13+ SURPRISING THINGS TO DO IN MOBILE AL

When you think of Mardi Gras, New Orleans immediately comes to mind. But did you know that the first Carnival season festivities in the United States began in Mobile, Alabama? The annual event carries over today, albeit a more family-friendly version, as locals don royal attire on floats and at community balls. In addition to beads, revelers throw Moon Pies. It’s definitely among our list of surprising things to do in Mobile Al!

12 SURPRISING THINGS TO DO IN MOBILE AL
Photo courtesy of Visit Mobile.

Even if you don’t visit during the spring, you can still enjoy a cold beverage on Dauphin Street, Mobile’s main nightlife thoroughfare. This street also boasts the city’s best restaurants and art galleries.

The town’s architecture is reminiscent of its rival cities, New Orleans and Savannah, complete with French, Spanish, and English influences. Trees with colorful flowers line the streets and the occasional square breaks up the grid for a shaded space for community events.

Set along the Gulf of Mexico, the area is important for shipping and commerce but also has wildlife-rich areas like Dauphin Island, Fairhope, and Gulf Shores.

THINGS TO DO IN MOBILE AL

13+ SURPRISING THINGS TO DO IN MOBILE AL
Photo courtesy of Visit Mobile.

QUACK ON THE WATER WITH GULF COAST DUCKS

New to Mobile is the Gulf Coast Ducks, which winds through downtown before hopping in the Gulf of Mexico. Along the way, you’ll learn about the city and waterway’s history. The special vehicle is reminiscent of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, just without the flying. Purchase a Quacker, a noisemaker in the shape of a duck bill, for the full effect, and be prepared for the splash into the water! Tours last a little over an hour and leave from the USS Alabama.

USS ALABAMA BATTLESHIP MEMORIAL PARK

The 45,000-ton USS Battleship Alabama sailed the North Atlantic and the South Pacific during her three-year tenure during World War II. She was home to a crew of 2,500 brave American soldiers. She’s been nicknamed “Mighty A” or the “Heroine of the Pacific.” She ended up in Mobile, Alabama, as a National Historic Landmark and memorial to millions.

GULFQUEST TEACHES VISITORS ABOUT THE IMPORTANT BODY OF WATER

Gulfquest National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico has new exhibits and is the only museum in the world devoted to the maritime history of the gulf. Interactive exhibits focus on the port, complete with life-sized shipping containers, the hurricanes and oil spills that have affected the area, and wildlife found nearby. It’s easy to spend a few hours here, so give yourself plenty of time, and when you get hungry, the museum has its own seafood restaurant overlooking the water.

GET YOUR SCIENCE ON AT THE EXPLOREUM

Younger visitors will enjoy this science museum and IMAX theater with hands-on experiences. Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center was opened in 1998 and has over 150 exhibits, including one on the human body’s inner workings, the coast’s environment, and simple machines. Past traveling exhibits include Our Bodies and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Programming includes summer camps and field trips.

LIFE’S A PARTY AT THE MOBILE CARNIVAL MUSEUM

Experience the city’s biggest party even if your visit doesn’t coincide with the festivities. It’s the only museum in the country devoted to the history of Carnival, the official name of the festival season that includes Fat Tuesday. This museum has rooms of the lavish attire donned by the courts of krewes. You can also see everything that goes into planning a parade float. Stop by the gift shop for masks of your own.

SEE WHERE A BASEBALL GREAT GREW UP

Who knew that one of the greatest baseball players in the world hailed from Mobile, Alabama? The Hank Aaron Home is a modest three-room home where the legend lived out his childhood. Tours are available Monday to Friday and during home games. Mobile Bay Bears, the area’s minor league baseball team, operates the museum, so it’s a perfect spot for a pre-game visit.

STEP BACK IN TIME AT THE HISTORY MUSEUM

The History Museum of Mobile is a national landmark featuring artifacts, text, audio, video, and hands-on interactive experiences in the Museum’s permanent exhibit galleries to help bring Mobile’s history to life. Plus, there are several rotating exhibits throughout the year and events.

