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The Best Family Mobile City Guide (Alabama)

Mobile City Guide

Familydaysout.com has done ALL the hard work so you don’t have to with this ULTIMATE Mobile City Guide (Alabama) to print & use!

Mobile, Alabama has such an incredibly rich and fascinating history, and you really need to visit this incredbile city to truly appreciate it all. Mobile not only has a rich history, but so many fun things to do with kids. It's an often overlooked city when planning a family day out, but we plan to change that!

On the path between New Orleans and Birmingham, Mobile is one of our favorites, so we can't wait to share with you our most popular things to do in Mobile, including our "Top 9 Family Attractions" that you can enjoy on your next family day out!

There are so many fun things to do with kids in Mobile, so make sure check out the entire Mobile City Guide we've provided, so you know exactly how to plan your family day out when you visit this charming and colorful Alabaman city!

Image Credit: Tad Denson via Mobile.org

In this Mobile City Guide, we'll be sharing with you our favorite museums (and there are a LOT!) that can be found within this historic Alabama city, as well as plenty of attractions that will excite and entertain.  We'll share not-to-be-missed experiences that really will allow you to embrace the magic of Mobile, along with some fun surprises too! We know budgets are always a consideration, so also in this Mobile City Guide we've also listed some great FREE things to do with kids! If you want to ditch the car, we let you know the best way to explore the city via public transport, and we also share some really fun facts you can impress your friends with!

If you want to explore a bit further out, this Mobile City Guide also let's you in on our favorite day trip. We also check out some famous faces who were born in Mobile, all of which help you plan your Mobile family day out - and more! 

So whether this is your first trip to Mobile, or maybe you've lived in the city for your whole life but just never had time to really explore it, and you think "I wonder what is there is to do near me in Mobile?", then keep reading, because we have the top 9 things to do in Mobile with kids, the family,...and more!

Image Credit: Tad Denson via Mobile.org

Did you know that back in 1702, Mobile was actually the capital of colonial French Louisiana? In fact, it was part of New France for 60 years! Later, following their vistory in the Seven Years' War, Britain took control in 1763, and then during the American Reevolutionary War, the Spanish took over! You can see already with such a history, how the various cultures have infused and shaped the city - and that's just the tip of the iceberg!

In 1813, Mobile officially became part of the USA, after it was captured by American forces, and added to the Mississippi Treaty, then moved to Alabama - officially becoming part of the 22nd state in 1819! (Really, that's not THAT long ago when you think about it!) Later, Alabama left the Union to join the Confederacy, then in 1865 it returned once again to the Union after the American Civil War. 

The history of Mobile, however, spans further back than this! Spanish explorers sailed into the area as early as 1500, then explored and mappped in more details over the next few decades. When the Spanish arrived, they found the Muscogee Native American tribe - the first inhabitants of the Mobile Bay area.

After WWI, steel and shipbuilding became two of the most important areas of production to the economy, and because of this huge involvemnt in the military effort, the population of Mobile dramatically increased during WWII.  In recent years, the city has been the focus of an Urban Design plan to help shape downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods. 

Image Credit: Tad Denson via Mobile.org

If you love history, the Mobile really has some really fascinating things to do with kids and of course, with family. The historic attractions include such favorites like Bragg Mitchell Mansion, Conde Charlotte Museum and the Mobile Carnival Museum. Also a popular destination is the adventure and nature-filled Historic Blakeley State Park

Then you have the attractions that allow you to really embrace the beauty of the city in a really fun way, such as taking to the waters on a Perdido Queen Riverboat Cruise!

Be inspired with free entry attractions such as the Hank Aaron Childhood Home & Museum (and maybe catch a baseball game at the Hank Aaron Stadium too!)

If you don't have a car, a great way to get around Mobile is by the Wave Transit system of public buses.  The numerous routes can connect you to a host of destinations in and around Mobile, including the airport and Dauphin Island. 

Fares can be paid with cash, or you can pick up a MyWAVE card which cost $4, but can save you time and hassle AND be reloaded for up to 3 years! They also have passes and special fares for all needs. 

Just a note if you are paying cash, they don't offer change (so have the correct amount!), and if you make a transfer you have to pay the additional fare (something you don't have to if you have the MyWAVE card!)

Source and Image Credit: More information here: The Wave Transit

Main Image Credit: Tad Denson via Mobile.org

One of the must-visit attractions in Mobile is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Not to attend a mass, but just to look at. The architecture is simply stunning, and is worth a photo opportunity. The cornerstone of the Cathedral was laid in 1835, and it took 15 years to build, finally being consecrated in 1850. 

Today, it's a highlight of Mobile, and whether you are relgious or not, and even what religion you are, there's not denying that the building is simply stunning, so grab those cameras and enjoy the view!

Image Credit & Website: Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception / Michael Maestro

Our Top 9 Fun Things To Do With The Kids In Mobile

Our Top 9 Fun Things To Do With The Kids In Mobile Our Top 9 Fun Things To Do With The Kids In Mobile

1Mobile Carnival Museum

Mobile is the birthplace of the Mardi Gras, so any family day out in the city must include a visit to the Mobile Carnival Museum! Here, you can learn all about the rich history and traditions of Carnival, and get up close with the incredible artistry of the costumes and props used in the parade. 

The museum is also filled with incredibly artifacts and memorabilia, with a host of photographs dating back to 1886! Kids can even exprience a behind-the-mask view of the street party by climbing onto a rocking float! It's a celebration in Mobile, and all are welcome!

Image Credit: Mobile Carnival Museum

Dive into history with a visit to the USS Alabama Battleship, and subsequent Memorial Park. A visit here is a beautiful tribute, history lesson and military attraction all in one.  All of the exhibits here tell the incredible story of not just the battleship, but all the people who lived and worked in and around it, and what that meant. 

It's not just exhibits that feature at the USS Alabama! Did you know kids can actually climb inside a gun turrel, as well as man an actual 12mm gun AND get locked in the brig, so lots of interactive fun for the little ones too! Also in the Memorial Park are 25 real life aircraft which will really round out the experience.

Image Credit: USS Alabama

Over 150 exhibits await at Exploreum, with hands-on fun for kids that make science and learning fun. It's not just the interactive exhibits that will engage and captivate kids - it's the larger than life Giant Screen films too!

Kids can be spending the day with dinosaurs learning how they lived, learn how the human body works and how incredible we are, or uncover the wonders of what lives under the ocean. Science IS fun, and learning IS fun, and that's exactly the experience kids will enjoy at Exploreum! One of the most popular attractions in Mobile for families. 

Image Credit: Exploreum

Over 150 exhibits await at Exploreum, with hands-on fun for kids that make science and learning fun. It's not just the interactive exhibits that will engage and captivate kids - it's the larger than life Giant Screen films too!

Kids can be spending the day with dinosaurs learning how they lived, learn how the human body works and how incredible we are, or uncover the wonders of what lives under the ocean. Science IS fun, and learning IS fun, and that's exactly the experience kids will enjoy at Exploreum! One of the most popular attractions in Mobile for families. 

Image Credit: MCPSESC

Mobile has an incredibly rich history, and it's worth a visit to this well put together museum to really appreciate the city and how it came to be as we know it today. Both permanent and changing exhibits fill the building (which also happens to be on the National Register of Historic Places itself!)

Kids can learn about the various people who shaped and influenced the city, from immigrants, politicians, tradespeople and slaves. There are exhibits on those who lived on the lands long before European settlement, as well as events that made the city. A fascinating insight into a fascinating city!

Image Credit: History Museum of Mobile

Bragg Mitchell Mansion really has become an icon of Mobile. Built in 1855, this Greek Revival style mansion passed through a number of hands before being donated as a museum, and we are so glad it was as it really gives you a fascinating insight into life over 150 years ago, and is an important piece of the city's history.

