5 must-see beaches on Gulf Coast, Florida (with Map & Photos)

Stretching 1,000 miles from the Texas-Mexico border to the tip of Florida, the five US states bordering the Gulf of Mexico are famous for their year-round inviting beaches. Its blue waters are always warm, the fishing is excellent, and there are many exciting outdoor attractions along the coasts of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.

Galveston Island, Texas


Galveston Island (Galveston Island), Texas, is located about 60 miles southeast of Houston. It has 51 km of coastline and different beaches that appeal to different tastes. Stewart Beach is ideal for family travel; on the other hand, on East Beach, the largest in Texas, adults can drink alcoholic beverages openly. It is known for its festivals, live music and its annual sand castle competition. Go hiking, bird watching and horseback riding at Galveston Island State Park, or enjoy cultural attractions such as the historic Moody Mansion and Pleasure Pier, an early 20th-century amusement park with mountains roller coasters, ferris wheel, carousel and crazy cup.

beaches on gulf coast florida
Galveston Island at dawn

Orange Beach, Alabama


Orange Beach is located in Alabama, 300 km east of New Orleans, Louisiana. It has the world's largest artificial fishing reef and is a popular dolphin spot off white sandy beaches. Take a tour on a glass-bottom boat or rent snorkeling gear to see dolphins in their natural habitat. During the day, the port of Orange Beach is packed with tourists shopping, playing mini golf and escaping the sun at the movies. In the evening, locals frequent the Wharf Outdoor Amphitheater (Oporto Afiteatro) to watch performances by artists such as Miranda Lambert and Jimmy Buffett.

beaches on gulf coast florida
Orange Beach, Alabama

Sarasota, Florida


Take the kids to Sarasota, Fla., 370 km northwest of Miami, where the shallow waters are great for learning to swim and floating in the sea. Named the best beach in the US by TripAdvisor in 2015, Siesta Key is popular for its pure quartz white sand and plentiful fishing year-round, with charters at marinas along the central harbor that take tourists to the best places to fish. species such as European perch, bijupir√°, horse mackerel and painted croaker. In November, the beach turns into an art museum during the annual festival known as the Siesta Key Crystal Classic, where very intricate sand sculptures are displayed.

beaches on gulf coast florida
Siesta Key

Gulfport, Mississippi


Paddle Southern Mississippi to Gulfport, Mississippi, 125 km from New Orleans. This Gulf Coast beach is popular for its wide variety of water trails; you can rent stand up boards, kayaks and canoes to explore the region. Board the ferry at Gulfport Small Craft Harbor to visit West Ship Island, a protected barrier island 12 miles offshore that is home to a national park, many dunes and grasslands. Here, you can find native wildlife such as birds, dolphins and alligators. Then stop in Fort Massachusetts to learn about the island's colonial history. If you prefer to relax, Gulfport also has 41 km of white sand beaches, where you can sunbathe for a while.

beaches on gulf coast florida
Gulfport, Mississippi

Destin, Florida


There are a multitude of things to do in Destin, Florida, a seaside town located 500 kilometers southwest of Atlanta, Georgia. During the summer, you can see many families having fun in the blue waters and building sand castles on the beach. Observe marine life up close at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park, where you can feed penguins and snorkel among dolphins and stingrays. Considered the "luckiest fishing village in the world", Destin also has world-class sport fishing charters departing from HarborWalk Marina. Walk along the Destin Harbor Boardwalk to find artists doing caricatures, book a pirate boat cruise and enjoy the sunset.

beaches on gulf coast florida
Emerald Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau