27 Best & Fun Things to Do in Dauphin Island (AL)

Dauphin Island is located on the southern side of Mobile Bay in Mobile County, on a barrier island in the state of Alabama, United States.

It is a small town officially incorporated in 1988, with a population of 1,778 during the 2020 census.

The town was named after the great-grandson of Louis XIV of France, the Dauphin, who was also the next Louis XV of France.

This coastal town is well known for its beautiful beaches, perfect for a lovely getaway with loved ones.

There is more to Dauphin Island than just beaches. Don’t hesitate to visit the town and find out the rest of its attractions.

Let’s explore the top things to do in Dauphin Island, AL

Things to do in Dauphin Island, AL

1. Visit Audubon Bird Sanctuary

Audubon Bird Sanctuary
Credits: Malachi Jacobs / Shutterstock
Audubon Bird Sanctuary

Are you an animal lover? But most significantly, a fan of birds? Add a visit to Audubon Bird Sanctuary to your list of the best things to do in Dauphin Island, AL.

The Audubon Bird Sanctuary has been the principal place for bird watchers since they move from South and Central America through this path.

The town of Dauphin Island is one of the top places for watching the migration of birds in North America during spring.

According to research, it is reported that over 95% of the various species of birds in Alabama have crossed Dauphin Island at some point.

During their journey, the birds stop by the Audubon Bird Sanctuary to take a break and rest before continuing. The birds cover about 137 acres.

The Audubon Bird Sanctuary also includes notable geographic characteristics such as beaches, marshes, dunes, and forests.

Address: 211 Bienville Blvd., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

2. Cadillac Square

Cadillac Square
Credits: Jimmy Emerson, DVM / Flickr
Cadillac Square

Your list of the fun things to do in Dauphin Island, AL, will be incomplete without a visit to Cadillac Square, where Governor Cadillac’s home was erected.

In 1713, when Governor Cadillac first came to Dauphin Island, his home was built precisely where the Square is found.

Cadillac Square features ancient oak trees, which are reported to have existed for about three hundred years. The trees serve as cool shades for relaxation.

This Square is another great place for bird watching as it is usually filled with rare species of birds of various sizes and colors.

Although the house no longer stands, there are picnic tables and chairs, making it perfect for a lovely picnic. Cadillac Square is a venue for several community events, including festivals and other local activities.

Address: 661 Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

3. Dauphin Island Public Beach

Dauphin Island Public Beach
Credits: rachael hansen / Shutterstock

How else can you begin exploring a coastal town like Dauphin Island without visiting its main Beach with your travel companions?

Dauphin Island Public Beach is usually the first destination for numerous tourists and citizens who have not been in the town in a while.

The Beach offers some of the most incredible landscapes on the Island, with several parks, trails, and historical exhibits nearby.

This attraction is a dog-friendly location, so you can visit with your furry friends to run around and have fun.

Dauphin Island Public Beach is open to everyone for pocket-friendly fees from as low as $2 to $5; these funds are used in conserving and maintaining the environment.

You will also sight beautiful dolphins moving in the water, including seagulls and shells scattered throughout the Beach. Exploring this Beach is one of the top things to do in Dauphin Island, AL.

Address: 1501 Bienville Blvd., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

4. Mobile Bay Ferry

Mobile Bay Ferry
Credits: Jimmy Emerson, DVM / Flickr
Mobile Bay Ferry

The Mobile Bay Ferry, open throughout the year, is the connection between Fort Morgan and Dauphin Island.

If you want to get to these two points, a ferry ride is best since it takes away hours from the supposed traveling time.

The ferry ride takes precisely forty minutes to get to this destination, where dramatic views of Mobile Bay welcome you.

Want to know what makes this ferry stand out the most? It is fully equipped to accommodate vehicles. Two ferries are usually made available during busy periods.

The Mobile Bay Ferry is effortlessly accessible by residents in communities like Dauphin Island, New Orleans, Fort Morgan, and Mobile.

