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When you picture your ideal beach vacation, what do you see? Are you lounging on white sand beaches, parasailing over bright blue waters, or dining at waterfront restaurants? Gulf Shores is the perfect destination for experiencing all of these activities and more. Fishing along the Gulf is an excellent way to spend a day during your trip. Savor the sunshine, hang out by the water, and have fun seeing who can reel in the biggest catch. If you’ve never fished before, or this is your first time fishing in Gulf Shores, don’t worry! We created the ultimate Gulf Shores, Alabama fishing guide. Read on to find out the best spots for fishing and some tips and tricks for fishing along the Gulf. Then, check out all of our family-friendly vacation rentals and get ready to book your vacation!

Look No Further for Your Gulf Shores Fishing Guide

Where to Fish

Gulf State Park

The Alabama Gulf Coast is a great spot for avid anglers. The Gulf State Park Fishing Pier, in the heart of Gulf State Park, is perhaps the best place for fishing in the state. Hurricane Ivan destroyed the old pier in 2004, but the rebuilt and revamped pier is better than ever before. The new pier is wheelchair accessible and features comfort stations, a shop for tackle and souvenirs, and indoor seating at the concessions area.

The pier is also an incredibly scenic spot for fishing! You can choose saltwater fishing off the dock for flounder, speckled trout, Spanish mackerel, and more. Or, you can venture farther into the park for freshwater fishing in Lake Shelby. There, you’ll find redfish, bass, catfish, and more. A complete list of fees can be found on the park’s website. There are additional charges for fishing licenses and rod rentals.

Inshore and Offshore Fishing Charters

Fishing charters are another awesome way to get the most out of your Gulf Shores fishing experience. When you select a fishing charter, the captain provides everything you’ll need. This includes the boat, fishing licenses, equipment, and top-notch knowledge of the local waters. Here are a few of our favorite fishing charters in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach:

  1. Orange Beach Fishing Charters ‒ This capable crew has over 35 years of fishing experience. They offer a variety of options to fit every group’s size and preferred timeframe. Their most-booked tour is the six-hour-long charter for six people. Check out their website for pricing details. We highly suggest bringing your catch to the on-site restaurant at Zeke’s Landing Marina after your charter. They will happily serve you your freshly caught seafood!
  2. Fish-Kabob Bowfishing  ‒ Fish-Kabob charters offer a variety of services to their guests. You can choose from fresh- or saltwater, night or day, bow or rod, inshore or offshore fishing when you book a charter with them. Their most popular adventure package is the Night Saltwater Inshore Bowfishing and Gigging excursion. You’ll have the chance to see stingrays, sheepshead, butterfly rays, and more.
  3. Red Eye Charters  ‒ This half- or full-day charter service specializes in Bottom Fishing, Trolling, Tuna Fishing, and Deep Dropping for up to six guests. Red Eye charters is happy to accommodate groups looking for either a relaxing day on the water or a challenging afternoon excursion. The boat itself features a high cruise speed and comfortable amenities.

Check out the Gulf Shores Tourism website for even more fishing charter options!

When to Fish

two men surf fishing along the water

There’s no doubt about it: fishing is a year-round sport along the Alabama Gulf Coast. During the summer, surf fishing along the beach is a favorite activity for both kids and adults.  Pompano, whiting, and flounder are the most common catches for this fishing method. When the spring weather turns into summer heat within a matter of weeks, it’s important to head into deeper waters to find bigger fish.

Summertime is arguably the best time of year for fishing in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. However, winter offers some promising fishing opportunities as well. Redfish, pompano, and sheepshead are the top three winter catches in Gulf Shores. Braving the winter cold could have a big payoff!

Check out this chart for a complete list of what’s biting during the different seasons. Please note that, while fishing is permitted at all times of the year, gray triggerfish season doesn’t begin until midnight on March 1st. Federal waters also open on this day.

