Travel like a local.


Roller Coasters, Impersonations, and the Beach at Gulf Shores, Alabama

The best things to do in Gulf Shores Alabama Brandon Styles Park at OWA Rollin’ Thunder roller coaster

The Rollin' Thunder roller coaster at OWA in Foley, Alabama.

I’m really excited to interview Brandon Styles of Brandon Styles Live about Gulf Shores, Alabama. Brandon’s tips for the best things to do in Gulf Shores are great because he moved his family here to live by the beach. He used to travel the U.S. with his magic and impersonation variety show but has now settled down to open his own theater at OWA. If anyone knows the allure of Gulf Shores and the local area, it is Brandon.

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Best things to do in Gulf Shores Alabama Brandon Styles Caribe Marina

The Caribe Marina in Gulf Shores

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Gulf Shores is a popular destination for people in the South. It offers miles of beaches and plenty of family fun, at an affordable price. When you visit, you’ll find 32 miles of sugar-white sand beaches made almost entirely of fine, quartz grains washed down from the Appalachian Mountains thousands of years ago. The town is at the southern end of Alabama on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico. It is about halfway between New Orleans, Louisiana, and Tallahassee, Florida.

The summer is a popular time to visit Gulf Shores and enjoy the sea breeze and sandy beaches. However, if you come in the fall, you’ll still enjoy excellent weather while avoiding the crowds. In May, visit to hear the live bands at Hangout Fest, a 3-day music festival. Or you can visit in the fall for Shrimp Fest, which is an annual tradition dating back to the 1970s. You’ll enjoy live music, local art, and delicious seafood with 250,000 of your closest friends.

We share a lot of resources and local suggestions in today’s podcast, but you should also check out Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism, the local convention and visitor’s bureau. They are a wealth of information and can help you plan an itinerary based on your time, budget, and interests.

If you’d like to learn how to travel for free using airline miles and hotel points, check out my free 7-day email course.

Best things to do in Gulf Shores Alabama Brandon Styles the Hangout

Spending time with friends at The Hangout

Getting around Gulf Shores

When visiting Gulf Shores, Brandon says to fly into either Pensacola International Airport (PNS) or Mobile Regional Airport (MOB). MOB is about an hour and a half drive to Gulf Shores and PNS is about an hour’s drive to Gulf Shores. Brandon says that Pensacola has the best driving view along the coast. Use our Expedia tool below to find flight, hotel, and rental car options.

Brandon says that there is no public transportation to get around, so you should plan to rent a car. Once you arrive in town, Uber and Lyft are also excellent ways to get around. If you need to rent a car, click here for the best offers from Avis, Budget, or Hertz.

If you only need a car for a couple of hours, you can rent by the hour with Zipcar. Join now to get $25 loaded into your account.

Best things to do in Gulf Shores Alabama Brandon Styles Matt's Ice Cream

Who wouldn’t want a sweet treat from Matt’s Ice Cream?

Places we talked about on the podcast

Here is a map of all of the places we talked about on the podcast episode with Brandon Styles about Gulf Shores, Alabama. You can zoom into the map and click on each dot to explore the city.

  • Red dots = best places to eat in Gulf Shores, Alabama
  • Green dots = best things to do in Gulf Shores, Alabama
  • Yellow dots = best places to stay in Gulf Shores, Alabama

Who is Brandon Styles?

Brandon Styles is a magician and celebrity impersonator that used to travel the U.S. to perform in front of live audiences. He learned at the age of 10 that he was given the gift to imitate people using his voice and mannerisms. With years of practice, Brandon’s list of impressions grew well over 200 by the age of 24. He and his family learned about opportunities at the OWA Entertainment District and decided to move down to Gulf Shores to establish his own theater. Brandon performs three types of shows throughout the year – 60 impressions in 60 minutes, a comedy and magic show, and a Trip Down Memory Lane dinner theater.

Best things to do in Gulf Shores Alabama Brandon Styles Variety Show Poster V1

Here are a few links about Brandon’s live shows and articles that he’s written:

You can connect with Brandon at his website and on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.


Click here to download our one-page guide of Brandon’s tips for Gulf Shores.

Big thanks to today’s podcast partner – Bluffworks

This episode is brought to you, in part, by Bluffworks. Whether I’m traveling for business or pleasure, it’s important to have clothes that make me look good AND feel great. I wear Bluffworks jeans, slacks, dress shirts, and blazers because they’re wrinkle-free and are designed for the modern traveler. And if they get dirty, a quick spin in the washing machine and they’re good as new.

Go to and use the promo code from the image below to save 10% off your order. There are many styles to fit your needs so you can stay wrinkle-free when you travel.

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Stay tuned for our next episode

Best things to do in Nashville TN Erin Pennington headshotListen to the next episode when Erin Pennington of XPLR Nash shares his tips for Broadway honky tonks, historic forts, a beautiful state parks in Nashville, Tennessee. We hope you’ll join us when We Travel There.

What’s your favorite part of Gulf Shores? Send us a Tweet, let us know in the comment section below, or continue the discussion in our Facebook group!

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Related episodes

To learn more about Southern cities near Gulf Shores, listen to these podcast episodes: