Many Southern cities aspire to blend the old with the new; few achieve it as dramatically as Huntsville, a hundred miles south of Nashville just inside the Alabama border. Its sleepy center still recalls the days when it was dominated by cotton merchants and railroad owners, a history absorbingly recounted in the Huntsville Depot Museum.
Busneeds.com kicked off the day with a visit to the Ice Complex by our charter bus. Once the charter bus arrived at the place, all 18 years scampered out of the bus is glee reminding me of Kindergarten kids at the chocolate factory. The Ice Complex is huge, although there were a lot of people there, it wasn’t at all cramped. For lunch, we decided to go a little exotic – no, not Chinese but we took the charter bus to a quaint little place called Bombay Cuisine where they serve East Indian dishes. At the end of the meal, we were ready for some shopping before we went and have some drinks.
Hunts Huntsville hugs the banks of the Muskoka River on the southwest corner of Algonquin Park. As the largest centre so close to the park, its streets support many of the amenities visitors will need before heading into the park and a few that may offer a break from the wilderness.
Amongst captivating log buildings, immense stone houses and heritage sites, restaurants offer a culinary escape from camp hot dogs and flaming marshmallows, but don’t expect to lose the wilderness entirely. With Algonquin Park so close, wildlife is a common sight on Huntsville’s avenues, and getting a closer look is an easy step into the wilds.
Enveloping the town is a latticework of lakes, woods and streams all supported by a thriving tour and outfitting sector. Whether it’s the summer joys of canoeing, kayaking or fishing a tour operator is close by. In winter, the landscape opens up to snowmobiling, ice fishing, snowshoeing, and there is even a local ski hill.
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