Make Payment
My Favs
1-877-446-4853

Lets Chat About Your Vacation!

Are you craving an escape from the hustle and bustle of the big city? Make the trip from Atlanta, Georgia, to Gulf Shores, Alabama. With its white sandy beaches, family-friendly atmosphere, and fantastic vacation rentals. There’s nowhere better to go than Gulf Shores! Keep reading to how you can embark on a trip from Atlanta, GA, to Gulf Shores, AL 

When you arrive in Gulf Shores, you’ll want to explore everything that this charming coastal area offers. To book fun-filled activities at affordable prices in one convenient place, use TripShock. Our program makes booking Gulf Coast adventures easy!   

find activities with once there

Head From Atlanta, GA, To Gulf Shores, AL 

The distance from Atlanta to Gulf Shores is approximately 348 miles. This makes it the perfect spot for a convenient getaway with manageable travel times. Whether you prefer to fly or drive, there are options to make this trip perfect for you.  

Road Trip 

Pack the car and take a road trip down south. The drive from Atlanta, GA, to Gulf Shores, AL, only takes about five and a half hours. The route is relatively straight and follows along I-85 South and I-65 South.  

If you want to break up the trip, Montgomery, AL, is the perfect place for a pit stop. After leaving Atlanta, you’ll reach Montgomery in just under two and half hours. As the capital of the state, there’s plenty of things to see and do in this city. Some of the most popular things to do in Montgomery include visiting the Rosa Parks Library and Museum, Montgomery Zoo, and Hank Williams Museum.  

Flying 

If you’d prefer to fly instead of driving, that’s a viable option. You can fly out of the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) and into the Pensacola International Airport (PNS). The flight only takes a little over an hour. Once you land, you can rent a car or take a transportation service to Gulf Shores. That car ride is approximately one hour long.  

Explore Everything That Gulf Shores Has To Offer 

You did it! You’ve made it to the Gulf of Mexico. Make the most out of your vacation and explore everything that this one of a kind area has to offer.  

Hit the Beach 

Gulf Shores is famous for its white sand beaches and great weather

When you live in Atlanta, you’re landlocked. Luckily for you, Gulf Shores isn’t far away, and it’s home to incredible beaches. Voted one of the best beaches by Coastal Living magazine, Gulf Shores Beach is famous for its unbelievably sugary-white sands. Spend your days relaxing by the shoreline, building sandcastles with your family, or taking a dip in the ocean. From jet skiing to parasailing to beach volleyball, there’s always fun to be had at the beach!  

Experience Alabama Gulf State Park 

One of the most gorgeous places to visit in Gulf Shores is Alabama State Park. The park has a variety of incredible sights and activities for people of all ages to enjoy. Gulf State Park is home to Hugh S. Branyon Back Country Trail, the largest paved trail network in the United States. It weaves its way through the town and links to a series of hiking and biking trails. The park also features a scenic golf course where you can practice your swing.  

Have a Blast at an Amusement Park 

Head just a few minutes up the road and make your way over to The Park at OWA. This unbelievable amusement park features 23 different attractions, thrilling rides, can’t miss events, and some of the most delicious park food you have ever experienced. It also offers 10000 square feet of water park fun. Whether you’re young or old, The Park at OWA has something for everyone.  

Gulf Shores is home to more than one amusement park. Since its opening, Waterville USA became one of the premier entertainment destinations for families vacationing along the Alabama Gulf Coast. The excitement never stops at this park. One of the most popular attractions is the Flowrider. Channel your inner surfer and ride over a continuous wave. You can practice all your tricks on a perfect wave with no fear of falling or injury! If you’re a thrillseeker, then you’ll want to get in line for Great White. This world-class one, two, and three passenger tubing adventure sends you through the jaws of a Great White Shark, a tunnel, a waterfall, and a quick drop to the lagoon below. This ride is the Gulf Coast’s most awesome tube ride. 

Stay in a Luxurious Vacation Rental 

beach house kitchen

When you arrive in Gulf Shores, you’ll need somewhere to rest your head and make your home away from home. Here at Harris Vacation Rentals, we’ve been making dream vacations a reality for over three decades. We’re happy to offer vacation homes of all shapes and sizes and varying amenities for whatever your group needs. We provide pet-friendly rentals, homes with private pools, and more. We even offer properties in Fort Morgan and Orange Beach, in addition to Gulf Shores.   

