Beautiful coastal towns may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of Mississippi; however, this southern state has quite a few. Twelve cities make up the counties of Jackson, Harrison, and Hancock in Coastal Mississippi. Landlocked on all sides but the fourth, Mississippi has 62 miles of charming coastline.
Each town has its own unique personality and things to explore. Foodies will love the international culinary influence, demonstrated by a plethora of fresh seafood and local ingredients. If you’re searching for a lovely vacation in an unexpected place, these Coastal Mississippi towns are for you.
This visit was hosted by Coastal Mississippi. All opinions remain my own.
Biloxi was once known as the Seafood Capital of the World. Located in Harrison County and perfectly situated on the coast, Biloxi is a hub for incredible seafood and sugar sand beaches. If you’ve never been on a shrimping boat, your visit to Biloxi is your chance! Experience what a real shrimping trip is like and learn everything you’ve always wondered about shrimp, from how they are caught to the best way to cook and eat them! A shrimping trip is a unique experience you won’t want to miss in Biloxi.
What would the seafood capital of the world be without a Seafood Museum? Explore exhibits on shrimping, fishing, wetlands, schooners, and maritime history. The museum is committed to showcasing and preserving Biloxi’s rich heritage through these exhibits and educational programs for youth.
Round off your day of learning about seafood by eating seafood! Oyster lovers will enjoy Mary Mahoney’s, not only a historical hotspot but the best place to eat charbroiled oysters. For the main course, try a decadent crabmeat imperial specialty, like the stuffed lobster or the perfectly cooked French double-cut pork chops. The elegance, romance, and old-world charm of Mary Mahoney’s is the ideal way to end your day in Biloxi.
2. Bay St. Louis
Bay St. Louis has been called one of the best places to live on the Mississippi coast and is located in Hancock County. Bay St. Louis is a quiet, charming town with friendly people and great restaurants. Spend some time soaking up the sun on the beach with your family and peruse the local shops.
Mardi Gras enthusiasts and movie buffs will love the Bay St. Louis Historic L&N Depot in the movie This Property Is Condemned. Visiting this old train depot is like taking a step back in time with clean, pleasant grounds and an informative history lesson. It also houses the Mardi Gras Museum, which is filled with beautiful costumes and timelines of the area.
Don’t miss hunting for the Angel Trees. There are four trees throughout Bay St. Louis. The trees were created by chainsaw artist Dayle Lewis following the devastation to Coastal Mississippi by Hurricane Katrina. The Angel Trees stand as a reminder that though the region was battered and injured they are recovering and thriving.
If you’re looking for some great restaurants, look no further than The Blind Tiger for a tropical island experience. Grab everything from fish tacos and shrimp to burgers and fries alongside a beautiful view of the Gulf.
The coastal community of Gautier is located between Pascagoula and Ocean Springs. It is known for its abundant nature and eco-tours. Book a sunset or afternoon cruise down the Pascagoula River and spot egrets, pelicans, ospreys, bald eagles, and various plant species, including orchids and wild lilies.
If you want to take your nature adventure to the next level, consider staying in a private cabin in the cypress forest. Spend your day kayaking through the swamp with a knowledgeable guide and see the Mississippi wildlife up close and personal!
4. Ocean Springs
Ocean Springs resides in Jackson County and is about two miles east of Biloxi. While in Ocean Springs, art lovers shouldn’t miss out on the Walter Anderson Museum. As the name suggests, this museum houses the works of Walter Anderson, an artist who used various mediums to interact and understand the world around him.
Currently, the museum is exhibiting The Most Elusive Artist, which showcases Anderson’s rarely seen watercolors, block prints, wood carvings, ceramics, and sketches. In conjunction with Anderson’s more iconic and well-known pieces is The Little Room. In The Little Room, he sketched and painted on the walls from floor to ceiling.
If you’re looking for a great lodging option, The Roost is a lovely boutique hotel perfect for a romantic getaway. Guests experience a blending of the old and new when walking into this beautifully restored historic building. Each room is unique and decorated with modern furnishings and old-world glamour.