How to Fish

Fishing rods off the back of a boat

There are so many different fishing methods to use in Gulf Shores. So, what exactly is the difference between inshore and offshore fishing? Inshore fishing usually takes place within nine miles of the shoreline. Popular spots include Fort Morgan and Perdido Pass. In Gulf Shores, you can expect to spend four to six hours reeling in speckled trout, white trout, tripletail, flounder and redfish. Offshore, or deep sea fishing, is done more than nine miles from land (typically 20-30 miles). Delve into the Gulf of Mexico’s rich, blue waters to find artificial reefs, natural sand bottoms, and a variety of fish.

Other fishing methods along the Gulf include fly fishing, bow fishing, and canoe or kayak fishing. These unique adventures can add an extra element of excitement to your fishing journey. No matter which method you choose, Gulf Shores is the ideal place for appreciating breathtaking scenery and catching staggering fish.

Reel in a Great Vacation Deal at Harris Properties

beach babe porch overlooking private beach and pier

Now that you’ve read our Gulf Shores, Alabama fishing guide, you’re ready to get out on the water! Whether you’re traveling to Gulf Shores for a guys getaway, family reunion, or vacation with the kids, fishing is a wonderful way to get out and enjoy the Alabama sunshine.

A vacation rental home with Harris Properties is the perfect place to unwind and spend quality time with family and friends. Our Beach Babe home features a private beach and fishing pier for your enjoyment. Soak up the sun on the sand or test out your fishing skills on the dock. The home’s side porch overlooks Little Lagoon, making it a peaceful spot to relax with a book or a cup of coffee. This 3-bedroom oasis has comfortable furnishings, spacious entertainment areas, and covered parking as well.

Why wait to take the vacation of your dreams? Check our availability and start planning your Gulf Shores vacation today!

Salty air, ocean breeze, and blue skies for miles. This is what the perfect Gulf Shores day looks like. One of our favorite things to do in the area is to rent a boat and explore the Gulf Coast first-hand. During your next Orange Beach vacation, spend a day on the water, soaking up the sunshine. Read on to discover the best Orange Beach boat rentals. Then, get ready to book the ultimate family beach vacation with Harris Properties!

Book Your Family Vacation Today With Harris Properties!

The Top 3 Orange Beach Boat Rentals

1. Orange Beach Boat Rentals

This family-oriented boat rental company is a staple of the Gulf Shores boating community. Located at The Wharf Orange Beach, Orange Beach Boat Rentals provides you with a map of the area as well as a complete tour of the vessel before you head out on the bay.

All of their boats include safety equipment, life jackets, clean restrooms, two anchors, satellite radio, leather cushions, and more. Select from either a half, full, or multi-day boating trip. Be sure to make your reservation in advance, and get ready to explore the natural beauty of Orange Beach!

2. Wallace Boat Rentals

Another full-service boat rental company, Wallace Boat Rentals encourages its customers to be their own captain. No boating license is required, though ample instruction and maps are provided. All boats include life jackets, safety gear, and anchors.

Additionally, Wallace Rentals customers can choose to rent a traditional boat, a pontoon boat, or a jet ski. How will you decide to explore 20 miles of bays, rivers, and islands?

3. Flora-Bama Marina

Located across Perdido Pass, Flora-Bama Marina offers pontoon boat, kayak, paddleboard, and jet ski rentals by the hour. Additionally, the marina’s deep sea fishing charters give you the opportunity to catch your own fish under the guidance of an expert captain.

After a day on the water, head across the street from the marina to Flora-Bama. This all-in-one fun spot has restaurants, bars, and live music.

More Ways to Enjoy Gulf Shores

There are plenty of ways to experience the Gulf Coast! Jet ski rentals and other Gulf Shores watersports are popular for thrill-seekers and adventurers. If you’re looking for a quieter way to spend your vacation, Gulf Shores is also a great place for fishing and relaxing on the beach.

Dock Your Boat at a Harris Properties Home

Bay Dreamin' Pier

Now that you’ve selected from the best Orange Beach boat rentals, it’s time to get out on the water! There are so many things to see on the Gulf Coast, from beautiful beaches to stunning sunsets. After a day’s worth of boating, you’ll want to a relaxing night, and we know just the place.