One of our standout properties is 50 Shades of Blue. This 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom home is perfect for any beach lover. Located right in the heart of Gulf Shores, guests will be able to access the area’s best attractions easily. It’s situated directly across from the beach and features two decks, giving it the ultimate coastal appeal. This pet-friendly home offers a fully-equipped kitchen, spacious bedrooms, a laundry room, and more!   

There’s no time to waste! Check our availability and find the perfect vacation rental for you. We can’t wait to see you in Gulf Shores!  

browse our properties

Your getaway doesn’t have to be all about the children. On your next Gulf Shores vacation, treat yourself to some much deserved time away from the kids. We know how you can make the most of your “me-time.” So remember, just because you’re a mom doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to have some fun during your beach vacation! However you wish to unwind, you won’t regret a mom’s getaway to Gulf Shores.

Book your Gulf Shores getaway today!

We Know the Secrets to an Unforgettable Mom’s Getaway to Gulf Shores!

Lounge on the Beach 

Gulf Shores is home to the best beaches on the Alabama Gulf Coast. These white-sand beaches and sparkling blue waters have so much to offer. If you want an undisturbed beach day away from the crowds, you’ve come to the perfect place! Gulf Shores beaches are ideal for curling up on the sand with your favorite book and taking in the serene shoreline for as long as you’d like. Oh, and the best part? While you unwind by the shore, your kids will be safe and very entertained at any of the local summer camps or  youth programs. 

Shop ‘til You Drop! 

No vacation is complete without a shopping trip! Whether you’re looking to add a new special piece to your closet, or need something cute for a night out, you’re going to find it here! Gulf Shores has shopping for all tastes. If you’re on the hunt for a one-of-a-kind item, we recommend popping into a local boutique. If you prefer getting a deal on the trendiest looks, stop by any of the local shopping districts or the popular Tanger Outlets in Foley, Alabama.

Treat Yourself to a Spa Day

Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are home to some of the most relaxing spas on the Gulf Coast. So, if you’re looking for the best place to pamper yourself, check out these spots: 

Try Specialty Wines 

Dress up and go on an exciting date with your sweetheart to Beyond the Grape Winery. This popular tasting room offers a fun paint and sip class that will delight artists of all experience levels. After you’ve unleashed your creative side, pick a local restaurant for a romantic dinner with your darling.

For the Best Accommodations, Stay in a Harris Vacation Rental 

The best way to plan a mom’s getaway to the Gulf is by finding a fantastic rental home that will make the whole family happy. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or an extended beach vacation, our properties have everything you need. Our vacation rentals come with fantastic amenities like private pools, oceanfront views, hot tubs, and game rooms. When you stay at a Harris vacation home, your kids can play pool or foosball while you relax to the soothing sounds of the Gulf.  

Browse our full selection of vacation rentals and book your home away from home today! We look forward to having you.

If you’re looking for the perfect place to celebrate the summertime with your family, Alabama’s Gulf Shores has everything you need! The Gulf Shores’ outdoor recreation is extraordinary! You can take in the spectacular wildlife or search for dolphins in the Gulf. The magic of Gulf Shores will leave you and your crew with lasting memories! For more vacation inspo and other Gulf Shores adventures, check out TripShock. When you book a Harris Vacation Rentals family vacation rental, you’ll even receive up to $100 off local tours and activities through TripShock. Planning the ultimate vacation has never been easier!

We Highly Recommend Taking Advantage of Gulf Shores Endless Outdoor Recreation Opportunities!

Spend an Afternoon at Alabama Gulf State Park

The Alabama Gulf State Park provides a Gulf Shores outdoor recreation experience like no other. This park boasts tons of outdoor activities for the whole family to enjoy. You can start by strolling along the country’s largest paved trail network, then splash around on Lake Shelby and finally, snap a few family photos on the Gulf State Pier. A relaxing afternoon at Alabama Gulf State Park will leave you wanting more Gulf Shores adventures.  

Discover Wildlife at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge

You have to see the stunning landscape of Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge! This nature reserve extends along the Gulf Shores for nearly 7,000 acres, and it’s home to many species of flora and fauna. The Wildlife Refuge is open to the public year-round, and it offers a variety of outdoor activities such as fishing, boating, hiking, and bird watching. With so many unique creatures to see and beautiful vistas to capture, the whole family will be entertained for hours. 

