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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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.
Are you looking for the best things to do in Gulf Shores in October? With exciting festivals, beautiful uncrowded shorelines, and endless activities, fall is one of the best times to visit this Gulf Coast paradise. Get a taste of Alabama at Shrimp Fest, enjoy the Halloween festivities, or take a romantic sunset stroll along the beach. Here are some of the best fall events and activities to add to your itinerary!
Autumn in Gulf Shores marks the return of the most-anticipated event of the year! For nearly half a century, the Shrimp Festival has been a beloved tradition for locals and visitors alike. Held right on the beach, the festival includes fresh-from-the-Gulf seafood prepared by top chefs, a sandcastle contest, live music, family activities, arts and crafts, 5k and 10k races, and the Miss Shrimp Festival Pageant. The 2019 dates are set for October 10th – 13th, so start making your plans to attend now!
Are you looking for the best thrills and chills in Gulf Shores, AL? You’re in luck! There are endless ways to celebrate spooky season along our sugar-white shores. On the weekends, visit the Town of Terror in Foley for twists, turns, and other haunted house horrors. Are you searching for Halloween family activities? Take the kids for a ride on the Pumpkin Patch Express. During the daytime, you can enjoy kid-friendly train rides, pony rides, a bounce house, pumpkin decorating, a haunted maze and more. After nightfall, however, this train ride takes a turn for the terrifying. From 7 p.m. until close, enjoy a scary ride with Halloween monsters and other things that go bump in the night!
Not to be outdone by the Shrimp Festival, the Alabama Festival of Flavor is one of the tastiest events of the year. Held in the neighboring Foley, this epicurean event features an array of mouthwatering cuisine prepared by local chefs. Offerings include everything from sandwiches and sauces to main dishes, craft beer, and wine. The event is scheduled to take place on October 5th, 2019.
Calling all nature-lovers and outdoor enthusiasts! October is the prime time to see migrating birds in Gulf Shores. And the best way to see them is at the Alabama Coastal Birdfest! This event offers a unique opportunity to get an up-close look at native birds, alligators, dolphins, wildflowers, and more wildlife. Mark your calendar for October 2nd – 5th, 2019!
From hiking and biking to paddle boarding and kayaking, there are endless ways to explore Gulf Shores, Alabama in October. The mild weather is ideal for enjoying outdoor activities and attractions. Get out and explore miles of scenic trails at Gulf State Park or Bon Secour Wildlife Refuge, tee off on one of the fabulous golf courses, or take the kids to the zoo. This is also a great time to visit one of the theme parks. Have a blast playing mini-golf or race go-karts at The Track. The possibilities are endless!
Many of our guests ask us if it is warm enough to swim in Gulf Shores in October. The answer is — it depends. The weather in Gulf Shores in October varies year to year. Typically, the temperatures range from the 60’s to low 80’s. While it may be too chilly to swim, this is one of the best times to visit the beach! Enjoy the uncrowded shoreline while you comb the beach for shells and other treasures. Or, cast a line from the pier or a charter and reel in your next trophy fish!
When it comes to the best lodging in the area, no place can compare to Harris Vacation Rentals! We offer a wide array of accommodation options in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, and Fort Morgan. From luxury beachfront rentals to intimate cottages and condos, we are sure to have the perfect property for your stay. We can also accommodate large groups, so feel free to bring your family and friends. Are you ready for an unforgettable fall getaway to beautiful Gulf Shores? Take advantage of our current deals and discounts. Then, browse our condo rentals and contact us to start planning your trip! We look forward to seeing you soon.
There’s nothing quite like spending a day on the water enjoying the ocean breeze and jaw-dropping views. Get some exercise and experience the natural beauty of the Gulf coast by going on a Gulf Shores kayaking excursion during your next trip! When you book a Harris Vacation Rentals family vacation rental, you’ll receive up to $100 off local tours and activities through TripShock. Planning the perfect vacation has never been easier!
Kayaking is perfect for all ages, making it a fantastic option for family fun in Gulf Shores. Kids and adults alike will love exploring the area from this new perspective.
Guided kayaking tours in Gulf Shores are a great way to discover the coastal ecosystem! Here are two of our favorite nearby kayaking tours.
The National Wildlife Refuge contains over 7,000 acres of uninterrupted, protected wildlife. A deep sense of calm and seclusion characterizes the area, and visitors love escaping the crowds here. If you want to get even closer to nature, book your spot on the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge Kayak Tour. This tour takes you to the refuge’s quiet areas so you can see unique birds in their native environment.
Do you want to get up close to dolphins in their natural habitat? Book yourself on a Dolphins at Sunset Kayak Tour through the Wild Native Tours company. Kayak your way through Southern waterways and learn about the ecology, diet, life cycles, and behaviors of the bottlenose dolphin. Wid Native Tours is environmentally conscious and follows a strict “Leave No Trace” policy. It’s just another reason to explore the area with them!
