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27 Best & Fun Things to Do in Decatur (AL)

Going away from it all might just be what you need to ease the stress from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Why not consider a trip to Decatur?

Decatur, Alabama, is the largest city in Morgan County. It is located on the shores of Lake Wheeler in northern Alabama.

Decatur is commonly known as the “River City.” It is also known as the “Rhodes Ferry Landing,” named after Dr. Rhodes – He ran a ferry on the river.

Decatur has much to offer, including exploring the city’s historic landmarks. B. Important buildings of the Victorian era.

This town has a population of only 55,000, but the people are kind and friendly. There are many activities and places you can participate in in Decatur.

Don’t miss the best things to do in Decatur (AL)to make your trip worthwhile:

Fun Things to Do in Decatur (AL)

1. Experience the Alabama Charity Championship Horseshow

Visit this annual city event, the Alabama Charity Championship Horse Show.

This is done annually with horses that are competitively managed and managed.

On this occasion, the best Hackney, Roadster, and American saddlebreds in the country are produced.

It ranks fourth in terms of being the largest saddlebred show in America.

Tickets sell out quickly and are available to many viewers. So when you visit Decatur, you may want to time your trip around the event.

Don’t miss the exciting things to do in Decatur.

2. See the City With Alabama Jubilee

Move on to the Alabama Jubilee, the largest classic balloon race in all of Latin America. Make a list of things to do in Decatur (AL).

In 1978, the first event was held to display the city’s official hot air balloon, which had just been purchased.

The Alabama Jubilee initially attracted nearly 20 balloonists from neighboring states, including Louisiana, Mississippi, and Georgia.

And today, the Southeast Tourism Society lists Jubilee as one of its top tourist activities in the Southeast.

More than 62 pilots from more than 20 states nationwide fly to Decatur for the region’s annual summer launch event.

The event attracted a national audience, and the Alabama Legislature designated the city as the Hot Air Balloon Capital of Alabama.

3. Play Golf at Point Mallard Golf Course

Home to the Point Mallard Golf Course, Point Mallard Park sits on 80 acres of wooded flat land.

The 18-hole course has a rich history and many awards.

Beautiful course surrounded by trees and designed with the contours of the land in mind, so everything looks completely natural.

The course is 6,988 yards and has a par of 72. You’ll have to negotiate some tricky hills as you progress through the course, but all of this adds excitement to the round.

Things to Do in Decatur (AL) at Night

1. Grab a Bite at Big Bob Gibson’s Bar-B-Que

Originally founded in 1925, Big Bob Gibson’s Bar-B-Que, Decatur, is nationally recognized as the country’s best-known and oldest grill joint.

Opened by L&N Railroad employee Bob Gibson, this restaurant is famous for the Original Barbecue White His Sauce.

Since its inception, with brisket, pork, ribs, and chicken on its menu, it has won more than 15 World His Barbecue Championship Awards.

Now his fourth generation in the family, this restaurant has two locations in Decatur (one on 6th Avenue in the city and his other on Danville Road).

Enjoy menu options such as teppanyaki, pit barbecue sandwiches, and combination dishes.

2. Go on an Evening Cruise on Pickwick Belle

The Pickwick Bell is a replica of a paddle-wheel river boat. A 90-foot riverboat offers public and charter cruises on the Tennessee River.

Borst was named in his 2007 Pickwick He was active in Landing State Park until 2012, when he moored in Decatur’s Ingalls Harbor.

Twice a week (Thursday and Saturday), 90-minute sightseeing cruises and 2-hour dinner cruises on Friday evenings.

On the upper deck, enjoy sweeping city and river views as you cruise across the water at top speeds of 8 km/h while other guests stay on base.

Various special public event cruises, including the Elvis Concert Cruise and the Civil War Reenactment Cruise, are held yearly.

River boats are also available for rent for special private events such as company excursions and wedding receptions.

3. Have Some Beer With Friends at the RailYard

Located in downtown Decatur and is headed by Executive Chef Bill Harden.

The Railyard focuses on its commitment to world-famous Southern cuisine, always using fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

Open all week for all standard meals offering a variety of cuisines in a casual tavern atmosphere.

Menu favorites include pub-style craft burgers, specialty sandwiches topped with locally sourced meats, and Southern seafood-focused appetizer platters.

Enjoy seasonal cocktails featuring fine spirits, fresh fruit, or fine beers from national or regional microbreweries.