Explore the Bay on a Guided Dolphin Tour 

Hop aboard a dolphin watching cruise for a remarkable outdoor adventure. Several local businesses offer guided tours of varying lengths. One of our family-friendly favorites is the Dolphin eco-tour. On this two-hour nature cruise, you’ll get to see the Gulf Shores from a different vantage point, explore hidden estuaries and, of course, spot the local dolphin pod! Trust us; the kids will thank you! 

Take Your Family to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

The Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo is widely known as the “Little Zoo” for its starring role in The Little Zoo That Could on Animal Planet. However, despite its nickname, this “little zoo” houses 600 animals, 199 sub-species, and 22 endangered species. When you visit this tropical urban oasis, you’ll find yourself surrounded by curious sounds and a diverse array of animals. The zoo is adjacent to a nature preserve, spreads over 25 acres, and provides up-close sights of the animal exhibits to visitors of all ages.

In March of 2020, the zoo opened in a new park and welcomed record crowds. The new park features more innovative spaces, encourages public education programs, and emphasizes animal conservation. You’ve never seen a zoo quite like this one, so next time you’re in town, be sure to check it out.

Admire Art at Museums Near Gulf Shores, Alabama

The city of Gulf Shores has a rich history, filled with colorful characters, delicate architecture, and region-specific experiences. Throughout many of the museums found in the area, you’ll find exhibits and explanations for events of the past, and when you leave, it will be with a deeper appreciation for life on the Gulf. 

These fascinating museums will take you through time, art, and history by way of their captivating charm and historical significance:

Go for a Helicopter Ride With a Skilled Pilot

For a special experience over the cool blue water, take a helicopter tour in Gulf Shores. Picture yourself buzzing through the clouds, taking in all the views of the picturesque coast. Lost Bay Helicopter Tours offers a vast array of tours. Pick anything from an Island View Tour to a Sunset Tour and you’ll get to see the Gulf Coast like never before. If you think that’s  fun, take on another challenge and book a flying lesson! You’ll be guided by an experienced pilot with incredible knowledge of the skies!

Feel the Sand Between Your Toes

We know you’ve been dreaming of the Gulf Coast’s sugar-white sand and sparkling blue waters! What better way to spend your vacation than relaxing on these pristine and undiscovered beaches? Lucky for you, the Gulf Coast is home to gorgeous beaches in several locations, so you can relax on a different beach every day.

Take some time to explore the beaches in these three areas:  Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, and Fort Morgan. Each area has its own special charm and offers endless fun for the entire family. While you are in Gulf Shores, hit the water on a jet ski, kayak, or  stand-up paddleboard. Then, head to Orange Beach or Fort Morgan for a serene beach day away from the crowds. Here, you’ll have plenty of beach fun building sandcastles, playing beach volleyball, or reading a book in the sand. However you choose to spend your day, make sure it’s on the Gulf Coast.

There’s No Place Like a Harris Home

Once you’ve discovered what Gulf Shores has to offer, retreat to a perfect island-style vacation rental. Unwinding in a Harris Vacation Rentals home is ideal for you, your kids, and even our furry friend! Our private properties span from Orange Beach to Gulf Shores and offer plenty of space for everyone in your party. Make your home away from home on that’s just minutes away from the beach and give your family the getaway they deserve. Spend your spring break, summer, or any other vacation with us. We can’t wait to meet you! Browse our properties and contact us to book an unforgettable beach getaway today! 

BOOK NOW

Book your family vacation today!

Are you ready for a break from the hustle and bustle of city life? Have you been daydreaming about sugar-white sand and sparkling blue water? If so, it’s time for a relaxing getaway to Gulf Shores, Alabama! With beautiful beaches, fabulous restaurants, and exciting activities, it’s hard to imagine a more perfect paradise along the Gulf of Mexico. The best part? It’s just a short drive or plane ride from Birmingham, AL to Gulf Shores. So, what are you waiting for? Explore our coastal vacation rentals and start planning your next trip to paradise!

Getting There:

Via Car:

Most visitors choose to drive from Birmingham, AL to Gulf Shores. It’s a short 5-hour journey by car via I-65 South. This is the fastest and most direct route, and you’ll pass several charming towns along the way.