Another fantastic way to enjoy Gulf Shores kayaking is by renting a kayak. Get out on the water and explore the surrounding area at your own pace. Gulf Shores Boat and Paddlesports Rental offers kayak rentals starting at $50 for four hours. You can even opt to extend your rental for multiple days. When the kayak is delivered to you, you’ll receive a quick lesson on how to make the most of your experience. Paddled By You in Orange Beach is another awesome kayak rental option. Choose from a single, double, or triple kayak for either two, four, or eight hours. Rates start at $25 for two hours of fun!
After an exciting day of Gulf Shores kayaking, head back to your Harris Vacation Rentals vacation rental for a relaxing evening with family. Our Sunset Place home features gorgeous views of the Gulf of Mexico from the patio and spacious entertainment areas throughout the house. Spend the day at the beach, rinse off in the outdoor shower, and prepare dinner for the entire family in the fully equipped kitchen. This charming beachfront home sleeps 15, making it the ideal spot for a family reunion or summer vacation.
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 in Alabama fishing guides. 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!
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.
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:
Check out the Gulf Shores Tourism website for even more fishing charter options!
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.
There are so many different fishing methods to use in Gulf Shores. So, what exactly is the difference between inshore and offshore fishing? According to our Gulf Shores in Alabama fishing guides, 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.
Now that you’ve read our Gulf Shores in Alabama fishing guides, 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 Vacation Rentals 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.
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 Vacation Rentals!
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.
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!
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.
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!
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.
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!
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 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.
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 Vacation Rentals 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.
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!
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!
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!
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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!
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!
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!
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!
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!
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!
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!
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!
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!
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!
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.
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.
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 Vacation Rentals has to offer for your stay today! Explore our amazing deals, cottage and condo rentals today!
Nestled between windswept coastal dunes, snow-white beaches, and the glittering waves of the Gulf of Mexico, Gulf Shores is an incredible vacation destination for people who want to escape into the beauty of a tropical paradise. However, even beyond its stunning environment, Gulf Shores has an abundance of things to do for recreation and leisure—including playing a round of golf on each of its many renowned courses.
Play your way through Gulf Shores and experience the area in a completely unique fashion that no tour could offer you! Below, we’ve put together a brief list of just a handful of the many great golf courses in Gulf Shores that have earned Gulf Shores its reputation as a top-tier destination for golfers of all skill levels. Harris Vacation Rentals even has special pricing available for eight local courses; be sure to contact us at 877-446-4853 for more information before you hit the course!
Ranked by Golf Digest as one of the Top 100 Public Courses in the country, the expansive Kiva Dunes stretches across 7,092 yards and features an excellent course coupled with exquisite scenery. Situated along the shore, this course is much windier than others in the area. The opening hole gives you a relatively easy par 4 before launching into the more difficult holes. In particular, hole 9’s shot across the water can be challenging! Anyone looking to play this course will certainly want to take a look at our 19th Hole property, which overlooks the 9th green of this course!
One of the two courses at Craft Farms that was designed by Arnold Palmer himself, is Cotton Creek, which consists of a massive 7,127 yards. Twelve of the holes on this course are framed by water, while the flat sites are given definition through the mounding along the fairways. Hole 6 is where you’ll really have to step up your game, with the first shot requiring carry over water just to reach the fairway, and then a second shot over water to land on the green. Anyone who walks away with a birdie on this hole can consider themselves a pro!
Rated four-and-a-half stars by Golf Digest, Cypress Bend is the newer sister course to Cotton Creek, both of which are located at Craft Farms Golf Club and were designed by Arnold Palmer. It’s widely known for its playability for golfers of all skill levels. The toughest challenge at Cotton Creek will be found at hole 4, where a well-placed initial drive sets you up for a tough approach over the water to the green. This 4.5 star course is sure to delight all players!
Located near Bon Secour Wildlife Preserve, this Earl Stone-designed golf course showcases twenty-seven holes and a stunning natural backdrop. The three different 9-hole courses—Cypress, Lakes, and Marsh— combine to make one of the most unforgettable golf experiences in the country! Each of the 9-hole courses offers completely different challenges, so you’ll need to break out all your skills (and maybe some luck!) to come away with a low score.
Established in 1960’s, The Golf Shores Golf Club was the first golf course in Gulf Shores. It underwent renovations in 2005 that added bunkers, upgraded fairways, and water features, as well as raised the total yards to 6,812. This beautiful course is also home to an abundance of wildlife. It creates an experience that no golf enthusiast will want to miss.
Even though Gulf Shores is an amazing destination for lovers of golf, we also recognize that Gulf Shores is a paradise for all visitors—not just for golfers. Contact our team of reservation specialists to learn more about all that Gulf Shores has in-store for you during your time here when you book your trip accommodations through Harris Vacation Rentals today. Browse our beautiful cottages, condos and deals today!