What to do in Destin, Florida

Obviously the beach is the main reason we all go to Destin. The emerald green waters and the sugar white fine sand are comparable to beaches in the Caribbean.

But for those who don’t want to spend every day playing in the surf or lying on the sand, there are a multitude of opportunities in and around the Destin area. Dolphin cruises, aquariums, fighter jets, baseball diamonds, world class shopping, renting fun modes of transportation and water recreation can all be found here.

The Sea Blaster is the favorite dolphin cruiser among my friends and family. At $37 for adults and $24 for children it is not cheap entertainment, but that amount covers beer, wine and soft drinks and you can usually drum up a coupon from somewhere.

The Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park has dolphins, sting rays, gators, sea lions & tropical fish. A little less expensive than the Sea Blaster at $24 for adults and $15 for children (with discounts for FL residents and military) but again, do a little digging and you can find coupons.

Take a drive to Pensacola (about 90 minutes) to tour the National Naval Aviation Museum, and if you’re lucky, you’ll catch them practicing overhead (check their website https://www.navalaviationmuseum.org/ for days and time).

Destin has a wonderful Parks & Recreations department, we visit the dog park when we need our pooch fix, and play baseball on one of the many baseball diamonds daily (coming from the north, we call it our spring training). They have everything from indoor facilities to sports complexes to boat ramps to rental pavilions. For directions to all go to their website: https://www.cityofdestin.com/270/FacilitiesParks .

Shopping… OH THE SHOPPING! Silver Sands Outlet Mall with everything from Nike to Oakley to Coach to Vera Bradley (and everything in between). Hint for this one, DO NOT GO when it is raining or the weather is iffy, it will be JAM PACKED, rather go in the evenings when everyone is at dinner, it’s quiet and you don’t have to wait in long lines at every store. There is also a lovely little high end mall that they add to every year, The Grand Boulevard at San Destin. This shopping area has stores like Lilly Pulitzer and Vineyard Vines. Destin Commons is a huge outdoor shopping mall, lots of fun stores and movie theaters and restaurants.

Scooters and scoot cars to cruise up and down old highway 98 are such a fun way to spend an afternoon. Fantasea Scooters is where we always rent. It’s pretty affordable and they are all really easy to operate website for more information: .http://fantaseascooters.com/

One last suggestion for now: rent a pontoon boat or stand up paddle board. Visiting Crab Island is such a wonderful way to spend a sunny day. Coast on out there, drop anchor and spend some time throwing a frisbee or a football, or just snorkle around. We’ve always rented from The Destin Army Recreation Area, but if you don’t have military affiliation, Blue Crab Water Sports comes highly recommended. https://bluecrabwatersports.com/rentals You have to have a Florida Boating License, but the course is online and will only take about an hour: Take a Temporary Certificate test  down at the Blue Crab Water Sports booth. (Lasts for one year).

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