Biloxi, Anyone?

Everyone tries to take vacations….yes?

Last summer was a busy one for us with two weddings, a family reunion and some miscellaneous travels. This summer has been much more scaled down, thankfully.  But Kathy and I did kick the idea around about getting out of town for a few days and maybe doing some ‘beach time’.  We just weren’t sure where we wanted to go but knew we didn’t want to drive  forever and a day, which when you live in Texas, can sometimes be the case.

About 10-12 years ago, we did the Destin, FL trip with family and had a lovely time on their famed beaches.  But we didn’t want to drive that long to get there, and from where we live, South Padre Island is no short excursion either.  So making use of the internet we looked at beaches down on the Mississippi coast and found a place in Biloxi.  Keep in mind, I have NEVER considered Biloxi to be a destination point for a vacation.  And after both Katrina and the BP spill from two years ago we really had no idea what to expect, but Biloxi it was.  We just knew we could drive there and be there in about 8-9 hours and saw there were suppose to be white sand beaches on the water.

Let me also preface that for our entire married life and raising three girls, we knew something about ‘bare-boned-budgets’.  We have never been extravagant spenders primarily because we never had money to throw away. But if there was any splurging for this weekend trip, it was for the price of the room we booked which wasn’t that crazy and we sure got our money’s worth.

We knew we wanted to be on the beach and found, online, South Beach Biloxi. In our thinking, we anticipated maybe a small patch of beach there for hotel guest and if the area was not inviting, we could always drive further east for the day to hang out on the beaches elsewhere.  Boy, were we ever pleasantly surprised.  I’m not trying to change careers and write reviews for hotels and vacation spots, but I do want to give an enthusiastic shout-out to Biloxi, MS in being a great spot to visit if you need some time to unwind on pristine beaches.  We were not disappointed in the least.  I’m not sure why, but we kind of envisioned more of an industrial area with just a little patch of vacation beach carved out for guest like us and we were willing to try it out.  That place was nothing But beautiful coastline.

We left out early Thursday morning around 4AM after what had been a grueling week for both of us.  We were walking in white sand along an inviting coastline shortly after lunch and were spellbound by the drive along the coast that we opted for that took us right in to Biloxi and our hotel.  The room we got blew us away as we had no idea that we booked a suite that was more like a fully equipped one bedroom apartment on the ninth floor overlooking the gulf.  When I say ‘fully equipped’, I mean, washer/dryer, 1 1/2 bathrooms, living area, balcony, and a full kitchen that included fridge/freezer, dishwasher, microwave, dishes, blenders, silverware, etc.

The gulf coastline is obviously still laboring to rebuild the tourism industry after both Katrina and the oil spill.  Perhaps that explains the deal we got on our room and the sparsely populated beaches. But that was a plus for us. There simply were no crowds to tangle with.  The service at the hotel was wonderful and there were multiple options for dining out including multiple casinos which have rebuilt there in Biloxi.  In fact, after dinner one night, we did visit the Hard Rock Cafe casino for a short visit.  I’ve never been a big gambler but figured I would go squander $20.00 on the poker slot machines.  I’m still laughing when I think of the expression on the attendant there when I waved a 20 dollar bill asking him where I needed to go to purchase a couple of rolls of quarters.  Mr. Relevant (yours truly)  obviously has not been in a casino in some time and was informed that machines no longer take coins.  Yeah…I felt pretty stupid.   But I did take on one machine and piddled for a bit before hitting a straight flush and decided to cash out, forty dollars ahead and call it a night.  Just not my deal.  But if that is your cup of tea, you have plenty to do there in the evenings.

While the water was not ‘blue like the Caribbean’ it was refreshing and clean.  We really enjoyed a couple of meals at Shaggy’s eating on the deck right there on the beach. There was also plenty of jet skis for rental, para-gliding, deep sea fishing excursions and of course, no shortage of sand and sun.  Oh, did I mention we paid $2.94 for a gallon of gas when it was $3.15+ everywhere else outside of MS.

And as you might expect, I thoroughly enjoyed the change of scenery for picture taking.  We had an incredible view from our balcony on the 9th floor and could not get enough of the cloud formations that constantly change there on the coastline.  I wandered off one morning and visited the marina’s where the shrimpers come in with their catch.  As usual, I am happy to share some snapshots from our excursion if you want to see a bit of the scenery that we enjoyed.  Just click on the picture below of the rainbow over the water to view my gallery. 🙂  And if you have any questions about that area for a future visit, don’t hesitate to contact me.  It was a WONDERFUL place to visit and relax.

To View Full Gallery, Click on photo below: