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Gulf Shores travel guide

Gulf Shores tourism | Gulf Shores guide

You're Going to Love Gulf Shores

Do you like the idea of spending time on beautiful, almost deserted sandy beaches, warm ocean water lapping at your feet and affordable accommodation? If so, Gulf Shores, Alabama, could be your ideal vacation destination.

Gulf Shores is a sun-soaked Floridian coastal resort that just happens to be in Alabama, meaning many people overlook it. That's their loss. If you want endless, unspoiled beaches, this is the resort to visit. You can stay in self-catering cabins a few yards from the dunes, rent boats at bargain rates and charter fishing equipment and expert guides from the local marina.

Back on shore, family members can unwind at water parks like Waterville USA, drive go-karts, battle it out at mini-golf courses or play the real thing, before heading to first-class seafood restaurants like De Soto's Seafood Kitchen. It's an idyllic part of the world. The only amazing thing is that more people haven't discovered Gulf Shores. Well, now's your chance.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Gulf Shores

What to do in Gulf Shores

When to Visit Gulf Shores

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One of the best things about Gulf Shores is that the area is at its best when other parts of the country are becoming cold and dreary. Locals will tell you that the best time to visit is from around the end of October through to December, when the weather isn't too hot, rain is hardly a factor and accommodation won't be too expensive. Summer is a good time to visit if you can deal with big crowds and extreme heat. Spring is also an excellent time to go, but you may have to contend with some rain if you visit from April to June.

Average temperatures
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When the weather is nice in Gulf Shores

How to Get to Gulf Shores

Airlines serving Gulf Shores

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Where to Stay in Gulf Shores

One of the great things about Gulf Shores is its relative calm and lack of major resort hotels. Because it doesn't receive hundreds of thousands of visitors every year, the resort has a tranquil atmosphere that many nearby destinations lack. However, there are some exceptional accommodation options. The best of all is the Perdido Beach Resort, which provides an all-round family vacation experience, with on-site bars, restaurants, and sporting facilities. Most of the other accommodation options involve renting self-catering apartments or cabins. Check out the 600 properties at the Gulf Shores Plantation or the condos at Martinique On The Gulf for comfortable, beachside accommodation.

Popular Neighborhoods in Gulf Shores

Where to stay in popular areas of Gulf Shores

How to Get Around Gulf Shores

The Cost of Living in Gulf Shores

Shopping Streets

If you want to shop for vacation souvenirs, you'll have no trouble finding places in Gulf Shores. The seafront is packed with gift stores that double up as surf shacks, with some of the best including Alvin's Island Gulf Shores and Souvenir City of Gulf Shores, where shopping for humorous souvenirs is great fun. For a slightly more upmarket shopping experience, try Bayou Village, where you will find excellent seafood restaurants like the Original Oyster House alongside apparel stores like Jubilee, and Taylors Serendipity.

Groceries and Other

Anyone who chooses to self-cater in Gulf Shores should find it easy enough to buy groceries during their stay. Just north of the resort itself, you can easily drive to a Winn Dixie and Walmart Supercenter, which should have everything you need. Prices shouldn't be too high, but don't expect too many grocery bargains.

Where to Eat in Gulf Shores

Gulf Shores and the surrounding area has some superb seafood restaurants, just as you would expect from a resort on the Gulf of Mexico. If you are just stepping off the beach for a snack, Sea-n-Suds make great seafood sandwiches and Bahama Bob's Beachside Cafe combines gourmet dishes with a huge cocktail selection. Slightly further up the price scale, Flippers Seafood & Oyster Bar is the place to sample the region's shellfish, while Gulf Island Grill offers a Caribbean-influenced menu and a party atmosphere. Dining out won't be expensive. Expect to pay $30 maximum for a good meal.

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