What sounds better than a gorgeous, bay-front vacation home with a private boat slip? We can’t think of anything! Bay Dreamin in Fort Morgan features open entertainment areas, a game room, and accommodations for up to nine guests. Outside, enjoy the screened porch and outdoor shower. Bay Dreamin is the perfect place for your family to call home for a week!

At Harris Properties, we want your family vacation memories to last a lifetime. Browse our vacation rentals and get ready for your dream getaway!

It’s no secret that Gulf Shores is home to beautiful weather year-round. The next time you take a trip to the Gulf Coast, take advantage of the sunshine and blue skies with a visit to one of the top Gulf Shores AL golf courses! Whether you’re a lifelong golfer or have never set foot on the green before, Gulf Shores, AL is the perfect place to tee off. Enjoy expertly designed courses against the backdrop of a tropical paradise. Check out some of our favorite places to play, then get ready to book your Gulf Shores family vacation with Harris Properties!

Book Your Family Vacation at Harris Properties Today!

These are the 7 Greatest Gulf Shores AL Golf Courses

Get ready to test out your swing! We’ve compiled a lost of the eight leading Gulf Shores AL golf courses for you and your family to visit.

Note: After the closure of the Gulf State Park Golf Course, many other courses in the area are offering discounted rates. Check individual websites for deal details.

Gulf Shores Golf Courses

Kiva Dunes Golf Course

Kiva Dunes is one of our favorite golf courses in Gulf Shores, and we’re not the only ones who think so! Golf Digest ranked this exquisite course as one of the Top 100 Public Courses in the country. With over 7,000 yards of play area and plenty of secluded, natural scenery, this links-style course is perfect for any avid golfer. If you’d like to improve your skills before playing a game of your own, Kiva Dunes offers private and group lessons.

Tip: Book your tee time online in advance. The earlier you book, the more money you can save!

Peninsula Golf & Racquet Club

The Peninsula is a beautiful, private, and unforgettable golf resort nestled between Mobile Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. This 27-hole, 7,026-yard course is located next to the Bon Secour Wildlife Preserve and features lovely scenery and wildlife along the green. Enjoy views of Mobile Bay and access to the club restaurant and private beach.

Peninsula Golf is also a member of Honours Golf, a golf management company dedicated to providing exceptional golf experiences. As a member, you’ll receive preferred rates, onsite accommodations, and advance booking privileges at their courses.

Cotton Creek & Cyprus Bend at Craft Farms

Two Honours Golf courses, Cotton Creek and Cypress Bend, are both located at Craft Farms. Golf legend Arnold Palmer designed them to provide a challenging, yet inviting golf experience. As the only two courses designed by Palmer in the state, they are a must-visit for any avid golfer planning a trip to Alabama.

The greens are well-manicured, the staff is friendly, and the views (especially if you’re lucky enough to see a sunset) are stunning. Golf Digest rated the courses at 4.5/5 stars. But don’t take their word for it; come and test it out for yourself!

Orange Beach Golf Course

Head over to the small, adjoining city of Orange Beach for your next round of golf! The Orange Beach Golf Center is a 9-hole, par-3 course open every day of the week. The facility features a Pro Shop, golf clinic, and lighted driving range for you to practice your skills before stepping out on the green. The best part? You can revel in a spectacular Orange Beach sunset and keep playing golf! The driving range and Pro Shop are open until 9 p.m. daily.

Fairhope Golf Courses

Are you planning on taking a quick and fun day trip from Gulf Shores? Fairhope, AL is the perfect destination! Fairhope is just an hour from downtown Gulf Shores and is located along the Mobile Bay shoreline. Check out the pier, visit a history museum, and play a round of golf or two!