You also get to watch dolphins as they swim and jump in the water while you also breathe in some fresh air.

Address: AL, United States

5. Dauphin Island Heritage & Arts Council

Dauphin Island Heritage and Arts Council
Credits: Dauphin Island Heritage and Arts Council / Facebook
Dauphin Island Heritage and Arts Council

The Dauphin Island Heritage & Arts Council is committed to preserving and promoting the different art forms recognized in the community of Dauphin Island.

The council does this through numerous art fundraiser events and painting classes which strive to help visitors fully grasp the concept of valuing art.

The organization also runs an art gallery that features beautiful and unique artworks made by talented local artists.

The Dauphin Island Heritage & Arts Council is also keen on supporting local art competitions, musical productions, and community theater.

The organization has successfully nurtured a system of art supporters using its membership program, where interested people can join through the DIHAC website.

Address: 918 Bienville Rd., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

6. The Estuarium (Dauphin Island Sea Lab)

Estuarium (Dauphin Island Sea Lab)
Credits: moccasinlanding / Flickr
Estuarium (Dauphin Island Sea Lab)

Are you someone who loves marine animals? Visiting the Estuarium is one of the best things to do in Dauphin Island, AL.

The Estuarium commonly referred to as the Dauphin Island Sea Lab consists of over one hundred different kinds of marine life.

This attraction is a 10,000-square-foot exposition facility consisting of thirty aquariums, each solely focused on a particular element of the Mobile Bay Estuary.

This Estuary proclaimed as the United States’ fourth biggest estuary system, offers guided tours and educational materials for different audiences, such as boardwalk talks, school groups, and seminars to educate the public about the Mobile Bay Estuary’s ecology.

The Estuarium offers these educational talks at least twice a month to everyone for free. It also features a Sea Lab where students and experts do their research using the available resources for projects and fieldwork.

Address: 101 Bienville Blvd., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

7. Fort Gaines

Fort Gaines
Credits: George Dodd III / Shutterstock
Fort Gaines

Fort Gaines, located on the eastern side of Dauphin Island, has protected Moblie Bay’s entrance for over one hundred and fifty years.

Fort Gaines has overcome many years of winds, water erosion, and severe weather despite its proximity to the shoreline.

It is also mentioned on the list of the most endangered species historical sites in America. Within the area where the Fort is located, you will find a museum, a blacksmith shop, and a gift shop.

There are adequately maintained tunnels that link to different parts of the Fort, and visitors are allowed to explore them.

Fort Gaines was significant during the 19th century in the Battle of Mobile Bay and is open throughout the year. However, it might differ on special holidays.

The Fort is famous for offering picturesque views of the bay, its tunnels, ramparts, authentic cannons, and vintage quarters for the officers.

Address: 51 Bienville Blvd., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

8. FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters

FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters
Credits: Maksym Fesenko / Shutterstock

If casting lines and waiting to make a good catch is something you enjoy doing, Going on a trip with FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters is one of the fun things to do in Dauphin Island, AL.

FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters offers groups, families, and individuals guided fishing trips throughout the Dauphin Island area.

Once you pay the required chartered trip fees, you will be given the necessary equipment, such as bait, a fishing rod, tackle, reels, and more.

Each trip lasts for at least four to six hours, and you’re allowed to keep any catch you make. FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters use different points for departure to set out for the chartered trips, which solely depends on the season.

FinAtics Inshore Fishing Charters is open to professional and amateur anglers. Thus, you don’t need any prior experience before visiting.

Address: 610 E Lemoyne Dr, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

Alabama holds some top US attractions and activities, check out the top things to do in Tuscaloosa, things to do in Fort Payne, and fun things to do in Fort Morgan for a memorable exploration.

9. Shell Mound Park

Shell Mound Park
Credits: Jimmy Emerson, DVM / Flickr
Shell Mound Park

Shell Mound Park is an archaeological site located in the southern part of America and is easily accessible from Dauphin Island.

