Although many students come to Tuscaloosa for its great downtown area, various shopping malls, and delicious food, many come because of the endless opportunities that exist to get outside! Whether you simply like to enjoy a walk with your friends or you are more of the adventurous type, Tuscaloosa has something just for you. Spending time in Tuscaloosa’s great outdoors is a great way to make wonderful memories with new friends while also getting some great exercise!
If you are looking for a place to go for a stroll, consider going to Tuscaloosa’s Riverwalk. The Riverwalk is a paved trail that sits on the southern edge of the Black Warrior River near downtown Tuscaloosa. The trail is approximately 4.5 miles long, beginning at Capitol Park and ending near the East Side of Manderson Landing. There are plenty of places along the trail to stop and rest, including benches, gazebos, and trees that are perfect for hanging a hammock. Especially during the warmer months, this trail is frequently used by UA students to run walk, or bike.
“The Riverwalk is a great way to exercise with friends and take a break from school. I think as students we do not take enough time to get out and exercise. You can go there with any of your friends and even check out a dog from the Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter and take it to the Riverwalk. You can enjoy Orangeleaf and grab some ice cream and enjoy the river.”
– Claire Day | Junior | Public Relations | Gadsden, AL
If you are looking for a great outdoor area that offers multiple activities, Lake Lurleen State Park is perfect for you. Lake Lurleen is the perfect place to go if you need to escape the stress of college life. This state park features a 250 acre lake teeming with all kinds of species of fish, so if you enjoy fishing, Lake Lurleen is the perfect place to go and bring some friends! The lake is approximately one and a half miles long, and at its deepest it is 48 feet. Boat launch areas along with pier and bank fishing are available for your convenience. Additionally, Lake Lurleen features over 23 hiking trails that are especially perfect during the fall months. The park offers trails that are suitable for hikers of all skill levels, so whether you are just starting out or you are a seasoned hiker, Lake Lurleen has a trail for you. Other amenities include a Nature Center, paddle boating, and a beach.
Lake Tuscaloosa is another place that is frequented by students. Located five miles north of Tuscaloosa and Northport, this lake has 177 miles of shoreline. Many use this lake for boating, swimming, and fishing. There are both public and private boat ramps, as well as private marinas. Lake Tuscaloosa is a very popular spot for fishing, with spotted bass, bluegill, sunfish, carp, and more. If you find yourself looking for something fun to do with your friends during a warm weekend, Lake Tuscaloosa is one of the most popular and enjoyable places to go in the Tuscaloosa area.
The Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park consists of over 1,500 acres in three counties! This state park is perfect for camping and hiking. Tannehill State Park is bursting with history, consisting of a cotton gin, pioneer farm, and even a gristmill! A small railroad loops through the park. Countless activities exist for you, so you are never going to have to worry about getting bored. You can rent a cabin, of which there are seven total, which come furnished with a living room and kitchen for your convenience. Shopping opportunities exist for you as well, such as the James Scott Young Country Store and the Tannehill Sweet Shoppe when you want to satisfy your sweet tooth. Plenty of hiking trails exist for you, and all of the trails are an easy walk through wide dirt roads at a length of one to four miles.