Finding the motel in Alabama or Florida at the Gulf was not easy. It was a Friday evening and a bit late already. Coupon brochures were no help in terms of discount and we were lucky then we found a room in Days Inn (some 40 miles from the beach) at last. We made a mistake taking the room only for one night, as Saturday evening was even worse. But we wanted to be closer to the beach, what this place is all about.
The beach in Pensacola Beach is magnificent - powder-white sand and turquoise-blue water, you can not expect anything better. The Gulf of Mexico is beautiful, warm and inviting. The gorgeous white sand is made of quartz washed down from Appalachian Mountains over the centuries. August is a touristy season and therefore the beach was overcrowded a bit. But still it was so enjoyable that because of the coastal beauty we remade our remaining plans for our Deep South trip - we decided to spend the remaining time here. We regretted that we had to drive back to Atlanta to catch the plane, next time we consider returning from an other airport.
When on the beach, we also spent time on the Pensacola Beach fishing Pier, the longest in the Gulf of Mexico. We saw there how one fisherman had really big fish took the bait, but unfortunately he did not manage to catch it out. But there were several fishermen already lucky with their catch.
We visited here National Museum of Naval Aviation, which is on of the three largest aviation museums in the World. Here are presented 170 vintage aircrafts. There is also IMAX theater where we watched a film which took us to the ride with the Pensacola-based Blue Angels. The museum admission is free, but you should pay for movie. As the museum is on the Pensacola Naval Air Station, we were properly checked at the entrance. The guard asked: “Do you have any weapons and ammunitions in your car, sir?” We did not of course.
In Fort Walton, 25 miles from Pensacola Beach, we visited Florida’s Gulfarium. Gulfarium lies on beachfront of the Gulf. With approximately two hours we managed to enjoy the dolphin show and see several sea animals.
We wanted to go snorkeling in Destin (just 35 miles from Pensacola beach). But as the Gulf of Mexico can be hazardous, no snorkeling trip was taking place at that day. Therefore we used other option presented to us in the harbor - Dolphin watching. This was more like a trip for children (and we did not have children with us), but still worth of attending. But if you are there with children, consider this as a must. Not only because of the dolphins, but the captain also allows children to steer the boat.
When touring in US, we have always spent some time for shopping in Factory Outlets. I think this is very cheep and easy way to satisfy shopping needs. I think here also Americans have been very practical. We visited Tanger Factory outlet in Foley, Alabama, where are 120 brand name manufacturer and designer outlet stores.
After spending three wonderful days in Pensacola Beach we headed towards Atlanta in order to catch our plane back home. We had 340 miles to drive and we made one accommodation stop, some 100 miles before Atlanta. Our plane was at 4PM and we had to be in the check-in two hours before. We were quite good in planning the time arriving there in time, but we wanted to tank gasoline as late as possible. Unfortunately there was no gas station 20 or less miles before the car return and therefore we should drive further. Hertz Neverlost helped us to find the gas station, but … the first suggested was under maintenance. Now the situation got exciting … Our trip had happy end and we managed to be in airport in time.
Our wonderful trip to southern states has come to the end. We were happy and full of positive feelings.