The last five days we have been relaxing at home, exploring the Gulf Islands National Seashore park where we are camped, and spending most of our time in either Ocean Springs or Biloxi, Mississippi. As usual, our first stop was to the visitor center in Biloxi to get information about the area. On our way in the visitor center is a flag pole with red and blue stripe markers. The sign says the top red marker is the height of the surge and the 22′ high water level from Hurricane Katrina (2005) and the Blue marker is the high water 19.5′ level of Hurricane Camille (1969). Both hurricanes caused much devastation and loss of life.
From the front porch of the visitor center you can see the Biloxi Lighthouse draped with garland for Christmas. This lighouse is listed in the 2002 edition of “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” as the only lighthouse standing in the median of a four-lane highway. Built in 1848 the Lighthouse is an official Mississippi Landmark and is also on the National Register of Historic Places.
A few of the restaurants along the Gulf Shore in Biloxi are elevated. Hopefully, this will save them from the next hurricane.
We walked out on the Biloxi Pier.
And walked the boardwalk the goes around the I-110 exit ramp that was built out into the Gulf of Mexico.
Shrimp boats sell the fresh daily catch right off their boats in the marina behind the Hard Rock Casino.
Saturday morning we visited the Farmers Market in Ocean Springs. They had greens, and squash, flowers, baked and canned goods. We picked up some sweet potatoes, Christmas cookies, and a package of grits.
Last night was the 30th Annual Christmas on the Water Boat Parade in Biloxi, which we went to see. Spectators lined the beach with their lawn chairs and blankets.
The weather was perfect, no wind and the water was calm. Temp was in the 60’s. The parade was fun. My iPhone camera tried to get the pictures, it did OK, but I need an upgrade for night shots.
On our way back to the car I stopped to take this pic of the shrimp boats in the harbor.
Today, as we were walking around the campground we spotted an alligator in the pond.
We really are not into gambling, but we do enjoy walking into the casinos and looking around. Sometimes we donate a few bucks. We found this longhorn steer in the lobby of the Boomtown Casino. His name is Warren and he has his own Facebook Page: Warren at Boomtown Biloxi.
There are 26 miles of white soft sandy beach in Biloxi. There are a few people out, but it’s very quite this time of year.
A large four-panel mosaic sits at the east end of the Biloxi Bay Bridge. Artist Elizabeth Veglia.
Tomorrow we leave Mississippi and head east to Florida where we plan to spend most of the winter.