WIDE, SANDY BEACHES!
Of course, a beach vacation pretty much requires a beach. Alabama has a wide beach providing lots of room for beach games like volleyball, playing catch with a football or cornhole. The water tends to be calmer than Atlantic beaches, so little ones can build sandcastles while adults soak their toes in the gentle surf.
These family-friendly beaches are also marine-life friendly, with extensive sea turtle protection programs, trash cans and recycling bins to help guests keep the beach clean and safe. The Leave Only Footprints program is this region’s heartfelt mission!
We absolutely loved hanging out on the beach and walking along the water’s edge as the sun slipped away each evening.
CLEAR, BLUE, WARM WATERS
The Gulf waters of Alabama are warmer than the beaches on the Atlantic coast. The waves tend to be more gentle, rarely rising or falling more than a foot or so. This gentle surf is great for younger kids who want to play in the waves, for us older people who just want to enjoy the gentle lapping of the water, and for everyone who wants to fish!
When we head to Alabama’s beaches, we enjoy paddleboarding (yes, the water is that gentle), walking along the water’s edge, and floating on tubes.
With that said, it’s always important to obey weather warnings and stay out of the water when told it’s dangerous. Follow the beach flag warning system. While the water can be gentle, it can also be rough at times as well.
On vacation, I love getting a break from cooking and kitchen cleanup. In Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, there are so many great restaurant choices you’ll find something to please everyone in the family.
If you want a dining “experience” with an atmosphere to match the food, I recommend Tacky Jacks, The Gulf, and LuLu’s. All three offer more than just great food (which is important, of course).
Their unique styles stood out to make dining a memorable experience for our family. The rooftop at Tacky Jacks in Orange Beach has great views of the water. At LuLu’s you can sit waterside and watch the boats come and go or take the kids to a sandy area to run and play. At The Gulf, an outdoor, waterfront restaurant that defies explanation, lounge areas on the beach invite you to linger. This is a particularly great place to watch the sun set.
Two of our favorite breakfast spots are the Ruby Slipper Cafe, which is my daughter’s favorite, and Brick & Spoon, a longtime locals’ favorite. Some great lunchtime picks include Luna’s Eat & Drink, Doc’s Seafood Shack & Oyster Bar, and Fisher’s at Orange Beach Marina. For dinner, dress up and enjoy the impeccable service at Voyager’s at Perdido Beach Resort, flavorful Italian at Villaggio Grille at The Wharf or the satisfying portions at Wolf Bay Restaurant.