10 Things to Do with a Toddler at the Beach

Have toddler, will travel? Then a Gulf Shores and Orange Beach vacation should be on your bucket list.

Traveling with a toddler in tow is, notably, a different experience than traveling with older children. A little research and preparation will help ensure smooth sailing and family memories to last a lifetime. If your first question is “What's there for little ones to do at the beach?” we've got you covered.

1. The Zoo. With little ones in tow, the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo is a can't-miss attraction. For an extra fee, you can get up-close and personal with baby kangaroos and lemurs, too.

2. Bike the Nature Trails. Yes, we said bike. You'll be doing the peddling. Bike rentals with toddler seats attached are available at Gulf Shores bike rental stores. The Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail offers 27 miles of trails with comfort stations and restrooms located throughout the trails. Be sure to pick up a map at one of the trailheads.

3. Orange Beach Waterfront Park. The Orange Beach Waterfront Park is located on the banks of Wolf Bay and offers calm and shallow waters. Picnic tables and restroom facilities can be found nearby. Also located onsite is the Orange Beach Kids Park, a great spot for toddlers and even older children to take a break from the beach.

4. LuLu's. Don't miss lunch or dinner at LuLu's! Request a table by the sand area where your toddler can play in the sand and explore the Fountain for Youth. Bring a change of clothes or a towel for the ride back to your condo.

5. Model Train Exhibit. Take a short drive north to nearby Foley to visit the City of Foley Museum Archives and Model Train Exhibit. The whole family will enjoy watching the model trains go around the tracks.

6. Cool Your Taste Buds. I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! Take your pick of places to order up this tasty treat. A big scoop of ice cream with sprinkles is the perfect post-nap treat.

7. Alligator Alley.  Just 25 minutes north of Gulf Shores, stop in at Alligator Alley and see more than 200 alligators sunbathing and relaxing in their natural environment. Bring a stroller along for a nature walk on an elevated boardwalk and see other species, including turtles, ospreys, owls and bull frogs, too.

8. Waterville USA. Depending on the season, plan a day at Waterville USA's Steamboat Village. The waterpark is open from spring through Labor Day.

9. Jump around. The Factory, located across from the Gulf Shores Sportsplex, boasts 12,000 square feet of connected trampolines, including foam pits and a basketball goal. If that sounds too advanced for your little one, check out the toddler area in the middle of the trampoline courts.

10. The Beach! You came to the beach for a reason, so enjoy it! Bring plenty of water, snacks, sand toys and shade for a fun day on Alabama's white-sand beaches.

Beach Vacation with a Toddler

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