll want to arrive at Birmingham–Shuttlesworth International Airport, which is 5 miles northeast of the city.