Rock Creek Golf Club

Another Honours Golf certified course, Rock Creek is an 18-hole, player-friendly golf green. Enjoy 6,900 yards of golf, perfect for long hitters eager to practice their swing. The green of the championship golf course exhibits a variety of shapes and putting surfaces with lovely views of the surrounding wetlands. You can even rent out the club to host your own on-site golf tournament!

Fun fact: Rock Creek may have been the first place on the continent where golf was played in 1170 by Prince Madoc. Come and rub the famous rock for luck before you start your game!

Quail Creek Golf Course

Quail Creek is an affordable, accessible course just minutes away from downtown Fairhope. This well-landscaped, challenging fairway has 18 holes, three lakes, and more than 40 sand traps ‒ be sure to bring your best swing! The fairway is open to walkers, so spectators and family members are welcome to explore the greenway as well. After a game, head to the Pro Shop for a golf-themed souvenir. You can ever grab a quick bite to eat at the Quail Creek snack shop and grill.

Have a Tee-Rific Vacation With Harris Properties

Pelican-Lake

Are you ready to make your vacation a hole in one? There are so many reasons to tee off in Golf Shores, especially our world-class accommodations. After spending a day at one of the best Gulf Shores AL golf courses, come back and relax at a Harris Properties vacation rental.

Across the street from the Orange Beach Golf Center, our Pelican Condo is part of the Orange Beach villas. This quaint community features an onsite clubhouse, outdoor swimming pool, and a serene gazebo on the lake. The Pelican unit comfortably sleeps eight, and it is equipped with chic furnishings, a full-sized kitchen, and a covered patio. And, when you stay in the Orange Beach villas, you’ll be just a mile away from The Wharf at Orange Beach, one of our favorite entertainment and concert venues in Gulf Shores.

Don’t wait to start planning your ultimate family vacation! Browse our vacation rentals and book your Gulf Shores getaway today!

Nothing says “Welcome to Gulf Shores” like seeing a dolphin jump out of the water. During your next beach vacation, put one of the awesome dolphin cruises in Gulf Shores on your to-do list. It’s a unique way to get an up-close look at dolphins in their natural habitat! Read on to discover our top recommendations for dolphin cruises. Then, start planning your Gulf Shores vacation with Harris Properties!

Book Your Family Vacation Today!

Here Are the Best Dolphin Cruises in Gulf Shores

Thanks to the mild Gulf climate, these breathtaking dolphin cruises are held year-round in Gulf Shores!

The Sunny Lady Dolphin Tours

The Sunny Lady is one of our favorite cruises in Gulf Shores! Explore the scenic bays of Orange Beach on this hour and a half-long dolphin cruise. This is one of the most relaxing dolphin cruises in the area because the ship doesn’t leave the bay. Discover the marvelous shores of Orange Beach Bay throughout the day or at sunset with Sunny Lady dolphin cruises.

Tip: If you don’t want to buy snacks and drinks on the boat, each guest is allowed to bring their own six-pack cooler.

The Fun Boat

The Fun Boat is the perfect dolphin cruise for families with children. Their well-informed staff answers all dolphin, shark, and sea life questions your kids may have during the boat ride.

Not only will you spend two hours on the water observing Bottlenose dolphins, but you’ll also get to experience the Fun Boat water wars! Water cannons and squirt guns are the weapons of choice in this epic boat battle. At the end of the trip, families can examine the boat’s crab traps. Don’t forget to snap a picture of your child holding a crab’s claws in their hands!

Wild Native Tours

Would you like to get even closer to dolphins than you would on a standard dolphin cruise? Then Wild Native Tours is for you! During this 3-hour kayak tour, see Bottlenose dolphins swim next to you and observe native birds of the area. You’ll also learn about the Bottlenose environment, behaviors, and history. The best part? You’ll have a front-row seat to a Gulf Shores sunset.

Bonus: Wild Native Tours has a “leave no trace” policy, and the company is very environmentally conscious. Rest assured that they care about the dolphins you paddle alongside!

Make Harris Properties Your Home Away From Home

Dolphin-View-Balcony

After you’ve experienced the thrill of one of the many dolphin cruises Gulf Shores has to offer, enjoy a view of the ocean from your private balcony. Our luxury Dolphin View condominium has floor to ceiling windows with views of the Gulf of Mexico, Mobile Bay, Lake Shelby, Little Lagoon, and Oyster Bay. The stunning water views and sophisticated amenities, like whirlpool tubs and stainless steel appliances, make this the ideal beach rental.

When you stay at Dolphin View at the Mustique Condo, you’ll also have access to the building’s lagoon front pool, fitness center, and sauna. Simply walk across the street to the beautiful beaches of Gulf Shores. Don’t wait; check our availability and book your Gulf Shores vacation rental today!

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 Properties!

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 Properties, 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!

You’ve been to the beach and hit the hot spots like The Hangout and Waterville, USA. Now, are you’re looking for something different and off the beaten path? Say no more! We’re divulging three of our favorite lesser-known Orange Beach and Gulf Shores attractions and activities. Pack your bags, book your vacation rental and leave the itinerary to us!

Don’t Miss These Gulf Shores Attractions

 Shellbank Selects Oysters Whiteboots Charters. For a truly unforgettable experience, hop aboard a shrimp boat with Jarrett Frith and Lew Childree from Whiteboots Charters in Fort Morgan for either a shrimping or oyster farm tour. These two lifelong friends offer tours like none other on Alabama beaches. They bring character to a morning or afternoon on the backbays of the Alabama Gulf Coast with their friendly banter and stories of growing up on the bay.

 

“I’ve lived on the water my whole life,” said Jarrett. “My dad had me on a shrimp boat since I was in diapers. We love to share the experience with visitors and help them understand what it takes to get seafood on your plate.”

 

Whiteboots Charters offers a two-, three-, or four-hour shrimping excursion, and you get to keep the shrimp and fish you catch. It doesn’t get any fresher than right off the boat. Jarrett provides guests with a list of restaurants who will cook your shrimp after your excursion.

 

 Bon Secour Oysters Even more unique than the shrimping excursion is the oyster farm tour. Lew and Jarrett are boutique oyster farmers at Shellbank Selects oysters. During a two-hour tour, you’ll be treated to a ride on a flat-bottom boat to the oyster farm. Jarrett will get in the water and walk you through the process of farming these delicious gulf coast delicacies. This isn’t an ordinary tour, however. These two locals have been friends since they were kids and know how to entertain. There’s never a dull moment! In addition to a new appreciation for fishermen and Alabama seafood, you’ll leave with unique stories about growing up on the waters of Alabama beaches.

 

The best part of your oyster tour? Tasting fresh oysters right from the bay! The guys will give you a lesson in shucking these tasty delights, and then you can slurp away. Advance notice is required to ensure you can sample the oysters. Alabama law requires oysters to be processed before consumption.

 

 Orange Beach Waterfront Park Orange Beach Waterfront Park. Trade the Gulf waters for a day on scenic Wolf Bay. Orange Beach Waterfront Park is ideal for families with small children. The water is shallow and calm. A small beach area offers a spot for sandcastle building. Bring a kayak or standup paddleboard and paddle away in the smooth bay waters. A 400-foot fishing pier offers covered pavilions with seating. Bring your fishing pole and reel in dinner!

 

The park is rarely crowded, even on a typical summer day. Restroom facilities are nearby, and an outdoor shower is available to rinse the saltwater away before heading back to your Orange Beach rental. Picnic tables and grills make it easy to spend the entire day at the park.

Bonus! One more reason Orange Beach Waterfront Park is on our list of favorite attractions is because it’s dog friendly! Bring your pooch and enjoy a day splashing in the water.

 

Orange Beach Vacation Rentals

Whether you park your flip flops in Gulf Shores or Orange Beach, you’re a close drive to the waterfront park. Adagio is a great three-bedroom cottage that’s ideal for a budget-friendly Orange Beach vacation. With rates as low as $99 a night, you can beach it at Orange Beach Waterfront Park and then enjoy the cottage’s community pool located next to the rental.

