July 20, 2021

How to spend a day in Wetumpka

3.8 min read

The tiny town of Wetumpka, Alabama has had a big year. As the inaugural subject of Erin and Ben Napier’s hit HGTV show Home Town Takeover, Wetumpka is enjoying a bit more than its due 15 minutes of fame. Located just north of Montgomery on the Coosa River, Wetumpka’s historic Southern charm paired with its recently revitalized downtown make it the perfect place for a day trip. From riverfront adventure to boutique shopping and local dining, there’s plenty to explore for the whole family. Here’s our guide to spending a day in Wetumpka.

Take a Mural Tour

Though Wetumpka is best known for its natural beauty, there are a couple manmade points of interest in the form of colorful street art. Downtown find the “Together Wetumpka Can Do So Much” mural on Orline Street, painted by local art teacher Adrienne Duvall and her students. Nearby, in an alley connecting Hill Street and Company Street, check out a mural of notable figures and landmarks to the area that was recently updated with additional information, greenery, and a bench. Lastly, check out the town’s newest mural from across the river. The bright turquoise and red “Blooming on the Coosa” mural adds another bright spot to the city’s façade.

Invest in the Local Economy

Downtown Wetumpka is packed with local boutiques selling everything from women’s clothes and accessories to home décor, bath products, and local art. Pedestrian-only Company Street is home to Manino Fashions & Designs Menswear, Southern Twist Boutique for women’s clothing, Scent Wizards for bath and beauty products, and River Perk if you need a mid-shopping pick-me-up. One street over, you can find Market Shoppes artisan and boutique mall, as well as The Tapp18, a women’s clothing accessory and boutique that was featured on Home Town Takeover’s debut episode. For art lovers, check out Marcia Weber Art Objects Gallery, Rumbling Water Studios and Gallery, or Sparking the Arts Gallery.

Take in the Local History

Arguably the most iconic sight to see in town, you can’t leave Wetumpka without stopping at the Big Fish house. The big white house featured in Tim Burton’s 2003 cult classic sits on a hill at the center of downtown, casting its Southern glory across the streets below. Stop to grab a picture in front of the circa-1876 home that was restored by the Shellie Whitfield, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, local acrylic artist, and owner of the home. Find another restored treasure at Jerry’s Barber Shop, a classic barber shop owned by none other than the town’s mayor Jerry Willis.

Try the Local Fare
When you’re ready for a bite to eat, there are several places to get your fill of Southern classics, seriously good pub grub, and sweet treats. For the best ambiance in town, head to Caoches Corner Sports Bar and Grill for their legendary back patio featuring floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Coosa River. The menu offers an expansive array of dishes, including everything from burgers and nachos to steak and fried seafood. Don’t miss their daily specials on drinks and food like all-you-can-eat catfish or boiled shrimp on Tuesdays and discounted wings on Saturday. If you’re looking for a quick bite, grab a sandwich from Cooperhouse Deli or specialty hotdog from Grump Dog. Happy hour is best at locally owned Provisions Cheese and Wine Shoppe, where you can browse a generous selection of wines and cheese before sitting down to a glass of your choosing paired with a custom charcuterie board. Finish a great meal with a gourmet fruit or ice cream pop from Frios, an Alabama-based chain that’s since expanded with shops across the country.

Enjoy the River

Perhaps Wetumpka’s most defining feature is its proximity to the Coosa River. As you drive into town over the iconic Bibb Graves Bridge, you’ll have a gorgeous view of the natural feature. If you want to get a little closer to the action, Coosa River Adventures, located just down the road from downtown, has everything you need for a day on the water. Take a self-guided kayak tour of the river, where you’ll have the chance to paddle through class II and class III rapids while exploring the area’s natural flora and fauna, including blue herons and bald cypress trees.

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