What to do and see in Owens Cross Roads, United States: The Best Places and Tips

July 31, 2017 Flossie Demartino

Owens Cross Roads is a town in Madison County, Alabama, United States, and is included in the Huntsville-Decatur Combined Statistical Area. It was incorporated in 1967. As of the 2010 Census, the population of the town was 1,521.
Restaurants in Owens Cross Roads

1. Hampton Cove Golf Course

450 Old Hwy. 431 South, Owens Cross Roads, AL 35763-9304 +1 256-551-1818
Excellent
45%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
8%
Terrible
13%
Overall Ratings

3.5 based on 23 reviews

Hampton Cove Golf Course

Reviewed By marenostrum - Washington DC

I have always wanted to play on the RTJ Golf Trail in Alabama. Its creation was rather unique as it was funded by the Alabama State Retirement system to spur tourism and started with four courses.

Designed by my favorite course architect, Robert Trent Jones, hence the name sake, the course trail starts in the north of the state around Huntsville and ends up in Mobile and its bay.

Hampton Cove was one of the first to be built with two very different courses taking advantage of the surrounding topography. The River course, the more difficult of the two, meanders along a floodplain and river. As one can image, water is everywhere and the greens are elevated (to avoid the flooding).

Here is a summary of the River Course having played it twice (orange tees first day and purple tees, the tips, the next). Also, played the 18 holes par 3 called the Short Course as a bonus to my trip.

Exceptional
• All around, the staff is superb, from the starter to the restaurant, the Proshop to the Marshall.

Great-
• This is a course that requires accuracy and target shots
• Greens are difficult- rolling true, wicked breaks and large
• Course offers a good variation and choice of tee boxes and distances

Nice
• the facilities, practice range, chipping & putting greens and clubhouse are good
• The restaurant has good food (breakfast and lunch)
• Proshop has an excellent selection of apparel and golf items for men and women.

Okay-
• Greens were very hard and did not hold the shots without strong backspin

Course design and layout- 4 stars with a + for the difficult greens

The course lies along the banks of a river and floodplain. You can see from the vegetation how high the water gets. In fact, the sprinkler controls are perched up on stilts! So, it stands to reason that the greens are all elevated and there are NO bunkers. But who needs them when there is so much water. Errant drives or either short or long shots into the green will find water and add an enjoyable 1 -stroke penalty to your hole.

The ninth hole does not come back to the club house finding yourself throughout the round in the middle of a verdant forest.

The choice of tee boxes is impressive as it permits the player to craft the desired challenge.

Forward tees come in at 5,278 yards and rate at a 71.3/123 while the “tips” are 7,668 yards and rate at a 77.8/136. Between these two challenging bookends, a player can choose an additional three sets of tee boxes base on individual skillset.

The greens are incredibly well protected as they are raised from the ground and typically in the form of a 3 or 4 leaf clover. Critical undulations abound and makes for an easy 3 or 4 putt if one is not close to the hole.

Conditions- 3.5 stars

The entire course is rich with Bermuda grass as well as the greens.

This southern hot climate makes for a good environment for this type of grass. It really thrives in the heat. The course is well maintained from tee to green. It is nice to have your ball sit up on the grass. And when necessary, one can really get some needed spin action for short distances and near the green.

The big drawback is that the greens were hard. Shots that would come into the green at a low angle frequently ran away.

Price- 4 stars

The price of $69 is a good one considering weekend. This also includes a cart. The range balls are included.

Pace of Play- 4.5 stars

The first day I played as a threesome with two other local residents whose knowledge of the layout was vital not only to my score but to the pace of play (it certainly would have been longer). The first round was 4 hours while the second, as a single, was 2:50 minutes.

Staff- 5 stars

It should be noted that all the staff were extremely hospitable and wonderful hosts to a visitor like me. It is clear that they not only enjoy their work but take pride in such a good course.

Finally, I did have a chance to play the 18hole par 3, short course. It was a nice diversion with many difficult holes. Regrettably, I did not have a chance to play the Highlands course, the second course on the complex, which is easier and from the appearance it is more a links style layout. It will be for next time.

2. Huntsville Visitor Information Center

500 Church St NW, Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Huntsville, AL 35801-5548 +1 256-533-5723
Excellent
83%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 119 reviews

Huntsville Visitor Information Center

MAKE IT YOUR FIRST STOP! While in the Huntsville/Madison area visit one of area Visitor Centers for information, discount attraction, sports, arts & entertainment coupons.

