Gulf State Park, Gulf Shores, Alabama

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Visitors will love this spacious campground, which offers a secluded camping experience just 1.5 miles from the white sand and bustling beach towns of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. While Gulf State Park isn’t technically on the beach, we’re including it on this list because its stellar amenities and proximity to the beach make it worth a look, especially for families with young kids. Between biking, fishing, hiking, kayaking, swimming, and paddleboarding, campers hardly need to leave the park, but just in case, scores of restaurants, the Fort Morgan Historical Site, and the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo are close by.

The park is home to 496 full hookup campsites and comprehensive facilities that include a pool with a splash pad; laundry facilities; an Interpretive Center; a Nature Center and Learning Campus; a camp store; tennis, volleyball, and pickle-ball courts; organized weekly activities; bathhouses; and an on-site restaurant, Woodside. (Be aware that playgrounds are closed as of this writing due to COVID-19 restrictions, and the pier is closed for maintenance. Check the site for updates.) What else can you do in Alabama? Check out the coolest secret location in the state.