If you’re looking for a great halfway point to break for lunch, there are several great eateries in Montgomery. Some of our favorites are Mrs. B’s Home Cooking, Cahawba House, and Alloz Grill. Or, continue further down the road and take the exit for Priester’s Pecans in Fort Deposit. This eclectic gift shop carries a variety of sweet treats, including candied pecans, fudge, and sixteen flavors of ice cream! And if you’d like to wait until Greenville, Bates House of Turkey is another fabulous option. After you grab a bite to eat, it’s a smooth and easy ride to Gulf Shores! 

Via Plane:

If you prefer to travel by plane, there are also several quick Birmingham to Gulf Shores flights. Pensacola National Airport (PNS) is the closest airport to Gulf Shores, Alabama. The average flight time is approximately 1 hour, and then it’s just a 1-hour drive from Pensacola to Gulf Shores. 

Things to Do in Gulf Shores, Alabama

Now that you’ve reached your final destination, it’s time to enjoy paradise! Gulf Shores is known for its pristine beaches, excellent shops and restaurants, upscale spas, and exciting nightlife. By day, relax at the beach and sink your toes into the powder-soft sand. The sound of gentle waves will carry you to pure bliss! By night, check out the hip beach bars, listen to live music, or catch the latest show at the theatre. The possibilities are endless! 

Gulf Shores also boasts a plethora of activities and attractions. From kayaking and stand up paddleboarding to snorkeling, diving, and fishing, there are endless ways to have fun on the Gulf. Explore the waterways on a boating excursion, take a dolphin sunset tour, or fly high on a parasailing adventure. If you prefer to stay on land, get out and explore miles of scenic hiking trails. And if adventure is what you seek, you’re in luck! Visit one of the amusement parks, race go-karts at The Track, play a round of mini-golf, or tee off on one of the championship golf courses. Whether your idea of the perfect vacation includes relaxing by the shoreline or exploring all the sights, there is something for everyone! 

Book Your Gulf Shores Getaway With Harris Vacation Rentals

50 shades of blue

When it comes to lodging in Gulf Shores, no place compares to Harris Vacation Rentals! Our luxurious Gulf Shores vacation rentals are near all of these amazing attractions. From intimate condos and cottages to upscale retreats, we offer a wide range of accommodations options. We also offer pet-friendly rentals for guests who are traveling with their four-legged friends! And our premium concierge services will ensure you have everything you could ever want or need while on vacation. 

After your trip from Birmingham, AL to Gulf Shores, you’ll want to kick back and relax in your comfortable vacation rental. With cozy furnishings and top-notch amenities, 50 Shades of Blue is sure to sweep you off your feet! This 3 bedroom/ 2 bath home features coastal decor, a fully-equipped kitchen, and 2 spacious decks. It’s the perfect choice for beach-lovers! 

Make sure to take advantage of our last-minute deals and book your Gulf Shores getaway today. We can’t wait to welcome you! 

Book Your Family Vacation With Harris Vacation Rentals Today!

Music. Food. Fun. These are the three ingredients for an unforgettable Gulf Shores vacation. Where can you go to find all of these elements in one place? The Hangout Gulf Shores! This colorful, open-air attraction features various restaurants, live music, bars, and shops. It’s a great spot to spend the day with family or friends.

The only other thing you need for an unforgettable vacation is the perfect rental home. At Harris Vacation Rentals, we ensure the best experience for our guests. From beachfront bungalows to luxurious condos, there’s something to fit everyone’s vacation style. Book your rental home today!

About The Hangout Gulf Shores

Today, The Hangout has become the heart and soul of Gulf Shores. Its vibrant, lively atmosphere has been a staple of Gulf Shores culture since the 1950s and 60s. Nearly 70 years ago, The Hangout was a meeting place for surfers enjoying the local beaches.

The Hangout remained a local gathering place until Hurricane Ivan destroyed the property in 2004. However, The Hangout returned bigger and better than ever in 2008!  After a significant rebuild, the entertainment venue continues to grow to this day.

Things to Do at The Hangout

The Hangout is one of our favorite places for family fun in Gulf Shores. The venue is just feet away from the Gulf of Mexico, making it a beautiful place to spend time after a day at the beach.

