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Six Tips for Visiting Historic Birmingham, AL, with Your Favorite Senior Citizen or Disabled Loved One

Jun 3, 2023 | Children of Aging Parents

Welcome to Birmingham, Alabama!

The bustling city of Birmingham boasts a rich history of over 150 years and is still growing in key industries, offering you and your loved one many fascinating places to explore.

At the same time, navigating a busy city with a mobility challenge can be difficult to overcome. To give your loved one the best experience possible, considered these tips before you head out to Birmingham to help you get started on your exciting adventure.

Six Tips for Success

  1. Prepare for your outing by planning your route and checking to see if each of your desired stops is accessible for your loved one. If, during your research, you discover any potential challenges, do not hesitate to call the place ahead of time to ask about what they offer. If necessary, make adjustments to your itinerary by eliminating any stops that appear to present a particular challenge.
  2. Be aware of your surroundings when you are out and about, whether you decide to use public transportation or take your own vehicle. Constantly look around and anticipate any unexpected difficulties that may arise, such as an abrupt halt to traffic or a sudden need for a bathroom break.
  3. Accept help when it is available, especially when certain stops on your journey offer the use of mobility aids for your loved one. Many tourist attractions today fully recognize the need to be ADA compliant and have restructured their buildings to be fully equipped for all of the challenges that you face on a daily basis. Do not be embarrassed to ask staff for additional direction or tips—that is what they are there for!
  4. Be patient with any issues that may arise and keep a level head throughout. Even though you are in a busy city that may seem to be rushing by, take your own time and go at the pace that works best for you and your loved one.
  5. Plan for breaks along the way to give both you and your loved one a rest as needed. Besides the regular bathroom and water breaks that you think of, take some time to enjoy a snack here and there as well, whether it is a treat that you have brought from home or something you pick up along the way.
  6. Have fun! Best of all, don’t forget what you arrived in Birmingham for—to enjoy the many sights and sounds that this historic city has to offer. While the options of where to go and what to explore are truly endless, here are some additional ideas for you and your loved one.

Popular Places to Enjoy:

  • The Birmingham Zoo: Considered one of the best attractions in Alabama, this Zoo includes exciting exhibits like the Red Diamond Sea Lion Splash Show and Wildlife Show. The entire Zoo is friendly to guests with mobility impairments, sensory sensitivities, and vision challenges, equipping all of their staff with proper training to assist anyone who requires particular help during their visit. In addition, different types of wheelchair rentals are available at the gift shop for those who do not come with their own devices.
  • Birmingham Botanical Gardens: A beautiful living museum of over 65 acres, these gardens are free to enter and most of the areas are ADA compliant, including the parking lot, garden center, library, and majority of the paths. Also, complimentary wheelchairs are offered at the front desk on a first-come, first-served basis to those in need of additional assistance.
  • Birmingham Civil Rights Institute: Presenting the rich history of the Civil Rights Movement in the South, this museum features many permanent and temporary exhibits on key events that happened over time. The entire museum is fully accessible to all visitors with special needs and a limited number of wheelchairs are available at the security station.
  • Birmingham Museum of Art: This museum houses a diverse collection of all kinds of art from many different cultures in an effort to spark the creativity, imagination, and liveliness for all its viewers. It welcomes all visitors to enjoy its exhibits by being committed to accessibility for people with a diverse range of challenges and includes wheelchair rentals and lifts at the main entrances.
  • Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark: Showing a history of Birmingham’s rich mineral resources that led to its massive iron production for years, this museum opened to the public in the 1980s and welcomes all visitors to attend the self-guided tour. The building and entrances are all ADA compliant, ensuring that your loved one will feel safe while enjoying the historical information that is presented.

As you head back home after your busy day, remember that your daily life can become more accessible by using the many mobility aids that Harmar has to offer. From offering custom vehicle lifts to ramps, Harmar is focused on your success. Reach out to your local dealer today!

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