From the Crescent City to the Rocket City
Have you heard the news yet? Starting September 30, GLO Airlines will offer direct flights between the Huntsville International Airport and the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (for under $200!). So we’re taking a break from our regularly scheduled programming to write especially to you, New Orleanians! Because we know that we here in the Rocket City will definitely be taking advantage of these new flights to visit you all farther south, and we want to give you an idea of some of the amazing things you can see and do when you visit Huntsville.
#1: The Top Attraction in Alabama
Ever wonder why folks in Huntsville are always talking about how they’ve “got space?” What the heck are they talking about? We’re talking about NASA, my friends! Space race. Putting humans on the moon. *Astronauts.* Huntsville’s got major history with the space program, and over 650,000 people visited the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in 2015 to marvel at all the incredible artifacts of one of mankind’s greatest accomplishments. Oh, and did we mention that the Rocket Center is the largest spaceflight museum in the entire world? As if a full-size Saturn V moon rocket wasn’t enough.
#2: Hiking, Biking, and Birding, Oh My!
Now that we’ve talked to you about space, we’re going to let you in on another type of space we’ve got: outdoor spaces. But lots of cities have great outdoors – so what makes Huntsville’s so great? Well, it could be the fact that we have beautiful mountains and nature trails that are mere minutes from the heart of our downtown area. You can enjoy all the things downtown has to offer – from shopping, to craft breweries, and art – to being surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of Monte Sano Mountain in five minutes flat. We’ve also already written up entire blogs about what activities you can enjoy at outdoor spaces like the Land Trust’s Harvest Square Nature Preserve, Ditto Landing, and other outdoor favorites. Bonus: see what our feathered friends are up to on our Huntsville/Madison County Birding Trail.
#3: Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment
We know New Orleans has no shortage of art, but if you want to see LOTS of art all together in one spot, you should check out Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment. Lowe Mill A&E (as we affectionately call it) is the country’s largest, privately-owned arts facility. With a focus on visual arts, this huge historic factory building has been redeveloped into 131 working studios for over 200 artists and makers, 6 fine art galleries, a multi-use theatre, and performance venues. Within this thriving creative community are artists and makers from across the world. The Mill serves as a space where they can create, learn and collaborate. With studio spaces lining the hallways, visitors have the opportunity to openly explore the Mill and artist spaces where they can shop and learn about the artists and their works. They also host awesome events, such as their Concerts on the Dock music series.
#4: Great food. Even better beer.
So while New Orleans has a reputation for being quite the boozy city (hey, we’re just sayin’), Huntsville is quite fond of the suds ourselves. We’re actually the craft beer capital of the state, being home to nine craft beer breweries and even more taprooms, bars and beverage shops. We have so many of them, actually, that you can do a Downtown Craft Beer Trail and win a free Trail Boss bottle opener! Sometimes when you travel, you do start to long for that “taste of home,” so have no fear – you can find all your NOLA favorites at local spots like Beignet Cafe and the New Orleans Lunchbox. We’ve also got several unique dining options around Madison County if you want to venture out and experience the taste of Alabama. Ever dined in a jail cell? We didn’t think so.
#5: You can let your geek flag fly.
Huntsville was voted by Forbes as one of the geekiest cities in America. Wanna know why? Well, we’ll let this blog speak for ourselves.
This list just barely scratches the surface at all the things there is to see and do in Huntsville. Another great resource for events, attractions, dining and shopping options, and everything visitor related can be found on the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau website, huntsville.org. We can’t wait to see you here in the Rocket City, and laissez les bon temps rouler!
*GLO flights will operate on a tri-weekly basis on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Ticket information and pricing is subject to change. Visit huntsvillehotticket.com for the most up-to-date flight information.
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Kristen Pepper is an Athens, Ala. native who grew up “on the outside looking in” at all of the hustle and bustle of the Rocket City. She currently works as the marketing manager for the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and in her daily role supports the marketing, advertising, and public relations efforts of the CVB. While her dream of being personal assistant to Stevie Nicks hasn’t yet been realized, she’s happy in telling anyone (and everyone) who will listen just how awesome the Rocket City is, and also enjoying an Alabama craft beer or two.
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