Eat & Drink

What kind of food are you in the mood for today?

The Hangout dining room is constantly buzzing with excitement and delicious food. The venue’s signature dishes include the Cajun Campfire Steak, Hangout Jambalaya, Hang 10 Cheeseburger, Big Beach Burger, and Shaka Wrap. Are you feeling hungry yet?

Peruse all of the menus at The Hangout, then select some of the tastiest beachfront cuisine you’ll ever have!

You can also find Gulf Shores’s most famous drinks here. Chill out with a cocktail at the mermaid bar, sip on a draft beer, enjoy a frozen drink at the daiquiri bar, or try one of the featured brews. You can’t go wrong!

Have Fun

There’s something fun for those of all ages at The Hangout! Unique photo ops include the giant shaka hand, hangout chairs, and, of course, the beach.

Kids (and adults, too!) love playing in the sandpit and participating in the hourly foam party. There’s also an area for backyard games, a souvenir T-shirt shop, and a colorful wish wall. Enjoy live music at the mermaid stage and huddle around the fire pit on cool nights.

Our favorite aspect of The Hangout is all of the vintage decor, especially the wall collections. From old-school lunch boxes to black and white photographs, these memorabilia will transport you back in time!

Hangout Music Fest

The Hangout Gulf Shores is best known for its fantastic annual music festival. The Hangout Music Fest is the most famous Gulf Shores concert, and thousands flock to attend every year. Held the weekend before Memorial Day, this multi-day outdoor festival features some of the industry’s top artists. Relax beachside, jam out to amazing music, and take part in all the fun activities at the event. What’s not to love?

For more information about the music festival, check out the official website.

Hang Out at Harris Vacation Rentals

la mahana community pool

After you’ve explored The Hangout Gulf Shores, return to your stunning Harris Vacation Rentals vacation rental. Our homes are an attraction in and of themselves, and La Mahana is no exception. This gorgeous ground-level unit features a private patio, tropical decor, and a fully equipped kitchen, You’ll also have access to unbeatable amenities, from a crystal blue swimming pool to an outdoor shower and grilling area. The rental includes beachfront access so that you can start your mornings with a sunrise walk along the shore.

There’s nothing better than a family vacation by the ocean! Browse our properties and book your trip today! Browse our deals now!

Book Your Family Vacation With Harris Vacation Rentals Today!

Gulf Shores is known for its white sand beaches, deep blue waters, and amusing attractions. During the heat of the day, take a break from the high temperatures and treat yourself to an afternoon of shopping in Gulf Shores in Alabama. Leave some extra room when you’re packing your bags, because there are plenty of tempting trinkets to buy along the Gulf Coast! Read on to discover where to shop in Gulf Shores. Then, browse our family vacation rentals and start planning your vacation today!

Have the Most Fun Shopping in Gulf Shores in Alabama

There’s something to entertain every type of shopper in Gulf Shores. What will you discover during your trip?

Unique Shops

If you’re looking for one-of-a-kind stores, you’re in the right place! You won’t find a shop like Fran’s on 59 anywhere else. This specialty boutique, just a 15-minute drive from downtown Gulf Shores, sells a mix of antiques, garden sculptures, jewelry, and home goods. Fran’s on 59 is the ideal store for treasure hunters seeking their next great find!

Calling all candy lovers! The Chocolate Corner, voted Alabama’s #1 chocolate shop, specializes in all things sweet. Whether you’re searching for homemade fudge, beach-shaped treats, or ice cream, this is the place for you.

Malls

Do you want to shop ‘til you drop? The Foley Tanger Outlets has all of your favorite stores in one place. With over 100 stores to choose from, you’re bound to see something that catches your eye. Will you get a cute swimsuit at the Express Factory Outlet or a new set of clubs at Golf 4 Less? The choice is yours!

Our favorite mall in the area is The Wharf at Orange Beach. This all-in-one entertainment hub has it all. Spend the afternoon shopping, grab dinner at one of the waterfront restaurants, and see a movie or concert at night. Don’t miss a ride on The Wharf’s iconic Ferris wheel, either!

Need more recommendations? Check out our blog on the top five shopping malls in the area.

