Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

“The Little Zoo That Could”Sign for the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

When you visit Gulf Shores, Al of course your initial thought is the beautiful white sand beaches and fun in the sun. While the beach may be the main attraction for vacationers, it’s “The Little Zoo That Could” (otherwise known as the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo!) that wins their hearts.

“The Little Zoo That Could” was opened in 1989. During this time it was known as Zooland Animal Park. It has come a long way since then. With donations of land this zoo is now the home to 300 animals. Vacationers have the opportunity not only to visit the zoo, but to get up close and person with the animals.

It is the home to tigers, lions, bears and several different species of monkeys. Enjoy the Two tiger cubs playing in a basket at the zoo.adventurous exhibits and “encounter” areas while you take in the tropical aviaries that include peacocks, parrots and so much more. Families who visit “The Little Zoo That Could” will leave with a treasured experience after visiting the exotic creatures located right in the heart of Gulf Shores.

Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo awaits your visit. While you’re there don’t forget to visit the gift shop and pick up the 13-episode Animal Planet four-disc DVD set. This cherished zoo has sustained many struggles but has overcome all Mother Nature has thrown at it. The staff plays a huge part in the success of “The Little Zoo That Could”. Their love for the animals is exactly what keeps this attraction expanding. In fact, a new, large green home on the mainland is in the process of being built just a few miles away from the original location.

The beaches, the restaurants and the nightlife are reason enough to vacation on The Gulf, but do not head home without stopping in and saying hello to Gulf Shores, “The Little Zoo That Could”.

Zoo Hours of Operation:

Open 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Daily

(Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Year’s Day)

Zoo Admission:

 $11 Adults • $9 Seniors • $8 Kids 3-12 

  • Kids age 2 and Under are FREE! •

Contact the Zoo:

 1204 Gulf Shores Parkway

Gulf Shores, AL 36542

251-968-5732 (Main)

251-968-5731 (Info Line)

Check out more information about the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo and it’s exhibits and events today!

Gulf Coast Zoo Videos:

Or even better… Checkout a sneak peek at some of the park in one of these YouTube videos.

Wild Mike’s Animal Show

Video of Wild Mike Animal Show at the Gulf Coast Zoo

Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo: Animal Encounters

Video of the Animal Encounters at the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo.

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Historic Fort Morgan Alabama

Come Experience Historic Fort Morgan Alabama!

Located on Mobile Point, at the end of Scenic Fort Morgan Peninsula, the site of the historic fort has a diverse number of activities to make your reservation and visit a memorable one.

View of Historic Fort Morgan Alabama

View from across the bay from Dauphin Island

Preceded by another fort, Fort Bowyer during the War of 1812, Historic Fort Morgan Alabama is a Third System masonry fort built between 1819 and 1833. Standing guard where the bay meets the Gulf of Mexico, the fort played a significant role in the Battle of Mobile Bay in August 1864. Used intermittently through the Spanish American War, World War I and World War II, the site showcases the evolution of seacoast fortifications and adaptations made by the U.S Army for the defense of the Country.

If you enjoy history, you’ll love the depth and preservation at the Fort Morgan State Historic site, including guided tours in peak seasons such as June and July, and year round access to enjoy self guided tours. The museum offers an array of historical artifacts relevant to the span of history at the fort, as well as full displays sharing insight into the life of those who manned the fort at various times.

More Than Just a Fort

More than just history, the site also has nature areas, and a boat launch for the outdoorsman to enjoy. Or you can simply sit back and relax and let the worries of the world slip away.

Whatever your reason for visiting, make sure Historic Fort Morgan is part of your visit to Alabama’s beautiful Gulf Coast!

Historic Fort Morgan ADMISSIONS:

ADULTS: $7.00  SENIOR: $5.00 (65 and up)  CHILD: $4.00 (6-12)(6 and under free)  FAMILY: $18.00 (2 adults and 2 kids)  ACTIVE MILITARY/VETERANS: FREE WITH MILITARY ID

For more Information check out their website or book a nearby vacation rental!