HISTORY UP CLOSE AT FORT CONDE

While it’s not the original fort that defended the city of Mobile, as it was demolished in the 1800s, this replica of Fort Conde shows visitors what it was like, albeit on a smaller scale. It’s designed in a seven-point star design so that cannons and other weapons could be used against invaders. Exhibits showcase the artifacts from the time period found by archaeologists. Costumed interpreters will tell you about the fort, which is free to visit.

MOBILE MUSEUM OF ART

The Mobile Museum of Art boasts a wide variety of art from America, Asia, and Europe with a collection of more than 6,400 works of fine and decorative art. There are permanent exhibits, plus special exhibits, classes, and events.

CATHEDRAL BASILICA OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

The first Catholic Parish on the Gulf coast was established in Mobile, Alabama in 1703, one year after the founding of Mobile. The Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception has undergone several renovations over the past 300 years but is still a sight to see.

WHERE TO EAT IN MOBILE

WHERE TO EAT IN MOBILE

THE BAY’S BEST OYSTERS AT WINTZELL’S

You can’t come to the Alabama Gulf Coast without getting your seafood fix and Wintzell’s Oyster House LoDa location is a local favorite. The 75-year-old restaurant is still family-owned. The eatery’s walls are covered in different sayings and words of wisdom created by founder J. Oliver Wintzell. Oysters are the main draw you can get, as written on the sign, “fried, stewed, or nude.” In addition, you can get them chargrilled, Rockefeller, and much more. Gumbo and whole-fried fish are good alternatives if you aren’t into bivalves, as is the West Indies Salad.

PANINIS AT BEIGNETS AT PANINI PETE’S

You can’t do better for lunch than Panini Pete’s, a local sandwich chain that was founded in nearby Fairhope. The paninis use house-made ingredients like muffuletta and tomato, and mozzarella. Pair your meal with their shoestring fries and an order of beignets, little balls of fluffy fried dough topped with powdered sugar and lemon juice. Other options include burgers and salads.

HOTDOGS WITH A TWIST AT DEW DROP INN

The hot dogs at Dew Drop Inn are not your average sausage in a bun. The restaurant, named the oldest in Mobile, serves its dogs all the way with homemade chili, sauerkraut, mustard, ketchup, and a pickle slice. Po boys and sandwiches are also on offer, and local Jimmy Buffett is a fan of their burgers.

LIVE MUSIC AND ALABAMA BARBECUE

Moe’s Original BBQ is another chain that was started by Alabama natives. Pulled pork, sausages, and other meat-centric dishes are the main draw to the LoDa location but stick around for live music and the Bushwhacker, an adult beverage, that resembles an alcoholic milkshake. Find more BBQ thrills here.

MOBILE’S BEST RESTAURANT FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY

Whether you’re looking for a nice dinner out with the entire family or a date night, The Noble South specializes in farm-to-table Southern fare using seasonal, local ingredients. Start with pepper jelly and deviled eggs before sharing catfish etouffee or shrimp and grits. They also have an extensive cocktail menu.

WHERE TO STAY IN MOBILE AL

WHERE TO STAY IN MOBILE AL

DOWNTOWN MOBILE HOTELS

THE BATTLE HOUSE RENAISSANCE MOBILE HOTEL AND SPA

Rebuilt in 1908 after two fires, the Battle House reopened in 2007 after a 30-year closure. It’s been restored to its former glory and is a member of the Historic Hotels of America. It has over 200 rooms and a stunning atrium with a stained-glass roof. Their restaurant, The Trellis Room, has a Tiffany glass skylight and is the only four-diamond rated eatery in Mobile. The Battle House’s ballrooms host Mardi Gras balls every spring.

THE ADMIRAL HOTEL

As Mobile’s only boutique hotel, The Admiral Hotel is a part of Hilton’s Curio network. The decor is chic and inspired by the 1940s when the hotel’s first incarnation opened. In addition to the rooms, the hotel has its own restaurant, communal spaces, an outdoor patio, a swimming pool, and a fitness center. It’s also a short walk from Fort Conde and other Mobile attractions.