Souvenir Shops  

Of course, you can’t come back from vacation without a few souvenirs! Check out Souvenir City for everything from Gulf Shores koozies to shark tooth necklaces to T-shirts. We also recommend window shopping along Beach Boulevard, the city’s main street, for some great deals. You’ll find a plethora of souvenir stores just steps away from the ocean! Don’t forget to check these places out during your shopping in Gulf Shores in Alabama!

Soak up the Sun at Harris Vacation Rentals

southern living condo beach

After you’ve explored the best shopping in Gulf Shores in Alabama, you’ll deserve some time to relax. Luckily for you, we know the perfect place! Southern Living at the Palms is a beautiful Orange Beach vacation rental with breathtaking views of the ocean.  The spacious three bedroom, two bathroom condo sleeps ten just steps away from the sea. Spend your days basking in the sun on the beach or at the pool, then cook a family meal in the fully equipped kitchen during the evenings. You and your family deserve a tropical vacation. Reserve your stay before this fantastic unit is all booked! Book one of our favorite condos and browse these amazing deals!

There are few better places for year-round live music than Gulf Shores, Alabama. All year long, this beachfront town is the perfect setting to see your favorite band perform. Locals and tourists alike love to experience the area’s lively entertainment scene, so we’ve compiled the essential guide to Gulf Shores concerts. What are you waiting for? Gather your friends and family, belt out the lyrics to your favorite songs, and dance like no one is watching! Then, continue the fun at a private vacation rental with Harris Vacation Rentals!

Book Your Family Vacation Today!

Have a Rockin Good Time at These Gulf Shores Concerts

From intimate shows on the water to nationally acclaimed music festivals, there’s no shortage of concerts to attend in Gulf Shores. Here are our favorite ways to enjoy the Gulf Coast music scene!

Join the Party at Local Music Festivals

Hangout Music Festival

The annual Hangout Music Festival is the most renowned music festival on the Gulf Coast. Rain or shine, you can enjoy three days of music from the top rock, hip-hop, indie, and electronic artists in the industry. Past and upcoming artists include The Chainsmokers, Halsey, The Killers, SZA, Logic, The 1975, Khalid, and Hozier. For access to exclusive artist performances and preferred viewing areas, treat yourself to VIP tickets.

You’ll never be bored with activities like a tropical spa, puppy kissing booth, and a roller disco. Toast s’mores and tell stories around the fire at Camp Hangout, or take a spin on the Ferris wheel for an excellent view of the Gulf. You don’t want to miss the beachfront Hangout Festival this May ‒ get your tickets now!

Frank Brown International Songwriters’ Festival

Talented musicians from all over the country perform at the Frank Brown Songwriters’ Festival. The festival spans across two dozen venues along the Florida and Alabama Gulf Coast and features over 200 acclaimed, up-and-coming artists. Check out shows in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, as well as Pensacola’s Flora Bama beach bar.

One of the best parts of the festival is that the artists have a chance to share their musical journey with attendees. Some of the songs that guests hear are still in demo stages, and the musicians love to hear audience feedback. If you love music and are eager to learn more about the songwriting process, this is the festival for you. Learn more about the performers and get ready for ten days of soulful music this November!

Return for a Concert Series Encore

The C Spire Concert Series comes to Gulf Shores every spring and summer for months of outstanding outdoor music concerts. Plenty of talent passes through the Wharf Amphitheater each season. Past and future headliners include Imagine Dragons, The Dave Matthews Band, Hootie & The Blowfish, Zac Brown Band, and Jimmy Buffett. Explore the full lineup of upcoming events and reserve your tickets!

In addition to attending a concert at the Amphitheater, you can explore the rest of The Wharf at Orange Beach. You can shop, dine, see a movie, or play some mini golf at this entertainment destination.

Swim Out to a Floating Music Venue

Have you ever heard of a concert you could swim to? Well, there’s a first for everything! Gumbo Key is less of a concert venue and more of a well-kept local secret. Boaters find the event by using GPS coordinates which lead them to a barge marked with a flag. Gumbo Key’s “leave no trace” policy promotes more than just mystery. The event is adamant about cleaning up all trash to protect the fragile marine ecosystem.

There’s no better way to celebrate the summer solstice than attending a free, floating concert. In years past, thousands of people have flocked to the mythical floating venue to hear live Southern music serenade the Gulf Coast.