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Gulf State Park

Gulf State Park: Fun for the Whole Family!

Are you looking to experience all the Alabama Gulf Coast has to offer? If so, The Gulf State Park is just for you. At this park you will enjoy everything from camping, hiking, the gorgeous Gulf Coast beaches, a fantastic fishing pier, along with so much more.

The opportunities for fun and relaxation are limitless at this state park. The park offers primitive camping, cottages, cabins and RV hook-ups. Fill your day with hiking the 10 trails offered while you take in nature’s beauty. Be sure to bring your camera so you don’t miss out on photos of all the wildlife you come in counter with.

The fishing pier is an anglers dream! For a small fee you can fish right from the pier. The pier is 20- feet wide and extends 1,512 feet into the Gulf of Mexico. With the right bait on your line you are sure to catch various species of saltwater fish. If you would rather freshwater fish, the opportunity for that is offered at this state park. There is 900 acres provided by Lake Shelby for you to cast your lines into.

Do you have a dog you want to bring with you? The Gulf State Park welcomes your four legged friend. Your pet can enjoy the hiking   trails, the campground and the picnic area as long as they are on a leash. When you want to free your pet from the leash you can do so at the Dog Pond.

When you feel like experiencing a day or night out on the town you can so! The park is located near various restaurants, shopping and entertainment for the entire family. Just because you are camping doesn’t mean you can’t get out and about to enjoy the town.

Gulf State Park’s Nature Center

The nature center is a living museum of plants and animals that are native to the Gulf Coast region. It is their goal to inspire people to care for the environment by expanding their knowledge of the state’s natural resources through experiences that lead them to understand their connection to the natural world. The Gulf State Park has weekly programs that include guided nature walks, beach walks. Pier walks, and a nature time. Through these educational programs, they offer a multitude of learning opportunities for children and adults about Alabama’s Gulf Coast. Additionally, GSP Nature Center works closely with the United States Fish & Wildlife Service to protect Alabama’s sea turtles through the volunteer program known as Share the Beach.

There is an entrance fee of $2.00 per vehicle to enter the Campground. Lodging and campground guests are exempt from this fee.

Hours of Operation: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday – Saturday. Closed on Sunday.

Fly across Gulf State Park on a zipline.

The Gulf Adventure Center at Gulf State Park operates its Hummingbird Ziplines, allowing thrill-seekers to fly over the park at Lake Shelby. If you’re down for a real adventure, head over and get strapped into a full-body harness. Once you complete the mandatory ground training, you’ll climb up a rope ladder to one of the eagle’s nests, towering as high as 90 feet above the ground. From this vantage point, you can see for miles. Look west toward Fort Morgan, north to see some of Foley, and east to the Perdido Key and Pensacola area. The thrill of this view is nothing compared to the one you’ll get soaring across the Gulf State Park at Lake Shelby. The zipline course is more than a mile in total, but each stretch of cable is about 380 to 1228 feet, carrying visitors over scenic views of the parks dunes, lakes and trails. As you fly, be sure to look out to the south and admire the sparkling Gulf waters lapping at the shore. Although the entire experience takes about two and a half hours, once you’re actually flying, you’ll be back on the ground again before you know it! Of course, if you don’t like flying, there are plenty of other ways to enjoy Gulf State Park. The Gulf Adventure Center also offers kayaking and paddle boarding rentals for use on Lake Shelby within the park.

We encourage you and your family to visit the Gulf State Park for memories that will last a lifetime. Free yourself from the stress of a busy town and enter into the tranquility that this park has to share! And if you need help with a Gulf Shores vacation rental, don’t forget that Anchor Vacations is here for you!

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment



Voyage through time and revisit an era of adventure and bravery as you tour the many exhibits located at the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park in Mobile, AL nearby to our Gulf Shores and Orange Beach vacation rentals.

