3. Active adventures
For years, I equated beach vacations with long days on the beach, slathered in sunscreen as I relaxed on a beach chair under an umbrella. And while that’s a perfectly suitable option, I come back to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach because there’s so much more to do!
Adventurers will love Gulf Shores and Orange Beach because there’s so much to do. Two of my favorites are to explore the area on bike or by kayak. But, there are so many more adventures to be had, a great reason to keep going back. My Gulf Shores and Orange Beach adventure bucket list still has lots to check off, including:
2. Local cuisine
Every time I go to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, deciding where to eat gets harder and harder! The area is home to amazing, locally-owned restaurants. No matter what you’re craving, you’ll find it here. And it will be delicious!
Every time I visit, my list of places to eat again gets longer! But, I also have a growing list of new places to try! That’s a great dilemma, and a big reason I keep returning. It’s fun to try new restaurants, especially when they’re dedicated to consistent flavor and quality.
Besides amazing restaurants, talented chefs from around the world descend on Alabama’s Gulf coast for food festivals every year. The Shrimp Festival takes place on the beach in October, and The Oyster Cook-Off and Craft Beer Festival is in November. Check out the annual festivals and events calendar to learn more.
1. Family friendly
Really, this is the main reason I keep returning to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Of all the places I’ve traveled, it tops the list for family friendliness, and that’s not an accident. These communities have dedicated themselves to being intentionally family friendly. It starts with making tough choices like alcohol-free beaches on spring break, attracting fewer college spring breakers so families have clean, safe beaches to enjoy.
But, it’s more than that. Even driving here is pretty easy, with roads that are easy to navigate, bike lanes for active travelers, and family-friendly restaurant policies even at the nicest places.
I’ll keep exploring the world, because I love adventure. But, when I really want to unwind, I’ll head back to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.