Also rated as one of the most preserved sites, the mounds in this Park are reported to be the remains of seafood eaten by the Native Americans from Ad 1100-AD 1550.

More Archaeological data denotes that the mounds were most likely created during the winter months when Native Americans usually travel to Dauphin Island to make oysters together.

The Park is also home to a wide variety of rare herbs and plants that can be used on medicinal bases.

Alabama State did all it could to conserve the mounds due to their historical importance. Visitors can enter the Park for free.

Address: North Iberville, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

10. SickleFin and Southern Drawl Charters

SickleFin and Southern Drawl Charters
Credits: Ashley-Belle Burns / Shutterstock

SickleFin and Southern Drawl Charters is the latest fishing charter in Dauphin Island, founded in 2020.

They specialize in conducting research and helping protect the habitats of marine life in the Gulf of Mexico. They provide a modern navigation system, safety materials, and fishing gear for every trip.

If you want to visit or go on an exciting exploration, SickleFin and Southern Drawl Charters are here for you.

SickleFin and Southern Drawl Charters is the only charter corporation that owns a vessel with seakeeping. Every boat made available for a fishing trip is packed with the best custom rods, electronics, reels, etc.

They are all about giving you an experience which you have never had before with their friendly tour guides and excellent customer service.

11. Pirate’s Bar and Grill

Pirates Bar & Grill
Credits: Pirates Bar & Grill / Facebook
Pirate’s Bar & Grill

What could be better than dining in a gorgeous environment with amazing views of the Gulf? A visit to Pirate’s Bar and Grill is a must-do in Dauphin Island, AL.

Pirate’s Bar and Grill offers the authentic taste of southern cuisine through the variety of delicious meals served.

They offer an extensive food menu featuring a diverse selection of meals made using only fresh and locally sourced ingredients.

Make sure you try the popular Dauphin Island Bushwacker, which features chocolate, rum, and ice cream, along with a pan-seared flounder.

You can decide to dine indoors or outdoors for an extra fee, where you get access to the pool in the restaurant and the beachfront.

Address: 100 Orleans Drive, Dauphin Island, Alabama 36528, United States

12. Action Outdoors

Action Outdoors
Credits: Olesia Bilkei / Shutterstock

If you’re planning what to do in Dauphin Island, AL, visit Action Outdoors for a perfect gateway.

Action Outdoors is a tour company that offers boat trips through the surrounding waters of Dauphin Island.

So, whenever you want to have an amazing birthday party, private boat rides, and fishing trips, Action Outdoors is the best place.

Aside from the tours, Action Outdoors also offers special field trips for teachers, including educational materials.

During the field trips and other related tours, students of different ages are offered a closer view of the bay ecosystem.

Address: 650 LeMoyne Dr., Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

13. Miguel’s Beach’n Baja

Miguel's Beach'n Baja
Credits: Beach’n Baja / Facebook
Miguel’s Beach’n Baja

Are you searching for an excellent Mexican restaurant? Dine at Miguel’s Beach’n Baja in Dauphin Island, AL.

Miguel’s Beach’n Baja is the best place to enjoy a delicious Mexican meal, which offers you the authentic Mexican feeling in Alabama.

They offer a laid-back and comfortable atmosphere which is perfect for visitors to come in and dine together.

All the meals served are prepared from scratch by professional and passionate chefs using the original Mexican culinary style.

Miguel’s Beach’n Baja offers meals such as taquitos, spicy tacos, quesadillas, burritos, salsa, nachos, and more.

Address: 202 B Lemoyne Dr, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

14. West End Public Beach

West End Public Beach
Credits: Daxiao Productions / Shutterstock

Dauphin Island consists of only two public beaches, and the popular West End Public Beach is one of them.

West End Public Beach is located on the western part of the Island, featuring several essential beach facilities, including comfortable rooms and restrooms.