The USS AlabamaView of the USS Alabama at Battleship Memorial Park

USS Alabama (BB-60), a South Dakota-class battleship, was the sixth ship of the United States Navy named after the US state of Alabama. Alabama was commissioned in 1942 and served in World War II in the Atlantic and Pacific. The recipient of nine WWII Battle Stars, the Battleship USS Alabama and her crew of 2,500 saw action in the Atlantic for a year before joining the Pacific Fleet in the mid-1943. There she fought at such key locations such as Leyte, the Gilbert Islands and Okinawa. After the signing of the war ending surrender documents in September 1945, USS Alabama, or the “Mighty A”, as she was known, led the American fleet into Tokyo Bay.


Alongside the battleship is America’s oldest Gato Class US submarine on public display. The DRUM is named for a large Sea-Bass found off the North Atlantic Coast. With its crew of 72 men, the Drum conducted 13 war patrols, was awarded 12 Campaign Stars, and sank 15 Japanese ships totaling over 80,000 tons. Visitors can go below and inside and will see the conditions that confronted our Navy’s submarine.

Air Force Air Planes

Relive the glory days of the Air Force with “Calamity Jane”, a B-52 Stratofortress that served with the Strategic Air Command (SAC). Another cold war veteran, the A-12 “Blackbird” spy-plane, is a fascinating blast from the past. Inspect the other aircraft from Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm too.

Come Enjoy the USS Alabama Memorial Battleship Park

Be sure to visit the inspiring Vietnam and Korean War memorials and checking out the other aircraft and military equipment in their park. Take time to relax by the Bay with something delicious from The Galley then, stop by the Ships Store where you will find unique clothing, mementos and other military-themed items. There is so much to see at USS Alabama Memorial Park! Come visit and take a step back in time, reliving the many thrilling stories that played out aboard the Battleship ALABAMA & Submarine USS DRUM.

Learn More about visiting the USS Alabama

USS Alabama Memorial Battleship Park

2703 Battleship Pkwy, Mobile, AL 36603

Checkout Vacation Rentals on the Beach and within driving distance of the Park.

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge

 Map of Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge.Named one of the 10 Natural Wonders of Alabama, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge comprises 7,000 acres on five parcels of land


Information about Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge

Congress established the Refuge in 1980 to preserve the coastal dune ecosystem and to protect threatened and endangered species along with migratory birds.

The name Bon Secour is French and means “safe harbour”, a very appropriate name for Trail through Bon Secour WIldlife Refugethis undisturbed piece of paradise. From sandy beaches and rolling dunes, to wetlands with a dense growth of evergreens and deciduous trees, the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge features a diverse habitat.

More than 370 species of birds have been identified at the Refuge during migratory seasons. The largest are typically ospreys and several species of herons. Four species of hummingbirds have also been identified in the Refuge. Mammals such as the red fox, armadillo and coyotes call the Refuge home , as does the endangered Alabama beach mouse. Endangered sea turtles also use the sandy, unspoiled beaches for nesting from May to October.

The FBSNWR was established to help support the work of the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service in protecting one of the largest undeveloped parcels of land on the Alabama Gulf Coast. The Refuge is home to many species of wildlife and plants, some of which are endangered.

Sea Turtles are Popular at Bon Secour

Image of a baby sea turtle at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge near Gulf Shores.

Share the Beach volunteers monitor sea turtles nests on the entire Alabama Gulf Coast from Dauphin Island to the Florida state line. You may also adopt a nest by making a donation to the Share the Beach Program, sponsored by the Friends of the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge.

Get More information about Bon Secour and consider planning a visit with a stay in one of our great vacation rentals.

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Blakeley State Park

Visit Historic Blakeley State ParkConfederate trail through the woods at Historic Blakeley State Park.

Are you a history buff that thrives on visiting historic areas? If so, you will defiantly want to incorporate the Historic Blakeley State Park into your vacations. Visit the town of Blakeley, one of the oldest towns of Baldwin County dating back to the 1820;s. While you brush up on historic events such as The Battle of Blakeley, you will also enjoy all the nature this park has to offer.