All you need is a boat to get you there! Check out some of our boat rental options and head out to the elusive Gumbo Key. Then, spend the rest of the day zipping around the open ocean and exploring the magic of Gulf Shores.

Get a Taste of the Area’s Best Live Music

A guide to the music of Gulf Shores would be incomplete without mentioning some of the best places to experience live music with a little more local flair.

Pleasure Island Tiki Bar

Pleasant Island Tiki is known for their open-air beach vibes and excellent live entertainment. Take a seat at the colorful bar, enjoy views of Terry Cove, and immerse yourself in the sounds of Gulf Shores. The live music lineup includes regular favorite Al & Cathy, a local classic rock band. Get ready to jam out with a drink in your hand!

Papa Rocco’s

Live music and a kitchen open until midnight? Count us in! Papa Rocco’s pizza and oyster bar serves up free, in-house concerts every night of the week. Don’t miss their extended happy hour from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. every Monday through Friday.

Insider tip: If you are in town for St. Patrick’s Day, check out Papa’s owner Bill McGinnes’s Pub Crawl.

Lucy Buffett’s Lulu’s

Lulu’s family-friendly restaurant is a Gulf Shores landmark. Bring the kids, order some fresh-caught seafood, and soak up good vibes. Climb the ropes course and play at the arcade while live music fills the air. Lulu’s is an all-in-one hotspot for family fun!

Come Sail Away to a Gulf Shores Vacation Rental

Tiki Time Kitchen

Attending a Gulf Shores concert will have you dancing all night long! We have good news: discovering the Gulf Coast music scene is one of many fun things to do in Gulf Shores. Hit the beach, rent a bike, play a round of golf… there are limitless options for fun on Gulf Shores!

Now, all you need is to find the perfect vacation rental for you and your family! At Harris Vacation Rentals, our wide range of Gulf Shores vacation rentals have something for everyone. During your stay on the Gulf Coast, let our Tiki Time property be your home away from home. This charming, bayfront bungalow is beautifully decorated and comfortably sleeps 10. The house has its own pool, a large deck overlooking the lagoon, and a covered entertainment area. The private pier is ideal for kayaking, fishing, and family photo ops. The ultimate family vacation is at your fingertips. Browse our vacation rentals and start planning your Gulf Shores getaway today!
[links-block content=”Gulf Shores Vacation Rentals”]

With 32 miles of white-sand beaches, clear turquoise water and a family-friendly atmosphere, you can’t go wrong. Whether this is your first trip or you’re a repeat visitor, there’s plenty to keep the entire family entertained on Alabama beaches!  If you’re ready to try something fun and adventurous, you won’t be disappointed in the selection of new attractions in Gulf Shores or Orange Beach. Take a look at our top four favorite Orange Beach and Gulf Shores attractions!

Hummingbird Zipline

Orange Beach Zipline
Technically, the Hummingbird Zipline has been around for several years. However, during 2017 the zipline was deconstructed from the Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores and relocated to The Wharf in Orange Beach. The new Orange Beach zipline is bigger and better than ever! Experience an adrenaline-pumping excursion with breathtaking views over both land and water. The new zipline features more towers than the previous one, with nine towers and seven ziplines extending the length of one mile. You’ll soar as high as 90 feet above the ground and enjoy spectacular views of the Intracoastal Waterway and other coastal scenery. If you’re vacationing with a large group of family and friends, tour guides can take as many as 10 zipliners at one time.

What to Know About the Orange Beach Zipline

Stay and Play Near The Wharf and Hummingbird Zipline

The Wharf and its surrounding Orange Beach attractions offer a plethora of world-class restaurants, family-friendly attractions, 10,000-seat amphitheater, boutique shopping and more. For those who want to stay nearby, consider bayfront vacationing. Beach houses offer an ideal opportunity to spread out and enjoy privacy. Dock of the Bay, a four-bedroom, 2 ½ half bath beach house located on Wolf Bay, is just a short drive from this entertainment district and beaches. In fact, you’ll have your own, private bayfront beach and dock. Dock of the Bay is ideal for those who love fishing, kayaking and getting back to nature with the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail nearby.  Other budget friendly options are the homes at Orange Beach Villas.

