Experience one of the few remaining authentic roadhouses: The Flora-Bama. Here, straddling the state line of Alabama and Florida, you can grab yummy snacks or a meal - but the atmosphere is really about the music and the unique ambience at each of the several bars. This is the time to leave the little ones behind for some grown-up fun during your Gulf Coast vacation.

A taste of the South

When Courtney Cadel, a resident of Washington, D.C., first went to Flora-Bama for her Gulf Shores vacation, she was not only impressed with the menu filled with familiar comfort foods, but also the kind and efficient waitstaff who acted more like family than servers.

"I love how nice everyone is," said the 24-year-old. "Everyone just wanted to know you and help you."

If you want to have the same experience, you can scoot on over to
Flora-Bama for some bar bites, share a platter of oysters with friends,
or munch on french fries and sip a cocktail as you chat about your wonderful day spent at the beach.

Events for everyone

The Flora-Bama is a place to celebrate, and the fun-loving crew knows how to throw a party for any occasion. From the Polar Bear Dip on January 1 each year, to the Mullet Toss the last full weekend in April, to the Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival in November to Santa Claus arriving via parachute - and much, much more in between! - there's never a dull moment here.

Nightly music

Every Monday evening at 5 p.m., Flora-Bama hosts an open mic stage where you might hear the next rising star of the professional music scene. Order a pitcher of beer or a delicious Bushwacker and enjoy the show - or bring your guitar along and take the stage yourself if you so choose.

If you'd rather listen to seasoned professionals, live entertainment abounds every single day, typically beginning around 2 p.m. Among the numerous performers who play at Flora-Bama on a regular basis: J. Hawkins; Jack Robertson; LeaAnne and Rick; and Elaine Petty and Rhonda Hart - local favorites sometimes known as the Smokin' Elvises.

Before you head back to your beach vacation rental in Perdido Key, Orange Beach, Gulf Shores or Fort Morgan, be sure to request your favorite song so you can sing it all the way home!