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A lifestyle magazine for Central Florida's modern parents

Destination: Destin

Upscale Charm & Southern Spirit

Nestled in Florida’s Panhandle, Destin is a definitive blend of upscale charm and southern spirit. Not only does Destin boast some of the most secluded and well-kept beaches in Florida, but it also has a thriving community and outstanding restaurants everywhere you turn. Nightlife in Destin scales up in the summertime when in-the-know travelers escape to Destin for resort-style relaxation and weekly fireworks lighting up the night sky over the Gulf.

No visit to Destin would be complete without a taste of its eclectic, award-winning restaurants. Kids will enjoy feeding gators at Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar and Grill right after a tempting meal of seafood and burgers. Don’t forget to add your name with Sharpie to the colorful walls as a reminder of your trip! If you’re looking for the best BBQ in Northwest Florida, look no further than the award-winning pulled pork, ribs and brisket at the Buck’s Smokehouse.

Destin’s Henderson Beach State Park lets you enjoy preserved Florida nature at its finest while still keeping close to world-class resorts and culture. Pay a small fee (per vehicle) to drive on the beach and enjoy the gentle waves and seashells of Henderson Beach State Park. Or, pack a picnic to enjoy on the sand. End the day at the Destin Harbor Boardwalk with a line-up of boutiques and side attractions. If you’re in Destin on a Thursday night in summer, you may be in luck. Starting in June, fireworks will light up the sky when Emerald Grande at Harbor Walk Village puts on a spectacular summer show you can catch from the docks or harbor. 

“I love the beach sand sculpture class, where they bring all the equipment to the beach for a two-hour educational experience. We had a blast creating unique memories that will last forever.”

Yvette Martin, Sanford Mom

EAT: Even Louisiana locals will fall in love with The Louisiana Lagniappe, an upscale waterside favorite that delivers some of the best seafood in Destin. thelouisianalagniappe.com

SEE: A party spot on busier weekends and holidays, Crab Island (actually a wide, shallow sandbar) is a family friendly treat during the off-season. Try snorkeling or buy ice cream from floating vendor boats. 

STAY: If you’re looking for free breakfast and wide, spacious rooms with kitchenettes, try the Residence Inn Sandestin at Grand Boulevard for famed customer service and an all-inclusive getaway. For a free, hot breakfast and a short walk to the beach (think: no beach parking hassles and fees), head to Hampton Inn and Suites Destin. If you want the best location for action and water views book a harbor view room at Emerald Grande at HarborWalk Village.

DO: Get kids excited about sand and art with private family sand sculpture lessons on a Destin beach – the sky is the limit!

Written by
Brittany Perry
View all articles
Written by Brittany Perry

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