Things to Do in Decatur (AL) For Couples

1. Go Shopping at Decatur Farmers Market

Visit the Decatur Farmers Market. There is no better way than buying food from someone who grew it themselves.

The Decatur Farmers Market is open Monday through Saturday from April through November.

This market has many stalls selling fresh fruits and vegetables.

So when in Decatur, be sure to visit the market and buy what you need.

There are also special events each month. This event celebrates the fruits and vegetables of that particular season.

2. Have Dinner Together at Simp McGhee’s

Recorded in honor of early 20th-century riverboat captain Simp McGee.

His exuberant personality and unusual way of navigating this riverboat made him a local hero until his pilot’s license was revoked in 1917.

This restaurant in the Bank Street area serves classic tapas. Their special menu items include tuna Lafayette, crawfish egg rolls, and lamb ratatouille.

Their wine collection includes Red wine, fine white wine, and fresh sparkling wine. There are pet-friendly trails available occasionally.

3. See the Historic Railroad Depot

This is the fully restored 1905 Decatur Union Depot, which won the 2015-2016 Alabama Main Street Public Building Monument Preservation Project of the Year.

Any train fan will be happy. Here you can see many rare model trains and model train layouts.

There is also a mini theater room where you can watch train footage. Graphic panels detail the city’s incredible railroad history from 1834 to the present day.

Also on display are rare memorabilia and artifacts from 1905, restored signs, railroad tools, and some equipment. Also, enjoy the picnic area and the excellent train viewing platform.

Free to the public and open Monday through Friday and Saturday by appointment.

Another unique Decatur attraction not to be missed.

Things to Do in Decatur (AL) For Kids

1. Let Them Play at Point Mallard Park

How about a visit to the water park? The uniqueness is a fact.

Point Mallard Waterpark is on the border of Wheeler National Conservation Area. Spread over 500 acres along the banks of Flint Creek.

It was opened in 1970 as a multipurpose relaxation park. This is where the Gilmer Blackburn Aquatic Center is located.

This center has a 10-meter diving tower, two high-speed water slides, a European-style wave pool, and a lazy river.

Guests also have access to athletic facilities such as the Bill J. Dukes Athletic Complex (baseball center), Point Mallard Ice Complex, Point Mallard 18 Hole Golf Course, and Jimmy Johns Tennis Center.

Batting cages and a driving range are also available. You are not finished yet; the Almon Center consists of a training facility, indoor courts, game rooms, and a permanent outdoor pavilion in the Ronald Reagan Spirit of America Field area.

An 80-seat chapel, a 210-seat campground, and a covered picnic pavilion that seats 500 add to the park’s versatility.

Point Mallard Park hosts annual events such as: For example, a Civil War reenactment of the September Skirmish that you can participate in during your visit to Decatur.

2. Have Fun at the Trapped Escape Room

Check out Al’s Decatur for something adventurous. It is a confined escape room facility and the first of its kind in Decatur.

Requests groups of visitors to work as a team on solutions and clues to escape from several trapped rooms.

Each team spends his hour exploring themed mysteries and escaping from his room, creating a gaming experience that allows him to apply his problem-solving and team-building skills to real life.

The facility has four rooms, including Escape from Alcatraz, Treasure of the Emerald Islands, and Dr. Morgue. G. Reaper and bank robbery.

Visitors play in public spaces or some reserved spaces in private reservations, such as school events or corporate team-building events.

3. Get Them Candy at Morgan Price Candy Company

The taste of handmade candy is exceptional. It just melts in your mouth.

It feels like all your best childhood memories are in one sip, making it even more fun.

Of course, there are many sweets available in the market these days.

But the Morgan Price Candy Company has a charming candy store with an unparalleled commitment to providing customers with products they genuinely enjoy.

We all love the memories of watching moms and dads make chocolates and nibbling on grandma’s favorite chocolate treats on holidays.

Morgan Price Candy Company captures special moments with handcrafted candy recipes you love.

Since 1987, the company has continued its tradition of using premium ingredients to deliver freshly baked candies to its stores.

Times have changed as social media has taken over most aspects of people’s lives. But for family-owned businesses, that traditional business practice lives on forever.

Indoor Activities to Do in Decatur (AL) For Adults

1. Grab Some Barbecue Sandwiches at Whitt’s Barbecue

Whitt’s Barbecue is Floyd Whitt’s vision come true.

Floyd Whitt was his builder at Barbecue, his pit, and quit his bricklaying job, and in 1966 Six, he followed his dream by opening his first restaurant on Street and Decatur’s Spring.

