If you and your partner are planning a romantic getaway, look no further than Gulf Shores, Alabama. This beautiful coastal destination has everything you need for a memorable and intimate experience. From pristine white sands to outdoor adventures and live entertainment, the Gulf Shores area offers so many fun and relaxing activities. Let’s explore some things to do in Gulf Shores for couples.
If you haven’t visited Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, I encourage you to consider it. Alabama’s Gulf Coast offers a great beach getaway that is perfect for couples. Whether you’re planning your first visit or if you haven’t been in a while, I want to help you fill your itinerary with some of the best items that will help you create an unforgettable experience.
This trip was hosted by Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism but all opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. That means I will receive a small commission for any purchases made through these links at no additional cost to you.
How Can a Couple Spend a Weekend in Gulf Shores?
My husband and I have visited Gulf Shores more than a dozen times (honestly, we’ve lost count). Nonetheless, we’re always on a mission to find unique things to do in the area. I’m in love with the Gulf of Mexico and the beautiful white sand beaches in the area, so relaxing on the beach always finds its way into the itinerary. Here are some of the best places to go and the best things to do in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.
Where to Stay
There are several great places to choose from for a comfortable and relaxing stay on the Alabama Gulf Coast. Of course, you’ll want to consider your preferences and your budget as you choose the right place.
For this visit, we stayed at Indigo Surf by Beach 2 Bay Getaways. Indigo Surf is a beach house located on West Beach Boulevard. We typically choose properties that are beachfront, but this time our property was located directly across the street from the beach and we had a pretty sweet view of the beach from the front porch and our bedroom balcony.
There were only two of us on this vacation, but the property could have easily accommodated 13-15 people. This 3 bedroom 3.5 bathroom house is perfect for multiple couples, families with children, or a group of friends looking to have a great time. It has a full kitchen and washer and dryer. The location can’t be beat if you’re looking to be in the heart of Gulf Shores.
Visit Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism for all the best beach houses, hotels, resorts, and condos on the Alabama Gulf Coast.
What are some things couples can do in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach?
There are so many things for couples to do in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Here are some of our favorite things:
Enjoy Gulf Shores Beaches
Gulf Shores boasts some of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the United States. This makes it the perfect place for you and your partner to relax in the turquoise waters and soak up the sun. Other than relaxing in the waters, you can also
- consider renting beach bikes for a scenic ride along the shore.
- bring a chair and umbrella and indulge in a good book.
- pack a picnic lunch and enjoy it on the beach (or let The Beach Moms plan the perfect romantic beach picnic for you).
- take an early morning walk to enjoy the sunrise (or a late evening walk to enjoy the sunset).
Explore Gulf State Park
- Explore the natural habitat of Gulf State Park, which offers nature trails, a butterfly garden, and picnic areas.
- Go hiking or biking on one of the trails.
- Grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner at Woodside Grill.
- Go fishing on Gulf State Park fishing pier.
- Look for birds, turtles, alligators, and other wildlife.
- Pack and lunch and enjoy it at one of the picnic tables.
- Swim or go paddleboarding in the freshwater lake.
- Camp in an RV or tent at the camping sites.
- Learn more about the local environment, wildlife, and conservation efforts at The Nature Center.
- Explore the butterfly garden near the Nature Center, a serene spot to admire these beautiful insects.
- Explore the park through geocaching, a fun and interactive outdoor treasure-hunting activity.
Book a Sunset Cruise
- Book a romantic sunset cruise in the Gulf of Mexico and marvel at the marine life. (My pick: Anonyme Cruises at Orange Beach Marina.
Visit the Gulf Shores Museum
- Explore the history of the area at the Gulf Shores Museum, a great way to spend quality time together.
Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo
- Make a short drive to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, home to a little zoo with plenty of space for animal lovers.
Drive to Historic Fort Morgan
- Explore the Civil War-era fort and take in the rich history of the region.
Find Some Live Entertainment
- Experience live music and entertainment at local venues for a fun night out.
Go Beer Tasting at Big Beach Brewing Company
- Savor some of the Gulf Shores area’s finest craft beers at Big Beach Brewing Company.
Enjoy Wine and Cheese and Small Bites
- Visit Red or White Wine & Gourmet Center at The Wharf
Dine at a Delicious Gulf Shores Restaurant
- Enjoy the area’s best restaurants for fine dining and fresh seafood.
- Don’t miss the Yard Milkshake Bar for a sweet treat after dinner.
Find Some Outdoor Activities to Enjoy
- Explore the Gulf Shores area’s many outdoor activities, including mini golf, water parks, and amusement parks.
Hang out at Flora-Bama Yacht Club
- Spend a fun evening at the Flora-Bama Yacht Club, a popular entertainment district.
Schedule a Deep-Sea Fishing Trip
- Embark on a deep-sea fishing trip and enjoy some quality time on the water.
Visit The Wharf
- Browse the shops.
- Dine at an amazing restaurant.