Guided tours can take you around the impressive rooms, taking you back through time. The gardens are stunning too, as as a property that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it really is a must-visit for anyone visiting Mobile. It's such a key part of the history, and now you can be part of that history too!

Image Credit: Bragg Mitchell Mansion

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Conde-Charlotte Museum tells the story of Mobile under five flags - French, English, Spanish, Confederate and American. It's a fascinating walk through history, with period furnishings in a specatular example of past Mobile architecture. 

Guided tours can take you around the various rooms, from French inspired, to Spanish influenced, and more, so it really feels like you're walking through the history books, which makes it a great learning experience for kids too! They also offer a number of fun kids activities to make their day even more exciting!

Image Credit: Conde-Charlotte Museum

Seeing the sights of Mobile from the ground is one thing, but seeing the skyline from the river is another! Taking a cruise on the Perdido Queen is a great way to see Mobile from a whole other point of view - and they have a host of cruises that you can choose from too!

You can enjoy a lunch cruise, or take in sunset with a dinner cruise. They also offer fun themed cruises, such as the Murder Mystery cruise, Dinner Theater cruise or if you LOVE music, why not try the Jazz Brunch cruise? Plenty of options to find what's perfect for your family! 

Image Credit: Perdido Queen Cruises

Historic Blakeley State Park is one of the largest and most diverse attractions in the Gulf Coast area, nestled within the stunning Mobile-Tensaw Delta, and it makes for a great day out in nature, with 2,000 acres of some of the most biodiverse habitat in North America.

If nature wasn't enough, you can also enjoy some local history too as the park contains the sites of Alabama's largest Civil War battle, as well as the town of Blakleley - an important example of early Alabama, as well as Native American settlements which datee back thousands of years! A 20 minute drive from Mobile, in Spanish Fort. 

Image Credit: Historic Blakeley State Park

Famous Folk From Mobile!

 Family Days Out: City Guide

Laverne Cox

Laverne Cox is an American actress and LGBT advocat, most known for her breakthrough role as Sophie in the hit TV series Orange Is The New Black. She is also the first transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in any category!

Image Credit: Greg Hernandez

 Family Days Out: City Guide

Hank Aaron

Hank Aaron, also known as Hammerin' Hank, was an American professional baseball player who played 23 seasons in Major League Baseball. He is also widely regarded as one of the greatest baseball players in history.

Image Credit: Public Domain

5 Fun Mobile, Alabama Facts!

5 Fun Mobile, Alabama Facts!

Impress your friends with your amazing Mobile knowledge!

  • In 1703, the first Mardi Gras celebration in the New World actually occurred in Mobile - long before the first New Orleans Mardi Gras took place!
  • The city was first settle in 1702, which is actually a huge 117 years before Alabama even officially became a state!
  • Mobile is Alabama's only saltwater port. It's also one of the 12 biggest ports in the entire USA!
  • Mobile actually receives more rain that Seattle! (If you can believe it!)
  • Mobile was actually the first capital of what was then known as colonial French Louisiana back in 1702!

Top 5 FREE Things To Do With Kids In Mobile

Hank Aaron Childhood Home & Museum

Hank Aaron Childhood Home & Museum

Hank Aaron is considered one of the greatest baseball players that ever lived, and at the aptly named Hank Aaron Stadium, you can visit the actual building that was once his childhood home (built by his dad), that has turned into a free admission museum.

Exhibits showcase artifacts and memorabilia that tell the inspiring story of this Mobile-born sports hero, from incredibly humble beginnings through to smashing world records and securing his place in history. Whether you are a baseball fan or not, this museum is worth a visit.

