Cotton Bayou is a small beach area in Gulf State Park located 6.8 miles east of Alabama Highway 59 at the intersection of Highway 182 and Highway 161.
Cotton Bayou Beach boasts clean soft white sand, warm water, and the minimum standard amenities such as public restrooms, showers, and free parking.
A great place to watch sunsets but often too crowded since this beach is easily accessible and situated between highly popular condos in the area. Nevertheless, This is a proper place for all typical beach activities, such as swimming, sunbathing, strolling, having a family picnic, or building sand castles with the kids.
Picturesque and clean
All the beach areas including restrooms and showers are neat and clean. One can say the same about the white sand and clear water of the Cotton Bayou Beach. You can safely take off your shoes and enjoy walking on the soft warm sand. There is also a wooden walking zone and a pier going into the sea. Why not take a stroll there and watch the sea birds flying over the water? Or if you come later in the evening, take care not to miss the most beautiful spectacle – big red sun crawling down to the horizon and disappearing in the gulf! An unforgettable view!
The beach is nestled between heavily populated districts at the intersection of Highway 182 and Highway 161. You can easily access it by car and leave your vehicle on a free parking lot (including special spaces for handicapped drivers). On weekends, though, this place gets quite busy, so if you want to find a free space for your car or motorbike you’d better come to the beach as early as possible.
Unfortunately, dog owners can’t take their pets with them to play with a stick or take a swim on this beach. If you do so, you risk paying a 500$ fine.
Cotton Bayou Beach is a very beautiful and relaxing place to enjoy the sea, nature, and picture-postcard sunsets. At the end of the week, the beach often gets overcrowded, so you’d better arrive early enough not to wait for a vacant parking space. The advantage is that the parking is free! There are restrooms and showers; you can also use some of the sunbeds on the shore to make your stay more comfortable.
Additionally, there's a number of beaches near Cotton Bayou Beach which you can visit: