Space Center tops Alabama's paid attractions

      The Alabama Tourism Department says the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville was Alabama's most visited paid attraction in 2013.{} The center recorded more than 580,000 visitors.{} The Birmingham Zoo was second with more than 574,000 visitors and the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail was third with nearly 531,000 visitors.{}

      The USS Alabama Battleship Park finished fourth with more than 371,000 visitors and the McWane Science Center in Birmingham was fifth with nearly 317,000 visitors.{} The Tourism Department says Alabama's Gulf Coast Beaches were the top natural destination in 2013 with 5.5 million visitors.{} The Birmingham Botanical Gardens topped the free attractions with 350,000 in attendance.{} Mobile's Mardi Gras was the most attended event with almost 800,000 people.