 

 Gulf Shores attraction Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. You may have hiked or biked the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail system, but did you know there are more trails to explore? Just a short drive from Gulf Shores on the Fort Morgan Peninsula, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge is comprised of more than 7,000 acres of protected trails and beaches. The refuge is a stopover for more than 300 species of migratory birds, and is perfect for birdwatching.

 

The refuge offers a quiet and peaceful way to while away the day. There’s a large  beach area that is secluded and feels like your own, private oasis. Numerous trails offer miles of opportunities to see native wildlife. The one-mile-long Jeff Friend Trail features a canoe and kayak launch into Little Lagoon. We love the refuge for getting back to nature (and away from the crowds). When you want a low-key day during your Gulf Shores AL vacation, the wildlife refuge gets a big thumbs up from us. However, if you’re on a dog-friendly vacation, dogs are not permitted on the trails, so this is an activity you’ll need to leave Fido at home for.

 

Fort Morgan Rentals

If the quiet and tranquility of the wildlife refuge appeals to you, consider spending your vacation on the Fort Morgan Peninsula. You’ll find a variety of Fort Morgan rentals, including beach houses and condos. All Decked Out is a quaint, three-bedroom beach house located on the bay. The cozy cottage features a pier that is perfect for fishing, throwing a cast net or putting out crab traps. It’s also boat friendly and a dog-friendly vacation rental.

 

For even more Orange Beach, Fort Morgan and Gulf Shores attractions, read Four Hot New Attractions on Alabama Beaches.

Summer may be ending, but it’s always vacation season along the lovely Gulf of Mexico! Some people argue that beach towns are all about summer, but we disagree—with unbeatable temperatures, magnificent bird species, no crowds, and plenty of room to oneself, autumn is perfect for a Gulf Shores vacation!

Fabulous Temperatures

Most people prefer to keep their settings in a temperature range between 68° and 74°. Would you believe that’s just what you will get in Gulf Shores in the fall? Our September averages have highs in the 80s and lows in the 60s, with October and November enjoying lows in the 50s but highs in the 70s. Just bring along a light jacket and the weather is too perfect to miss out on!

All-Day Outings and Things to Do in Gulf Shores

With humidity from the Gulf, sometimes summer outings can reach an uncomfortable heat. Early afternoon outings in August can be stifling, creating a dead-zone of time for your things to do in Gulf Shores or leaving you chained to shady spots or desperate for a breeze. Thankfully, once the temperatures drop, you’ll feel fine outside all day! If you want to enjoy the amenities at Gulf State Park or take an eco-tour to look for dolphins, then try going in autumn, when the outdoors are welcoming all day!

New Birds

If you love visiting Gulf Shores for our nature trails, then come in fall and see a new variety of wildlife. The Gulf Coast is a popular stop for migrating birds heading south, and areas like Bon Secour Wildlife Refuge have been set aside as a safe repose for these enchanting avians. Get a glimpse of the hawks which pass through Fort Morgan, or spot other colorful birds en route on their own vacation!

Fewer Crowds

Many people’s vacation schedules follow the school year, taking time off work while the kids are out of school. This means that, despite all the benefits above, the crowds die down during autumn. You’ll have plenty of beach to yourself. September and October are perfect times before the waters are too cool for swimming and play to your heart’s content!

Lower Prices

We know that fewer people can get away from work during the fall, so we’re sure to offer competitive pricing. Gulf Shores in the fall is simply wonderful, and we don’t want you to miss it, or break the bank for it!

Book Your Stay with Harris Properties

For a beautiful vacation getaway that’s great all year around, call 1-877-446-4853 to book a stay with Harris Properties!

There are plenty of reasons to visit Gulf Shores all year long, but planning your vacation during the Halloween season adds a special touch of spooky fun to your stay. Read on to learn more about celebrating Halloween in Gulf Shores!