This Beach is a beautiful place to spend quality time with your family and friends, offering a vibrant and stunning environment to relax and have fun.

There are beach umbrellas, chairs, and other beach equipment available for rentals, which are meant to make your day at West End Public Beach memorable.

West End Public Beach is home to numerous shells and an incredible waterslide to help keep the little ones busy.

The Beach is magnificent, with clean, shallow waters and calm waves, which provide a soothing and comforting atmosphere.

You will likely find dolphins and fish leaping in the water. In addition, there is a sandy path through which you can go for a brief walk.

West End Public Beach is open from dusk to dawn. You’re advised to come with your towels, shoes for walking, sunscreen, and more.

Address: Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

15. Isle Dauphine Golf Club

Isle Dauphine Golf Club
Credits: Thaninee Chuensomchit / Shutterstock

Have you ever been in a natural environment filled with so much beauty and calmness? You have to visit Isle Dauphine Golf Club.

Isle Dauphine Golf Club is a favorite place for golf players seeking a unique experience.

Isle Dauphine Golf Club is the perfect place to test and master your golfing skills if you’re a beginner or an advanced player.

The golf courses are adequately maintained to ensure they are always in good condition to offer players a smooth tee time.

Address: 100 Orleans Dr, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

Also, check out our list of things to do in Gadsden, things to do in Guntersville, and things to do in Foley for a fun time in these cities of Alabama.

16. Lighthouse Bakery

Lighthouse Bakery
Credits: New Africa / Shutterstock

The Lighthouse Bakery is a paradise for delicious treats on Dauphin Island and has become part of many families’ memories.

The Bakery is housed in a lovely small shop with beautifully showcased mouthwatering treats, so everyone who sees them would salivate before even trying them out.

They serve beverages with a wide variety of baked goods made daily from scratch directly in their kitchen.

The Lighthouse Bakery offers raspberry, bacon wraps, pecan rolls, cookies, fresh croissants, and blueberry.

They also offer delicious omelets for breakfast comprising fresh crab meat, sausage, tomatoes, green peppers, jalapenos, and any cheeses of your choice.

You can order a delicious cup of espresso, lattes, cappuccino, and more, along with the light fares served. The Lighthouse Bakery is also filled with several American arts and crafts like jewelry and paintings made by local artists.

Address: 919 Chaumont Ave, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

17. Pelican Pub

Pelican Pub
Credits: Cherries / Shutterstock

That moment when you feel exhausted and thirsty, pay a visit to Pelican Pub, as it’s one of the best places to visit in Dauphin Island, AL.

Pelican Pub is where you can reboot your lost energy and take a break from all the stress.

They offer a wide variety of refreshing and delightful beers, served chilled or however you like.

Aside from drinks offered upstairs, they also serve delicious food downstairs. Order a plate of food and find a comfortable table where you can enjoy your food and drink.

Pelican Pub organizes a dart competition on Wednesday evenings by 7 pm; boat slips are available for rentals.

This local Pub takes pride in offering delectable meals, flavorful drinks, and outstanding customer service.

 Address: 1102 De Soto Ave, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

18. Dauphin Island Marina

Dauphin Island Marina
Credits: Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant / Flickr
Dauphin Island Marina

The Dauphin Island Marina, a full-time marina, is located between the mobile bay and inter coastal waterway, right at the bottom of the Dauphin Island Bridge.

Dauphin Island Marina features a wide variety of essential amenities, including a restaurant, fuel & oil, restrooms & showers, and a boat storage & maintenance area.

The Marina is always available for those who would like to go on a fishing trip not too far from Dauphin Island.

They also offer other water-related equipment such as pontoon boats, standup paddle boards, and kayaks for rentals.

Suppose you want closer views of dolphins and other wildlife. In that case, you can rent any available equipment for two hours, four hours, or throughout the day.

