When it’s time to start planning your next Memorial Day weekend getaway, consider the lively attractions and annual festivals in these nine Alabama cities and towns. Spend your weekend admiring the Hot Air Balloon Festival in Decatur, touring the historic sites in Birmingham, or fishing in Eufaula. Staying at one of many incredible Alabama vacation rentals means you can be situated right in the heart of exciting celebrations and ceremonies. Take a look at these popular destinations in Alabama.

1. Decatur

Decatur pulls out all the stops to celebrate the start of summer with Memorial Day weekend events that include the Daikin Festival, complete with Japanese music, arts, food, and culture. Take the kids to the Morgan County Fairgrounds to take part in the festival’s attractions, then admire the hot air balloons that fill the sky, stemming from the Alabama Jubilee Hot Air Balloon Festival in Point Mallard Park. The festival features more than 60 balloons and races, as well as a balloon glow celebration in the evenings. There is plenty in Decatur to keep everyone in the family entertained when you have a vacation rental in close proximity to Point Mallard Waterpark and the Wheeler Wildlife Refuge.

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2. Huntsville

Spend your Memorial Day weekend in northern Alabama and tour the U.S. Space and Rocket Center when making Huntsville your vacation destination. This busy Alabama city gives you and the family a chance to explore the interactive exhibits and space simulators before heading out to enjoy the great outdoors with a hike through Burritt on the Mountain. Get in some retail therapy when shopping the Bridge Street Town Center, or cater to the aspiring artists when stopping in at the Lowe Mill Arts Studio. Eat your way through the city when taking part in the Memorial Day weekend Downtown Dish Huntsville Food Tour, or thrill the thrill seekers when riding coasters at the Rocket City Fair at the Joe W. Davis Stadium over the long weekend.

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3. Gulf Shores

Fun in the sun is bound to occur when you spend Memorial Day weekend in Gulf Shores, but this popular Alabama city is also home to annual events to keep your toes tapping. Lulu Palooza is one of the most anticipated musical events of the year, and a vacation rental in Gulf Shores over Memorial Day weekend puts you right in the heart of the sights and sounds of this festival. Gulf Shores also features shoreline trails in Gulf Coast Park for morning walks, and parasail adventures with rentals from Blue Sky Parasail and Watersports. Make a splash at Waterville USA with the kids, or spend some time reflecting on the holiday with a quiet afternoon fishing at the Gulf State Park Fishing Pier.

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4. Mobile

Admire the view from your vacation rental balcony when situated in a beachfront cottage overlooking the Gulf of Mexico in Mobile. Start your -filled adventures with a Mobile Bay boat tour hosted by Gulf Coast Ducks. Stop in at the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum to soak up some history, then honor the fallen heroes while attending a Memorial Day ceremony at USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park. If your crew loves baseball, Memorial Day weekend is the ideal time to catch a Minor League game of the Mobile BayBears at Hank Aaron Stadium.

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5. Montgomery

The Alabama state capital comes alive over Memorial Day weekend with the annual Montgomery Symphony Jubilee Pops Concert, held in the downtown area. Leave your cozy vacation rental, pack up your coolers and blankets, and enjoy the free concert that includes a tribute to fallen heroes. Montgomery offers your family a chance to learn more about the history of the city with guided tours of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, the site where Martin Luther King Jr. preached, and the Alabama Department of Archives and History. Take advantage of the shining sun with a day relaxing on Riverfront Park’s beach or a trip to the Montgomery Zoo.

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6. Fairhope

Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy the scenic views of the eastern shore of the Mobile Bay while hiking along the Fairhope Municipal Trails and Parks over the Memorial Day weekend. This Alabama city is home to waterfront attractions that provide families with a lazy day fishing off Battles Wharf or kayaking or canoeing the Gulf with rentals from Eastern Shore Watersports. Show your respect for the fallen heroes on Memorial Day when attending the flag raising at Fairhope Gardens.

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7. Birmingham

Treat your family to the family-friendly attractions in the big city of Birmingham, which is home to the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and the Birmingham Zoo and Railroad Park. Adults enjoy relaxing over the long weekend on the Brewery Tasting Tour of Birmingham, while the kids can participate in the Family Fun Friday events celebrated prior to the Memorial Day holiday that expose your kids to team activities and athletic events at Railroad Park. If you still want to show off your athleticism, stop in at Region Field to see how the professionals play the game.

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8. Florence

Memorial Day weekend gives you and your family a chance to sit back and relax, and with a vacation rental in Florence, a city on the banks of the Tennessee River, you can do just that. After fishing at Wilson Dam, book some seats for a performance at the Shoals Theatre. Kids enjoy exploring the Children’s Museum of the Shoals, while adults love getting in some retail therapy at the specialty shops in the downtown area. Top off your weekend celebration by honoring the local veterans at a special service on Monday, hosted by the city, the American Legion Post, and the Veterans Memorial Committee.

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9. Eufaula

If fishing away the Memorial Day weekend holiday sounds like a dream, then Eufaula is the ideal vacation destination for your family. Head to the Bass Fishing Capital of the World and drop in your rods at Lakepoint Resort State Park or Walter F. George Lake. May offers warm temperatures for you to get out and about to see the Eufaula attractions that range from admiring endangered species at the Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge to hiking the Yoholo Micco Creek Indian Trail.

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