Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Opelika, AL

  • Published 2022/08/09

The charming city of Opelika is the sister city of Auburn and the county capital of Lee County, Alabama.

Opelika has a population of over 30,000 as of the 2020 census.

Its location makes it an ideal place to visit for people who want to experience the history of the South.

No matter what kind of traveler you are, you’ll always have something to do in Opelika.

If you’re an adventurer, you can take a trip to some of the parks and nature centers around the city.

If the art world interests you, stop by and check out one of the art galleries and theaters in Opelika.

After visiting every attraction in Opelika, you can choose among the many restaurants to satisfy your hunger.

Start your exciting adventure in this charming city by trying the best things to do in Opelika.

Cross the Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge

Entryway of Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge

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The Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge is a unique attraction and a must-visit historical landmark in the city.

The Opelika community owns the wooden covered bridge above Rocky Brook Creek in the Opelika Municipal Park.

Constructed in 1900, the Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge entered the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage record in 1977.

In 2005, the bridge sustained damage in its original location in Salem.

They moved to its current location, where they also reconstructed it.

Signage of Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge

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The Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge crosses a creek with enormous stream boulders that provides fantastic photo opportunities.

The bridge also offers an excellent opportunity to get out of the house and stretch your legs.

Not every day do you come across a wooden covered bridge, which is why the Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge is a must-see attraction.

Side facade of Salem-Shotwell Covered Bridge

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Spend the Day at Opelika Municipal Park

Opelika Municipal Park is the perfect place to take your family for an afternoon of fun.

This park should entertain you and your family with a wide range of activities available.

In this park, you can find a pavilion, playgrounds, and plenty of picnic tables where you can enjoy your meal under the shade of towering trees.

One of the most attractive features of the park is the Rocky Brook Rocket, a classic model train built to carry visitors around the grounds of Opelika Municipal Park.

The Rocky Brook Creek also borders the park, adding to its attractiveness.

Opelika Municipal Park is a perfect location for picnics with friends and family since it has enough space for everyone to have a good time.

Explore the Museum of East Alabama

The Museum of East Alabama will take you back in time with its exciting exhibits and collections.

Situated in the heart of Opelika’s historic downtown, the Museum of East Alabama houses over 5,000 objects that represent Opelika’s history.

They built the museum in 1989 to serve as a place where people can revisit the past of Opelika.

The exhibits mainly focus on the history of East Alabama, featuring items from Camp Opelika, Roanoke dolls, and revolutionary recording technologies.

If you’re a history buff or interested in local history, then you’ll have fun exploring every corner of the museum.

Join the thousands of visitors to the museum and see why many people flock to the Museum of East Alabama.

Wander the Spring Villa Park

The Spring Villa Park is a 350-acre property across the street from the Penn Yonge house that provides a variety of family-friendly activities.

It includes an antebellum house, restrooms, an open play area, picnic tables and grills, volleyball courts, and a caretaker’s home.

You can spend some time in the park and rest in one of the campgrounds with hookups for 30 spaces.

You can also bring your kids to the open play area or have a picnic on the picnic tables around the park, where you may cook meats or burgers.

There are walking pathways throughout Spring Villa Park, where you may enjoy the beauty of nature while getting some exercise and stretching your muscles.

The Spring Villa Park is one of the must-see attractions in Opelika, so include it on your itinerary!

Try Fine Spirits at the John Emerald Distilling Company

If you want to unwind after a hard day at work while sipping drinks, you should visit John Emerald Distilling Company.

It is a craft distillery located in the heart of Opelika, Alabama.

They offer a wide variety of cocktails and tours and sell bottles of spirits in their shop in Opelika.

John Emerald Distilling Company also distributes its spirits throughout several states in the United States, such as California, Florida, New York, Mississippi, Georgia, and of course, Alabama.

If you want to understand how your favorite cocktail comes out, visit John Emerald Distilling Company and take a tour.

Play Golf at Grand National Golf Course

The Grand National Golf Course is one of the top public golf courses in the vicinity.

The famous designer Robert Trent Jones, Sr., built the course.

This award-winning golf course is on Lake Saugahatchee, which spans 600 acres.

The Grand National Golf Course comprises 54 holes and is open to the public for play at any time of day.

You can find three courses: the Links Course, the Short Course, and the Lake Course.

The course has bagged several awards since its establishment, such as the “Best Courses in Alabama” and “America’s Top 50 Affordable Courses.”

It also hosted prestigious tournaments such as the Barbasol Championship and the Nike Tour Championship in 1997.

During your visit to the Grand National Golf Course, enjoy its practice range, locker facilities, golf store, greens, and on-site restaurant.

Play with Friends at CyberZone

Opelika’s CyberZone is a great place to go when you need some entertainment.

The CyberZone offers games for all ages, including arcade games, virtual reality, laser tag, and esports.

You can play your favorite arcade games like PacMan in the state-of-the-art arcade of CyberZone.

Otherwise, choose among the ten different games to play in the laser tag arena.

The entertainment center also boasts a virtual reality attraction where you can explore a new world and go on an adventure with the help of a VR headset.

You don’t have to worry if you get hungry after playing around because Cyberzone also offers foods like pizzas, salads, sandwiches, drinks, and even desserts.

CyberZone is one of the best places to go if you’re looking for something interesting to do with your children or yourself.

Set up Camp at Lakeside RV Park

Staying in a cozy camp and waking up to the scenic beauty of the lake is one of the best experiences you can have in Opelika.

