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Open today: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Review Highlights
So Wondrous to Behold!!

A bunch of us Senior Citizens decided to tour the Ave Maria Grotto on a Thursday morning. We... read more

Reviewed October 26, 2018
PennyW5
,
Helena, Alabama
Worth a Visit

It’s a relaxing place to walk around and enjoy miniatures of religious structures of the world. It... read more

Reviewed October 8, 2018
ktine26
via mobile
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Traveler Overview
  • Excellent61%
  • Very good31%
  • Average6%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“gift shop”(35 reviews)
“folk art”(7 reviews)
“each piece”(7 reviews)
About
Four-acre park providing a natural setting for 125 miniature reproductions of historic buildings and shrines created by a Benedictine monk of the St. Bernard Abbey in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Closed Now
Hours Today: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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Contact
St. Bernard Abbey, 1600 St. Bernard Dr. SE, Cullman, AL 35055
Website
+1 256-734-4110
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Reviews (341)
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All reviews gift shop folk art each piece fascinating place miniature buildings take your time works of art his life catholic church worth the trip awe inspiring walking tour couple of hours self guided tour monk abbey religious
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Reviewed October 26, 2018

A bunch of us Senior Citizens decided to tour the Ave Maria Grotto on a Thursday morning. We arrived very early so we could see the sites without getting too hot. We had been told there was going to be a fair amount of walking...More

Date of experience: October 2018
1  Thank PennyW5
Reviewed October 8, 2018 via mobile

It’s a relaxing place to walk around and enjoy miniatures of religious structures of the world. It somewhat gives you a peaceful vibe and you will appreciate everything there (esp. if you’re a Catholic). It’s clean, relaxing, they got nice staff and it has a...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank ktine26
Reviewed October 5, 2018 via mobile

This place is such a simple haven to visit. The miniature scale models are breathtaking and awe-inspiring. The level of detail and effort it took to make them is uncanny! My wife and I LOVED walking around and just taking in all the intricate things...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank Jeremy T
Reviewed October 2, 2018 via mobile

This was such a unique place to visit I definitely recommend coming NOT during the blooming festival because of the massive amount of people there, come a month early to still have the spring temps and enjoy a more relaxing stroll through all the elements...More

Date of experience: March 2018
Thank Hippiemama7
Reviewed October 1, 2018 via mobile

We visited today. This is a unique experience. It took him 40 years to build and we can see why. Each miniature is unique and meticulously done. They have done a wonderful job of keeping each piece in tact. This is a self guided tour...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank Cubette6
Reviewed September 26, 2018 via mobile

My husband told me about this place he went as a child. I have to admit, I wasn’t so sure this would be something we would be interested in. I was so wrong. It was absolutely breathtaking. A man created cathedrals, cities, shrines, etc it...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank tgarnett3603
Reviewed September 12, 2018 via mobile

I was never aware this existed and upon seeing could hardly believe it did by how amazing and beautiful it was. Definitely an experience i would recommend for everyone.

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank Matt L
Reviewed September 10, 2018 via mobile

Great place to take the kids. A lot of creativity to be seen. Also a very nice catholic store. Haven’t seen anywhere else like it.

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank tishy_12
Reviewed August 11, 2018

A little worried about taking my non-religious husband to see The Grotto. My mother is from Hanceville AL. I visited The Grotto about 40 years ago as a child and was awed by it. It was late afternoon on a Friday when my husband and...More

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank Kirsten S
Reviewed August 6, 2018 via mobile

Not much for the non Catholic. Very impressed with the work it too to make everything. Not for the people who have trouble walking.

Date of experience: September 2017
Thank W5363GQlorim
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Questions & Answers
Ask a question
laura1plus5
April 12, 2017|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from David K | Reviewed this property |
It does have a sidewalk all the way around, but beware that it has a tall hill that will be tough to push the wheelchair up unless you are ready for it. I wouldn't have a problem, but I would not want my dad to do it... More
1
Vote
TrainerSW2007
February 24, 2017|
AnswerShow all 13 answers
Response from B0rn2Trav3l | Reviewed this property |
I agree with the others. Please allow 30 minutes or more to really maximize your visit there.
0
Votes
60morena
May 7, 2016|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from 25Denise15 | Reviewed this property |
no not really... there is a lot of walking, so good shoes for that.... casual wear... not dressy. we wore shorts and jeans.
2
Votes
Travel Forum Posts
carrie62
Bay of Fundy & Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia, Canada
stop between Birmingham and Nashville (0 Replies)
I will be driving from Birmingham to Nashville along I-65 and am wondering about interesting stops along the way. I would love to see anything historic, quaint, quirky, Southern, religious, or nature-related. I love small towns and old houses and barns. I do know about the Ave Maria Grotto in Cullman. Any other sights you would recommend?
December 19, 2008|
carrie62
Bay of Fundy & Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia, Canada
stops between Birmingham and Nashville (3 Replies)
I will be driving from Birmingham to Nashville along I-65 and am wondering about interesting stops along the way. I would love to see anything historic, quaint, quirky, Southern, religious, or nature-related. I love small towns and old houses and barns. I do know about the Ave Maria Grotto in Cullman. Any other sights you would recommend?
December 19, 2008|
Response fromdbh2|
The monestary in Hanceville is supposed to be beautiful and has a tour. I haven't been personally but know others who have. It is at Exit 292 (or maybe 291) - Hanceville. There are signs to direct you. If you are into antiques, Hartselle (exit 328) has a nice, old downtown area with lots of shops. Moorseville is a neat area near Huntsville. You can exit onto I-565 (exit 340) and follow the signs there.