SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - Making memories and sharing your Mississippi Gulf Coast story is easier than ever with today's technology. Almost all of us have a high quality camera in our pocket and the ability to share a picture with the world in an instant.
Here are some of my favorite spots to grab that perfect selfie along the 60+ miles that make up our beautiful coast. I encourage you to go out and make your own memories and post them to social media using #superselfies and #MSCoastLife. Also, make sure you tag me in them on Twitter: @jbrannanwlox, and Instagram: @jbwlox. If your favorite selfie spot didn't make this list, make sure to let us know!
1. "Welcome to the Mississippi Gulf Coast" sign
You'll find a great spot to grab a selfie at the south end of Cowan Road in Gulfport. The "Welcome to the Mississippi Gulf Coast" sign sits at the very middle of our beautiful coast right on the beach. It's easy to park close to the sign on the south side of Highway 90 just east of the Cowan Road stop light.
In this very month, 24 years ago, dockside gambling was legalized in Harrison County. Now, the Coast sports a dozen casinos, thousands of jobs, and a hopping nightlife. One of the casinos that dot our shore happens to be the tallest building in Mississippi. The Beau Rivage, standing at almost 400 feet tall, is a towering building, with 28 floors. You can get a selfie in front of the Beau Rivage by getting out on the sidewalk in front of the casino. It's best to stand on the north side if you'd like a pic of the whole resort, but you can get a good pic of the gardens and other details on the south side of the highway.
Moving on down the row. One of 11 Hard Rock Casinos in the world rests on Highway 90 in Biloxi. The casino features lots of options for nightlife, and lots of places to take pictures.
All of the casinos and the other casinos on the coast are active on social media. So, if you post a picture and tag them in it, you may get retweeted. You never know.
3. Leo the Lion
One of Biloxi's newest attractions is MGM Ballpark, the home of the Biloxi Shuckers minor league baseball team. Something that stands out about MGM park is the statue of Leo the Lion that's installed on the southeast corner of the brand new ballpark. To get that perfect selfie, you're going to need to park in the small parking strip just off of Caillavet Street. And don't forget, April 2nd, go out and watch the Biloxi Shuckers at MGM Park in the pre-season game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
4. Round Island Lighthouse
The original Round Island lighthouse was built in 1833 and then it was rebuilt in 1859. In 2010, It was moved from its location on Round Island to where it sits now. In November 2015, after restoration, the lighthouse opened to public tours. Tours are actually open Friday and Saturday from ten AM to five PM for two dollars a person. What you need to do to get your selfie in front of the lighthouse is take highway 90 east towards Pascagoula. Take the first exit after the bridge onto Pascagoula Street. Follow that street to the right all the way to the parking lot for Lighthouse Park. Make sure you walk around and see the beautiful park and then make your way down to the lighthouse.
5. Biloxi Lighthouse
One of the coast's most famous lighthouses sits in the median of Highway 90 in Biloxi. It was first erected in 1848. It's withstood many storms, including Hurricane Katrina in 2005, but not without sustaining a good bit of damage. It opened back up in 2010, after a 14 month $400,000 restoration. Now you get a chance to go inside and take tours; 9:00, 9:15, 9:30 daily for $5 for adults and $2 for children. It's easy to park at either the Visitors Center on the north side of Highway 90 or the parking lot on the south side of Highway 90 and carefully cross the highway to get a pic with one of the most iconic and historic structures on the coast.
6. "Welcome to Mississippi" sign
You'll find a picture spot that practically screams Mississippi in Hancock County on the west end of our beautiful state. In fact it says Mississippi right on the sign. The iconic Welcome to Mississippi sign is easy to spot on the eastbound lanes of the interstate, but getting a pic there may be a little dangerous. As an alternate, you can get a safer look at the sign right down the road at the Mississippi Welcome Center.
7. Lunar Lander at the Welcome Center
The Welcome to Mississippi sign isn't the only photo op you'll find the Welcome Center. There's also a 30 foot tall replica of the Lunar Lander used as a trainer by Apollo 13 astronauts. You could take a picture with this lunar lander if you want to, but I may have an even better idea. As you walk under the lander you may notice a signature and a pair of bootprints on the pavement that allow you to walk in the footsteps of Apollo astronaut and Biloxi native, Fred Haise.
8. Infinity Science Center, F-1 rocket engine
As the folks here at the Infinity Science Center in Hancock County will tell you, you can't go to the moon without going through South Mississippi first. While Stennis Space Center serves as a prominent rocket testing facility, the Infinity Science Center serves around 60 thousand guests each year. One of the first things you should check out is the impressive F-1 rocket engine on display right outside the facility's front door. While you're there, go ahead and grab a #rocketselfie.
9. Infinity Science Center, astronaut
Step inside Infinity Science Center's massive facility where guests can experience a mix of exhibits and hands on experiments that are geared to inspire guests and spark imaginations. You'll see why the science center is the only place on the coast to grab a pic that's out of this world. Especially when you take a picture of yourself inside the astronaut suit on display. The folks at the Infinity Science Center hope you'll tag them in your pics on social media.
10. Crooked Feather
You'll find a great place for pictures in Ocean Springs right next to Highway 90. Crooked Feather, the Native American head sculpture, sits on the east side of Biloxi Bay at the foot of the Ocean Springs bridge. The sculpture is a replica of one that was carved in 1975 by Hungarian sculptor, Peter Toth. In 1999, the city commissioned Thomas King, a local sculptor, to carve the current Crooked Feather that you'll now find at the entrance to the city of Ocean Springs. The best way to get to Crooked Feather is to turn off the highway from the eastbound lanes right after you pass a caboose and the Crooked Feather carving.
11. Gulf Islands National Seashore
A driving force behind visitors coming to our beautiful coast is eco-tourism. One of the best spots to take in some of that eco-tourism is at the Gulf Islands National Seashore on Davis Bayou. The possibilities for pics there are endless. You could get a pic right in front of the welcome sign at the entrance to the park. Practically everywhere in the park is picturesque, and if you're lucky, you may get some wildlife in your shot, maybe even an alligator. The Davis Bayou area of the Gulf Islands National Seashore can be accessed from Bienville Boulevard in Ocean Springs just across the street from the hospital.