Orange Beach Catboat Tours

Orange Beach Cat Boat ToursYou won’t find any other Orange Beach attraction quite like this one! Orange Beach Cat Boat Tours opened in 2017 and has been thrilling vacationers with adrenaline-pumping adventures ever since. Located at Caribe Marina, you’ll have the opportunity to coast through the scenic back bays and Ole River areas of Orange Beach on your own, personal watercraft. You can choose between a guided tour or can actually rent a cat boat for as little as $50 per hour and explore on your own after a brief lesson. A cat boat is a unique watercraft and is considered a compact catamaran. The boat sits low to the water and accommodates a driver and passenger in comfortable seats.

If you need a first-hand account before you work up the nerve to pilot your own boat for the first time, Fadra Nally of All Things Fadra has the details for you. “In just a few short hours, I went from very hesitant, first-time boat “captain” trying to figure out how to steer without a steering wheel to a Cat Boat-loving, stick-steering master! Orange Beach Cat Boat Tours gave me the knowledge and confidence to zip around the waterways (and get my pulse pounding) or take it slow to check out the scenery in the back bays – from wildlife to amazing homes right on the water.”

What to Know About Orange Beach Cat Boat Tours

Stay and Play Near Caribe Marina and Orange Beach Cat Boat Tours

If you’ve never experienced the tranquility Ole River in Orange Beach offers, Blue River at Wind Drift is the perfect Orange Beach vacation rental. The three-bedroom, two-bathroom condo is located directly on Ole River with beach access just steps away. If you already own a boat, Wind Drift is boat-friendly and boat slips are available for a small fee paid onsite.

Foley, AL OWA Amusement Park

OWA flying carouselOWA is another one of the newest beach attractions that takes top billing. While not actually in Gulf Shores or Orange Beach, the amusement park is located just a few minutes away in nearby Foley. Plan to spend a full day at OWA during your Gulf Shores AL vacation. The park offers a come-and-go atmosphere, unlike attractions similar to Six Flags. There are plenty of restaurants including Wahlburgers and The Groovy Goat, with more being added. You can even satisfy your sweet tooth at Hershey’s Ice Cream Parlor. There are 21 roller coasters and rides ready to provide thrills and chills for all ages. Rollin’ Thunder is a park favorite and features stomach-dropping loops, twists and hairpin turns. Year-round special events keep the entertainment going. Check the park’s event calendar prior to your Gulf Shores vacation to make sure you have the latest OWA news.

What to Know About OWA

Stay and Play Near OWA

Amusement parks are always more fun in groups! If you’re traveling with a large group and need a Gulf Shores AL vacation rental that’ll sleep, oh say, 26 people, check out Brainstopper. It’s appropriately named because the moment you walk in the door, your worries and stress will melt away. Besides offering eight bedrooms and eight and a half baths, you also have use of two community pools and direct beach access. Expansive balconies are perfect for your morning cup of coffee before heading out to experience the thrills at OWA.

Sand Castle University

Sand Castle UniversityWe’re taking the adventure down a notch for those ready for some good, old-fashioned beach fun. If your sandcastle-building skills fall a little flat, treat the family to a lesson with Sand Castle University. SCU offers group sessions for building perfect sand sculptures. Owner Janel will bring the class to you, complete with all the necessary beach tools needed! Trust us when we say, you won’t even mind any homework from this “class.” If you’re celebrating a special occasion like a graduation, anniversary or marriage proposal, Sand Castle University can even construct a personalized sand sculpture for the occasion!

What to Know About Sand Castle University

Stay and Play Near Sand Castle University

One of the things that makes this new Gulf Shores attraction so attractive is that it can come to you! So, essentially, everywhere is near SCU. However, we suggest taking a peek at the Lemon Drop beach house located in Morgantown in the Fort Morgan community. It’s a great spot with plenty of quiet white-sand beach available. The four-bedroom, two and a half beach house offers access to two community pools and tennis courts. When you aren’t building sandcastles, the secluded neighborhood is great for bike riding. You can even bring your golf cart along! If you have a large group, Lemon Drop is located near several other beach houses, including Brainstopper, Pelican Paradise, Sea La Vie and Sawgrass.

Now that you know where to stay and play on your next Gulf Shores and Orange Beach AL vacation, it’s time to start planning your next trip! For information on booking direct and keeping money in your pocket for all these great beach attractions, check out this blog with money-saving tips for booking Gulf Shores vacation rentals.