Reviewed By OrionOctober - Youngstown, Ohio

Stop here first in Huntsville! I recently stopped here with my brother, his teen daughter, and my teen son before we visited the U.S. Space and Rocket Museum in Huntsville. I had read online that the best discounts for the Rocket museum were to be...MoreWe are so glad to hear that you had such a positive experience at our visitor center! We hope you'll come back to Huntsville as your "final trip destination" on a future trip!

3. Cathedral Caverns State Park

637 Cave Rd, Woodville, AL 35776-8700 +1 256-728-8193
Excellent
75%
Good
20%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 336 reviews

Cathedral Caverns State Park

This beautiful cave system features unique rock formations and ancient relics.

Reviewed By Monica R - Satsuma, Alabama, United States

A must see. Huge and expansive caverns which became more beautiful the further you went. Takes about two hours to go through and the walk can get a little steep in places. The guide was Great! Don't miss this cavern if you are in the area.

4. U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum

2060 Airport Rd SW, Huntsville, AL 35801-5338 +1 256-883-3737
Excellent
79%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 228 reviews

U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum

Located in Huntsville Alabama, The U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum is one of the premier military museums in the world. The exhibits of memorabilia, artifacts, and military equipment range from the American Revolutionary War to present day. Included in the collection are many rare and important artifacts including the oldest surviving jeep: the Ford Pygmy.

Reviewed By christina k

I didn't think there would be so much military memoribilial! Very well organized! The amout of jeeps and tanks was amazing! The staff was great and very knowledgeable about the displays. I definitely will be going there again! As a member in the military, it was one of the best museums I have ever seen for the military and more people should be going there than the space museum! Great for adults, and children. Even my teenage sister loved it!

5. Madison County Nature Trail-Green Mountain

5000 Nature Trail Rd SE, Huntsville, AL 35803-3802 +1 256-883-9501
Excellent
75%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 171 reviews

Madison County Nature Trail-Green Mountain

Madison County Nature Trail The Madison County Nature Trail was constructed beginning in 1974 with completion in 1975. The construction was financed jointly by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Madison County Commission. It has been noted that the Chairman, James Record, had a special love for nature and the environment and was instrumental in the building of the Nature Trail. The Nature Trail is a Park for all seasons containing 72 acres which rests above the surrounding communities atop Green Mountain in southeast Huntsville. The Park is open free to the public each day from 7 a.m. until 30 minutes prior to sunset, closing only on Christmas Day and New Years Day, or during inclement weather. Sky Lake which consists of 17 acres of mountain water is encompassed by a 1 ½ mile trail. Other facilities include an open air pavilion, a-frame chapel, outdoor classroom, covered bridge, picnic area and accessible restrooms. Use of the Pavilion and Chapel are provided by reservation with all other areas of the Park used on a first come first served basis. Fishing is provided for children less than 16 years of age or seniors over 60. A fishing fee is charged and fishing is allowed Monday through Friday only. Since the construction of the Nature Trail, renovations consisting of trail improvements and restroom improvements were completed in 1998. Funding was provided by a National Recreational Trails Grant provided through the Alabama Department of Economic and community Affairs. In 2012 a grant was also obtained providing for a new waterfall pump and accessories. There have also been several projects improving the facilities, many of which have been accomplished through volunteers such as Boy Scouts earning various merits up to and including Eagle Scout. The Nature Trail is funded by the Madison County Commission. It is operated by a Park Manager (Bobby Cobb), Park Maintenance Worker, and two Part Time Park Attendants. During open hours there is always one employee present for safety and security reasons. The Nature Trail is recognized as a Treasure Forest by the Alabama Forestry Commission. It is also considered a Wildlife Sanctuary. The entire Park although owned and operated by the Madison County Commission lies within the city limits of the City of Huntsville. Bobby Cobb / Park Manager

Reviewed By Leonard C

Our family has been walking this nature trail for over 20 years. What a wonderful place to just enjoy peace and quiet and a beautiful trail. It has been our pleasure to enjoy for a very long time and what is most important is that it has remained the same for all the years that we have been going there.

