Anytime of year is great for exploring the distinctly beautiful waterways on the Alabama Gulf Coast by powerboat, personal watercraft, or slower-paced vessels such as canoes and kayaks.

Fall is an exceptional time to enjoy an adventure on the water thanks to cooler temperatures and also now that there is the newly minted Coastal Alabama Back Bay Blueway, which is free to explore.

The Back Bay Blueway system features 21 launch sites on four trails on the coast that invite nature lovers to get a close look at the serene, unique ecosystem as they paddle board, canoe or kayak waterways throughout Fort Morgan, Gulf Shores, Gulf State Park and Orange Beach.

Launch sites differ in the amenities they offer, such as restroom facilities, parking, access to fresh water, etc.

Two launch sites are available in the Fort Morgan area: the Fort Morgan Boat Ramp on Mobile Bay at Ala. Hwy. 180 and The Pines Boat Ramp on Ala. Hwy. 180 and situated on Bon Secour Bay.

See: Fort Morgan Vacation Rentals

Little Lagoon is a 10-mile stretch of open water near the Gulf of Mexico. For those who might want to stop and throw a line, there are a variety of salt and freshwater fish in the waters, including trout, flounder and redfish.

There are three launch sites on Little Lagoon: Jeff Friend Kayak Launch at 13900 Ala. Hwy. 180; Little Lagoon Pass Park at 1660 West Beach Blvd.; and Little Lagoon Park (Mo’s Landing) at 18068 Fort Morgan Road.

See: Gulf Shores Vacation Rentals

Gulf State Park Trail offers a view of the coastal terrain from different vantage points, such as Lake Shelby and Middle Lake. Launch sites here include Marsh Bridge at Ala. Hwy. 135; Lake Shelby Park on Ala. Hwy. 135; and Nature Center on Campground Road.

Orange Beach and Wolf Bay Trail takes paddlers to some of the most scenic and sought-after spots to view coastal terrain and wildlife: Robinson and Bird Islands, Cotton Bayou, Terry Cove, Wolf Bay and other popular bodies of water. This is the largest of the four trails.

Launch sites on the Orange Beach and Wolf Bay Trail are situated at Cotton Bayou Launch on No Wake Road; Jubilee Point on Jubilee Point Road; Boggy Point Boat Launch on Marina Road; Look Rook Road on Look Rook Road off Canal Road; Wilson Boulevard; Mississippi Avenue; Hayden Drive; Orange Beach Waterfront Park on Canal Road; Cypress Avenue on Canal Road; Graham Creek Preserve on Wolf Bay Drive; Wolf Creek Park on Hance Lane; and Gulf Bay Road on Canal Road.

See: Orange Beach Vacation Rentals

See: Public Boat Launch Sites

Bring your canoe, kayak, personal watercraft or boat to one of Meyer’s boat-friendly vacation rental properties on your next Gulf Coast vacation.