All travel, accommodations, and activities were provided to me to facilitate this story. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
You’re sitting around with a bunch of your friends thinking, We really need to take time for ourselves. We work hard taking care of everyone in the family even when we go on vacation. Wouldn’t it be nice to head to a beach and just relax for a few days? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a “beach momcation”?
And then the friend that you don’t know that well says, We should go to Alabama! And there’s a quiet lull in the conversation.
Look, I’m not knocking Alabama in any way, shape, or form. But when someone mentions a getaway with white sandy beaches and beautiful emerald water, you don’t normally think immediately of Alabama. But I’m here to tell you (and that friend you don’t know very well) that that’s exactly where you should head.
My Beach Momcation started with an invitation to spend a few days on the shores of Alabama. And if I’m being honest, I didn’t even realize how much shoreline Alabama had until I looked at a map.
Right where Florida meets Alabama (an area affectionately known as Florabama) is a long peninsula short on crowds and full of amazing food, activity, and, of course, beautiful beaches. And that’s part of what made it the perfect location for a momcation. Let me run you through my itinerary.
Planning the Beach Momcation
Luckily, I didn’t have to do much to get ready for the trip except book a flight to Pensacola (which is about 45 minutes away from Alabama’s beaches) and answer the ultimate question: What would I want to do on a Beach Momcation?
My quick thoughts:
- Anything that might require early mornings or late nights (I have no one else’s schedule to consider)
- Good food (I love Thai, Mexican, fresh seafood, a good steak) – spicy is okay! And of course, good drinks as well!
- Anything a bit more on the adventurous side or even requiring more walking (I don’t have to worry about complaints about anyone’s feet!)
- Downtime! I love to relax – whether it’s on a boat, reading a book on the beach, or enjoying the spa
Through these questions, I also got to know a fellow mom who would be joining me. Sarah from Sarah in the Suburbs was also in need of a Beach Momcation (she has twins!). And I was pretty sure we would get along great.
The last thing was picking the place to stay. Laura’s Vacation Rentals hosted us at the Caribe Resort. Through Laura’s website, we picked the beautiful 3 bedroom condo on the third floor. The views weren’t as dramatic but the decor felt homey to us.
When we arrived, we made fast friends and got to work promoting our Beach Momcation because the INTERNET was picking the itinerary for us! We had two activity slots each day and the public voted on what we should do. We both had our favorites but, in the end, I love that the planning was out of my hands and all I had to do was show up!
Day 1, Option 1: The Spa at The Beach Club OR Glow Yoga
This may sound like an easy choice because time at the spa seems so obvious. But Glow Yoga definitely appealed to me as well. Who doesn’t want to commune with their chakras on a beautiful beach in the morning?
In the end, the audience voted for Sarah and I to head off to The Spa at The Beach Club, a beautiful family resort at the other end of the peninsula. One hour of Swedish massage, a dip in the hot spa, and a few mimosas were definitely the way to kick off our momcation.
Day 1, Option 2: Coastal Kayak Excursions OR Gulf Coast Paddle Company
Here’s where we got it a little backwards. We spent the morning relaxing only to get really active in the afternoon. I will admit that I had strong opinions about this vote and may have swayed my audience in my direction. You see, Gulf Coast Paddle Company is stand up paddleboarding. In my mind, that meant I would repeatedly lose my balance and fall in the water. I would have tried it but that’s not how the votes went.
I’m a big fan of kayaking so I wasn’t disappointed when we spent the day with Captain Glenn at Coastal Kayak Excursions. After a quick tour of the bay where we saw bottlenose dolphins (for real!), we headed into the calm backwaters where we paddled around and saw an abundance of fish and fowl.
Day 2, Option 1: Orange Beach Cat Boat Tour OR Harmony Creek Farm
On the second day, we started with adventure but our choices were very different. We had the opportunity to either head to Harmony Creek Farm where we would take a class in making bath bombs or we could try out the Orange Beach Cat Boat Tour. Sarah and I were reluctant since neither of us knew what a cat boat was but we were ready for adventure when it was selected as our activity for the morning!
I stepped up to be our boat captain (mainly because I’m a control freak) and we ended up having a blast cruising past celebrity houses situated all along the bay. I might have even gone so fast that I scared myself a little (and probably Sarah too!).
Day 2, Option 2: Rum Sisters OR Sassy Bass Crazy Donuts
Our final option was all about eating. I’m a huge donut lover so I was ready if Sassy Bass Crazy Donuts was our choice but the audience selected Rum Sisters and, contrary to the name, our visit did not involve drinking!
Two women who shared a love of rum started baking alcohol-infused cakes and now ship them all over the country. We got to sample way too many cakes and take some home (the Drunken Monkey is my favorite) and I’m definitely thinking about these for holiday gifting!
The Rest of the Beach Momcation
While the audience selected a lot of our activities, we had a lot time for other things and we spent most of that time EATING! I ate oysters and incredibly fresh fish and hushpuppies and had my first Bushwacker (it’s a drink, a very dangerous drink). But I’ll save all that for another post. Just know that Sarah and I had an amazing time with each other, with our host, and with all of the fabulous companies that helped make this trip possible.