Fantastic Weather During Halloween in Gulf Shores

With average temperatures in the mid- to upper-70s during the month of October, you and your guests will be reveling in the nice temperatures while the rest of the country starts to get chilly. Even the water stays warm, meaning you can plan a beach day in the middle of fall!

OWA’s Town of Terror

Located in the nearby city of Foley, OWA is an entertainment destination that hosts the Town of Terror on weekend nights throughout October. The Town of Terror has a haunted house, bloodthirsty butchers, insane asylum escapees, and more. They even have special Flashlight Nights, where you can explore the park guided only by the light of a flashlight for extra scares. Flashlight nights are held on Thursdays and Sundays from 6:00pm to 9:00pm, while regular Town of Terror hours are held on Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00pm to midnight. Admission ranges from $10.00 to $44.95. Town of Terror is open from 6:00pm to 10:00pm on the nights of October 30th and 31st.

Pumpkin Patch Express

Perfect for a fall-themed steam train ride during the day or a haunted thrill ride at night, the Wales West Light Railway Pumpkin Patch Express runs in the nearby town of Silverhill from the end of September through October 31st. The train rides are only scary after 7:00pm. Other attractions and activities on-site include pony rides, a petting zoo, a bounce house, a pumpkin cannon, pumpkin decorating, a haunted barn, and more. Admission is $15.00 per person plus tax, with children two and under admitted for free.

Caribe Marina Ghost Cruise

Taking place at Caribe Marina & Watersports in Orange Beach on select days during October, the Caribe Marina Ghost Cruise invites visitors to experience Halloween in a uniquely coastal way. Cruise around Perdido Bay on a moonlit cruise while listening to ghost stories and being haunted by ghouls. The forty-five minute cruise departs twice per night at 7:00pm and 8:00pm. Admission is $15.00 per child and $20.00 per adult.

Trunk R Treat at The Wharf

An alternative to trick-or-treating by going door-to-door, Trunk R Treat at The Wharf is a family-friendly event where people can dress up, kids can have fun doing activities like face painting and riding camels, and Main Street plays host to cars and trucks filled with candy. This event takes place from 6:00pm to 8:30pm on October 31st.

Harris Properties – Your Gateway to Gulf Shores

For more information on what Gulf Shores has to offer for your vacation during Halloween and beyond, contact our reservation specialists and book your lodgings in one of our incredible vacation rental properties today!

Spring officially ushers in the high tourist season along the Alabama Gulf Coast – and Alabama’s very own Pleasure Island. By early May, the island will be teeming with vacationers. It’s likely you’ll require more than a week to see all the attractions, eateries, bars, and things to do and events in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores, but if a week is all you have, that’s ample time to hit all the Gulf Shores beach things to do.

Eat and Drink – Gulf Shores Beach Things To Do

When it comes to beach grub, there’s the iconic establishments like Bubba’s, Lulu’s at Homeport, Tin Top, Tacky Jacks, The Hangout, Mikee’s, Sea ‘N Suds, DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen, Doc’s Seafood Shack, and of course, the infamous Flora-Bama. But there are some off-the-beaten path restaurants like Anchor, Flippers, Our Cigar Bar, Coastal Kitchen, O’Choppers, Snappers Lounge, Barefoot Island, and Our Cigar Bar, just to name a few. When it comes to imbibing in a bushwhacker or cocktail with an umbrella, there are dozens of juke joints, honky-tonks, and thatched, pool-side tiki bars to get your drink on. Cheers!

Family Fun On the Cheap

Got a condominium full of little ones? Pleasure Island offers things to do away from the beach like Waterville U.S.A., The Track, Adventure Island, the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, The Hangout and much more. If you’re on a budget, there’s plenty to do on the cheap with the kids like Waterfront Park, Gulf State Park Pier, Fountain of Youth at Lulu’s and, naturally, the beach! Yeah, we got beaches—dozens of miles of powdery, snow-white sand. From West Beach to Gulf Shores to Cotton Bayou and Perdido Pass in Orange Beach, it’s endless beach as far as the eye can see.

