Gulf Shores, Alabama, a charming coastal town nestled along the Gulf of Mexico, offers an enticing escape for travelers seeking sun, sea, and Southern hospitality. Just a short journey from Navarre, Florida, Gulf Shores presents a delightful mix of beautiful beaches, outdoor adventures, and a laid-back atmosphere. In this article, we’ll guide you through a memorable day trip to Gulf Shores, where you can immerse yourself in the natural beauty and coastal delights of this enchanting destination.

Morning: Coastal Serenity

1. Gulf Shores Public Beach

Kickstart your day trip with a visit to Gulf Shores Public Beach. This picturesque stretch of soft white sand and turquoise waters provides the perfect setting for a tranquil morning. Take a leisurely walk along the shoreline, bask in the gentle sea breeze, and enjoy the serenity of the Gulf.

2. The Hangout

After working up an appetite, head to The Hangout, a lively beachfront restaurant known for its vibrant atmosphere and delicious breakfast offerings. Indulge in classic Southern favorites like shrimp and grits or savor a hearty brunch to energize yourself for the day ahead.

3. Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge

For nature enthusiasts, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge is a must-visit. Just a short drive from Gulf Shores, this pristine refuge provides a sanctuary for diverse wildlife and habitats. Take a peaceful hike along the trails, keep an eye out for native birds, and revel in the unspoiled beauty of the coastal landscape.

Late Morning to Afternoon: Outdoor Adventures

1. Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

For a family-friendly adventure, head to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. This well-maintained zoo showcases a variety of animals and offers interactive experiences for visitors. Enjoy watching playful lemurs, majestic tigers, and other fascinating creatures in a well-designed and naturalistic environment.

See also  Grayton Beach Arts Festival: Celebrating Local Creativity

2. Gulf State Park

Gulf State Park is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, offering a range of activities for all ages. Whether you prefer hiking, biking, fishing, or kayaking, the park’s diverse ecosystems and recreational facilities cater to various interests.

3. Picnic at Lake Shelby

After your outdoor escapades, unwind with a relaxing picnic at Lake Shelby, within Gulf State Park. This tranquil lake setting is an ideal spot to enjoy a packed lunch amidst nature’s splendor.

Late Afternoon to Evening: Beach Fun and Local Cuisine

1. Gulf Shores Beaches

Return to the beach for some leisurely fun in the sun. Gulf Shores boasts numerous public access points to the beach, allowing you to explore different stretches of the coastline. Consider renting beach chairs and umbrellas for ultimate comfort as you soak in the sun and listen to the soothing sounds of the waves.

2. Souvenir Shopping

Before dinner, explore the local boutiques and souvenir shops along Gulf Shores’ main streets. Find unique coastal trinkets, beachwear, and gifts to commemorate your day trip to this charming town.

3. Dinner at The Gulf

For a memorable dinner experience, head to The Gulf restaurant. This waterfront eatery offers delicious Gulf Coast cuisine with stunning views of the sunset. Try their fresh seafood dishes or enjoy a refreshing cocktail as the day comes to a close.


Gulf Shores, Alabama, presents a captivating coastal escape from Navarre, Florida, and a wealth of experiences await every traveler. From the serene beaches and nature retreats to the outdoor adventures and delectable local cuisine, a day trip to Gulf Shores promises fond memories and a genuine taste of Southern charm. As you bid farewell to this coastal haven and return to Navarre, you’ll carry with you the allure of Gulf Shores and the anticipation of returning to this idyllic destination in the future. Until then, may your travels be filled with sunshine and the spirit of the Gulf.

See also  Gulf Shores Nature Reserves: Wildlife Encounters