Arts & Culture
Take a quick look around Mobile and you’ll see how artful a city it is. With its beautiful 95,000 square foot facility brimming with art from around the world, Mobile Museum of Art is the largest museum on the Gulf Coast from New Orleans to Tampa.
And on the second Friday of every month during the LoDa Artwalk, downtown shops and art galleries open their doors for the evening and invite the public in to experience, enjoy, and even take home local artistic wares. Mobile’s cultural flair extends far beyond the visual arts; the city also boasts its own symphony, ballet, opera and numerous theatre troupes.
Thanks to its location on the Gulf of Mexico, Mobile has a mild subtropical climate, with the average annual temperature a pleasant 67 °F. Winters in Mobile are mild; seasonal lows average around 40 °F, and summers are hot and humid, with highs in the 90s.
Be sure to bring an umbrella—Mobile receives more average rainfall (greater than 60 inches per year) than any other city in the continental US!
From pre-school to higher education, Mobile has a broad range of educational institutions both public and private. So whether you want to pursue your Ph. D., or you’re simply looking for the ideal spot for your children to learn their ABC’s, this city provides a wealth of learning opportunities for students of all ages.
FESTIVALS & EVENTS
As the birthplace of Mardi Gras, Mobile certainly knows how to throw a party, but festival fun in Mobile doesn’t end after the final parade. You’ll love spring in Mobile, which brings the annual American Cancer Society’s Chili Cook-Off, Historic Homes Tour, Festival of Flowers, along with the SouthSounds Music and Arts Festival. Fall events will fill up your calendar too, with the Greater Gulf State Fair, Ten65, and Bay Area Brunchfest, to name a few.
There’s also Dauphin Street International Beer Festival, Greek Festival and the famous downtown New Year’s event featuring a 600-pound illuminated MoonPie. No matter the time of year, this town loves any excuse to have a celebration, so come on out and join the fun!
Come hungry, but don’t expect to stay that way for long in Mobile. With abundant options ranging from casual coastal fare to upscale fine dining, you’ll find something to please even the most discriminating diner. With the Gulf Coast as our backyard, seafood here is unparalleled, and restaurants serve mouthwatering fresh fish, shrimp, crab and oysters.
Mobile also dishes out savory southern and Creole dishes, and when crawfish are in season, be sure to give the “mudbugs” a try. You won’t have trouble finding delicious things to eat in this city—you’ll likely run out of room long before you run out of options.
The rich history of the “City of Six Flags” began in 1702, when the French founded it as the capital of their colonial settlement. Mobile later switched hands to the British and then the Spanish before American forces took control. The oldest city in the state of Alabama, Mobile draws cultural, architectural and culinary influences from the groups that occupied, inhabited or simply passed through its port.
Evidence of the city’s involvement in the Civil War is still visible at Fort Gaines on Dauphin Island and across the bay at Fort Morgan. Questionably the most significant historic legacy of Mobile is our Mardi Gras celebration, adopted from French tradition and famously reinstated after the Civil War by local icon Joe Cain. His legacy lives on; dozens of parades and extravagant masquerade balls transform the city into a two-week-long celebration each year.
Mobilians are always on the move! There are plenty of ways to stay physically and socially active here, whether you prefer to run, walk or ride. The Port City Pacers is a local running club that organizes events including the annual Azalea Trail Run, a nationally-renowned event.
There are local leagues for soccer, softball and even kickball, and Mobile boasts one of the nation’s largest tennis facilities.
Mobilians love music, and this city offers a broad range of musical performances, from the soothing classical sounds of the Mobile Symphony Orchestra to rocking live acts at Alchemy Tavern or The Merry Widow.
You can see world-renowned artists like Yo-Yo Ma at the historic Saenger Theatre, and then stroll down Dauphin Street and hear some of the area’s local stars on the rise. Downtown venues Soul Kitchen and The Steeple on St. Francis feature regional and national touring acts, or if smaller, more intimate performances are more your style, you can catch them weekly at restaurants and bars like Callaghan’s Irish Social Club or The Listening Room. Fans of jazz, you are not alone in Mobile; local Mystic Order of the Jazz Obsessed (MOJO) hosts a monthly jazz night.
With more than 70 parks and hundreds of miles of trails for hiking and biking, Mobile is practically begging you to come outside and play.
Five Rivers Delta Safaris offers canoeing and kayaking trips, as well as guided camping and fishing expeditions. If you prefer to get out of downtown, hit the trails and take a hike at Chickasabogue Park or the 6.5-mile loop around the USS Alabama.
The area boasts more than 10 disc golf courses, or if traditional golf is your game, Mobile is ranked among the top 10 value destinations for the game, according to Golf Digest. Along with that glowing designation, Mobile also features part of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, a collection of 468 champion-level holes located throughout the state. With the rivers and Bay nearby, watersports are popular and accessible—you can sail, fish, snorkel, waterski and swim minutes from home. Since the weather is pleasant nearly year round, there’s hardly a reason not to get out and dive into the fun.
Shoppers, rejoice! From the boutiques and shops of downtown to the malls and shopping centers scattered throughout the area, there is ample opportunity to shop until you drop. You’ll find many noted national retailers in the Mobile area, along with a host of independently-owned—or, as we like to call them, seriously local—stores selling anything you can imagine, from fine food, antiques, hardware, and clothing for the entire family.
Sports fans, get on your feet! Mobile has great teams and sporting events to get you cheering. Take your family out to the ball game at Hank Aaron Stadium with the BayBears, Mobile’s AA minor league baseball team.
If football fits your fancy, Mobile has plenty to offer! Each year the city hosts the Senior Bowl, which pits the country’s best collegiate players and NFL draft prospects against each other in a thrilling pre-draft game. The University of South Alabama also offers NCAA football at a newly-constructed on-campus stadium along with more than a dozen other women and men’s sports teams.