Alabama's coastline is somewhat of a hidden gem, unspoilt and stretching for 32 miles along the Gulf. Fine quartz crystals, washed down centuries ago from the Appalachian Mountains, have formed beaches of sugar-white sand that rival the world's best. Paired with modern resorts and charming amusement arcades, it's the perfect seaside holiday destination.
If you're a wildlife lover, the Alabama Coastal Birding Trail passes over 50 birding sites through this region, including bald eagles, osprey and Snowy Plovers. The beaches are also home to thousands of endangered turtles – each summer, the mothers return to the same beaches to lay their eggs – and another popular activity is boating with resident bottlenose dolphins in the sparkling Gulf.
This area is also a foodie's paradise; fresh seafood, Southern specialities and Cajun delicacies are all on the menu at restaurants that range from waterfront bistros to trendy beach shacks. And, at The Wharf entertainment district, you can play mini golf, go zip-lining and ride the giant Ferris wheel, before taking in a spectacular light show on Main Street.