Planning your next trip? There are plenty of destinations in each state where family fun and learning meet! Please be sure to follow all state and local public health guidance while visiting. We also suggest researching Covid related restrictions and closings at all locations before you travel.  

Alabama 

Looking to learn about the world of flight? Prepare for liftoff at Flight Works Alabama, a comprehensive aerospace exhibition and education center in Mobile. This 15,000 square foot facility houses over 40 hands-on exhibits, a classroom, workshop, fabrication room, drone aviary, and more! For aviator enthusiasts, the US Space and Rocket Center is a must-visit.  The center showcased rockets, achievements, and artifacts of the U.S. space program, as well as a flight simulator.  

The Civil Rights Trail is a great place to experience the legacy of those who changed history through the U.S. Civil Rights Movement. Visit the Selma Interpretive Center to connect with the stories of civil rights marchers as they crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge to support voting rights. Walk in the footsteps of civil rights legends such as Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr at stops located in the cities of Montgomery and Birmingham 

Arkansas  

One of the best places to discover the Natural State is Crater of Diamonds State Park, located in Murfreesboro. It is one of the only places in the world where you can search for diamonds and other gemstones in their original volcanic source.  Start in the park’s visitor center, where you’ll learn about the site’s history, geology, and popular methods for searching.  You get the keep whatever you find, so keep your eyes peeled! 

Looking to experience farm life? Pay a visit to Dogwood Hills Guest Farm in Harriet. You can work the farm and enjoy daily meals on site. Guests can be involved as little or as much as they like, from collecting eggs, milking cows and goats, or feeding animals. You can also use the farm as a starting point for hiking, mountain biking, or floating the Buffalo National River.   

Kentucky  

Newport Aquarium offers families plenty to see, do and learn during every visit. The world-class facility showcases thousands of animals from around the world in a million gallons of water, including Sweet Pea and Scooter, the Newport Aquarium’s ultra-rare shark rays. Each day begins with a special penguin parade, a show featuring one of the Aquarium’s African Penguins. There are dive shows, feedings, and ‘meet the biologist’ sessions scheduled throughout the day. Visitors can also pet sharks, turtles, and other creatures and explore the Stingray Hideaway.  

There’s Only One…Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory. It takes a special place to craft the Official Bat of Major League Baseball. Experience history-in-the-making as you stroll through the factory where world-famous Louisville Slugger baseball bats, used by MLB star players, are made. The Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory is home to the World’s Biggest Baseball Bat and offers engaging and interesting exhibits along with an award-winning bat factory tour. Guests visiting the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory receive a souvenir mini-bat. 

Louisiana  

The City Park in New Orleans shows a more serene side to the city and is filled with activities for all to enjoy. New Orleans Botanical Garden is a park-within-a-park that is home to two thousand plants. Sitting on almost eleven acres in City Park, The Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden is home to over 90 sculptures by renowned artists from around the world. Warm beignets (think fluffy square donuts) piled high with powdered sugar and served with café au lait are being served up in City Park at the Café Du Monde.  

Looking to learn more about Louisiana? The Capitol Park Museum in Baton Rouge showcases the intricacies of the most vibrant state in America, with thematic exhibits on Louisiana’s history, industry, and culture. The exhibits about the music of Louisiana will have you singing along! 

Mississippi   

You can find a one-stop-shop of learning and fun at the LeFleur Museum District. Located in Jackson, this area is home to four different museums. At the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum, people of all ages will enjoy interactive games and exhibits while learning about the state’s sports history. Visit the Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Museum to determine how farmers lived and worked in the past and how the industry is looking in the future. Don’t forget to meet the mules, Joe and Sally! Whether you dig for fossils, captain a shrimp boat, paint in the art gallery, or partake in the many other exhibits, you will love the interactivity of the Mississippi Children’s Museum. Finally, to spend some time on the wild side, check out Mississippi’s Natural Science Museum. See live alligators, snakes, snapping turtles, 200 species of native fish, and other creatures native to the state. There is also a great hiking trail, perfect for taking in the great outdoors.  

Tennessee – Visit https://www.tnvacation.com/ for more information.  

If you are in Kingsport, exploring Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium’s 3,500 acres along beautiful hiking trails and mountain bike trails is a must. See artifacts from the earliest families who settled on Bays Mountain in the mid-1800s. Take a trip through space or catch a glimpse of bobcats, wolves, river otters, turtles, or white-tail deer.  They also offer a wide variety of public programs throughout the year, from survival courses to guided tours.  

Exploration awaits at Adventure Science Center in Nashville. Experience interactive activities found in the Adventure Tower where Earth Science, Creativity and Innovation, Sound and Light, Air and Space, and Health and Energy are blended to create non-stop fun. Continue on to Space Chase, where cosmic rays, the Star Walk, and Infrared Wall can be found. Catch a performance in the planetarium!  

Did you know the Memphis Zoo is one of only four zoos in the US that have pandas? There is so much to explore in the 70 acres of habitats that house more than 3,500 animals. Be sure to check out the Zambezi River Hippo Camp, an immersive experience where you can stand on a lodge balcony to see hippos and crocodiles. Underwater views and an explorative fishing village are all included in the new exhibit. 

West Virginia  

As a landlocked state, the in West Virginia are hard to come by, but splashing around in the Middle Fork River running through Audra State Park is every bit as fun.  This nature area is perfect for family picnics. The clear, clean water of the Middle Fork River and the rock overhang of the Alum Cave offer picture-perfect backdrops. 

The West Virginia State Museum at the State Capitol Complex tells West Virginia’s origin from prehistoric days to present days along an interactive path through 26 Discovery Rooms. You’ll learn all about the ancient Native American mound builders, frontier life, the Civil War, coal mining, and all the aspects that made West Virginia what it is today.