Spring Break is just around the corner, and the beach communities of Gulf Shores, Fort Morgan, Orange Beach and Perdido Key are gearing up to serve as headquarters to families in search of a week of fun in the sun.

With a focus on offering a diverse selection of family-friendly activities, these communities know how to serve up fun.

Here are five ideas for making the most of your Spring Break in and around Gulf Shores. Choose your adventure!

Explore The Beaches

Be sure to explore the beach area in front of your vacation rental if your condo or beach house is situated nearby.

Many Gulf-front condos have a substantially sized beach fronting the emerald green waters of the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, many condo complexes contract with service providers who offer access to loungers and umbrellas during your stay.

If you are staying in an off-beach vacation rental, there are lots of public beach accesses to explore, ranging from the main public beach area in Gulf Shores, located at the intersection at the end of Hwy. 59 and the beach road, to state park entrances. Here, you’ll find restaurants, such as the iconic Hangout and the historic Pink Pony Pub (cold oysters, colder beer!), with Sea N Suds nearby. All of these places are great for enjoying seafood, burgers and cold beverages.

Other access points are available at Gulf State Park.

If you are seeking a quieter beach visit, consider beaches in Perdido Key or Fort Morgan. Perdido Key is home to several world-renowned parks like Johnson Beach at Gulf Islands National Seashore, Perdido Key State Park and Big Lagoon State Park. In the Fort Morgan area, visit the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge or take a leisurely drive to historic Fort Morgan, situated where Mobile Bay meets the Gulf of Mexico.

Blow Off Steam At An Arcade

The Gulf Coast is home to numerous arcades that are inviting spots for kids of all ages (grownups, too!) to zap aliens, “drive” a racecar and more.

The Track Family Recreation Center is located just north of the Intracoastal Canal Waterway bridge, and features not just a large arcade area but also mini golf and fun amusement park rides.

Waterville USA, whose water attractions open in May, also has an arcade among other attractions. There are go-carts, mini golf and a two-person bungee trampoline that promises to take you to new heights. There’s also an escape room for those who enjoy brain twisters and puzzles.

Fat Daddy’s in Orange Beach is another arcade option. This venue is near numerous condo complexes (including Seaside Beach & Racquet and Phoenix V) and features more than 80 of the latest and greatest arcade games. Need a spot for a birthday party while you’re here? Call Fat Daddy’s, they know how to entertain kids of all ages.

Just behind Fat Daddy’s is Adventure Island, where you can play in the Alligator Alley Arcade, ride go-karts, play lazer tag, putt around a mini golf course, play on bumper boats and enjoy a spin on the mini teacup ride. This folks at Adventure Island love birthday parties, too!

Situated at the always-free-to-explore Downtown OWA, just north of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, is The Arcade at OWA. It is open to the public and connected to The Groovy Goat. The arcade features more than 50 games to play.

Go Fish!

There’s no shortage of opportunities to fish while visiting the Gulf Coast during Spring Break.

Many people enjoy surf fishing right from the beach. Or, consider dropping a line from the Gulf State Park Fishing & Education Pier. At 1,500 feet long, it’s a sight to behold, and there’s always someone fishing there. Purchase a fishing license right from the store on the pier.

Some condos even come with their own fishing piers, and welcome guests to fish during their vacation.

If you want to fish aboard a boat, there are many captains who will take your crew fishing either inshore or offshore. There are trips that last a few hours or even overnight for the ultra-adventurous.

Just be sure to purchase a fishing license, no matter where your journey takes you.

Shop ’Til You Drop

Shopping at the beach is simply more fun. From outlet shopping to browsing cute coastal boutiques, there are many options.

Just north of the beach in Foley is Tanger Outlet, where you’ll find more than 100 stores offering designer clothing, fashion accessories and practical housewares.

Some of the larger stores at Tanger include TJ Maxx, H&M, Forever 21, VF Outlet and Old Navy, among many others.

A destination unto itself, the Wharf in Orange Beach is a favorite of vacationers and local residents. There’s a movie theater, numerous restaurants, cool nightspots, lots of cute shops to browse for coastal-inspired items, and a concert amphitheater where high-profile performers take the stage as part of the C-Spire Concert Series. You can also board a nature or dolphin cruise at the Wharf.

In Perdido Key, a complex of shops called Villagio is a fun choice. Here, you’ll find an ice cream and coffee shop, an art studio and gallery, restaurants, a day spa and several cute boutique-style shops.

Just Relax!

When visiting the beach, the idea is to leave the rat race behind and relax. There are many ways to chill out.

Visit a day spa. There are numerous options to consider, one favorite being at the Beach Club on Fort Morgan. Located in the clubhouse at the south end of the property, this spa offers a variety of treatments such as facials, manicures and pedicures, massages, and more. Grab your best friend and make a day of it by booking the “Ultimate Spa Day,” a five-hour experience where you can choose from packages that include a massage, signature mani/pedi, facial and body polish.

Another option is the Serenity Salon & Spa at the Beach in Orange Beach. An Aveda Concept Salon and Spa, all are welcomed to enjoy a variety of treatments ranging from hair and nails services to massage, facials, body treatments, and spa packages.

A great way to relax is to watch the sunset or sunrise from your vacation rental’s private balcony or deck. Keep a lookout for dolphins as the seagulls swoop down to the water for a meal. Take a long walk on the beach or check out the fitness room at your condo.

Book your Spring Break accommodations now, as the most popular vacation rentals are the first to fill, especially larger houses with five or more bedrooms.