Top 10 Things to Do on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

| October 11, 2012 | Comments

From the glitz and glamor of the casino’s to the laid back fishing piers dotted along the shoreline, the Mississippi Gulf Coast has something for everyone. There are my top 10 things to do on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

While people may come for the warm weather and miles of beaches, what keeps them coming back time and time again is the Southern hospitality and sweet tea.

Top 10 things to do on Mississippi Gulf Coast

Top 10 Things to Do on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

Try Your Luck at the Casinos

There are 12 casinos dotted along the Mississippi Gulf Coast so if you don’t win big at one simply hop on over to the next. Not a fan of gambling? No worries, you can also enjoy high end cuisine and top notch shows while your money stays safely tucked away from the blackjack tables.

Eat fresh seafood

The Gulf Coast is famous for its fresh seafood. If it can be found in the Gulf of Mexico it can be found on a menu (usually fried). Try a seafood platter at one the many restaurants dotted along the beach. It usually includes fried shrimp, fish, oysters and hushpuppies.

Don’t feel guilty, you’re on vacation.

Top 10 things to do on Mississippi Gulf Coast

Experience the Coast’s Artistic Side

There are plenty of art galleries and museums located on the coast. One of the most popular being the  Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art featuring ceramics by the “Mad Potter of Biloxi,” George Ohr. The Walter Anderson Museum gives you a glimpse of the plants, animals and people of the Gulf Coast through the eyes of one of the areas most famous artists.

Enjoy the beach

The Mississippi Gulf Coast offers twenty-six miles of sandy beaches where you can rent jet-ski’s, barbeque under a shaded pavilion or simply laze in the sun. The nearby barrier islands keep the waves gentle so the kids can swim freely.

Top 10 things to do on Mississippi Gulf Coast

Check Out a Festival

There’s always something going on along the shores of the Gulf Coast. Whether it’s the annual “Cruisin the Coast” every October or the very popular “Crawfish Music Festival”. Whatever you choose, you’re guaranteed good food, good music and good people.

Grab a Reel

Fishing is a popular pastime here and with good reason. With eleven fishing piers spread across the Gulf Coast there’s no excuse to head out with your tackle box for a relaxing day of fishing.

If you’re looking for a little more adventure there’s more than 50 charter boat services ready to take you out on the water.

Top 10 things to do on Mississippi Gulf Coast

Go Downtown

Every city on the Mississippi Gulf Coast has a downtown area offering small town charm with boutiques, art galleries and cafe’s. Head to downtown Biloxi for a martini at Jazzeppi’s before heading to my favorite downtown area, Old Town Bay St. Louis, where you’ll be in antique-shopping heaven.

Visit Ship Island

Ship Island is located about 10 miles from the Mississippi Gulf Coast and is a great place to bird watch, sunbathe and swim. With daily passenger ferry service between the months of March and October you can be there in approximately one hour during which you’re sure to spot friendly dolphins swimming beside your boat.

Be sure to check out Fort Massachusetts (1858) during your visit to the island.

Remember Hurricane Katrina

The Hurricane Katrina Memorial is located in Biloxi and stands 12 feet tall, the height of the water during the storm surge. You can see various items from buildings and homes that were destroyed along with the names of 170 victims who lost their lives due to the storm.

Afterwards, drive west down highway 90 and you’ll spot dozens of tree sculptures made from what used to be live oak trees. Continue to downtown Bay St. Louis and see the “Heavenly Carved Wooden Angels” which are  also damaged oak trees that now serve as a tribute.

This lone lighthouse was part of a Casino that has now been abandoned.

Top 10 things to do on Mississippi Gulf Coast

Have an Out-of-this-world Experience

NASA’s Stennis Space Center recently added a new addition to the family with the INFINITY Science Center. Here you can ride a flight simulator and see the space suit worn by heroic Apollo 13 astronaut Fred Haise.

Your ticket price also includes a behind the scenes bus tour of Stennis Space Center, America’s largest rocket engine test facility.

Now you won’t be bored the next time you visit the area with these top 10 things to do on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

Leave a comment recommending your top tips for the Mississippi Gulf Coast!

Photos from Flickr Creative Commons: Welcome sign, Beach, Pier, Lighthouse and Oysters.

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I am a freelance writer, photographer and blogger who loves to travel. I'm originally from New Orleans, LA but am living in Recife, Brazil at the moment.