Top 10 Things to Do in Ocean Springs, Mississippi
Ocean Springs, Mississippi, is a small, bohemian-style community nestled in the Gulf Coast. It is a city that thrives on creativity, inspired by its rich artistic history and natural surroundings. For such a small community, there is quite a large assortment of unique shops, restaurants, and live music venues. Below are 10 eclectic, artistic, and funky places worth visiting.
For authentic barbecue and live blues music, stop by The Shed, a unique concoction of buildings pieced together on a campground along the river. Family-style tables line the interior, as well as an assortment of recycled license plates, old cars, and antique pieces. The vintage signs on the walls feature fun quotes perfect for an Instagram post. Along with the unique atmosphere, The Shed also boasts delicious food. Don’t leave without trying the highly recommended pulled pork.
Learn about Walter Anderson, the artist that started it all, at the Walter Anderson Museum. Decades ago, Anderson prolifically created different works of art, including pottery, and set up a family studio in Ocean Springs. The pieces of pottery are intricate and reminiscent of hieroglyphic paintings from Egypt. Also displayed are some of his ornate bowls, vases, saucers, ink drawings, block prints, watercolors, clay sculptures, and woodcarvings. Much of his work celebrated the love of nature. His vision has continued through generations and established an artistic community that flourishes still today.
Step inside Poppy’s Gift Shop, and you’ll be greeted by a wide assortment of funky items such as Mardi Gras Christmas ornaments and handmaid soaps. The hosts are gracious and offer a complimentary cup of warm cider or frozen rose, depending on the season. Nothing quite compares to a friendly, southern welcome.
For picture perfect, edible art, visit the French Kiss Bakery. The European pastries and cake selection are beautiful, delicious, and mouth-watering. You’ll have your pick of multiple freshly baked treats that are sure to wow your taste buds. My favorite is any of the 3-layer personal cakes displayed in the center of the café. They come in a variety of flavors, from carrot cake, cheesecake, chocolate, and strawberry, and are absolutely amazing.
Visit Coastal Magpie Antiques for retro art and repurposed household appliances. Step back in time and enjoy everything in this adorable store. All items are for sale, even the furniture holding the artistic creations. It’s the perfect place to buy some unique finds at a great price.
If you’re looking for a live music venue, head over to Government Street Grocery. They have a great beer selection, delicious burgers, and live music several days of the week. The large patio is a great spot to soak in the atmosphere.
Pop Brothers provides delicious ice-cream pops and adorable outdoor seating under a ginormous oak tree. They are dog-friendly and offer multiple popsicle flavors for your furry friend. It’s the perfect place to sit in the shade and relax.
Fort Bayou Live Bait, located on the Bayou is a great location to bird watch. Buy some shrimp and throw them in the Bayou to see a wide assortment of wildlife gather around for a snack. You’ll be greeted by pelicans, egrets and other species of birds. Make sure to bring your camera to document the beautiful flight. As the bayous tend to be a bit wet, be sure to wear some water-resistant boots for this adventure.
From the prohibition era, The Julep Room is a fun venue hidden amongst the cellar doors below Jenny’s Catfish Restaurant. The building is an old southern, stately mansion, with a beautiful view of the bayou. Stay for live music, shuffleboard, and stories from bootlegging days. Make sure to try the on-tap beer selections, which includes the tasty Ghost in the Machine beer, a double India Pale Ale with a citrus flavor.
Pecans and pralines, made by hand, from scratch, using recipes passed down through generations await you in The Candy Cottage. This old-school candy shop has all your childhood favorites as well as homemade fudge.
Keep walking down Washington Avenue or Government Street, to explore other numerous sweet shops, boutiques, retro eateries, or galleries. Experience Ocean Springs by checking off all of the locations and activities listed above. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. There’s something for every connoisseur.