The Eastern Shore Trail is a scenic path along Alabama's Mobile Bay that runs from Spanish Fort to Weeks Bay. It connects several communities along its 25-mile length, including Daphne, Montrose, Fairhope, and Point Clear. This mostly paved trail also features some boardwalk sections along wetland areas. The "Gator Alley" boardwalk that begins the trail runs under the incredibly busy Interstate 10, but is also a great site for spotting alligators, water birds, and other wildlife.
The Eastern Shore Trail winds past many urban amenities, including
marinas, piers, historic sites, shops, and restaurants, so there is lots to perk up your pups attention! Points of
interest include the quirky Fairhope Flower Clock and the historic Marriott
Grand Hotel in Point Clear, which was opened in 1847, and
renovated beautifully in the early 2000s. Stop for a bite along the way at dog-friendly restaurants, including Moe's Original BBQ in Daphne, and both Sage Lebanese
Café and Pinzone's Italian Village in Fairhope. The dog-friendly outdoor tables at the scenic Two Sisters Bakery and Deli in Fairhope are situated under some truly majestic giant oak trees.
This is an urban trail, but it's also full of wild delights. Wildlife sightings are abundant along the entire route, as are oaks draped with Spanish moss. In Daphne, the trail passes Bayfront Park and Village Point Park Preserve, where you're likely to spot egrets and alligators in their natural wetlands habitat. In Fairhope, North Beach Park and other parks clustered around the municipal pier afford many seaside delights, including sandy beaches. Further south, the trail passes through Mullet Point Park, where there are grassy lawns and picnic areas, and ends at Weeks Bay Reserve, where you can take a trail through a pitcher plant bog and gaze at ancient trees.
While some cyclists navigate the entire trail, walkers usually pick a favorite section for a day hike. Popular routes include the three-mile stretch from Fairhope Pier to the Grand Marriott and the five-mile section from Mullet Point Park to Weeks Bay Reserve. No matter what section of the trail you choose, you and your canine companion will delight in the salt air and Southern hospitality of these charming seaside towns.