Cotton Bowl Tailgating: Which Lot is Best?

Headed to the Cotton Bowl and looking to setup a tailgate? A very common question we get asked is – where should we park to get the best Cotton Bowl tailgating spot? I understand this can be very subjective, but since we have tailgated at AT&T Stadium numerous times, I thought I might share my thoughts.

Click this LINK to check out the official tailgating rules on the Cotton Bowl website.


Dallas Cowboys Tailgating Lot Map

I’ll start with the spots we have set up a tailgating trailer for an event at AT&T Stadium.

The Lots

Lot 15 – This is a lot on far west side of the stadium. There’s a lot of RV/bus parking in this lot and a few car spots. This is also where the Uber waiting spot is and is a decent hike away from the stadium. Not a lot of tailgating goes on in this lot except for around the RVs.

Lot 14 – Large lot south of the stadium close to Division Street. This is mainly a RV lot, but there are exterior spaces around the lot, and also a large grass area to the east of the RV area. I’ve even seen this lot as a cash parking lot the day of the event, depending on how many spots they sell before the event. Decent tailgating on the exterior spots, and if you have a huge group, you might even consider purchasing an RV pass so you can get use of 6 parking spaces. For more info on RV parking out there, click HERE

Lot 13 – Great lot for Cotton Bowl tailgating with a large group. There are larger grassy areas on the east side of this lot. Plenty of room for a cooking or tailgating trailer and a pop up tent. You do have to contend with a little grass slope so make sure you get there early to get a good spot. There are also some grassy areas on the west side of the lot, but you have the sidewalk to contend with. There is a lot of foot traffic along with the sidewalk, so it’s also a great place to “people-watch” if you’re into that.

Lot 12 – Very similar lot to Lot 13 on the other side of AT&T Way. This lot also has a large grass area on the north side of the lot. They’ve stationed what looks to be a portable cell tower in the lot’s grass area, so that will take up some of that space. There’s plenty of room to set up a tailgating trailer, a few tents and room to toss a football in that area. Like lot 13, there are also spots along AT&T way, but they barely have room for a pop up tent and also contend with a ditch and sidewalk. If it’s been raining, the spots along AT&T Way can get pretty muddy as well.

Lot 11 – Large lot, the only space you will be allowed to setup a tailgate is around the exterior parking spots. There are spots lining the outside of the lot that have some grass area, but some of that area is taken up by landscaping and signage. You’ll want to get there early to make sure you can secure one of these spots, as this is a pretty popular lot.

Lot 10 – Large lot close to the stadium. This lot allows tailgating around the exterior grassy areas, and has a few decent sized spots on the corners of the lot. Some of the spots do have a retaining wall to deal with, so make sure to get there pretty early so you can decide if you can handle a step down to the grassy area – especially after enjoying a few frosty beverages. They usually won’t allow you to set up any canopies on the grass area that is on the other side of the retaining wall, so keep that in mind when setting up your spot.

Lot 4 –¬† This lot gets pretty rowdy and can be fun to watch. Lots of good-natured, opposing team ribbing can be seen here. There are a lot of exterior spots in this lot, but some have to contend with a retaining wall and fencing. The east side of the lot has some decent tree coverage close to the walking trail. You are also close to Texas Live if you want to check that out.

Lots 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8 and 9 – Never tailgated in these lots, mostly because they have limited grass area and are usually sold out prior to any event. They are really close to the stadium and any areas you may have will have crowded sidewalks and most likely little to no room for a grill or tent.

Dallas Cowboys Tailgating

Yes, ESPN’s Kaylee Hartung likes to hang out at our AT&T Stadium tailgates.

RED LOTS or RANGER LOTS – These have a lot of grass areas as well, but are pretty far from the Stadium. We’ve tailgated for Rangers games in Lot M and there is a lot of grassy area out there as well.

Get There Early!

You’ll notice an theme with many of these lots, GET THERE EARLY. Unless you are planning on crashing someone else’s tailgate, you want to show up early. Lots usually open 5 hours before game time, but that can change depending on event time, so check before. There is usually a line to get in a lot well before it opens. Showing up an hour before a lot opens is not a bad idea at all (depending on the event of course).

Have you done a little tailgating at AT&T Stadium and have something to add or disagree with anything above? Feel free to comment below!

Other Cotton Bowl related links:

Tailgating Trailer/TV rental packages and pricing 

The Complete Guide to the Cotton Bowl