Best Family Beach Vacations on the Gulf Coast

  • 01 of 05

    Destin, Florida

    Destin_HendersonBeach.jpg
    ••• Florida State Parks

    With sand like powdered sugar and the brilliant turquoise Gulf of Mexico, Destin is a gem on the Emerald Coast. Put these kid-friendly attractions on the top of your to-do list.

    Continue to 2 of 5 below.
  • 02 of 05

    St. George Island, Florida

    StGeorgeIslandLighthouse.jpg
    ••• St. George Island Lighthouse

    Tucked into the crook of Florida's Panhandle, the 28-mile St. George Island is renowned for its unspoiled beaches. Located just off the coast, the barrier island is part of the long stretch of beaches known as Gulf Islands National Seashore. 

    Continue to 3 of 5 below.
  • 03 of 05

    Gulf Shores & Orange Beach, Alabama

    GulfStateParkPier.jpg
    ••• Gulf State Park Pier

    With 32 miles of spectacular, sugar-white beaches and a raft load of outdoor activities and family attractions, the neighboring towns of  Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are premier family beach vacation destinations. 

    Continue to 4 of 5 below.
  • 04 of 05

    Padre Island, Texas

    HorsesOnBeach.jpg
    ••• South Padre Island Adventure Park

    Running north-south off the coast of mainland Texas, Padre Island is the world's longest barrier island and a playground for beachgoers and sun lovers. Aside from the town of South Padre Island on its southern end, the island is quite sparsely populated. The central portion of the island is preserved in a natural state as the Padre Island National Seashore. North Padre is where you'll find the pristine, unencumbered Texas coast—a dramatic contrast to the often congested scene of South Padre. 

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    Sanibel & Captiva Islands, Florida

    SanibelSunset.jpg
    ••• Sanibel-Captiva Chamber of Commerce

    The famous shell-strewn beaches on Sanibel and Captiva Islands are among the most beautiful in all of Florida. There are no amusement parks, no traffic lights, no billboard-lined highways, no glaring neon, and no tracts of high-rise condos. Instead, you'll find a laid-back vibe, terrific restaurants, chic shops, and 15 miles of drop-dead-gorgeous beaches.