Beach Safety Tips
The waters of the Gulf of Mexico are as inviting as they are beautiful. We want you to enjoy your time riding the emerald waves and splashing in the saltwater while on vacation to the Gulf Coast. We also want each of our guests to remain safe while doing so and ask that you remain vigilant regarding surf conditions.
Begin each beach trip by checking the flag color for the day. The local flag warning system is universal across each of our beaches, from Gulf Shores to Cape San Blas, FL. Lifeguarded public beaches are also available in each of our Northwest Florida and Coastal Alabama vacation destinations mid-March through September.
Double Red Flag: Water is closed to public due to dangerous water conditions
Red Flag: High hazard due to surf and/or strong currents
Yellow Flag: Medium surf and/or current hazard
Green Flag: Low hazard and calm conditions, remain vigilant
Purple Flag: Marine pests present, such as jellyfish, stingrays or dangerous fish
Rip currents, powerful currents of water moving away from shore, are also something you should heed while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico. These currents can sweep even the strongest swimmer out to sea.
Identify a Rip Current
- Waves break further out to sea on either side of a rip current
- Waves are smaller and unorganized along more evenly breaking waves
- Sand is stirred up by rip currents causing the water to appear murky and brown
- The water is deeper, as indicated by darker colored water
If You See Someone Else Caught in a Rip Current
- Notify a lifeguard and have someone call 911
- Do not enter the water.
- Throw person a floatation device and do not lose sight of them
If You are Caught in a Rip Current
- Do not panic or swim against the current
- Try to relax and float until the current dissipates
- Swim parallel to coastline until you can reach the shore
While monitoring the beach conditions is certainly a huge part of beach safety, we also want to remind you to put on sunscreen and reapply often while enjoying your time on the beaches of Northwest Florida and Coastal Alabama! Nothing ruins a good time like a painful burn.