HAMPTON INN DOWNTOWN

For a budget-friendly stay downtown, the Hampton Inn is your best bet. Not only is it well located in town near Dauphin Street, but it also has parking, free breakfast, and free WiFi.

DOWNTOWN MOBILE INNS AND BED & BREAKFASTS

FORT CONDE INN

This 1836 bed and breakfast is all about the Southern charm with two floors of porches, comfy furnishings, and daily breakfast. They also have microwaves, refrigerators, and kitchenettes if you prefer to make your own meals.

MALAGA INN

While there are rumors that it is haunted, one thing is for sure: the Malaga Inn is one of the historic district’s most stunning. The French-inspired architecture holds unique rooms and suites with complimentary WiFi, cable televisions, free parking, the all-important coffee makers, and a swimming pool.

Malaga Inn

While there are rumors that it is haunted, one thing is for sure: the Malaga Inn is one of the historic district’s most stunning. The French-inspired architecture holds unique rooms and suites with complimentary WiFi, cable televisions, free parking, the all-important coffee makers, and a swimming pool.

GREATER MOBILE BAY ACCOMMODATIONS

GULF BREEZE MOTEL, DAUPHIN ISLAND

Options on Dauphin Island are few, but this basic motel has amenities like television, Internet, and access to the beach. Children under 5 stay for free and you can get a free night with a week’s stay.

DAUPHIN ISLAND CAMPGROUND

If you want to be as close to the beach and nature as possible, you can also camp on the island. The 155-acre Audubon Bird Sanctuary beach park has sites for RVs and tents as well as a bird sanctuary, public boat launches, a dog park, and WiFi.

GRAND HOTEL MARRIOTT, POINT CLEAR

Just across Mobile Bay is the area’s finest resort. In addition to the rooms and access to white sand beaches, the resort boasts a pool complex, two golf courses, a 20,000-square-foot spa, ten tennis courts, marina access, and a number of dining options.

WHERE TO STAY IN MOBILE ALABAMA

MORE INFORMATION FOR YOUR ALAMABA VISIT

MOBILE ALABAMA FAQ

What are Mobile, Alabama’s nicknames?

Mobile, Alabama, has many nicknames. These are The Port City, The Azalea City, The City of Six Flags, and The Gateway to the Gulf. 

What are Mobile, Alabama’s top attractions?

Mobile, Alabama’s top attractions are the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park, the History Museum of Mobile, and the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico.

What famous baseball players are from Mobile, Alabama?

Mobile is home to five Major League Baseball Hall of Famers: Hank Aaron, Billy Williams, William McCovery, Satchel Paige, and Ozzie Smith.

Follow us here: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

All articles belong to 365 Atlanta Family LLC, and all photos belong to us as well, unless otherwise noted. It’s all copyrighted. Please don’t repost anything elsewhere without asking me first. All rights reserved. This site uses cookies to enhance your experience.

We make no guarantees of any price listed on our site. We are not responsible for content on external web sites linked from ours, including linked resources, an external blog post, any partner site, hotel property sites, or affiliate sites. We only write about places we love in an attempt to help you in your adventures, but we can’t guarantee you will love them, too.

Posts may contain affiliate links at no cost to you. Several of our trips are also compensated by the respective tourism boards for the city or state we are visiting. This never impacts how we share the destination with you – opinions are always our own and we pride ourselves on that. We do not sell links or accept unsolicited guest posts under any circumstances. Don’t even ask.

United States Copyright, 365 Atlanta Family, LLC

View our Privacy Policy | Subscribe to our Newsletter | Contact Site Owner | View Terms & Conditions | About Us

8 Fabulous Fall Festivals in Georgia GEORGIA CREEKSIDE CABIN RENTALS LAKE BLUE RIDGE CABIN RENTALS FOR YOUR NEXT ESCAPE