Image Credit: Hank Aaron Museum

Stroll Lower Dauphin Street Historic District

Stroll Lower Dauphin Street Historic District

We know that Mobile has a rich and fascinating history, but sometimes it's nice to just put those walking shoes on and take it all in. A stroll down Lower Dauphin Street Historic District is like taking a stroll back in time - it's also been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1979! 

The district spans over 750 acres, and within this area there nearly 1500 historic buildings to view, dating from the 1820s right through to the 20th century. The styles also vary too, from Greek Revival, Victorian and Queen Anne, and more! 

Image Credit: Public Domain

Get creative on the LoDa ArtWalk!

Get creative on the LoDa ArtWalk!

Get the diary out and note that every second Friday from 6pm to 9pm, the LoDa ArtWalk helps downtown Mobile come alive! The streets are free to stroll down, where thousands of locals and visitors come together to enjoy local art, food, music, and culture. 

Strolling ArtWalk alows you to browse eclectic local galleries, and fun pop-up markets all in your own time. The experience really showcases the city's diversity, from the contemporary to the traditional, from street food to sophisticated. 

Image Credit: Mobile.org

Enjoy the sun at Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

Enjoy the sun at Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

Mobile is also known as the Gateway to the Gulf, and that's because just a short drive from downtown you'll find 32 miles of stunningly white sand beaches! Have fun in the sun with lazy beach days or enjoy more of an adventure out of the city. 

You might spot a dolphin, or ejnoy fishing, and you can always enjoy the 200-year old history in the area. There are some paid attractions in the area, if you want to enrich your experience such as Fort Morgan and deep-sea fishing trips, and even dolphin cruises. 

Image Credit: Mobile.org

Attend Mardi Gras!

Attend Mardi Gras!

Mobile is home to the ORIGINAL Mardi Gras, so of course attending this iconic attract is a must! This iconic celebration has been running since 1703 (yes, 1703!), is pre-dates the more well-known Mardi Gras of New Orleans. 

During it's run, over 40 parades occur through downtown Mobile, and it's also a great excuse to dress up too! The event occurs in February, and the way it's designed, you can actually catch the same parades a number of times if you want to enjoy them again and again. Don't miss checking out some of the decorated porches - the locals really get into the celebrations and some of them are definitely worth a photo!

Image Credit: Mobile.org

Mobile Alabama Travel Guide 4K!

A Fun Day Trip From Mobile!

A stone's throw from Mobile is really a place like no other, and you would never guess that such a place was so close to city life - Dauphin Island! This historically significant destination is now where families thrive. Sandy beaches and walking trails await, with not a single shopping mall, water park, or even a traffic light in sight!

The Gulf of Mexico hugs Dauphin Island, giving families an incredible nature-based escape at only a distance of 35 miles from Mobile (or around a 40 minute driving time). The rich history makes a visit here so much more special.

The history of Dauphin Island is rich and varied, dating all the way back to 1,000 BC. In fact, you can still see the remains of early inhabitant settlements with mounds of discarded clam and oyster shells (In fact, the endless supply of seafood is one main reason the island was initially popular for settlers!). These mounds are also a lasting testament to the long-term Native American occupation on Dauphin Island. 

The first evidence of Dauphin Island mapped is in 1519, and over the next 100 years, many exploring nations set foot on the white sandy shores.  From 1699 to 1763, Dauphin Island was under French posession (despite numerous attacks from the Spanish!) and went on to become the Louisiana capital. 

In 1766 the British took over, then swiftly by the Spanish in 1780. Finally, in 1813 the US took over (in the hopes the British wouldn't use the island in the War of 1812!), and then, in 1813, Dauphin Island finally became American.

Today, the turbulent history is long in the past, and the island offers nothing but peaceful tranquility for all who visit!

Image Credit: Dauphin Island

Here’s our top 3 Dauphin Island things to do:

We hope you found this content useful! Please share with your friends, and if you have any comments, or want to let us know what we can do to further help you find fun days out with the family, then just email our team at [email protected]!

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