Address: Dauphin Island Marina, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

19. Gulfside Golf Course

Gulfside Golf Course
Credits: Yellowj / Shutterstock

Whether you’re a professional or amateur golf player, Gulfside Golf Course is the best golf course for you on Dauphin Island.

Gulfside Golf Course is magnificent, with meanders along the Beach offering picturesque views of the environment.

The Course is worth the time and effort, as you’re sure of having an unforgettable golfing experience in the town.

The Golf Course is excellent for beginners offering every golf player the right amount of challenges and thrills they expect.

Gulfside Golf Course also allows visitors to come in and watch other golf players play. Visitors can also decide to improve their playing skills.

Address: 100 Orleans Dr, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

20. Sand Island Lighthouse

Sand Island Lighthouse
Credits: laurie schaerer / Shutterstock
Sand Island Lighthouse

Sand Island Lighthouse has been one of Alabama’s most historically significant lighthouses for more than one hundred and fifty years.

The Lighthouse was first erected in 1838 by Winslow Lewis, a famous architect, before being brought down during the civil war.

About nine years after the end of the Civil War, the Lighthouse was reconstructed on a land space of four hundred acres until it got to only one acre, where it currently stands.

Sand Island Lighthouse has been extensively preserved and adequately maintained through the joint efforts of the state’s people.

The Lighthouse is open to both residents and tourists free of charge, although you need a boat to get to the building.

Address: Sand Island Light, Gulf of Mexico, Alabama, United States

21. Dauphin Island Massage

Dauphin Island Massage
Credits: Olena Yakobchuk / Shutterstock

While having all the fun you need, don’t forget your body has its own needs. Therefore, ensure to visit Dauphin Island Massage in Dauphin Island, AL.

Dauphin Island Massage is a spa that takes care of your body; all you need to do is relax and let them do all the work.

The spa is managed by Tina, a licensed massage therapist who has been in the industry for over twenty years since 2001.

Dauphin Island Massage is concerned with transforming its guests into vibrant participants in their various healing processes.

They offer different kinds of massages such as deep tissue, hot stone, Swedish, and pregnancy massages, including others services like reflexology, facials, salt scrubs, and more.

Address: 122 Audubon Street, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, United States

22. Cedar Point Fishing Pier Inc.

Cedar Point Fishing Pier Inc.
Credits: 5m3photos / Shutterstock

Cedar Point Fishing Pier Inc. is an excellent spot for relaxation and a popular place for many residents and visitors.

This Fishing Pier is the longest in the area, with enough room for everyone. You can also purchase fishing equipment such as baits, flavorful drinks, and snacks from the on-site shop.

You can bring your chair or rent chairs at the Pier, whichever is more convenient for you.

Cedar Point Fishing Pier Inc. offers you an opportunity to go fishing. At the same time, you enjoy the beautiful view and fresh air.

You won’t leave here empty-handed as there is an assortment of fish in the water with grocery carts scattered throughout the area waiting to be filled.

Address: 18250 Dauphin Island Pkwy, Coden, AL 36523, United States

23. Little Red School House Community Complex

Little Red School House Community Complex
Credits: Strickland Wayne / Facebook
Little Red School House Community Complex

Little Red School House Community Complex is one of the best places to visit in Dauphin Island, AL.

The Little Red School House Community Complex began in the 1930s as a school building before the command was given to eradicate the building.

Although the town’s citizens fought against the decree, the structure was later moved to Bienville Boulevard.

The Little Red School House Community Complex contains a premium museum, a library, and a gift shop open to the public.

The Museum is filled with lots of history about Dauphin Island, showcasing historical data about bridges, landmarks, and more. There is also an extensive collection of books, audiobooks, DVDs, puzzles, and games packed in the library, which are available for rental free of charge.

Address: 1016 Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36528-4300, United States

24. Arts of Dauphin Island

Arts of Dauphin Island
Credits: PeopleImages.com – Yuri A / Shutterstock

Dauphin Island is a charming art gallery known as The Arts of Dauphin Island, which operates from Thursday through Saturday, from 11 am to 5 pm.

