Sweet home, Alabama. It’s not just the name of a popular song but home to forests, mountains, farms, and yes, even beaches. It is one of the most biologically diverse states in the continental US. If you’re tired of haggling for a spot on other overcrowded beaches, it’s time to visit Alabama beaches.
This post is sponsored by Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism. All opinions are my own.
Why You Should Visit Alabama Beaches
When vacationers across the US think of warm, southern beaches, they may not consider Alabama a prime location. They would be incorrect. Outside of the deep south states such as Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee, and Florida, travelers skip right over Alabama when thinking of destinations to plan a beach vacation. Don’t make this mistake when you make plans to visit Alabama beaches.
Alabama Beaches are Hidden Gems
As previously stated, most travelers don’t think of Alabama when they think of the beach. This misconception is understandable, but that makes the beaches even more desirable.
The crowds are often lower in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Of course, they do rise during peak times such as spring break, summer, and holiday weekends, but there is still plenty of room to find your own spot of paradise.
Diverse Food Choices at Alabama Beaches
Seafood is the most obvious choice when spending time on the sugar-white sands of the gulf, but there are other great choices as well. These restaurants can be found in either Gulf Shores or Orange Beach.
- LuLu’s Gulf Shores Restaurant: founded by Lucy Buffet, sister of legendary musician Jimmy Buffet, this restaurant is a favorite of families because of its massive outdoor area with both paid activities and free ones that are great for kids.
- The Hangout: known for its live music and festivals, this restaurant is also great for families because it is right on the beach; plan a visit when there isn’t a festival on the books.
- Mo’Bay Beignet Co.: only serves beignets and coffee, but they are worth a visit for breakfast or an afternoon snack.
- Voyagers Restaurant: perfect for a high-class date night on vacation, especially if you are seated with a view of the ocean during sunset.
- Cobalt: a gorgeous restaurant with a view of the bay, it is more casual at lunchtime and elegant at dinner.
- CoastAL Orange Beach: a new restaurant that prides itself on being the only beachfront restaurant in Orange Beach; it features live music, outdoor seating, and a beach bar.
What Else is there to Do at Alabamas Beaches?
Lying on the beach in the sun, reading a book under an umbrella, or playing in the ocean are all enjoyable facets of being at the beach. What else is there to do besides spend the day at the beach?
Indoor Fun When You Visit Alabama Beaches
Unfortunately, it does rain occasionally at the beach. Staying indoors is easy with a trip to Jurassic Golf Gulf Shores. This glow-in-the-dark mini golf course is entirely indoors. As a bonus, it is located next to The Yard Milkshake Bar, known for its massive, Instagram-worthy milkshake creations.
A little further up the road, the amusement park OWA has an indoor waterpark in Foley. Tropic Falls has 23 rides and attractions everyone can enjoy, and, if the weather clears up, 23 more attractions at their amusement park too.
Nothing is more fun than seeing a movie at a different theater than the one I’m used to. Orange Beach has an AMC Theater at The Wharf, a quaint shopping and dining destination that houses additional indoor activities such as The Axe Hole, Breakout Orange Beach, and the Cool Shots Selfie Museum.
Outdoor Activities at the Beach
For outdoor fun, check out Foil Gulf Coast. An eFoil is an electric surfboard powered by a battery and propeller. Foil Gulf Coast will give visitors lessons before allowing them to try the new surf technique themselves!
Hammock Time Tiki Tours offers tours of the Ole River and back bays of Orange Beach if you’re looking for something less involved. Guests are allowed to bring refreshments, and a restroom is on board.
Take a tour around the waterways with Orange Beach Cat Boat Tours. Guided tours share the beauty of nature and wildlife in the gulf and fun facts about the community and surrounding areas.
If you want to be more active, Gulf State Park has hiking and biking trails and RV and primitive camping sites. There is also an educational base camp called the Learning Campus that offers educational programs and hands-on experiences to connect visitors with nature and the park’s cultural heritage.
How to Plan a Visit to Alabama Beaches
Ready to make getaway plans? There is plenty of time to plan your visit to Alabama’s beautiful beaches for spring break. This guide is just a sampling of why you should plan a visit to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama. Visit Alabama Beaches has a fantastic website with more information about what, where, and how to make your next beach vacation your most memorable.