Several weeks ago I told you I was working on a big project with a deadline. I’m happy to say I’ve completed the assignment and enjoyed every minute of it. My task was to write the copy for the 2017 Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Convention and Visitor’s Official Vacation Guide.
At around 100 pages, it’s a beautiful, glossy magazine that features our wonderful beach communities in Alabama. The guide is available to anyone who wants more information about visiting or relocating to our area. The photographs are like a coffee table book and will make you wish you were at the beach the moment you first lay eyes on them.
I was a perfect fit for this job because I’ve lived on the Gulf Coast for most of my life and know first hand why it’s such a great area. But even with my lifetime of experiences, I didn’t even realize how many awesome new things there are to do here. I uncovered loads of activities for families, singles and retirees and found places to eat that were brand new. Parks I had visited as a child had grown and developed into full service destinations with the addition of zip lines, paddle boarding and sailing lessons.
The natural resources here are incredibly diverse and to be tasked with the job to write about it all was an honor and challenge.
And . . . it was a total coincidence, but not a big surprise, that BEFORE I took the job of writing this guide, our family had already made reservations to spend a week, where else? But on the Alabama Gulf Coast.
Since schedules were crazy this year with teenagers working their summer jobs and taking classes, we decided to stick close to home and found a wonderful condo to rent, owned by friends here in Fairhope, that was about an hour away in Orange Beach.
Since I had just written the official guide for Gulf Shores & Orange Beach, I was the go-to girl for all the hot spots and immediately herded everyone to The Gulf Restaurant, which is made of shipping containers! How do you like this driftwood chair? I would love to have this on my back porch!
The outdoor restaurant is very casual, and sits on the pass where you can watch the boats float by while you eat delicious seafood. During the week, we also loved eating at Cobalt, Little New Orleans, Liquid Life and . . .
twice at Doc’s Seafood Shack.
One of our favorites was Ginny Lane, located at The Wharf. Our table ordered oysters, shrimp and grits, the fish special and the steak special, and every single thing was amazing. It was very crowded, but worth the wait.
Since our group consisted of teenagers up to my parents, strolling through the shops, or sitting on benches to enjoy the nightly light show in the palm trees was the perfect evening out at The Wharf for us. This store , MII, featured one of my favorite authors, Andy Andrews, who happens to be a much loved resident of Orange Beach.
Although I’ve read most of Andy’s books, (HERE) I somehow missed The Heart Mender, so my Mom kindly bought me a copy and I’m reading it now.
Here’s my brother Robert (from the firehouse HERE), trying out an inflatable Air Bag in Objects, also located in The Wharf.
The Wharf has fun activities scheduled throughout the summer. The night we were there, a petting zoo was visiting and giving children camel rides. We actually returned a second night to eat ice cream and see a movie.
We had such a nice time visiting the beach in our own backyard. Gulf Shores & Orange Beach are a big playground for people like us, who have known and loved this beach area for generations, but it’s such a friendly place, first time visitors will feel like it’s their hometown beach as well.
I have one more store I fell in love with that I’ll show you later, so watch for that post coming up soon!
The 2017 Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Visitor’s Guide won’t be available just yet. I’ll be sure to let you know when it’s released so you can get a copy for yourself! Until then, here’s their beautiful web site: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach