Northern Alabama blends beauty and economic prosperity

Northern Alabama is a scenic region with mountain vistas, plentiful state parks, lakes, rivers, as well as two of the largest metropolitan areas of the state in the Birmingham (metro pop. 880,000) and Huntsville (metro pop. 318,000) MSAs. By most economic measures, these two areas are growing, prosperous areas. Birmingham has diversified from its roots as an iron and steel producing center to a well-balanced economy of both manufacturing and service-oriented jobs. Huntsville has moved from its early success in the space program to expanding into high-tech businesses and a very vibrant economy.

The outlying areas are dotted with small towns like Cullman and Scottsboro and Fort Payne, places where boating, hunting and outdoor recreation is important. Also important is NASCAR racing, with the region’s Talladega Super speedway just outside of Birmingham.

But golfing may be the most popular activity with the easy availability of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, which The New York Times called “some of the best public golf on Earth.” The trail extends through North Alabama with Oxmoor Valley in Birmingham, Silver Lakes near Anniston and Hampton Cove in Huntsville.

Looking for the “road less traveled” to carve out your retirement niche? North Alabama has the economic strength to support a second career and the unspoiled beauty and outdoor recreation for those looking for a slower pace of life.