A safe day to...
Travel to Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham is not only the most populated city in the state of Alabama it is the cultural and entertainment capital, with numerous art galleries including the Birmingham Museum of Art, which is the largest museum in the Southeast. In 2017, The New York Times named Birmingham one of the top 52 places to visit. The city sits just shy of 200 miles directly south of Nashville and 150 miles west of Atlanta. Birmingham is made up of several distinct and vibrant neighborhoods, each providing visitors with a unique experience.
Because of Birmingham’s unique location, it is not only vulnerable to hurricanes from the gulf side of the state, but it is also at risk for tornados, earthquakes and flooding. This can make Birmingham’s “off-season” for natural disasters seem rather short; however, each possible scenario can be simply mitigated with education and preparedness, and at the end of it, you should feel confident and prepared about visiting Birmingham any time of year.
Best Time to Visit Birmingham
Temperatures and humidity levels in Birmingham during March, April and May are more reasonable than during the middle of summer; however, be aware that these months are also Alabama’s tornado season. The peak summer months are when the city is the busiest, but also the hottest. Visiting in the fall will also offers more mild temperatures and slightly fewer tourists. Hurricane season in Alabama typically runs from June through November, but this is no reason to avoid visiting within this window. Visiting in the winter months makes for a less expensive trip and even cooler temperatures.
Travel Safely in Birmingham
Terra Frma strongly believes that disaster prone towns and cities deserve to be visited and supported. Some of the most spectacular areas in the world happen to be disaster prone areas. If we stop visiting them, we stop seeing the world at its fullest. Just as you deserve to be resilient at home, you deserve to be resilient while traveling as well.
Travel safely to Birmingham by taking these simple preparedness steps, which include packing smart and researching helpful resources ahead of time.
Pack the following items
- Disaster Deck
- Vehicle Kit
- Printed map of Jefferson County
- Location of designated tornado and hurricane shelters
Local safety resources for Birmingham, AL
- Sign up for the Jefferson County Citizen Notification System
- Check the address to your accommodations against the FEMA Flood Map Service Center
- Look over this USGS Seismic Hazard Map for Alabama.
- If your accommodations do not have a storm shelter on the premises, review and make note of the nearest storm shelter to you by checking the Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency
Birmingham is at risk for
A Day in Birmingham...
Shopping in Birmingham
Like any large city, Birmingham has several different neighborhoods suited for each type of visitor. Here, we’ve detailed a few of the most popular areas to explore.
The Southside is a historic neighborhood known for its Bohemian culture where you'll find an abundance of musical, artistic and literary pursuits embodied within this lively and vibrant area. The Southside is home to Five Points South, a small neighborhood within the area that has served as the center for Birmingham art and entertainment for decades.
revbirmingham.org - Five Point South
Downtown is home to a wonderful mix of eclectic retail spaces, hip new lofts, plenty of green space, professional baseball and of course a wide variety of restaurants, bars and cafes.
Lakeview houses some of the largest entertainment venues in the city and you’d be hard pressed to find a restaurant in this area without a fantastic patio. Lakeview also boasts some great residential lofts which give the area a more rounded-out feel.
Avondale/Crestwood. What used to be a bustling steel area has now transitioned into one of Birmingham’s hippest neighborhoods, attracting all the newest live music venues entertainment. This area is not to be overlooked.
Get Outside in Birmingham
Red Mountain Park is ideal for exploring, whether you’re looking to bike, hike, run, zipline or even explore old mines. Escape the urban landscape of the city and enjoy the 15 miles of trails and ample outdoor space at this park just 8 miles away from downtown.
Eddie Freyer - Red Mountain Park
Where to Eat in Birmingham
Highlands Bar & Grill is a fine dining experience that specializes in French techniques and utilizes fresh seasonal ingredient. Having been in business for over 30 years, they know what they're doing.
El Barrio food is inspired by multi-regional Mexican cuisine, urban design and locally sourced ingredients, bridging the gap between the typical Mexican restaurant and a bustling bar and grill.
Saw’s BBQ. Now, we understand there are many different adored barbeque techniques, each with their own devout followers, but we have to say that no matter your style, you'll enjoy a meal at Saw’s BBQ. The minimalist design of the restaurant ensures your experience is all about the food; just how it should be.
Where to Drink in Birmingham
Avondale Brewing Co. is the one of the best breweries with the best outdoor space. Enjoy outdoor live music and choose from one of their six flagship beers or one of their seasonal offerings.
The Collins Bar is a unique establishment with no cocktail menu. They actually serve up tailor-made cocktails suited perfectly to what you ask for. We’ve heard that if you ask for something tropical, they may even pour yours into a whole pineapple!
Where to Stay in Birmingham
Whether you are camping, renting, or staying at a hotel, we recommend you learn the safety procedures in place at your accommodation, print a map and highlight routes from your accommodation to the nearest designated safety shelter.
As you tour Birmingham, notice the traffic patterns and low-lying areas, for example. Traveling is a great time to learn new things, so why not add a few unfamiliar natural disasters to your repertoire?
The Redmont Hotel, the oldest operating hotel in Birmingham that opened in 1925, it is a boutique hotel with historical charm and modern amenities, and it's located in the heart of downtown.
Pursell Farms is perfect for those ready to splurge on a country-chic vacation. Their slogan is "unrivaled southern hospitality and with plenty of private room options, a golf course, spa, yoga, horseback riding and a skeet shooting, you won't even want to leave the premises!
The Grab + Go Box
No matter where you live or where you travel, the Grab + Go Box is your resource for practicing vital steps to outsmart any disaster. It is the only step-by-step product that prepares you before and guides you during any natural disaster. Interactive expert resources and wellness-focused guidance help build physical and emotional resilience in you and your family. If you're traveling with your entire household, bring the Grab + Go Box with you. Or if you're traveling individually, pack a Disaster Deck in each family members' travel bag or backpack.