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Things To Do in Gulf Shores

by Amber Garrett on December 18th, 2021

Gulf Shores, Alabama coastlineWith more than 32 miles of sugar-white beaches and rolling sand dunes, it’s no wonder Gulf Shores is one of the South’s best vacation spots. The main attraction is the beach, but many more family-friendly options await.

  • Find some good eatin’ at one of Gulf Shores many seafood restaurants. Every visit to Gulf Shores should include an afternoon or evening at Home – LuLu’s ( This waterfront casual eatery offers everything from mouth-watering gumbo to fish tacos, salads, peel-and-eat-shrimp, to turnip greens and juicy hamburgers. The drink menu and beer options are extensive. Nightly live music adds to the festive, yet laid-back, vacation experience. The Original Oyster House and King Neptune’s are long-time favorites. Or try a popular franchise like Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores, which also has locations in Fort Morgan, Orange Beach, and Mobile. Or, if you’re staying somewhere like The Lighthouse Condos, you can walk next door to the long-time favorite Sea-N-Suds,  a seafood eatery with a deck that extends over the sand and close enough to hear the waves crashing on shore.  Sea-N-Suds serves something for everyone, from fried oysters, crab claws, seafood platters and hamburgers to salads and chicken fingers.
  • Take a drive up to Foley and shop till you drop at the Tanger Outlets. More than 120 brand-name stores await you.
  • Channel your inner child — and give the kids some thrills and chills — at The Track Family Recreation Center, which offers Go-Karts, bumper cars, and other rides as well as miniature golf.
Teen surfing on the Flow Rider at Waterville in Gulf Shores

Riders can stand-up surf or body board on the Flow Rider, a popular attraction at Waterville.

  • Cool off in a lazy river, then play a round of mini golf, at Waterville USA. Set on 20 acres about 1/4 mile from the beach, Waterville is both a water park and an amusement park. It’s open seasonally, so make sure you check out the hours before you go.
  • Go crabbing at night. Grab some flashlights, a net, and a bucket (kids optional) and look for crabs. Expect endless giggles and lasting memories! Be sure to practice catch and release.
  • Spend a day at historic Fort Morgan, one of our most popular trips listed in our guide to 10 Easy Day Trips from Gulf Shores. This star-shaped fort was built to control the main shipping channel into Mobile Bay. Its original purpose was simple – to prevent enemy forces from entering the bay. Be sure to bring your camera. Historic arches and natural light will ignite your creative juices.
  • Take a walk on the wild side at the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. Known as “The Little Zoo That Could,” it features more than 500 animals, including tigers, lions, bears, birds, and reptiles, plus a petting zoo. Interactive animal shows are offered during the spring and summer months.
  • Jam out to a live performance for a smorgasbord of night-time entertainment. Sipping ice-cold drinks and listening to some good music is a great way to end the perfect day at the beach. Lulu’s offers live entertainment every day. So does the Flora-Bama, a short drive down the highway at the Florida state line.
  • Relax. The most important thing to do. Whether it’s just lying on the beach listening to the waves crash or a day at the spa. Just say ahhh!

Find Gulf Shores condo rentals and vacation homes on our website or call our vacation planners at 1-888-698-1488.

This article was originally written in 2015 by Amber and was updated in 2023 by BeachGuide staff.

beach and sand dunes at Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL

Miles of white-sand beaches at Gulf State Park

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