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Mobile has deep roots in the deep south. It was founded in 1702 as the French capital of Louisiana. For the next 100+ years was a colony of France, Great Britain, and Spain before becoming part of the United States in 1813.
Its unique heritage and history make Mobile a truly fascinating destination. Check out these 8 epic experiences in Mobile!
You can’t talk about Mobile without mentioning oysters. The city was (quite literally) built on oyster shells! When European explorers arrived early in the 16th century, they found enormous shell mounds on Dauphin Island and the Mobile-Tensaw Delta at Bottle Creek. These shells were later used to pave the way for early roads and buildings.
Today the oyster industry brings in more than $250 million as part of Alabama’s seafood commerce. These tasty treats are part of the fabric of the city – you’ll find them EVERYWHERE!
For a truly epic experience, stop at Wintzell’s Oyster House to try them “fried, stewed, or nude.” Wintzell’s has been around since 1938 and will even show you how to shuck your own.
Mobile invites you to check out the Oyster Trail! The Oyster Trail is a fun and educational public art trail throughout coastal Alabama. Look for the giant oysters painted by local artists on street corners, parks, lobbies, and more. Each shell gives a fun fact about oysters and how they benefit Mobile Bay.
Post some FB pics of the shells you find you just might win a prize!
Africatown is both a local and national legacy. On July 9, 1860, the Clotilde entered Mobile Harbor with America’s last slaves. The men and women who were forcefully removed from their homeland and enslaved then formed their own (largely self-governed) community that continues to thrive today.
The Africatown Heritage House is expected to open in early summer 2022 after experiencing building and supply challenges related to the pandemic. It tells the long-untold story of the nation’s last known slave ship, and the town created by the survivors of those who were brought to Alabama on that ship.
It will feature “Clotilda: The Exhibition,” curated by the History Museum of Mobile.
The USS Alabama is a retired South Dakota class battleship commissioned in 1942 that was converted to a museum in Mobile.
You can explore the “Mighty A” when you visit the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park. Walk the 12 decks, climb inside gun turrets, man a machine gun – but don’t get locked in the brig!
You can also tour the USS Drum submarine and get up close and personal with rare and historic aircraft (more than 25 on display including an A-12 Blackbird Spy Plane.)
Go inside the wheelhouse of the Perdido Queen or simply enjoy an evening on the water.
Groups can get an insider’s look at what drives the ship and then relax on the magnificent waterway as you dine in style. There are a variety of cruises from which to choose – including a murder mystery, comedy, holiday, and more. A mouthwatering meal is served, and live entertainment is included.
You can’t visit Mobile without indulging in a little southern comfort food. The Bienville Bites food tour features walking tours of Mobile’s signature flavors and spirits. Try a 1,000-year-old culinary history tour, a BBBQ tour (yep- 3 Bs!), a prohibition murder mystery tour, and more.
Speakeasies, BBQ, and outstanding cuisine are definitely on the menu in Mobile!
The Saenger Theatre is a must-do in Mobile. This gorgeous historic venue opened in 1927 and hosts more than 70,000 guests each year. Its stunning architecture and rich acoustics make it a perfect venue for the Mobile Symphony Orchestra, as well as national acts, classic movies, and more.
Three Georges has been a Mobile staple since 1917. As the name implies, it was founded by three men named George who were on a mission to turn the former 1866 building into a haven of sweet treats.
More than a hundred years later, Three Georges is still serving up tempting ice cream, shakes, and candy using original recipes.
Three Georges offers epic tours of the building and candy-making demonstrations while you’re there. Yum!
While New Orleans gets all the attention, Mobile is the birthplace of Mardi Gras in America! In 1703, French pioneers who settled at Twenty-Seven Mile Bluff, celebrated their first Mardi Gras in the New World. By 1711, the first papiér-maché bull honoring Mardi Gras made its way down Dauphin Street (and is credited for being the first parade in America.)
You can dig a little deeper into this rich tradition of feasting and fun at the Mobile Carnival Museum. Find out more about the royalty and pageantry of Carnival here – you can even see photos of the celebration dating back to 1886!
If you want to learn even more about Mobile, spend a few minutes with Michael Dorie from Visit Mobile on Destination Dispatch. Michael shares lots of great Mobile info for groups and other guests so you’ll know exactly what to expect on your next visit to The Port City!
Mobile is an intriguing mix of funky and festive several hundred years in the making. Its people, culture, history, and tradition make your visit to this Gulf Coast city an epic experience!
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