12 Best Beaches in Alabama You Must Visit [Update 2024]

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best beaches in Alabama

Alabama is a state in the Southeastern region of the United States. When it comes to beaches, there is no denying that the Alabama Gulf Shores steals the show. It is one of the top beach destinations in the United States due to the immaculate white sands, family-friendly setting, wildlife, and practically perfect weather most months of the year.

The “sugar-white” sands seen on Alabama beaches are well-known. The minuscule granules that massage your toes as you go down the sand are equally at ease for both strolling and sunbathing on your beach blanket. Although the southern seas are excellent for swimming, the beach’s appeal also includes all kinds of water activities, including diving, jet skiing, and parasailing.

If you’re looking for pristine shores, jaw-dropping crystal clear waters, and Instagram-worthy beaches, check out our list of the best beaches in Alabama.

1. Orange Beach

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Orange Beach is one of the best beaches in Alabama

One of the most stunning beaches along this section of the Gulf Coast of Alabama is Orange Beach. It features kilometers of beaches with powdered sugar sand, which are fantastic for lounging in the sun but also provide the chance to see sea turtles lay eggs from May to October. There is access to the bayous and bays north of Perdido Pass from the beach.

For those tourists looking for a little more activity, there are fishing charters, golf courses, dolphin watching tours, and the Alabama Coastal Birding Trail.

2. Cotton Bayou Beach

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At the crossroads of Highways 182 and 161, this charming little beach area is tucked away between a few extremely well-liked condominiums. It’s the ideal location for a variety of activities or simply unwinding and people-watching. The parking area is not far from the beach, which is equipped with all the necessities like restrooms and outdoor showers.

Come early to locate a good place on this lovely white sand beach on the Gulf of Mexico, as it can get busy at times. Although dogs are not permitted, the shallow water is ideal for children. A very common location for wedding photos is the beach.

3. Dauphin Island Beach

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Dauphin Island Beach

Known as the ideal family vacation spot, Dauphin Island is a small barrier island off the coast of Alabama in the Gulf of Mexico. The island’s west end is miles long and is composed entirely of miles of powder-fine white sand. Making sand castles, wandering along the waves, and simply cooling down in the sea are all enjoyable activities on the long, narrow beaches.

Along the beaches, there are public golf courses as well as gorgeous parks that are shaded by old oaks. It is the only beach in the region that allows pets. Fishing off the coast is also excellent. On the western edge of the community of Dauphin Island, there is a further public beach that hosts many live music events throughout the summer.

Take a look at these stunning beach resorts in Alabama.

4. Fairhope Beach

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Fairhope Beach

A huge estuary that connects to the Gulf of Mexico is where the small, Bohemian town of Fairhope is situated on the shore of Mobile Bay. Surprisingly, the town features a few small but magnificent beaches despite being situated on the saline waters of the estuary.

One of these is found just north of the well-known pier, and immediately behind the beach, on a high cliff, is a lovely grassy spot that’s ideal for picnics, with stunning views of the ocean and big trees that offer shade. On a hot summer day, the region has a nice breeze that cools the skin, but the waves are always calm, and the kids love it.

5. Florida Point Beach

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Florida Point Beach near Orange Beach, Alabama, is a magnificent 6,000-foot strip of fine white sand that stretches alongside the turquoise seas of Florida Point. It is about 3 miles from Perdido Pass Bridge. Along the beach, there is a well-liked boardwalk, as well as a number of picnic sites and outdoor restrooms.

Take a little longer strolling through the dunes if you want to discover a more remote and private position on the sand because the beach is rather crowded. You might find the ideal spot all to yourself. The beach access offers free parking.

6. Fort Morgan Beach

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For anyone looking to spend some time on the beach away from the busier areas with beach bars and gift shops, the Fort Morgan Peninsula, which points out like a finger west from the Alabama Gulf Shores, is ideal. The peninsula’s seashore is about an hour’s drive from any store, and a sizable portion of it is enclosed in a designated wildlife sanctuary, but the privacy it offers is well worth the distance.

