The Gulf Coast’s Best Places to Visit if You’re Looking for a Vacation from It All

Introduction: What are the Best Vacation Spots on the Gulf Shore?

If you are in the planning stages for a much-needed vacation, then you can’t go wrong somewhere in the gulf. Pensacola Beach, Panama City Beach, and Gulf Shores Alabama offer the widest range of accommodations to suit any budget. There’s plenty to do around these parts with beaches, fish markets, water parks and lounges. Some of the best places to relax begin at Gulf Shores and stretch north towards Pensacola Beach. But, since the hinterland is a long way off, here are our top picks for this area of Florida. For more information on these areas, see our northern Gulf Coast page.
Gulf Shores, Alabama. Located on the Alabama/Florida border, Gulf Shores is an ideal place to relax and recover from over-indulgence in Florida’s resort areas. With its own world-class beaches and a lively nightlife, it has a character that comes straight from its history as a vacation resort for Alabamans in the 1950s. In the past decade, though, it has become a very busy place with the addition of several high-rise hotels.
There are plenty of things to do in Gulf Shores. There’s a marina, a casino and plenty of places to buy souvenirs. The best beach is Fisherman’s Park with its own pier and more than 100 acres of sand. There are also lots of fishing tackle shops as well as restaurants in Gulf Shores that serve seafood.

gulf shores al to pensacola fl
gulf shores al to pensacola fl

10 Things to Do on the Gulf Shore in Pensacola

Pensacola is a popular spot for a weekend getaway or a summer vacation. It’s home to Pensacola Beach and Fort Pickens, which is on many people’s lists of must-sees while they’re in Florida. There are lots of things to do on the Gulf Shores (and some pretty famous seafood restaurants) if you’re visiting Pensacola.
Here are some of the best things to do on the Gulf Shore in Pensacola.
10. Scenic Beach Drive
This is one of the most popular and scenic drives on the gulf shore in Pensacola. It’s a 23-mile long, two-lane road that takes you along 30-miles of shoreline along Scenic Hwy 98 and Scenic Hwy 363 between Gulf Breeze and Navarre Beach. It’s filled with the most beautiful sights and wildlife you’ll find on the gulf shore.
9. Explore the Gulf of Mexico
This is one of the best ways to see what a place like Pensacola looks like from the water. The Pensacola Naval Air Station is home to the Blue Angels, and if you’re lucky, you might get to see them perform. You’re also a short drive from Warrington Point, where you can explore Ship Island, Fort Pickens, Blue Angels Training Facility and more.
8. Putt Around Bayou Golf Park
This is one of the most popular places in Pensacola to go golfing. It features an 18-hole course (with 27 holes and a practice range) that offers something for every skill level. It’s got a citrus orchard, restaurant and even a gift shop that offers clothing, souvenirs and snacks. I once read that Bayou Golf Park was designed by the PGA Touring Pro, Jim Colbert, so you know it’s good!

gulf shores al to pensacola fl
gulf shores al to pensacola fl

Best Beaches on the Gulf Coast of Florida and Alabama

The Gulf of Mexico is home to some of the best watersports in the world, and it’s only a short drive from Gulf Shores to St. Andrews State Park, which is one of the largest parks in Florida. There are plenty of activities for all ages at this park including swimming and fishing. There are full-service marinas for pontoon boats, fishing boats, or other watercraft and you can rent fishing gear on-site. There are also guided trips to nearby islands, as well as a nature trail and a baseball field. If you prefer city life, the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is located about 25 miles south of Gulf Shores on Dauphin Island. This location is the prime spot for aquatic research and education programs, and there are daily tours available. There’s also a wildlife sanctuary on the island and plenty of activities for the kids, including a boat ride through the marshes.
Other Gulf Coast Beaches

gulf shores al to pensacola fl
gulf shores al to pensacola fl

The Top 10 Things to Do Near Pensacola Beach

The area between Gulf Shores and Pensacola Beach is engaging to explore. Enjoy activities like boating, golfing and shopping at the popular Festival MarketPlace. Nearby are lots of water activities like swimming, surfing, water skiing, parasailing and boat rentals.
Pensacola Beach: Feeling the sand between your toes on this stretch of sugar-white beaches is worth the trip alone. Be sure to walk out to the Fort Pickens Lighthouse and search for dolphins along the way. Stop at shops like Galleon’s Island Treasures and Pensacola Beach Company while you’re there or grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants. You can also bike (rentals are available) along Scenic Gulf Drive, which stretches all the way to Gulf Shores.

gulf shores al to pensacola fl
gulf shores al to pensacola fl

Conclusion: If You Want a Seaside Getaway from Everything and Everyone You Should Come Here

The area between Gulf Shores, Alabama and Pensacola Beach, Florida is a popular spot for a weekend getaway with plenty of activities to choose from. You can enjoy a traditional beach outing or try your hand at a new sport such as kayaking or fishing. Outdoor enthusiasts will appreciate the pristine, crystal-clear waters that make it easy to see for miles.
If you’re looking for a place to get away from society and all its noise, you’ll find it in the Gulf coast area. A wonderful place to forget about work, books and the worries of life. The fabulous beaches and warm waters will make you feel good. But, there is more to it than just feeling good.
You can have a great time with your family and friends without being under anyone’s watchful eye. If you have fallen behind on your debts or are having trouble getting along with someone, not to worry because there are plenty of distractions in the area from which you can easily divert yourself from your troubles.
A quaint hotel or bed and breakfast can provide a good nights sleep and a decent breakfast. You can find the perfect place to stay along Alabama’s beaches at either or .

gulf shores al to pensacola fl
gulf shores al to pensacola fl

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