Events and Festivals

April and May also means the shoulder season, which means festivals like the Interstate Mullet Toss and Gulf Coast’s Greatest Beach Party. What’s that? Glad you asked. It’s an intimate beach bash for three days at the Flora-Bama Lounge and Package along with tens of thousands of folks from across the country gathered for one of the most popular Gulf Shores beach things to do: to toss a lifeless mullet from Florida into Alabama and to party in paradise.

Like classic Southern muscle cars? In late April, The Wharf holds its annual Bama Coast Cruise. In May is The Hangout Fest, a three-day music fest held right on Gulf Shores Public Beach, featuring a variety of live music from Friday to Sunday night. Got wine? The Orange Beach Wine Fest in mid-May offers a plethora of crushed grapes at Caribe the Resort, while the Hot Air Balloon Festival in neighboring Foley in early May gives tourists a bird’s-eye-view of Baldwin County.

Where Do I Stay?

Lodging options run the gamut from small beach cottages to plush beachfront homes to cozy condos and swanky penthouses. Depending on your lodging budget and needs, the Alabama Gulf Coast offers all kinds of price points. Whether you’re looking for lodging for a romantic getaway for two or a large home for a family reunion or a baseball team, the area can accommodate your needs. But keep in mind, rates don’t dip in the high season.

Your Perfect Spot in the Sand

The beautiful beach communities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are no longer a secret, and with good reason. The beaches are some of the most pristine and stunning in the country, while the culinary and entertainment landscape captures the best of the Deep South. So, come on down, y’all.  What are you waiting for? The Alabama Gulf Coast is waiting for you.

When you visit Gulf Shores, you won’t want to skip out on enjoying our phenomenal weather—especially during the temperate months of the spring season. Take full advantage of the warm and cheerful Gulf Coast sunshine by planning a picnic in one of the city’s many distinctively beautiful spots that are perfectly suited for such Gulf Shores family activities. Read on below to learn more about some of Gulf Shores’ best places to picnic.

Fort Morgan Historic Site

Pair your picnic with a side of history at the Fort Morgan, where visitors can explore the ruins of a key battle site of the Civil War (sometimes with the added effect of costumed reenactments), as well as the rugged bluffs overlooking the scenic splendor of the Gulf of Mexico. You will likely get a glimpse of some of the huge cargo freighters that deliver goods from around the world to the Port of Mobile each day, a great Gulf Shores family activity!

Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

Consisting of over fifteen miles of trails interspersed amid six different ecosystems, each trail in this extensive network offers distinctive sights for your viewing pleasure, from towering sand dunes to aromatic magnolias and a butterfly garden. You can hike off your meal as you go!

Lake Shelby Recreation Area – Gulf Shores Family Activities

Shaded by immense oak trees, Lake Shelby offers serene picnicking conditions for those who wish to take their meal next to the idyllic backdrop of a 900-acre freshwater lake. Beyond sitting on the grass or by the shoreline, pavilions are also provided for picnics. Gulf Shores family activities like kayaking and paddle boarding make for fun post-meal pursuits. Remember to bring your pooch because the waterfront dog park at Lake Shelby is just a few steps away!

Orange Beach Waterfront Park

Nestled against Wolf Bay, Orange Beach Waterfront Park has a number of amenities that are ideal for a picnic excursion, including shelter areas with grills, walking paths, a fishing pier, and a park for children.

Alabama Point East

Situated slightly east of Perdido Pass Bridge within the boundaries of Gulf State Park, this breathtaking locale includes pristine beaches, impressive sand dunes, tranquil boardwalks, and areas designated for picnicking, though just about any spot along Alabama Point East will provide stunning visuals to go along with your meal.

Harris Properties – Your Guide to Gulf Shores

Contact our reservations team to find out additional information on what you can expect during your time in Gulf Shores when you book your trip accommodations in one of the lovely vacation rentals that Harris Properties has to offer for your stay today!