Using Route 53 to create subdomain names for your projects

If you create and deploy your own software projects to the cloud, at some point you probably end up with a number of things deployed to various places and unless you spend time maintaining your bookmarks to all these projects, it becomes hard to keep track after a while.

One of the interesting things about Route 53 is that you can create A records that resolve to IP addresses either within AWS or hosted elsewhere. If you have you own domain setup in Route 53, you can easily create subdomains with A records pointing to where ever these projects are hosted. e.g. -> x.x.x.x -> y.y.y.y

A while back I deployed my Sudoku Solver React app to an S3 bucket hosting the website, and I can never remember the S3 endpoint name. But using a Route 53 Alias to the S3 endpoint, you can create whatever subdomain you need to point to the target resource. Here’s what it looks like setting up an alias:


  • when you click in the Alias Target box you should see your S3 bucket already listed (if not, check you’ve enabled Static Website Hosting)
  • the recordset name must be identical to the first part of your bucket name (e.g. ‘example’)
  • the S3 bucket name must be the subdomain name plus full domain, e.g.

Moving GoDaddy DNS to AWS Route 53

Before changing the DNS settings on GoDaddy, set up Route 53 to manage DNS for your domain first, because you’ll need the AWS DNS server names when updating the GoDaddy DNS config.

In the AWS Console, go to Route 53, then Hosted Zones, and press the ‘Created Hosted Zone’ button:

Enter your domain name, select ‘Public Hosted Zone’ and press ‘Create’:

At this point Route 53 will have assigned a list of DNS nameservers for your domain – remember this list for when you update the GoDaddy config

Next, press ‘Create Record Set’, select Type A record and enter the name of your subdomain, e.g. www, and enter the IP address of your server that this name should resolve to:

Now let’s update the GoDaddy config. By default, here’s the DNS entries managed by GoDaddy when you register a domain with them:

First step, cancel the GoDaddy nameservers. Do this from the ‘Change’ button:

Change the type to Custom:

Then enter the dns server names from Route 53 and press ‘Save’. You should now be done. Assuming the setup on Route 53 has propagated, hit your domain name in a browser and hopefully you’re up and running.