Many of us love to travel but prefer avoiding the more prominent cities’ typical tourist traps. Places like Millbrook, Alabama, are ideal for that type of traveler because they sit just outside more popular destinations. In the case of Millbrook, you get all the proximity and benefits of being near the state capital of Montgomery without the added traffic and congestion.
Although the population is still under 20,000, it’s steadily climbing. New homes in Millbrook, AL, are in demand as people fall in love with this ideal mixture of city and country life.
Millbrook is a favorite spot for nature enthusiasts because beautiful lakes and rivers surround it. The remote islands nearby have been used to produce movies, and some of the old mansions from the Antebellum era are still standing and ready to teach you about the days of plantations and Southern Belles.
Ready to travel to Millbrook? When you do, make sure to visit these 7 crowd favorites!
1. Old Alabama Town
There’s no doubt about it: Once you visit Millbrook, you’ll experience a bit of nostalgia for quieter times. Although we’ve learned a lot about our ancestors’ mistakes, we all wish things were a bit simpler today.
You can taste pre-technology living in Old Alabama Town between Millbrook and Montgomery. The entire area is an open-air historical museum with more than 50 19th and 20th-century buildings that have been restored from their original designs. These authentic structures include a tavern, a church (the Molton House), a grocery store on the street corner, and a chapel school.
After exploring the way towns were designed, you can decide for yourself whether all of our technology is a good or bad thing.
2. Jackson Lake Island
Off the beaten path, Jackson Lake Island sits just outside of Millbrook. It’s a preferred spot for visitors and residents who want to canoe through the lake or fish alongside the banks. You’ll find plenty of majestic scenery (and even spot the goats who live on the island) when you trek the many hiking trails. Keep an eye out for the remains of the movie set used by Tim Burton to film “Big Fish.” Located in the town of Spectre, it recently hit headlines when part of the set was destroyed by lightning in 2023.
Spend a few hours surrounded by southern nature or camp overnight, and feel your worries disappear.
3. Fort Toulouse (Jackson Park)
While you’re visiting Millbrook, Alabama Jackson Park, stop by Fort Toulouse, where you’ll see a variety of Creek Indian Houses as they were back in 1751. Explore the William Bartram Nature Trail for an immersion in Alabama’s ecosystem, and check out an Indian Mound that’s over a millennia old. If you’re there at the right time, don’t miss the Alabama Frontier Days.
4. Alabama Nature Center
This education center is perfect for all ages. The 23,000-square-foot structure is indoor and outdoor and includes a hands-on exploratory hall, a theater, and hiking trails that take you through the various Alabama ecosystems.
5. Legacy Museum
Although the idea of getting back to our roots sounds appealing, the reality for many would be far different. We can’t forget the stories of the minorities who lived when racial and gender inequality were thriving.
These stories are told at the Legacy Museum, where 11,000 square feet of videos, exhibits, and dioramas explain what life was like for slaves, both adults and children. It’s not a fun place to go, but it’s a crucial reminder of how far we have come and how dangerous it will be if we backslide.
6. Rosa Parks Library and Museum
Anyone who has learned anything about the Civil Rights Movement knows about the importance of Rosa Parks and her quiet stance against racism. This African-American woman never intended to go down in history as a major star in the fight for equality. But her name is right up there with Martin Luther King, Jr. today.
Her story and that of others with similar histories are told at the Rosa Parks Library and Museum. They’ve even held onto the bus stop in Court Square. You can see where Parks took her stand (or rather, stayed seated).
7. Montgomery Zoo
For a more lighthearted excursion in Millbrook, Alabama, take a day and head to the Montgomery Zoo. This 40-acre park is home to hundreds of animals spread out amongst five “continents.” You can walk through the zoo at your leisure. But before you leave, make sure you take the sky lift for a panoramic perspective.