Known as PARA, the Tuscaloosa County Park and Recreation Authority has enjoyed enormous success as one of Alabama’s unique countywide recreational programs. PARA operates over 30 parks throughout Tuscaloosa County totaling more than 2,000 acres of Public Park and recreational land.
In addition, PARA provides citizens year-round with a full range of facilities, recreational programs, and activities for every age. New, modern community centers are strategically located throughout the community.
Swimming pools; softball, baseball and soccer fields; lighted tennis courts; picnic and family pavilions; a 104,000 square foot multi-purpose arena; walking trails; boat landings; and a new, award-winning public golf course, Ol’ Colony; and various other athletic complexes all combine to provide the citizens of Tuscaloosa County exceptional opportunities and outlets for fun and family recreation.
In addition, the University of Alabama Arboretum offers walking trails for those who prefer outdoors. It features numerous trails through a native woodland section, a wildflower garden, a collection of ornamental plants, an experimental garden, and a children’s garden.
Lakes and Rivers
From sailing to skiing to championship bass fishing, Tuscaloosa County is a popular location for water sports. Among the most popular lakes for recreation include Lake Tuscaloosa, Holt Lake, Lake Lurleen, Lake Nichol, and Oliver Lake, and, of course, the Black Warrior River provides additional water sports and riverfront recreational opportunities.
There are many great places and numerous opportunities to play golf in the Tuscaloosa area year round. In Tuscaloosa, you will find Ol’ Colony Golf Course, which in 2001 Golf Digest ranked as one of the top 5 new public courses in the nation. Additionally, there is the University of Alabama Golf Center, which is a bargain for students and faculty alike. The scenic layout makes this course enjoyable to play even for the high handicappers. What makes these courses even better is that they are all affordable.
In addition to the public courses in Tuscaloosa, The Capstone Club is a private club exclusively for University of Alabama alumni and their guests. Also in Tuscaloosa, you may purchase membership to the NorthRiver Yacht Club, Indian Hills, or Woodland Forest.
Since Alabama is a small state, any of the 7 courses of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail are only a short drive away.
For anyone looking to improve on their game, lessons are offered at most of the courses in the area, specifically Hidden Meadows, Ol’ Colony, and the University of Alabama Golf Center. All of these essentials make Tuscaloosa and Alabama one of the best places in the southeast for avid golfers.
- Ol’ Colony Golf Course, 205-562-3202
- Tannehill National, 205-477-4653
- Mimosa Golf Course, 205-752-8112
- Hidden Meadows Golf Course, 205-339-3673
- Country Club of Tuscaloosa, 205-759-5535
- Indian Hills Country Club, 205-349-1504
- NorthRiver Yacht Club, 205-345-0202
- Woodland Forest Country Club, 205-556-1232
- Delmar Golf Training Facility, 205-349-4653
- Hillcrest Golf Center, 205-344-6502
- Lakeside Driving Range, 205-333-6933
There are many State Parks surrounding Tuscaloosa for the avid outdoors person. The parks offer visitors hiking/walking opportunities, biking trails, boating activities, camping facilities, and golf ranges.