Shop The Fall Family Beach Trip to Gulf Shores Post HERE: Crossbody Bag // Sandals // Watch Band // Denim Shorts // Sunglasses // Leyton’s Swim Trunk // Eric’s Swim Trunk // Finn’s Swimsuit // Lime Green Bikini
Fall family beach trip? Yes, please! Over fall break, Eric and I wanted to do something with the boys while they were out of school, and Gulf Shores was the perfect distance away for an easy drive from Birmingham! Travel is essential to us both as a couple and for making memories with our boys! This trip to Gulf Shores was a little different from our trips to Tampa FL, and we ended up being on the go a bit more than usual! We loved it and the boys had a blast.
A huge thank you to Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism for hosting us for this trip! (Check them out on Instagram here!) I’ll break down everything we did so you can save or pin this itinerary for future reference!
Where to stay:
The Lodge at Gulf State Park // This momma adored how much space we had for our family of 4 in our suite! It was also so conveniently located. They have 4 restaurants, and we appreciated the outdoor terraces, fire-pit, and boardwalks with direct access to the beach. Guests have access to 28 miles of educational hiking and biking trails, Segway tours, a nature center, outdoor classrooms, kayaking, guided nature walks, and more. Its beachfront location also gives easy access to a host of water activities.
The Lodge stands out from Gulf Coast destinations because of its size, the diversity of its preserved ecosystems, and commitment to sustainability.
Where to eat:
GT’s on the Bay // With stunning views and bayfront dining in the heart of Orange Beach, GTs features a one-of-kind menu. We loved the family-friendly atmosphere. You can enjoy a stone hearth pizza and fresh salad, cajun empanadas, or fish tacos as well as craft beers and daily happy hour. The boys thought the outdoor playground with a pirate ship was so cool!
Breakfast at the Ruby Slipper Cafe // Award-winning restaurant famous for their New Orleans’ inspired breakfast and brunch!
Ginny Lane Bar and Grill // Marina views and amazing food!
Woodside Restaurant // We did dinner and live music here. Think creative Southern cuisine using locally-sourced ingredients. I loved that they have outdoor games with the outdoor seating options, including cornhole and ping pong. On select nights, they give kiddos s’mores kits to use around the outdoor fit pits. (Allergy and gluten-free options available.
Doc’s Seafood // An Orange Beach tradition for more than 30 years, here you’ll find Doc’s “world famous” fried shrimp, “build-your-own” delicious seafood platters, fried fish, seafood gumbo, big ol’ deep water royal red shrimp + much more.
Lulu’s // We did lunch here, and it’s owned and operated by Lucy Buffett, sister to singer Jimmy Buffett. There is a large sand area, Fountain of Youth and Mountain of Youth, as well as nightly live music. LuLu’s has an extensive allergy menu! Other aspects of this destination dining spot include:
- Live Music Nightly
- Fun Arcade
- 3-story climbing ropes course the Mountain of Youth
- Smaller Munchkin Mountain for the little tykes
- Boat Dockage!
Beach Family Activities
Besides the white sand beaches, of course??
Historic Fort Morgan // This was built between 1819 and 1833. Besides the history, the site also has nature areas, a boat launch, picnic area, and beaches to enjoy.
The Wharf // This is Orange Beach’s waterfront dining and entertainment complex! Located on the Intracoastal Waterway, you’ll find an amphitheater and dozens of unique boutiques and restaurants. I opted out of the Ferris wheel, but I heard that it’s the tallest one in the southeast. When you visit The Wharf at night, you can enjoy the SPECTRA Sound and Light Show–a unique experience unlike anything else.
Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo // Voted “#1 Zoo in Alabama” and also known as the “Little Zoo That Could” for its starring role in the 2006 hit documentary series of the same name on Animal Planet.
Big Beach Brewing Company // All the beers on tap are made in-house and the brewery is locally owned.