Lakeside RV Park is the perfect destination to set up a tent to immerse yourself in nature fully.

It offers guests a wide range of amenities and services that will make your stay pleasant.

You can enjoy a peaceful life without worrying about electricity, water, laundry, Wi-Fi, or a comfortable comfort room.

If you’re bringing kids along, you can let them play outside and drop them off in the kids’ playground so you can have some time for yourself.

Some popular activities you can enjoy in the RV Park include fishing, camping, and golfing on the nearby golf course.

If you want to enjoy the outdoors on a budget, Lakeside RV Park is the place for you.

Check Out the Lee County Courthouse

History marker of Lee County Courthouse

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Constructed in 1896, the Lee County Courthouse is a shining example of magnificent Neoclassical Revival architecture.

This functional courthouse stands next to Courthouse Square in Historic Downtown Opelika.

It’s also on the National Register of Historic Places.

The most promising aspect of this courthouse is its architecture.

People regard the Lee County Courthouse as one of the most important buildings in the city because of its distinctive architectural style.

Exterior of Lee County Courthouse

Spellck, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The mission of this courthouse is to provide fair treatment under the law and due process to the city’s residents.

You can have a tour and snap some pictures around the historic building or know the history of the Lee County Courthouse.

If you are interested in the law, you may also observe the legal system in action at the Lee County Courthouse.

Visit the Opelika Wood Duck Heritage Preserve and Siddique Nature Park

Birdwatchers and outdoor lovers flock to the Opelika Wood Duck Heritage Preserve and Siddique Nature Park.

They want to see various kinds of wildlife and, most significantly, the birds.

It is an 85-acre rehabilitated habitat and park for migratory and local birds in the area.

The Opelika Wood Duck Heritage Preserve and Siddique Nature Park is home to over 170 species of birds.

However, you can find many wood ducks and waterfowl in the park.

The park offers several activities you can enjoy.

You can trek the trails around the park and enjoy birding opportunities along the way.

Opelika Wood Duck Heritage Preserve and Siddique Nature Park is the perfect destination to unwind and escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

Explore the Tiger Town Outdoor Shopping Center

Do you enjoy shopping?

Tiger Town Outdoor Shopping Center is here to meet your shopping needs.

The Tiger Town Outdoor Shopping Center is the biggest retail district in east Alabama, with 130 acres of boutiques and stalls.

The shopping center offers everything from clothing and shoes to toys and home decor, so you’ll indeed find something you love.

If you need something other than shopping, the shopping center has restaurants where you can satisfy your hunger.

Go to the Tiger Town Outdoor Shopping Center when you’re in the mood for a little retail therapy.

See a Show at the Opelika Center for the Performing Arts

The Opelika Center for the Performing Arts has given audiences access to the world’s top artists and musicians for over three decades.

The Opelika Center for the Performing Arts is situated in an unpretentious building on the outside.

Likewise, the interior is modest but elegant.

What began as an amateur painting club in 1965 has now evolved into a professional arts presentation and educational organization.

You can take a seat in one of the 1,150 seats of the performing arts center and witness outstanding performances from world-renowned local and international artists.

There is no better way to enjoy artistic performances than to witness them with your own eyes.

See what the Opelika Center for the Performing Arts has in store for you.

Jump around at the Surge Trampoline Park

If you’re sick and tired of just walking around and wandering the streets of Opelika, why don’t you try jumping in the Surge Trampoline Park?

The Surge Trampoline Park is the city’s premiere trampoline park, where you can bring your children or go with friends.

The trampoline park is full of activities that will keep you entertained, such as arcade games, dodgeball, and basketball.

It even has climbing features, trapeze, wipeout, and many more.

To make it more special, you can host birthday parties and other events at the Surge Trampoline Park.

Jumping on trampolines is a great way to burn calories while having fun.

Shop for Unique Items at Angel’s Antiques and Flea Mall

Angel’s Antique and Flea Mall is one of the biggest flea markets in the city, with over 60,000 square feet of stalls.

It is home to more than 450 vendors offering one-of-a-kind antiques and other things you might need.

This gigantic mall has a little bit of everything.

You can find anything from old furniture to paintings, jewelry, and anything you could imagine.

It is the best shopping destination for antique enthusiasts because of its immense size and extensive inventory.

You’ll never know what you can find in Angel’s Antiques and Flea Mall, which makes it so exciting.

Listen to the Sound Wall

The Sound Wall is a music lover’s sanctuary and destination studio for artists wishing to escape the city’s hustle and bustle.

You can find it inside a beautiful Victorian mansion built in 1907.

In 2016, its owners renovated the place and turned it into a studio, performance venue, and artist residence.

The Sound Wall offers a unique experience to the visitors by giving a musical experience you can’t find anywhere else in Opelika.

You can listen to the talented local musicians and watch them perform their original compositions.

The Sound Wall significantly impacted the city’s music industry by offering a location where musicians could play and express themselves in a safe environment.

If you want a good time with people with the same interest, the Sound Wall is your best bet.

Final Thoughts

If you are visiting this wonderful city, use this list to help you decide where to begin.

Opelika offers bountiful opportunities to explore and experience new activities that will leave prints for a lifetime.

It has world-class facilities, family-friendly parks, gigantic malls, quaint little shops, historic downtown, and the best restaurants.

Book your trip today and discover the best things to do in Opelika!

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