Ready to brave the crowds for holiday shopping? You’ll discover a wonderland of boutiques, specialty shops, handmade items and brand-name stores along Alabama’s Coastal Connection.

Start your shopping excursion with a stop at the Tanger Outlet Center in Foley. The renowned mall has more than 120 brand-name stores along with locally owned shops.

Tanger is also home to a unique bazaar that has taken place in Foley for the past 51 years: the Trim-A-Tree Holiday Arts & Crafts Expo, a project of the Foley Art Center. Trim-A-Tree features wonderful creations by more than 200 artists and craftsmen from throughout the Southeast. You’ll find the six-week-long holiday fine arts and crafts event in Suite 182, open Monday through Saturday from 10-7 and Sunday from 11-6.

Santa’s elves can find another whimsical shopping experience at the 7th Annual Merry Market Unique Gifts and Arts Expo on Dec. 7 and 8. Admission is free at the Orange Beach Event Center at The Wharf on Canal Road in Orange Beach. Hours are 9-6 on Friday, Dec. 7, and 9-5 on Saturday, Dec. 8. More than 70 vendors will offer unique gifts, fine arts, and arts and crafts.

Fairhope’s charming downtown offers a delightful place to stroll, shop and dine. Art galleries, clothing boutiques, bookstores, a candy shop, and a store for locally made soap makes this a wonderful, walkable location where you can pick up gifts for everyone on your list.

Enjoy the Christmas music, lights and decorations while strolling these and other shopping destinations along Alabama’s Coastal Connection.