Things to Do in Auburn
When you add welcoming southern charm to the buoyant spirit of a college town, you get a city like Auburn, located in eastern Alabama just 40 miles from the Georgia border.
You'll discover that Auburn’s small-town ambiance and picturesque parks more than live up to its motto as “The Loveliest Village on the Plains.”
Football, Fans and Feathers
The team mascot may be a Tiger, but when you attend an Auburn University football game in the Jordan-Hare Stadium, you’ll be shouting the battle cry, “War Eagle,” as you watch well-trained birds soar across the stadium. Before the game, stop by the Edgar B. Carter Amphitheater, where the university’s Southeastern Raptor Center program lets you see falcons, hawks and eagles up close. After the game, continue the Auburn football tradition at Toomer's Drugs, an old-fashioned soda fountain where you’ll celebrate the victory or lament the loss with the locals over a glass of fresh-squeezed lemonade.
Explore the Outdoors at Chewacla
In the mood for some fresh air? Pack a picnic and head to Chewacla State Park. While hiking one of the six trails, ranging from easy to challenging, you just might see the park’s waterfall or spy a great blue heron hunting the creek. Mountain bikers, too, can test their grit on the trails, where wooden ramps, bridges and walls add to the challenge. Cool down after a hike with a dip in the 26-acre lake, or cast a line to bait bass, crappie and catfish. The park charges a small admission fee per guest and closes at sundown, so come early for a full day of fun.
A University of Education in Nature
Be at one with nature thanks to Auburn University’s Louise Kreher Forest Ecology Preserve. The 120-acre sanctuary is comprised of seven different habitats. Bring your walking shoes and choose from 30 different hiking trails through the butterfly and vegetable gardens, Wildflower Trail and Hidden Falls. Or just relax while the kids play in the human-sized eagle’s nest in the nature playground.
Discover Auburn’s History
Charge up your cell phones and tablets—it’s time to discover Auburn’s role in the Civil War. Thanks to the university’s Civil War Digital Tour, you can walk through town as you step back in time, listening to the stories behind the city’s most historic sites. Download the tour for free from iTunes and get an earful of history.
For an even deeper understanding of the town's past, check out the historical markers maintained by the local heritage association. If you’re a true history buff, drive to neighboring Opelika, where you’ll learn more about local culture and lore at the Museum of East Alabama.
Pet-Friendly Fun at Kiesel Park
Auburn dog lovers agree—Kiesel Park is the place to take your furry friends. Wear out your pup as you walk along the park’s 2-mile trail. If you’d rather relax while Fido runs free, head to the fenced-in dog run, which features an obstacle course. The grounds are also home to the stunning Nunn-Winston House, a fine example of antebellum Greek revival architecture that you can tour by reservation. If you visit in late April, don't miss Auburn CityFest held at the park on the last Saturday of the month.
Road Trip to Callaway Gardens
If well-manicured flower gardens are more your speed, hit the road for the 50-mile drive to Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia. Tucked into the southern foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Callaway has been delighting nature lovers since 1953. Stroll some of the attraction’s 6,500 acres, featuring groomed gardens with azaleas, vegetables, holly trees and hydrangeas, as well as a 5-acre greenhouse in the horticultural center. But Callaway Gardens—despite the name—is so much more than greens. Come prepared for all kinds of family fun including water sports, zip lines, a pioneer log cabin, a butterfly center and daily shows about birds of prey.
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