His twice featured in Southern Living magazine is known for his menu of grilled hickory-smoked beef, pork, ribs, turkey, and more.

Enjoy full plate and family package options, including Brunswick stews, BBQ sandwiches, homemade sides, dishes, and biscuits.

You can also host groups of 25 people at this location or attend customizable events.

2. See Ancient Relics at Cook’s Natural Science Museum

The Cook Museum of Natural Science was the realization of the vision of John R. Cook (President Cook’s Pest Control).

This museum was once just a private science collection where supplementary data could be collected and used to train pest control technicians.

This is no longer a story as it has been transformed into a world-class natural history collection.

The Cook Museum has more than 2,000 exhibits from private collections. Collection categories include detailed wildlife exhibits, mounted birds, rocks, minerals, and corals.

Another exhibit is the Tennessee Valley Lake exhibit. This shows the endemic flora and fauna of the area.

It is one of his few exhibits in the United States to feature both a golden eagle and a stuffed bald eagle.

After exploring the museum, head to the Auditorium, where you can relax and watch a science film.

3. Don’t Miss a Performance at the Princess Theatre

Another exciting Decatur attraction is the Princess Theater. The Princess Theatre was built in 1887 as a stable and converted in 1919 into a multi-act hall and silent cinema.

In 1941 the building was renovated with neon awnings and an Art Deco façade.

The interior included elements such as terrazzo soil maps of Alabama and glow-in-the-dark murals.

After its purchase by the City of Decatur in 1978, the theater was converted into a live arts venue and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

It has a spacious room that can accommodate 667 people. More than 60,000 visitors come to see performances, concerts, or touring shows each year.

Romantic Things to Do in Decatur (AL)

1. Spend Some Time at Delano Park

Want to visit Decatur’s oldest park? Delano Park is one of Decatur’s attractions.

Delano Park was established in 1887 as a major project in the city’s post-Civil War redevelopment. As you might have guessed, the park was named in honor of President Franklin D. Roosevelt He

The park has recently seen major improvements, as seen with a children’s water playground featuring a river, and the floor is adorned with a large-scale map of Alabama.

An important rose garden is also planted, now reconstructed in the Delano Rose Garden.

And the historic concrete bridge is a famous place for photos, memories, and reflections.

Other development plans include trails throughout the area connecting the central and western parts of the park.

2. Book the Weekend at Amberley Suite Hotel

Decatur has plenty of places to stay, perhaps a hotel or one of the play campgrounds in town.

Would you like to book your stay? Amberley Suite Hotel will then answer all your accommodation questions.

Located in the heart of Decatur’s stunning historic city, you’re sure to have a great experience.

Amberley Suite Hotel also has an outdoor pool and a 24-hour fitness center are available.

This hostel is strategically located for easy access to the airport and the rest of Alabama.

3. Watch Wildlife at Wheeler Lake

With over 67,000 acres and about 60 miles long, Wheeler Lake is her second largest lake along the Tennessee River.

It is an artificial body of water created by the Tennessee Valley Authority to control flooding and generate hydroelectric power in the area.

It is now one of Decatur’s most famous attractions, averaging more than 4 million visitors annually.

There are exciting seasonal activities for visitors to participate in, including hunting, boating, water sports, fishing, and wildlife viewing.

You can camp in the area if you wish, as the visitor center has picnic and accommodation facilities.

Adjacent to Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge for outdoor activities.

Free Things to Do in Decatur (AL)

1. Participate in Riverfest

No one enjoys barbecue more than Americans. For more than 20 years, Decatur has hosted an annual event called Riverfest.

The State of Alabama recognizes the event as the state’s official barbecue championship event.

Winning the Riverfest earned the USA his right to the Royal World Championship and an invitation to Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational.

Riverfest is just the place to watch a game and enjoy great food than here.

Participating in this competition is definitely one of the best things to do in Decatur (AL).

2. Take a Walk Through the Wheeler Wildlife Refuge

Wheeler Wildlife Refuge covers 35,000 acres and is located on the banks of the Tennessee River,

This site is a beautiful habitat for migratory and wintering birds, such as red-tailed hawks and Canadian geese.

This refuge was opened in 1938 by President Franklin D. and named in memory of Major General Joseph Wheeler.

Operates under the joint management of the Wildlife Service, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, and the National Fish and Wildlife Service. They are also responsible for the Redstone Arsenal area of ​​Refuge.

