Things to Do When Vacationing on the Beach in Alabama

aerial view of a Gulf Shores, Alabama beach

Looking for a beautiful beach vacation? Alabama has a stunning seaside that's as special as it is uncrowded. In fact, the soft white sand and warm gulf waters of Gulf Shores, Fort Morgan, and Orange Beach are surprisingly undiscovered. The only downside is that once you come to visit, you may never want to leave.


While you'll be excused for simply stepping outside your vacation rental and slipping into the beautiful aquamarine waves, there's plenty to do besides spending the day under your beach umbrella.

Wildlife Encounters

Gulf Shores is home to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, where the whole family will enjoy events like a kangaroo encounter or a visit to the reptile garden. Or explore the peaceful Alabama Gulf Coastal Birding Trail, where you might find a blue heron soaring across the sky, or an egret wading in the grasses. And June through October, you can witness loggerhead sea turtles nesting at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge.

Outdoor Fun

At Gulf State Park, along with more dazzling beaches, you'll find a zip line to take you soaring over the dunes. Craving more thrills? You'll find them — rent a jet ski, or take off over the sea in a parasail. Kayaks, pontoon boats and paddle boards are also available to rent. From dolphin cruises to charter fishing, there's always a new outdoor experience along the Alabama coast.


The history of the region is also close at hand. A visit to historic Fort Morgan, active from 1834 to World War II, takes you back in time, as you stand overlooking Mobile Bay from the battlements. A short drive away are the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park and the National Museum of Naval Aviation.

At the Orange Beach Indian & Sea Museum, you'll learn more about the indigenous culture of the area, as well as local history, regional fishing and marine life. And you can discover the work of local artists at the Orange Beach Art Center.


With some 16 golf courses along the coast, someone's sure to take a swing at things. Visit Kiva Dunes Golf Club, the #1 ranked golf course in Alabama, right in Gulf Shores, or check out the tree-lined fairways at Craft Farms Golf Resort.


And when the sun goes down, that doesn't mean the fun stops. At The Wharf in Orange Beach, you'll find a family entertainment center with shopping, movie theaters, dining, live music and even a Ferris wheel. In Gulf Shores, 12,000-square- feet of connected trampolines will keep you jumping at the Factory, while at The Track Family Fun Park there are go-karts, bumper boats, an arcade and mini-golf. Community events are happening, too — from summer block parties to a lighted Christmas Parade in Gulf Shores.

Food and Drink

Enjoy a delicious meal overlooking the beach at Gulf Shores Seafood, where a meal of sausage, shrimp, potatoes and corn on the cob is a local specialty. At Bahama Bobs, you'll find more "fish-tastic" entrees, including spicy Bimini-style shrimp, and great cocktails. In Orange Beach, you won't want to miss the Cajun feasts at Fisher's. Back in Gulf Shores, Big Beach Brewing Company offers its fine craft beers in a comfortable tasting room.

But, while there's plenty to see, taste and do, in the end, it's the beautiful beaches of the Alabama coast that you'll love the most. Bet you can't visit just once.