Sports

With plenty of lakes, golf courses, and outdoor areas—the Shoals has plenty of activities to keep sports and outdoors enthusiasts entertained. So enjoy a championship game or take a swing at one of our area’s award-winning golf courses.

NCAA Division II Championship
The University of North Alabama’s Braly Stadium has hosted the Division II Championship Game since 1986. The Shoals also hosts the Harlon Hill Award ceremony each year during the same week as the championship game. For more information on how to get tickets go to d2championship.com.

Golf
The Shoals area is known as one of the premiere golfing locations in the Southeast. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at the Shoals offers 36-holes of golf and is nationally recognized as one of the best golf courses in the United States. Also located in Muscle Shoals is Cypress Lakes Golf and Country Club (don’t worry, they allow public use of the course and its facilities). Another great golf course just outside Florence is Blackberry Trail Golf Course, which opened in 2001. In Tuscumbia, Spring Creek Golf Course offers another challenge for novices and experienced golfers alike. Only a short drive away from the Shoals, Joe Wheeler State Park in Rogersville has a premiere golf course as well.

Fishing
The Shoals, which is known as the “Smallmouth Bass Capitol of the World,” is one of the best freshwater fishing destinations anywhere. With three of the best-stocked lakes surrounding the Shoals area—Pickwick Lake, Wheeler Lake, and Wilson Lake—fishing enthusiasts won’t be disappointed. The Shoals area hosts fishing tournaments throughout the year and brings in more line class records certified by the International Game Fish Association than anywhere else in the United States. For your best chance at reeling in the catch of your life, hire a local fishing guide to take you to the best spots. Alabama Freshwater Fishing Licenses can be purchased online at www.outdooralabama.com/licenses.

Outdoor Recreation
If venturing into the great outdoors and sleeping under the stars is your type of adventure, the Shoals area offers plenty of campsites, hiking trails, and places to canoe and kayak, mountain bike, and bird watch.

A great way for visitors to experience Southern culture and the outdoors is by taking a drive or bike trip along the Natchez Trace Parkway, a 444-mile road that connects Natchez, Mississippi and Nashville, Tennessee. Along the trail there are wilderness areas as well as areas that take you to unique and quaint little towns throughout Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee. For more information visit www.scenictrace.com.

For shorter, more manageable day hikes try one of the Shoals’ great wilderness preserves and trails. Just off of County Road 47, just outside of Florence’s city limits, is Shoals Creek Preserve, an area consisting of hiking trails, horse trails, and mountain bike trials. Wildwood Park is just five minutes from downtown Florence and has 3-5 miles of beginner to advanced mountain bike trails, as well as picnic areas next to Cypress Creek. Just off of Muscle Shoals’ River Road are the Tennessee Valley Recreation Trails that feature the Old Railroad Bridge, a natural waterfall, campsites, and over 11-miles of different trails and terrain. Cane Creek Nature Preserve in Colbert County has over 400 acres of privately protected land. The Preserve was opened as a sanctuary for local wildlife and plants and the Preserve is open to the public year round for no charge. There are also access roads to most areas of the preserve so elderly or those with disabilities can enjoy the area also.

With three major lakes that are a part of the Shoals, this area is a great destination for water activities of all types. Doublehead Resort is located on the shores of Wilson Lake and offers guests all kinds of amenities, which include furnished cabins with full kitchens, as well as activities for the whole family. Try horseback riding or relax on the lake. The Resort also offers personal watercraft and pontoon boat rentals so you can explore the river.

Located on Wheeler Lake, Joe Wheeler State Park offers guests many different types of lodging, activities, and dining. Try one of the brand new lake cottages or rent a good old-fashioned campsite under the stars. The park also offers boat rentals, which includes fishing boats, pontoon boats, and paddleboats. The park has hiking and mountain bike trails.

The North Alabama Birding Trail consists of 50 birding sites in over 11 counties in north Alabama. Many of the Trails’ locations can be found around the Shoals area. Bald eagles, waterfowls, warblers, blue herons, and many other species can all be spotted in the Shoals area. For more information visit www.northalabamabirding.org.

featured articles

Celebrate. All Year Long!

There is always something fun going on in the Shoals. Whether you are interested in history, music, film, or art, the Shoals has a festival or celebration for every interest and every season.
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Sports

With plenty of lakes, golf courses, and outdoor areas—the Shoals has plenty of activities to keep sports and outdoors enthusiasts entertained. So enjoy a championship game or take a swing at one of our area’s award-winning golf courses.
Read More »

Other Attractions and Activities

From a variety of architectural treasures to historical museums and exhibits—the Shoals has activities and attractions that are as varied as the four cities that make up the area.
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Nightlife

Whether you’re looking for a quiet, peaceful evening dining and having cocktails with friends and family, or are ready to take the party up a notch, The Shoals has a place for everyone. Test your billiard savvy at Smokehouse Billiards in downtown Florence.
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Cultural Arts

The Shoals area has four amazing theatres and two unique art museums, and a variety of arts organizations. Whether you’re interested in seeing a play, listening to music, or strolling through an art exhibit at one of the area's museums—you will have plenty of options in the Shoals.
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