Now that I got that race report out of the way, let’s discuss the other awesomeness of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama. This area was about an eight hour drive for me from the Tampa Bay area. I chose to drive since I was bringing my bike with me and I don’t mind a nice, quiet drive on occasion. Jesica took a flight and met me there on Friday afternoon.
Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism* was kind enough to sponsor this travel so that I could tell you all about it!** They set us up in the lovely beachside Brett Robinson condo of Phoenix V. Upon arriving in our room, I immediately noticed the view. It. Was. Incredible.
While I do live fairly close to a beach myself, I would say this one had some of the cleanest, whitest sand I’ve ever seen. Gulf Shores & Orange Beach has a Leave Only Footprints initiative and I absolutely love it. After sunset, anything left on the beach is collected and either disposed of or repurposed.
The outdoor pool at our condo was long enough for laps, but they also have an indoor pool. Plus, along with a fitness facility, there’s also racquetball courts, basketball half court, and a splash pad water park for the little ones. The Brett Robinson group is your best bet for staying in this area as they have many properties to choose from.
Ya’ll know I love food. I swear in my next life I’m going to be a foodie blogger. Gulf Shores & Orange Beach are definitely not lacking in the tasty food department. I felt like we were on a tour of deliciousness.
I had amazing deviled eggs at Luna’s Eat & Drink, plus a pimiento cheese sandwich with bacon. (You can see those on my instagram.)
My pre-race meal on Friday night at Villaggio Grille was so tasty that I had to force myself to stop eating so I didn’t over do it. I had shallot and beef kabobs, if you are interested. The owner was so nice and was also racing on Saturday. He offered to order our desserts for us. We happily accepted. I’d like to think he brought out this massive dessert plate so that he could beat me, which he did. Soundly.
On Saturday, post race obvs, I had to have this strange sounding, yet perfectly complimentary brisket and tater tot concoction at The Anchor Bar. It was tater tots topped with smoked brisket, pickled red onions, cotija cheese, sour cream, tomato jam, fresh jalapenos, and a sunny side up egg. I was so full, but it was SO good.
I promise I did try to eat healthy. Oh wait. Nope. No I didn’t. It was totally possible as every place offered something on the lighter side, but I wanted to try a few new things before I got back on my healthy eating plan. Besides, I was on racecation, right?
I know you are wondering like, ok Beth, did you do anything besides triathlon and eat? Well yes I did thankyouverymuch. I got a friggin fantastic massage at Fusion Spa. Did you know that at Aveda Spas they start all massages with a foot bath? It was a total bonus to an already fantastic experience.
After the massage, I got to check out the Wharf area. It features a bunch of cute shops, concert venue, ferris wheel and restaurants. The Villagio Grille (the place with all the desserts above) is located here. I actually wish I had a bit more time to explore this area.
On our last morning in Gulf Shores & Orange Beach we were treated to ocean-side yoga from Glow Yoga. I was a total mess, of course. My hips creaked and I moaned and I think Jesica and Elizabeth got a good laugh at how completely inflexible I have become. It was a good wake up call to hit up yoga again!
Jesica and Elizabeth also went kayaking and ran along the nature trails, I on the other hand, was pretty tired from the triathlon so you’ll have to head over to their blogs to read about those activities. This area really does offer a lot to do! And of course, if you aren’t into doing things on your vacation, you can always just relax and take in the gorgeous gulf views.
I can’t thank Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism enough for providing such an amazing experience. It’s a wonderful area to take your family, friends, or girlfriends for a beach getaway. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to stop at the Flori-Bama for a Bushwacker, but it’s on my list for my next visit.
*All opinions are my own. I was offered sponsored travel in exchange for social media posts and blog posts.
**I would still tell you if this place was a turd. It was not.