The fabulous seafood available on the Gulf Coast of Alabama is as much of a reason to book a cozy 1-bedroom Gulf Shores vacation rental or a family-sized 4-bedroom Gulf Shores property as the sparkling aquamarine waters and picturesque white-sand beaches. The Gulf Coast is famous for everything from crawfish to catfish, but its oysters are a force to be reckoned with.

The Gulf of Mexico oyster is one of the region's most famous types of seafood, with a sweet flavor and soft texture. In Gulf Shores, locals and guests love their oysters served many different ways. Since you'll find oysters on the menus of most Gulf Shores restaurants, let us highlight three tasty ways to enjoy this Southern delicacy. 

Baked oysters

You can't go wrong ordering oysters on the Gulf Coast.Almost every restaurant will serve up some type of baked oyster dish. At The Original Oyster House in Gulf Shores, you can taste three of this establishment's best baked recipes
when you order the Shell Shocked Baked Oyster Sampler. Joe and Dave's Favorite features oysters baked with garlic cocktail sauce, applewood bacon crumbles and fresh, shredded Parmesan. In the Parmesan Garlic, these mollusks are baked with garlic butter, parsley and Parmesan cheese. The third item in the sampler, the Cajun Tasso, gives you that Cajun flavor you'll crave, with tasso ham cream sauce and Parmesan cheese.

Fried oysters

No beachside vacation is complete without a serving of fried oysters. The popular Mikee's Seafood, just north of the beach, has a luscious Fried Oyster Dinner for a very reasonable price. Served with both hush puppies and fritters done just right, you also get to choose baked beans, turnip greens or marinated cabbage, plus another choice of new potatoes or fries. Or if you'd rather wrap your fried oysters in soft bread, their Tender Fried Oysters Po-Boy, fully dressed, will certainly hit the spot.

Raw oysters

Looking for the best raw oysters? Many restaurants would probably fight for this title, and in a formal competition, they might all tie for first place. No matter where you are served, you can't go wrong enjoying a plate of fresh, raw oysters straight out of the Gulf of Mexico. But a much-heralded place to round out your Gulf Shores experience is the Pink Pony Pub, known to serve up fantastic raw oysters on the half shell. Lunch, dinner or late night, you'll enjoy the fun atmosphere of the bright pink building as you dine in or relax on the deck overlooking the gorgeous gulf beach.

Of course, dining is not the only factor in making your trip to the Gulf Shores area truly outstanding. You will find so many things to do here - including fun activities, incredible shopping opportunities and diverse places to relax - that you will want to return season after season to experience them all.