- Ride the Ferris wheel.
Whether you’re seeking a relaxing beach vacation or an action-packed adventure, Gulf Shores has something for every couple. Enjoy a romantic and unforgettable getaway in this picturesque coastal paradise.
Other Date Ideas for Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Area
Here are some other fun things to do on the Alabama Gulf Coast:
- Visit the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge.
- Check out one of the local golf courses.
- Book a dolphin cruise.
- Check out the amusement park in nearby Foley.
- Find a picnic area and enjoy a meal outside.
- Catch a movie at the local movie theater.
- Visit the indoor water park in Foley.
- Trek through one of the bike trails.
- Grab ice cream at one of the local sweet shops.
- Go on a mission to find some delicious food trucks.
- Ride down the coast and enjoy the scenic views.
Sample Gulf Shores Itinerary for Couples
As I mentioned earlier, my husband and I love extended weekend trips to the Alabama Gulf Coast. Here’s how we recently spent an extended weekend in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach:
We started our day by stopping at Tanger Outlets in Foley, Alabama, to do some shopping. There are several great stores in this outlet mall. We stopped in and got some great deals at Hey Dude, Nike, Talbots, The Cosmetics Company Store, and Michael Kors, to name a few.
After shopping a bit, we checked into our vacation rental and relaxed a little before dinner.
Dinner for our first night was at Voyagers in Orange Beach. Voyagers is located inside Perdido Beach Resort. Now, I’ve visited the Alabama Gulf Coast more times than I can count, but somehow, I’ve overlooked this gem. I have three words to describe this restaurant: A-MAZ-ING!
This upscale beachfront restaurant offers unique dishes that change with the season. You can enjoy spectacular beach views while dining and enjoying your appetizers and entrees. If you’re a wine lover, you’ll love it here! Voyagers has a relationship with winemakers worldwide and displays approximately 700 bottles in their entryway wine storage. I’m no sommelier, but our amazing server, Christina helped us pick the perfect bottle!
Chef Brody Olive came by the table to say hello and guided us through selecting menu items that we would love.
Day 2 started with breakfast at Woodside Restaurant at Gulf State Park. Woodside is a counter-service style restaurant that offers several breakfast faves. I had pancakes and bacon and my husband had an omelette. Our meal was served hot and fresh and we both enjoyed our selections.
After breakfast, we headed over to explore the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail. Fun fact: USA Today named this trail 2023’s Best Recreational Trail in the Country! I can certainly see why. We enjoyed so many great views along our hike. If hiking isn’t your thing, grab a bike from one of the free bikeshare racks located throughout the park. If you’re a bit fancier, there are also eBikes available for rent.
Of course, you can’t be at the beach without relaxing on the beach. After our walk through the park, we headed over to enjoy some beach time.
Later that evening, we headed to Orange Beach Marina for a sunset cruise with Anonyme Cruises! It was the perfect evening for a 2-hour cruise aboard the Anonyme II, a Duffy Electric Boat. This was our first Duffy cruise and we are hooked. The ride was smooth and relaxing and we saw several dolphins while we were out on the water.
Our captain was DD Russo and she was simply amazing. She was kind and accommodating and made sure we were comfortable from the time we stepped on the boat until we disembarked. I highly recommend Anonyme Cruises.
Note: You can bring food and drinks on the cruise, or you can connect with Southern Charm Picnic Company to set up a picnic cruise. Make sure to check out the Anonyme Cruises website for more information about how to book this experience.
There’s something about sunrises at the beach that make my heart smile. So, of course, I was intentional about seeing at least one beach sunrise. On our third day at the beach, I got up super early, grabbed my sneakers, and headed out for an early morning walk. Hugging the pillow extra tight seemed like a better option until I saw that sun pop out. What an amazing sight! Pictures don’t quite do it justice.
After the sunrise, I walked a few blocks to Pier 33 to grab some coffee at West Beach Coffee House. I sat and enjoyed a light roast coffee with a warm pastry. There were two other ladies sitting in the coffee shop and we sat and talked and enjoyed our coffee together.
When I finished my coffee run, I went back to the rental and dragged my husband out of bed so we could head to Experience the Oyster! Always check the Gulf Shores & Orange Beach calendar to see what fun activities might be happening while you’re there.
Experience the Oyster is a culinary showcase of oysters presented by Murder Point Oysters. Vendors, oyster farmers and restaurant owners from all over prepare oysters in unique and delicious ways and attendees purchase tasting tickets to indulge. In addition to oysters, there are also other seafood dishes like gumbo and jambalaya available for tasting.
Oh, and the fun doesn’t stop there. There was also live music, oyster demonstrations, and appearances by top chefs from all over the country.
A nap was in order after a fun day at Experience the Oyster, so we walked back to our vacation rental to relax, watch some football, and take a nap! (I’m usually #teamnosleep on vacations, but we were both a bit tired after all the excitement from the festival.)
Dinner reservations for the night were at Jesse’s on the Bay. I know I’ve said this about a dozen different restaurants, but our experience at Jesse’s was incredible. (Y’all, there are some amazing restaurants in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach!) This is definitely a great place for a romantic date night.
Jesse’s is located in Fort Morgan, a short drive from Gulf Shores. This upscale (yet casual) restaurant on the bay offers steaks, seafood, and unique salads, sides, and desserts.
And, of course, what romantic trip to the beach would be complete without an evening stroll on the beach listening to the waves crashing on the shore?
Our final day at the beach consisted of denial! How in the world did four days in paradise go by so quickly? I opted for a distant view of the beach sunrise with a cup of coffee while my husband opted for extra sleep since he was the one driving us home. After packing our things, we headed out to enjoy one last delicious meal before hitting the road.
We had brunch at Savanna The Restaurant at the Gulf Coast Zoo. This family-friendly fine dining restaurant offers a weekend brunch that I couldn’t wait to try and let me tell you, it did not disappoint. Three words: Bananas Foster Pancakes! Need I say more? The pancakes were fluffy and the fosters sauce was so yummy.
100 Romantic Things Couples Can Do at the Beach
A beach trip can be one of the most fun and romantic trips a couple can take together. Here are 100 top things couples can do to create lasting memories together while they are at the beach:
1. Take a romantic sunset walk along the shoreline.
2. Watch the sunrise together.
3. Build a sandcastle.
4. Have a beach picnic.
5. Play beach volleyball.
6. Read a book together.
7. Go beachcombing for shells.
8. Fly a kite.
9. Swim in the ocean.
10. Go bodyboarding or surfing.
11. Collect seaglass.
12. Try paddleboarding or kayaking.
13. Have a beachside photoshoot.
14. Enjoy a game of frisbee.
15. Bring a hammock and relax.
16. Play beach paddleball.
17. Sunbathe and work on your tan.
18. Snorkel in the clear waters.
19. Take a beach yoga class.
20. Go on a seashell hunt.
21. Have a bonfire (where allowed).
22. Enjoy a beachside BBQ.
23. Take a romantic stroll under the moonlight.
24. Try your hand at beach fishing.
25. Have a beachside dance party.
26. Search for buried treasure (use metal detectors).
27. Birdwatch and spot local wildlife.
28. Build a driftwood sculpture.
29. Explore tide pools.
30. Try skimboarding.
31. Create beach art with rocks and sand.
32. Enjoy beachside drinks.
33. Write messages in the sand.
34. Bring a telescope for stargazing.
35. Play horseshoes.
36. Take a beach nap.
37. Play beach charades.
38. Have a water balloon fight.
39. Hunt for crabs at night.
40. Go seashell jewelry making.
41. Take a beach jog together.
42. Try stand-up paddleboard yoga.
43. Have a sandcastle competition.
44. Paint seashells.
45. Enjoy beachside live music.
46. Fly a remote control plane or drone.
47. Have a beachside meditation session.
48. Go beach biking (if allowed).
49. Take a romantic horseback ride on the beach.
50. Have a beachside spa day.
51. Enjoy beachside dining at a restaurant.
52. Try beachside ziplining (if available).
53. Go beach bowling (if available).
54. Have a friendly beach Olympics.
55. Try beachfront karaoke.
56. Go snorkeling for buried treasure.
57. Play a game of beach bingo.
58. Enjoy a beachfront scavenger hunt.
59. Take a beach boat tour.
60. Rent a beachside cabana.
61. Try your hand at beach paddleball.
62. Learn to juggle or do tricks.
63. Have a beachside tarot card reading.
64. Play a game of beach badminton.
65. Take a beachside painting class.
66. Enjoy beachside fireworks (if available).
67. Go beachside horseback riding.
68. Take a beachside yoga class.
69. Try stand-up paddleboarding together.
70. Explore a nearby beach town.
71. Go beachcombing for driftwood.
72. Have a beachside BBQ competition.
73. Play beachside bingo.
74. Watch a beach movie on a projector.
75. Have a beachside fruit carving contest.
76. Take a beachside tai chi class.
77. Go beachside geocaching.
78. Try beachside acro-yoga.
79. Have a beachside trivia night.
80. Take a beachside cooking class.
81. Go beachside wine tasting (if available).
82. Try beachside glassblowing (if available).
83. Take a beachside pottery class.
84. Have a beachside science experiment.
85. Play a game of beach dodgeball.
86. Try beachside hula hooping.
87. Have a beachside magic show.
88. Go beachside rock climbing (if available).
89. Take a beachside photography class.
90. Have a beachside beer tasting (if available).
91. Go parasailing.
92. Try beachside tai chi.
93. Take a beachside dance class.
94. Have a beachside art exhibit.
95. Play beachside board games.
96. Go beachside wine and paint.
97. Try beachside archery (if available).
98. Have a beachside comedy night.
99. Take a beachside trapeze class (if available).
100. Enjoy a beachside fire-dancing show.