There are a variety of outdoor activities you can participate in here. More than 700,000 annual visitors engage in hunting, game viewing, fishing, and more.

The refuge offers more variety for visitors, with five hiking trails, a wildlife viewing tower, six boat docks, and several spot stations.

You may also experience some annual events held at the refuge. These include the Southern Wildlife Festival, youth summer camps, and fishing rodeos.

3. Explore the Old Decatur Historic District

Don’t miss this area when visiting Decatur.

Spread over 116 acres across several historic districts in Albany and Old Decatur, the Old Decatur Historic District features the largest collection of surviving Victorian-era buildings and homes in the state.

Further development has taken place around historic Bank Street (home to the former State Bank Building), the city’s commercial center in the 19th century, with access to riverboats, rail, and rolling stock.

These buildings in the area are considered the most iconic Italian and Victorian buildings in the region.

You can see Todd’s house in Lafayette. It is one of his surviving structures from before the Civil War.

You can see and access them by taking a tour of the area.

Cheap Things to Do in Decatur (AL)

1. Take a Tour of the Old State Bank

Here’s one of the most exciting things about Decatur. Visiting here would be an exciting experience for the financially interested and others.

Old State Bank was first built in the 1833 year. It began as the head office of the Bank of Alabama, which was an aggressive step to put the city in the books of Southeast Asian celebrities.

After a nationwide depression, the bank closed in 1833, but an underbuild was built. Local folklores believe it to be one of the main reasons for Decatur’s transformation into a modern urban form of the frontier village.

During the 19th and 20th centuries, the bank served multiple purposes as a public boarding house, American Legion Hall, and Union Army Hospital until it was donated to the City of Decatur in 1976.

Today the bank is open to the public as a living history museum. The first floor is the bank’s lobby, and the second floor is the bank’s apartment.

2. Check Out the Carnegie Visual Arts Center

The Carnegie Visual Arts Center has something for every art lover.

Housed in the famous 1904 Carnegie Library (which was the city’s library for over 70 years), the center is home to the region’s premier museum and arts education center.

With more than 4,000 square feet of center with exhibits, studios, and workshops, the center also has about eight to ten public art exhibits.

These include national traveling presentations and exhibitions, such as works by Moses He Tolliver and Jimmy Riesdus, held annually in the Faculty’s Main Level Galleries.

In addition, the Daikin America Education Center (location) hosts summer camps for children.

3. Go Back in Time at the Blue & Gray Museum of North Alabama

Want to explore something historic during your visit? The Blue and Gray Museum offers a glimpse into the American Civil War.

Also known as the North Alabama Civil War Museum, the museum has the largest collection of privately owned American Civil War relics and is an excellent Decatur destination for military relic enthusiasts.

Visit this museum to learn about Decatur’s history through historical exhibits.

It is a fun place to visit if you have kids interested in American history during the Civil War.

Explore the Civil War and non-Civil War collections housed in this museum during your visit to Decatur, Alabama.

Cool Places to Visit in Decatur (AL)

1. Morgan County Archives

In 1995, the Morgan County Commission established the Morgan County Archives as a permanent repository.

Dedicated to preserving the local community and inactive government records, the Morgan County Archives preserves important community records dating back to 1819.

These records document the history of the city’s civic development and are considered one of the city’s most important archival collections. These include census, courts, and marriage records.

This archive is the most notable public vantage point where original copies of the Hartselle Enquirer and the local Decatur Daily can be viewed.

Open to the public to provide access to microfilm, public computer workstations, libraries, and genealogical and regional research resources.

Regular exhibitions of small specialized collections related to popular historical figures and the city’s Civil War history.

2. Mooresville

Founded in 1818, the entire village consists of just 12 blocks of oak-lined parcels listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Buildings worth checking out include the Stage Coach Inn and Tavern, a working post office that dates back to 1840.

The town was also featured in Walt’s Disney movie Tom and Huck.

3. Shops on 2nd Avenue

Shops on 2nd Avenue are home to some of Decatur, Alabama’s most unique shops.

This 4,200-square-foot retail space of his consists of 39 unique shops selling locally-made items, from handcrafted goods to outstanding works of art by local artists.

Business owners share a passion for what they do and care about how the public views their products.

2nd Avenue is like stepping into a wonderland, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere.


Decatur is a unique city with attractions and activities to keep you busy.

There is no denying that museums, landmarks, markets, parks, and rivers are top attractions.

Make time to visit all these amazing destinations while you’re in town with our checklist of things to do in Decatur (AL).

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