Thank you for practicing a “Leave Only Footprints” lifestyle. The following simple steps will also help you protect our clean island during your stay:
  • Avoid walking on any beach vegetation. Plant roots hold together the fragile dunes.
  • Explore away from bird nesting areas. Nests may be located in the ground and camouflaged to resemble the surrounding environment, so please watch your step!
  • Please, please, please don’t litter! Pack out all your trash and recycle what you can.
  • Refill all holes. They can cause injury to wildlife and people. And be careful when playing in holes. Falling sand from side collapses can be dangerous.



Slip on those flip flops, grab your brightest beach towel, and find the best place to plant your umbrella to enjoy a day of fun in the sun on the Alabama Gulf Coast.

And after you have whiled away the hours on the sugar-white sand – so soft and clean it even squeaks under your feet – remember to take your memories . . . and leave only footprints.

Based on Leave No Trace principles, this policy exists to ensure the health of our pristine white-sand beaches, the beachgoers who enjoy them, and the diverse wildlife that depends on them. Among other species, clean island practices protect the sea turtles nesting along the shores of the Gulf Coast from May through October. For more information, visit

Effective in 2016, the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach ask that you please remove all your personal items from the beach one hour after sunset.

Pack up the beach chairs, gather the beach toys, fold and carry out the tent, and recycle or throw away all trash in a designated receptacle. All abandoned items will be removed for the protection of our beaches, local wildlife, and the many visitors we want to enjoy our clean coast for generations to come.
City of Orange Beach Ordinance
City of Gulf Shores Ordinance

We know you love our beach!

Each of us is responsible for protecting and preserving it, and the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach strive to provide a safe, clean, family-friendly environment for everyone visiting. To help you do your part, here are some tips for enjoying our coast responsibly, along with some rules, regulations and resources.

Beach Rules & Regulations

The following are regulated by local, state or federal laws or ordinances that are enforced on our beaches. Enjoying our coastline responsibly ensures a more positive experience for you and helps ensure the safety of all our visitors and the sustainability of our natural resources.

LOF-icons-02Any structures or equipment left on the beach an hour after sunset will be removed and disposed of by beach patrol (except for permitted beach services).

LOF-icons-03Individual lodging properties and land owners may allow tents and shelters in designated areas during the day. Learn the rules for your stretch of beach.

LOF-icons-04These items are not allowed on our beaches:

  • Glass containers
  • Metal shovels or excessive digging
  • Litter
  • Tents or structures larger than 12’ X 12’
  • Overnight camping
  • Fireworks
  • Loud Music
  • Fires
  • Pets
  • Vehicles
LOF-icons-05Keep off the dunes. Staying off the dunes will help us to preserve our dune system and the habitat it provides. Use beach walkovers and boardwalks where provided.
LOF-icons-06Observe and obey the Beach Warning Flag System. Double red flags mean the waters are closed for your safety.
LOF-icons-07Be respectful of private property beyond the bounds of your lodging property.

Look before you play!

The beach is a fun place to swim, splash and play, but your safety is always the priority. Remember to observe and obey the Beach Warning Flag System.

Check First for Safety

Call 251-968-TIDE (8433) or 251-981-SURF (7873) for current surf conditions.

Beach Warning Flag System

Dangerous Marine Life

Medium Hazard: Moderate Surf and/or Currents

High Hazard: High Surf and/or Strong Currents

Water Closed to the Public

Keep up the good work!

Check out these examples of folks enjoying our pristine Alabama coastline – while exercising good beach behavior!