View of the Historic Blakeley Battleground.Today, the park is decorated with 400 year old oak trees and horned owl hoots. It is known as one of the south’s loveliest ghost towns. Walk to historic nature trails or jump on the Delta Explorer for a guided tour of Historic Blakeley State Park. It is surely an adventure you and your family will never forget.

Map of Blakeley State Park Historic Battlefield.

Viewing point within the wetlands of Historic Blakeley State ParkThe Delta is a wilderness wetland eco-system where you will explore scenic views and encounter the many inhabitants that take shelter here. Since it is the home of the State’s largest populations of alligators, black bears, osprey you are sure to get those fantastic wilderness family photos.

The park welcomes those who love to become one with nature by camping. It offers two different campgrounds to experience. The Apalachee campground is for those campers with recreational vehicles. It has underground utilities and was designed for privacy from other campers. It is modernized and awaits your arrival. The Harper campground is equipped for those who would rather tent camp. You do not have utilities but there are restrooms located nearby, fire rings to cozy up by and picnic tables for all your outdoor family meals.

Have a relaxing, adventurous and educational experience by visiting the Historic Blakeley State Park. Immerse yourself in “the South’s loveliest ghost town”, while you make historic memories with your family and friends.

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Meaher State Park

If you are looking to camp, fish or just relax in the great outdoors look no further the Meaher State Park. This beautiful park is located in the wetlands of Mobile Bay. With its 1,327 acres you will truly be surrounded by all that Mother Nature has to offer.

Fishing at Meaher State Park

Fish the wetlands of Meaher Sate Park.Meaher State Park offers an abundant amount of fishing opportunities. The park has a 300-foot pier with a 200-foot “T” for all your fishing needs. Since the park is located on Mobile Bay you have access to freshwater and saltwater fish. An Alabama freshwater fishing license is required in order to fish, but that is merely a stepping stone to all the catches you are going to make. If you wish to bring your boast, no problem, there is an accessible boat ramp located on the Blakeley River on the east end of the park.

Camping at Meaher State Park

This state park also has economical overnight lodgings. The campground is equipped with 20-30 and 50 amp electrical connections, water and sewer service. Also, for your convenience that campground has a bathhouse and laundry facilities.

Enjoy the beauty of Meaher State Park.Just because you are camping doesn’t mean you can’t experience the metro are of Mobile. Take a break from the outdoors to visit the many shopping and dining prospects Mobile has to offer. If you are missing the beach, no worries, the gorgeous Alabama Gulf Coast beaches are only an hour away.

Bring the family and experience all the outdoor fun Meaher State Park has to offer. The entrance fee to the park is only $2 per person. You do not want to miss out on the stunning scenery, relaxation and wildlife provided by this state park.

Learn More about the Meaher State Park & vacation rentals with us for something more luxurious than camping!

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Pirates Cove Gulf Shores

Pirates Cove Marina & Restaurant

Closeup image of the famous Pirates Cove cheeseburger and bushwhacker.We know that on your vacation you want a true local experience. Pirates Cove is the destination for you. When you visit Pirates Cove put away your watches, because you are now on island time and everything moves at it’s own pace! You can get there by boat or by car; all that matters is that you get there. Locals adore this hidden gem for the live music, their famous cheeseburger and of course the bushwhackers! We HIGHLY encourage you to order up these yummy favorites and take a seat outside along the Marina’s dock and Gulf Coast waters, just like the locals do!

Pirates Cove Gulf Shores Area Favorite!

Outside view of Pirates Cove Gulf Shores from the parking lot.Located in Elberta, AL near by to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Pirates Cove is home to some of the most wonderful mainlanders you will ever meet. They absolutely love man’s best friend, so your dog is more than welcome to tag along and enjoy the experience as well. Take in the true coastal, laid back atmosphere at Pirates Cove, one of the local’s most beloved places on the island.

View of the Pirates Cove outside bar and dock.

