Between the white-sand beaches, kayaking excursions and pier fishing, it’s no wonder families visit the Alabama Gulf Coast for annual getaways. Gulf Shores and Orange Beach welcome everyone with open arms and lots of sunshine. Take a virtual vacation to this breathtaking Southern destination. Check out the video below and then explore five more facets of this coastal region.

Take a Virtual Tour of Gulf Shores & Orange Beach, AL

 

Beaches

Alabama’s 32 miles of sugar-white sand beaches are a haven for families from across the country. With pristine turquoise waters and an agreeable coastal climate, there are plenty of reasons to have your fun in the sun in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.

Gulf Shores and Orange Beach

Have some fun in the sun at one of the many Alabama Gulf Coast beaches. Image: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism

Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

4009 Orange Beach Blvd., Orange Beach, AL 36561 • (251) 981-1063

With 28+ miles of paved trails, the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail is the perfect place to bike and hike while also learning about coastal wildlife. The trail system is made up of 15 trails that take visitors through six unique ecosystems where you’ll see freshwater marsh, white-tailed deer, migratory birds and more.

Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, AL

Learn about coastal wildlife as you hike the beautiful Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail. Image: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism

Coastal Alabama Back Bay Blueway

Get up-close to the wonderful waterways around the destination by paddling along the Coastal Alabama Back Bay Blueway. The blueway offers four distinct trails with 21 launch sites scattered throughout Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan. Paddlers can explore cypress swamps, freshwater lakes and back bays.

Coastal Alabama Back Bay Blueway

Grab the family and paddle along the Coastal Alabama Back Bay Blueway. Image: Instagram

Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

20499 Oak Rd. E., Gulf Shores, AL 36542 • (251) 256-7008

Experience encounters with sloths, lemurs, kangaroos and more at the new Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. The zoo’s new 25-acre facility opened in March 2020. Guests can expect to find new, larger exhibits for the 600+ animals, a 130-foot zipline and safari rides as well as event spaces for meetings and weddings and several dining options.

Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

Embark on your next big adventure at the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. Image: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism

The Gulf

27500 Perdido Beach Blvd., Orange Beach, AL 36561 • (251) 424-1800

Waterfront views, delicious cuisine and lots of room to roam make The Gulf a popular spot for families vacationing on Alabama’s beaches. The menu includes fresh Gulf seafood selections, mouth-watering burgers and tacos. You also don’t want to miss out on their made-from-scratch cocktails. The blueberry mojito is an island-wide favorite.

The Gulf in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach

Indulge in delicious food and cocktails at The Gulf. Image: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism

Check out more amazing Southern destinations in our “Virtual Vacation” series. Click HERE!