For an incredible prix fixe meal, dine at The Vestige. This delicious restaurant prides itself on using seasonal, sustainable, and local food to create unique dishes. The Vestige is a must-visit for a truly gourmet and distinctive experience.
5. Moss Point
Moss Point, also located in Jackson County, north of Pascagoula, is a great place to connect with nature. It is home to the Pascagoula River Audubon Center, where you can view a wide range of birds and other wildlife.
6. Long Beach
Nestled right between Pass Christian and Gulfport is Long Beach. Originally an agricultural town, Long Beach was known for the production of red radishes. Now, it’s a popular beach destination for visitors from around the South. While there, check out The Friendship Oak Tree, a 500-year-old oak that has withstood countless hurricanes!
The Inn at Long Beach is a great place to stay for incredible views of the Gulf just a few steps away. Those seeking a quiet retreat with close proximity to the shops and dining will enjoy this beachside hotel.
7. Pass Christian
Pass Christian is located in Harrison County, right across the bay from Bay St. Louis. During your trip to Pass Christian, you’ll experience their casual, laid-back way of life. This chill town is home to blues and jazz and has celebrated its musical heritage with the Jazz in the Pass festival since 1999. The two-day music event is held every May and is sure to entertain the whole family.
There are many waterfront restaurants to choose from when dining in Pass Christian. Some good recommendations include Shaggy’s, a tropical restaurant known for its seafood platters, and Bacchus On The Beach, known for its cajun and creole cuisine.
The coastal town of Gulfport is located in Harrison County and is the second-largest city in Mississippi. If you’re searching for a luxury stay, Grand Centennial Hotel in Centennial Plaza is the place to be. Centennial Plaza is a 48-acre resort complex that features restaurants, two hotels, water activities, a dancing fountain, historical buildings, and expansive grounds. It is the ideal hub for a romantic getaway or a family vacation.
One of the main attractions in Gulfport is the Mississippi Aquarium. The three pillars of the aquarium are education, conservation, and community. The aquarium houses more than 200 species of animals with both indoor and outdoor habitats.
While visiting Gulfport, check out Patio 44 for a wonderful dinner on the water. Patio 44 offers southern seafood, steaks, and tasty cocktails. It has an elevated and refined atmosphere, perfect for a romantic waterfront dinner.
In the 1900s, Pascagoula was known as the duck decoy capital of the world. Today, however, Pascagoula is known as a significant industrial city in Mississippi. Pascagoula is also the birthplace of one of music’s beloved sons, Jimmy Buffett.
The Grand Magnolia Ballroom and Suites is a charming option for your overnight stay. Situated minutes away from downtown Pascagoula, in a restored old Southern home, you’ll experience a taste of old Southern hospitality.
While in Pascagoula, visit the restored Round Island Lighthouse, which stood for 140 years on the coast before being destroyed by frequent hurricanes. This historic lighthouse serves as a hub for old stories of the area’s maritime history, pirate tales, and battles, letting visitors take a peek at Pascagoula’s rich past.
For an even deeper dive into the culture of this Coastal Mississippi community, check out The La Pointe-Krebs House and Museum. It is the oldest building in Mississippi, built-in 1757, and houses many historical artifacts, the perfect outing for history buffs.
After working up an appetite, consider dining at Brady’s Steak and Seafood, a one-stop shop for everything you could want from raw oysters to crab cakes, premium steaks, and fresh seafood.
Coastal Community Has A Lot To Offer
Coastal Mississippi promises that its communities will welcome you with warmth and charm. Your experience will be filled with excitement and relaxation. These coastal communities offer you plenty of room to roam while their hospitality partners have implemented the necessary precautions to keep you, your loved ones, and industry employees safe.
For more information and quick tips to help you plan your trip to Coastal Mississippi, you can visit their website. A trip to the gulf coast of Mississippi is the unexpected gem of a vacation you’ve been searching for.