Summer is the perfect time for Southerners to gather their family members, pack up the car, and take a road trip to a new place. Whether it's a long weekend away or two weeks spent with your toes in the sand, family vacations are a chance to glimpse the natural beauty of our region and spend time with those we love. So, it's no wonder that as soon as kids start getting out of school, families make their way down to the coast to enjoy the stunning ocean views that the South offers. This vacation spot is one of our absolute favorites – and many families would agree. Gulf Shores, self-titled "Small Town, Big Beach," is along Alabama's Gulf Coast. The lengthy coastline, gorgeous views, iconic restaurants, and clear water make it one of the best spots around. The area is home to all sorts of marine life, including whales, dolphins, and even one species of manatee. If you aren't coming to lay on the white sand, you may be in the area for Gulf Shores' popular music scene, including the ever-popular Hangout Music Festival held every May. Whatever your reason, you won't regret a visit to this charming Southern locale.