MONTGOMERY, Ala. – ‘Welcome to Alabama the Beautiful’ is written on state line signs. A statement that bold deserves proof. The Alabama State Parks, Alapark, organization is proud to announce we are a beautiful state thanks to TripAdvisor.
The world’s largest travel site, according to their website, awards the Certificates of Excellence, CoE, title to those who meet a lengthy and positive list of requirements. Then, a state park can earn the Hall of Fame, HoF, label.
To qualify for a CoE, the company says a business must “maintain an overall TripAdvisor rating of at least four out of five; have a minimum number of reviews; and have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least twelve months.”
Certificates of Excellence list consists of the following names and divisions:
- Cheaha State Park in Delta – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Desota Falls – for Mountains/Nature & Wildlife Areas/State Parks?Waterfalls/Nature & Parks
- Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail at Gulf State Park – for Hiking Tails/Nature & Parks/Outdoor Activities
- Lake Guntersville State Park – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Meaher State Park in Spanish Fort – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Rickwood Caverns State Park in Warrior – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Wind Creek State Park in Alexander City – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
Bold indicates parks who were back-to-back winners, picking up Certificates of Excellence in 2017 and 2018. Non-bold parks were awarded Certificates of Excellence for the first time this year.
The HoF honor comes after receiving the certificates for five straight years.
Hall of Fame list consists of the following names and divisions:
- Cathedral Caverns State Park in Woodville – for Caverns & Caves/Nature & Parks
- Chewacla State Park in Auburn – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- DeSoto State Park in Fort Payne – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores – for Beaches/State Parks/Nature & Parks/Outdoor Activities; State Parks/Piers & Boardwalks, Nature & Parks, Sights and Landmarks, Outdoor Activities; and the Gulf State Park Campground for Specialty Lodging.
- Joe Wheeler State Park – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Monte Sano State Park in Huntsville – for State Parks/Nature & Parks
- Oak Mountain State Park in Pelham – for State Parks/Nature & Parks/Biking Trails/Outdoor Activities
Bold indicates a park was recognized in three areas, making it nine Hall of Fame honors.
The Alabama State Parks organization says the parks received 16 Certificates of Excellence for 2018, all parks added together. Remember, Gulf State Park is counted for three.
The awards are announced annually in May.