This well-known Dauphin Island gallery is the abode of regional and local artists and their distinctive art pieces.

The gallery, which holds occasional exhibitions, features a variety of items such as sculptures, pottery, wood works, paintings, photography, and mixed media works.

Depending on when you visit and how long you plan on staying, you and your kids can take art classes or catch art exhibitions at the gallery. It would be best if you contacted them before you visit.

Stop by the Arts of Dauphin Island gallery to discover artwork created by local and regional artists.

Visiting the Arts of Dauphin Island gallery would make a good inclusion to your list of best things to do in Dauphin Island, AL, especially if you are an art buff.

Address: 1101 Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, USA

25. Fort Morgan Historic Site

Fort Morgan Historic Site
Credits: Onasill – Bill Badzo / Flickr
Fort Morgan Historic Site

The Morgan Historic Site features a wide range of activities to make your trip unforgettable. It is situated on Mobile Point, near the tip of the scenic Fort Morgan Peninsula.

Fort Morgan is a Third System masonry fort constructed between 1819 and 1833. Fort Bowyer, another fort built during the War of 1812, was built before it.

The fort, which stood guard where Mobile Bay meets the Gulf of Mexico, was crucial to the outcome of the Battle of Mobile Bay in August 1864.

The site used sporadically during the Spanish American War, World Wars I and II, illustrates the development of seacoast fortifications and modifications made by the US Army for national defense.

The site holds more history you will not find in textbooks, so this tourist destination would be worth visiting if you love history.

Address: 110 State Highway 180 State Fort Morgan, AL 36542, USA

26. Goat Tree Reserve

The Goat Tree Reserve is a piece of the maritime forest that was once on the island’s eastern side and is home to both migratory and permanent songbird populations.

The tree got its name because, according to folklore in the area, wild goats on the island used to sleep on it at night to avoid being eaten by roaming alligators.

Instead of housing goats, the venerable Goat Tree now serves as a haven for a wide variety of thrushes, vireos, flycatchers, warblers, and tanagers that migrate through during the spring and fall.

Try not to scare the birds away since the tree has become a landmark and a popular place for bird watchers at the Goat tree preserve.

Address: 701 Cadillac Ave, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, USA

27. Captain Mike’s Fishing

Captain Mike's Fishing
Credits: Piotr Wawrzyniuk / Shutterstock

This establishment aims at helping you catch many big fish in the comfort of neat, world-class boats featuring state-of-the-art fishing equipment.

Captain Mike’s Fishing company is run and owned by a family. Early in the 1970s, Capt. Mike started his enthusiasm for charter fishing, and in the 1990s, Captain Mike Thierry’s son, Skipper, joined the business.

King Marchand, Capt. Mike’s longtime first mate took over fishing the Lady Ann on March 1st, 2021 when Capt. Mike retired after 50 years of service.

The boats are incredibly good, featuring XM satellite radio, air-conditioned salons, DVD players, microwaves, flat-screen satellite TVs, spotless restrooms, hot showers and coffee makers, and other home conveniences.

You can request a large group charter rate, as the boats can take 38 passengers. You can also customize your trips with the help of the crew.

Climb aboard the “Escape,” the beautiful spacious boat with enough room for all passengers to cast their line or apply other fishing techniques.

Fish the best hot spots in the area; rest assured that you are in good hands as the captains are all certified and experienced and will help you get the best catch in the Gulf of Mexico.

Address: 650 Lemoyne Dr, Dauphin Island, AL 36528, USA

Planning to explore Alabama? Get the best of attractions and activities in Montgomery, Auburn, and Decatur for a fun vacation.

Plan Your Trip to Dauphin Island

Dauphin Island will change the judgment of anyone who thinks they have visited the most beautiful places in the United States.

The magnificence and charms of this town will warm your heart and make you want to stay longer than you planned. 

Start planning your trip to Dauphin Island.