The beaches are undeveloped, have excellent, white sand, and are open to the public without charge. Finding them might be a challenge, since the majority are located in private hotels. Within the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge, 1.5 miles from the visitor center, are two public beach access locations. At the tip of the peninsula, away from the Fort Morgan State Historic Site, there is an unnamed public beach access.

These are the most romantic hotels in Alabama.

7. Gulf Shores Main Beach

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Thousands of tourists flock to Gulf Shores on the Alabama Gulf of Mexico coast because of the area’s white sand beaches and turquoise waters. There are 32 miles of breathtakingly beautiful beaches to select from, and you may engage in sports like swimming, tanning, surfing, and bodyboarding.

The quartz that descended from the Appalachian Mountains millions of years ago makes up practically all the sand on the beaches. When walked on, the sand makes amusing squeaking noises and is cold and velvety to the touch. The beach is bustling with activity, including volleyball matches and charming beach bars.

8. Gulf State Park Beach

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Over three miles of beautiful fine sand beaches can be found in Gulf State Park. These beaches are great for lounging in the sun, taking a dip in the ocean, listening to the seabirds, and gathering seashells. In Gulf Shores, there are some beaches that are close to a gorgeous pavilion. At Orange Beach, there is another park beach access point.

The park’s beaches are well-liked for surfing, kayaking, or simply lounging on the sand. Each summer, park workers offer a program of enjoyable activities like geocaching, led nature hikes, and stargazing. A short drive from the beach, the park features 20 cabins and 11 lakeside cottages near to the golf course.

9. West Beach

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West Beach is where you want to set your flip-flops and towel if you’re searching for fewer crowds but still want to enjoy Gulf Shores beach life. This area of Gulf Shores is primarily made up of beach houses, which you may rent or simply enjoy from the waterfront. There are numerous dining establishments where you may have a romantic sunset meal or lunch by the ocean.

The Gulf State Park and Waterville USA waterpark are two of the close-by attractions to the beach, which extends into Mobile Bay. Private vacation houses are the closest housing alternatives to West Beach, or you can stay at a resort along the Gulf Shores and go to West Beach for the day.

10. Robinson Island

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Robinson Island is one of the best-kept secrets in the Orange Beach region and draws both swimmers and sailors. One of three tiny sandbar islands situated north of the Perdido Pass bridge is Robinson Island. These islands, which can only be reached by boat, are very well-liked by the residents.

Visitors are highly advised to stay in the coastal areas and not wander inland in order to safeguard the habitat since the islands, which include Bird and Walker islands, are all shorebird breeding grounds. There are also pet restrictions on the island.

Robinson Island is tucked away in the back bays and is a little slice of paradise because the surrounding area is protected habitat. The surrounding natural flora and fauna are being protected by the city, and the scenery is beautiful.

11. Little Lagoon

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Located in Gulf Shores, Little Lagoon Pass is a popular spot for families to access the beach. It is situated just across from the Gulf, where Little Lagoon drains into. If you’re searching for a location that provides access to the beach as well as conveniences like free parking, public restrooms, and outdoor showers, this is an excellent choice.

Families with little children will benefit greatly from the shallower water. At Little Lagoon Pass, there is a small public park where you can find a shady location to eat a packed lunch. Since there are nearby attractions and a fishing pier, you may spend the entire beach day in one place.

12. Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge

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On the beautiful Fort Morgan Peninsula, west of Alabama Gulf Shores, the 7,157-acre Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge is located. A variety of migratory birds can find protected feeding and resting areas at the refuge, which also serves as a haven for numerous native plants and animals from the area.

It is one of the largest areas of Alabama’s coast that has not yet been developed. Perdue, Sand Bayou, Fort Morgan, Little Point Clear, and Little Dauphin Island are the different areas of the refuge.

The refuge safeguards a variety of habitats, including uplands, salt and freshwater marshes, scrub forest, sand dunes, freshwater swamps, and beaches. The Alabama beach mouse and the green, loggerhead, and Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles are only a few of the refuge’s threatened species.

There are numerous historical and natural landmarks in Alabama, and they are all dispersed throughout the various beaches that are available. Alabama provides some of the most amazing and genuine beach retreats imaginable, with a few variations that make each of their numerous holiday destinations distinctive.

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