As you begin planning your Gulf Shores Alabama vacation escape, chances are your itinerary will never grow very big, not because there isn’t a lot to do in our coastal village on the shores of the Gulf, but because you have penciled in LOTS of time at the beach! Even your dining experiences, when not enjoyed at home in our comfortable and charming Poole & Associates vacation sanctuaries, will tend to be spent at beachside restaurants where you don’t have to take your eyes off the pristine white sand beaches and the turquoise waters that frame it for one second! This vacation is one designed for sea, sun, sand, and relaxation, and you are all in for the week! There is one exception, however, one very specific and very enjoyable activity that you have probably placed right under beach time and seafood dinners on your bucket list of Alabama activities and that is, of course, shopping! Whether you are stocking the pantry of your abode, seeking souvenirs, or are just curious about the wares and products offered on the Gulf Coast (as opposed to your desert hometown in Arizona!) you have more than likely slated a good bit of time for shopping and our guide to the best places to do so will help you cut to the chase and get back to the beach as quickly as you desire!

 

At Home in Gulf Shores

 

The first shopping expedition of your Gulf Shores getaway will probably be to the grocery store to ensure that you have snacks and at least a couple of meal-fixing ingredients to tide you over between seafood restaurant visits. While not glamorous, groceries are necessary and you have a choice of chain stores to visit, including Publix or Rouses Market, but if you really want a taste of Alabama charm, we suggest you stop by Pier 33, a quaint general store filled with charm. Located right on the main strip at 900 W Beach Boulevard #6302, Pier 33 offers a great selection of groceries, souvenirs, or beach gear, and also sells beer and wine!

 

Souvenirs for Days

 

As you might expect from a beach town you can’t walk far without finding a shop in which you can purchase memorabilia from your time in paradise, but there are a few that we think you will especially love! Souvenir City, located at  217 Gulf Shores Parkway is about the size of a small city and is jammed to the rafters with everything Gulf Shores, including tees, mugs, magnets, and so much more! Walk into the shark’s mouth that just happens to be the entrance (after stopping for a picture or two, of course!) and be prepared to lose yourself in the colorful wares they sell within. LA (Lower Alabama) Gifts, 3800 Gulf Shores Parkway #330, is another popular gift shop in the area, offering gifts, beach gear, and souvenirs that are a little more expensive than the ones you will find in Souvenir City all of which can be found in a much more compact sized store! But if you were to hold our hands to the fire and demand which is our personal favorite gift store in Gulf Shores, it would have to be the Royal Standard, located at 3769 Gulf Shores Parkway. It is definitely a gift store in every sense of the word, featuring a huge selection of wares for everyone on your shopping list and even provides a very strong section for men which makes us wonder. Why can’t EVERY store be like the Royal Standard and provide a men’s section as well?

 

Boutiques That Will Wow

 

The boutiques of the world should all hope to be as fun and wonderful as some of our local ones, including Geez Louise Boutique, found at 701 Gulf Shores Parkway! Offering colorful clothing for women, all the accessories to complete any outfit, and a selection of gifts, we simply can’t stay away and have a feeling you will be the same way! The Beach House Boutique, 3800 Gulf Shores Parkway #320, ensures that you will be the best-dressed beachgoer in town, and Glitter & Dirt, 3800 Gulf Shores Parkway Suite 325 is proud to offer women’s and children’s wear that are high quality and so very cute!

 

Room for Everything you Buy

 

After meandering in and out of stores and lugging large bags of goodies with you everywhere you go, coming home to our Gulf Shores sanctuaries will be a treat you will look forward to every day! Drop your bags in the extra room, slip into that new romper you purchased at Glitter & Dirt, and head to the balcony for a little sea therapy! Every minute spent in our Poole & Associates homes away from home will be the best one; reserve your favorite today!