More Pirates Cove Information

Checkout the Great Local Pirates Cove Music Schedule

Checkout the Pirates Cove Menu

Contact Information for Pirates Cove:

6664 County Road 95

Elberta, AL  36530

(251) 987-1224

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Waterville USA Gulf Shores

When you need a break from the sand but you still want to play in the water look no further than Waterville USA located in Gulf Shores. This 20 acre waterpark and amusement park has everything for your family to enjoy! And may people didn’t even know it was an option when they started planning their trip to the Gulf Coast~

Visit Waterville USA in Gulf Shores. Lazy River and Slides.Waterville was opened in 1986 and since then has grown regularly, adding new attractions to the park. Enjoy a family fun atmosphere while having peace of mind for the safety of your family. This park employs over 300 employees with American Red Cross certified life guard. The staff is extensively trained to provide top notch safety and customer service and the rides and attractions are designed to keep everyone entertained and safe!

Waterville USA has something for everyone in the family!

IF you are a dare devil that appreciates the excitement of the adrenaline rush take a ride on the Cannonball Run. This rollercoaster offers a 50MPH nail biting experience you are sure to never forget. With its zero-gravity and high speed this coaster is surely a must ride. Maybe you just want to chill out and relax. You can do so in the Crystal Waters River. Grab a free tube and float this 1/3 mile river through the park while you blissfully take in the beautiful tropical landscaping and its big waterfall. Adventure and relaxation awaits you with slides, go carts, rollercoaster and more!

Be sure to take time out of your vacation to visit Waterville USA. No matter what your forte may be this water park and amusement park is sure to satisfy all your vacations desires.

** When you book a vacation rental with Anchor Vacations, we do offer one free adult admission to Waterville USA as an added bonus. Checkout this and other great free amenity services you get when you book with us!

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment

Flora-Bama Fishing & Gulf Shores Summer Activities

Kick back and relax on the beach in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach for the summer!! There are several exciting events you can partake in and of course nothing beats vacationing at the beach. Start with the ever popular Flora-Bama Fishing Rodeo and checkout everything else available in June!


The Flora-Bama Fishing Rodeo is the ‘Every Mans” fishing rodeo! Just like the Lounge you don’t have to be a VIP to fish with us. Categories will range from Catfish to Bill Fish and everything in between. They will be giving away top of the line prizes I can promise you that! The tournament will be held at the Flor-Bama Yacht Club across the street from the world famous Flora-Bama Lounge and Package Store. The FBFR is a 3-day Captains Choice tournament with anglers competing for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in 30 categories including red snapper. Accompanying the tournament will be a three day beach party and awards ceremony that will include daily weigh-ins with fish viewing, live music, great food and hospitality done in true Flora-Bama fashion. Not only will the FBFR be one of the premier events on the Gulf Coast. A portion of the proceeds from the tournament will be donated to the Operation Reconnect, a charity for Combat Veterans.
This event will be held June 10, 2016 – June 12, 2016. The tickets are $40.00 for the adult division and $20.00 for kids 12 and under competing in the youth division. Kids can fish up with an adult-division ticket.


The Gulf Coasts Arts Alliance (GCAA) Art Market, in partnership with the City of Gulf Shores, is held from 3:00 pm until 8:00 pm on June 4, 2016. The Art Market features original art by local and regional artists and has grown to be a favorite day-long event for locals and tourists. This event will include original art, kid’s art activities, local artists, local musicians and unique demonstrations.


Watch Fort Morgan’s Civil War history come to life every summer during the evening tours. Historical interpreters portraying members of the garrison, tell about the lives of the soldiers during the fort’s most turbulent years. Demonstrations of Civil War small arms drill will occur throughout the evening as well as the firing of one of the fort’s artillery pieces at the conclusion of the tour. This event will be held from June 2, 2016 – July 26, 2016. There is a small admission fee of $7 for adults, $5 for Seniors & students and $4 CHILDREN AGES 6-12.

Posted in Blog | Leave a comment