6. Roller Coasters Skate Center

6291 Highway 431 S, Owens Cross Roads, AL 35763-9208 +1 256-533-7528
Excellent
0%
Good
100%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 2 reviews

Roller Coasters Skate Center

Reviewed By Nathan A - Carthage, New York

This is the second time in a month we have visited here. This time we stayed longer and participated in more activities at the center. Just like last review the AC is still messed up so it was still a little warm (mid 80's) managed by fans. The roller skating rink is still the cleanest and best maintained in the Huntsville area, and all the video arcade games still work. We bought the 5 people for $20 deal which included skates, laser tag, playground, and pizza and drinks. The laser tag is a small room with equipment for 10-12 people max to play. The small room is not ideal for your tween kids with lots of energy but it was great for my family (2 adults, 10, 7, 4 year old kids) because the kids were easy to keep track of and nobody could go to far away which ensured everyone was in on the action and having fun. We also ate at the concession area this time. The pizza is the frozen kind cooked on site in a pizza over. It tasted as good as any other frozen pizza, nothing special but it hit the spot. They have a coke fountain and several juice choices and bottled water for drinks. Classic diner seating and indoor picnic tables round out the dining area. Like last time the kids indoor playground was clean and well kept and like I mentioned last time it is in great view of anywhere in the building so your little ones can play and no matter what you are doing it is easy to watch them. The restrooms were clean and stocked and it didn't feel like you were going to get diseased just by walking in there. All together a great place to visit again. We stayed three hours this time and that felt like enough.

7. Huntsville Botanical Garden

4747 Bob Wallace Ave SW, Huntsville, AL 35805-3390 +1 256-830-4447
Excellent
71%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 696 reviews

Huntsville Botanical Garden

The Huntsville Botanical Garden is open year-round and boasts a picture perfect aquatic garden, a spectacular wildflower and nature trail and numerous specialty gardens and plant collections. The Children’s Garden and Nature Center contain the nation’s largest seasonal butterfly house and eight specialized gardens aimed toward the younger set. Children and adults alike will enjoy a stroll through the dinosaur garden, the space garden, storybook garden and more. Family festivals include Beaks and Barks, Huntsville Blooms, the Scarecrow Trail, and the nationally recognized Galaxy of Lights, and be sure not to miss our annual summer exhibits, designed to appeal to children and families. The Garden also has a gift shop, indoor and outdoor facility rental options, and education programs for all ages. The Garden is a privately run 501c3 non-profit, which receives a majority of its support from garden members, supporters, and corporate donors.

Reviewed By Richard H - Willowbrook, Illinois

Huntsville has a very lovely Garden walk. You can spend a few hours seeing lovely flowers, shrubs, and trees or spend all day studying them. When you get tired and hungry they have a small restaurant with very good food. You can choose a salad, a sandwich, or a meal. I had Shrimp & Grits which was the best I have ever eaten.

8. U.S. Space and Rocket Center

1 Tranquility Base, Huntsville, AL 35805-3371 +1 800-637-7223
Excellent
63%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 2 reviews

U.S. Space and Rocket Center

Home to Space Camp, Aviation Challenge and NASA's Official Visitor Information Center for Marshall Space Flight Center; The U.S. Space & Rocket Center is recognized as one of the most comprehensive U.S. manned space flight hardware museums in the world.

Reviewed By MurphymomChicago - Chicago

I am so glad we visited. If you have the time, do the bus tour and go see the International Space Station communications center, plus former launch sites. If you do not have time for bus tour, head straight to the Davidson building as this is the most interesting in my opinion. The Saturn 5 hangs from the ceiling and it talks about how our space program beginnings in the 40's through the 60's

9. Monte Sano State Park

5105 Nolen Ave SE, Huntsville, AL 35801-1029 +1 256-534-3757
Excellent
64%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 351 reviews

Monte Sano State Park

Reviewed By SGI_Beachman - Canton, Georgia

Been to the park 3 times for Mountain Mist 50k. The trails are amazing and have something to offer all levels of runner, mountain biker, and hiker from crushed gravel and jeep trails to smooth single track all the way to gnarly rock covered soul crushing climbs and descents with steep switchbacks. Along the way there are amazing views and waterfalls.

Stayed in the cabins twice. They are perfect for a weekend race get away.

The lodge is gigantic and the fireplaces are some of my favorite of all time. They are gigantic and with the fire going they are amazing to look at and perfect to sit at recover from the hard day and warm up.

10. Harmony Park Safari

431 Clouds Cove Rd SE, Huntsville, AL 35803-6513 +1 256-723-3880
Excellent
69%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 399 reviews

Harmony Park Safari

Reviewed By Kelly F - Brentwood, United States

My wife and I visited. We enjoyed ourselves. This was our second drive thru zoo, the plus of this one is the Tortoise Trail and areas to walk around after you’ve driven thru. The down side was it was shorter/smaller than the other one. Still a good time.

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