In April 2006, my sister and I brought our 2 year olds, rented a house and loved it. Loved the dolphins every morning. The weather was chilly in the mornings and evenings, and there was rain several days. There were crabs pinching at our feet in the shallow water, so we wore water shoes and caught them in our hats! In May 2009, we brought our now 5 year olds and a 2 year old. Again, some rain, but so much fun, beachfront home. We never drove the whole way. We flew to New Orleans, rented a car and drove the rest, taking the ferry over from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan. Loved the soft white sand, the shells (nothing fancy though) and the dolphins each morning. We found one jellyfish (blue) that had washed up on the shore. No crabs that time, maybe they were gone by May. Outdoor shower is a must, doesn't need to be heated. There is a Walmart at 180/59 in Gulf Shores that you can't see from either road! But it's there. In 2011, with two more babies in tow, we only went to Galveston. It was okay, but not like Gulf Shores. No dolphins, no shells, and seaweed each morning. The house prices were about the same at G.S. for some reason, maybe due to the close drive for Texans. 2012, sister opted out of Galveston again, but we tried it again with now 2 and 8 yr olds. Couldn't even walk down to the water, the seaweed was so high on the beach, you had to CLIMB over it! Totally gross. The first few days weren't that bad, but by day 3 we were DONE with the beach (and we love the beach - lived in Hawaii, so taking a major cutback here). My two year old cried when he had to walk on seaweed and my 8 year old cried that the seaweed engulfed him in the water. Yes there had been a recent storm, but are you willing to take that chance? I'm not, never again. Ok, so now all of us are back to Gulf shores in 2013. June now, because we have school-age kids. We drove and stopped halfway each way. The house on the beach was great. Lulu's in Gulf SHores is awesome and fun for the whole family. The Cold Mil Fleet dolphin cruises are perfect (3 times now!) But there were jellyfish. Not the first day, but I was stung on day2. Day 3 we could see them and the kids were being stung. Day 4 we put our toes in and made sandcastles and were confused about what was happening. Locals said the jellyfish had never really gone away in 2013. Usually they don't see them until August, which is why we had never dealt with them. Something about the currents- one said. Something about the water temp- another said. We are used to them- they said. How do you get used to getting stung? We bought vinegar and learned to scrub our skin with sand if it happened. I got stung several times a day if I attempted boogie boarding. By day 6 we changed tactics. We learned to catch jellyfish in a net and bury them in a sandy grave, lol. The kids made a game of it and learned to spot them well and not get stung. I had been getting stung under the water though, and never saw them. The men never got stung for some reason. There area also some sort of nettles and also some biting fish that cause stinging on a few of us. All we wanted to do was boogie-board. But we made the best of it and made a big "Jellyfish Fort" out of sand- To protect future visitors. One old guy said some days they're there, some days they're not. But it will never be in the news- affects tourism. We had too book our beach house by February to get what we wanted for June! How do you plan for that? Will we go back? I really don't know. Will we just go to Destin? Will it be better? THe traffic was so bad getting into Gulf Shores Saturday early afternoon, we could havce made it to Destin easily in that time from Texas. But 14-15 hour drive to maybe have jellyfish? Will we take the kids out of school and go in May? Will that help? Just don't know yet. Good Luck :) OH and by the way, be careful to check the ferry schedule. One ferry is great- the big one. The little one sucked- no seating, no viewing decks, and no working bathroom. The Estuarium on Dauphin Island is small but a fun morning trip if the ferry doesn't suck, lol.