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A Girls’ Getaway in Destin

Planning a Girls’ Getaway in Destin

Now that fall is here, it’s a great time of year to come to Destin for a quick girls’ weekend. Cities like Atlanta, Birmingham, New Orleans, and Baton Rouge are all within driving distance, so you can pack up your car that morning and be in Destin before happy hour ends! We’ve listed out some of our favorite activities here that make for a perfect girls’ getaway in Destin. Plus, we’ve even highlighted some of our favorite Destin vacation rentals that are perfect for your group.

Use this as your guide when planning your girls’ getaway in Destin. We’ll see you at the beach!

  • Spa day at The Henderson – If you have never treated yourself to a spa day at The Henderson’s Salamander Spa, you are missing out! They are currently operating during COVID with limited amenities, but are still working hard to give you the relaxing spa experience you deserve. Treatments at Salamander Spa include massage, facials, manicures, pedicures, and more.
  • Shopping at Destin Commons – Destin Commons has been known as “the Emerald Coast’s best shopping center” for over 15 years! There are over 95 stores and restaurants combined, a play area, mural art walk, and so much more. If you’re coming down with your furry friend, Destin Commons welcomes them as well! (Endless shopping in Destin awaits!)Girls' Getaway in Destin
  • Happy hour at The Craft Bar – The Craft Bar is one of our favorite restaurants in Destin, and happy hour there is a must. Monday through Friday from 2-6 PM, enjoy $5 happy hour bites and drinks. This includes favorites like their soft pretzels and mac n’ cheese, and house cocktails including their basil smash and “pepino del benicio.” (Check out more of our favorite restaurants in Destin.)
  • Sunday brunch at Brotula’s – It wouldn’t be a girls’ trip to Destin without Sunday brunch! Destin is full of places to go for brunch on the weekends, but one of go-to places each time is Brotula’s. Bloody Marys, bottomless mimosas, and all-you-can-eat snow crab are just some of the reason we love Sunday brunch at Brotula’s!
  • Workout classes at Orangetheory Fitness – Keeping up with your fitness on vacation? Head over to Orangetheory Fitness for a workout you won’t forget! If you have a class pass, you can join any class. If not, don’t sweat! Your first workout here is free. If you’re looking for a challenging workout with results, Orangetheory is the place to be.

Where to Stay:

Looking for more Destin vacation rentals for your weekend getaway? Browse more options with our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals.

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Halloween in Destin – Version 2020

With Halloween just a few weeks away, children and parents are wondering what the holiday will look like this year. Two Destin area locations are planning to go forward with outdoor events to give families some extra-fun options. Since one is during the day and the other is at night, you can go to both!

Destin Commons

You are invited to bring the family to enjoy spooky crafts on the Uniquely Clever Art Bus, a photo booth by Epic Photo Co., balloon sculpting with Betty Longlegs, face painting by Arts on the Beach, and a magic and music show by Captain Davy and his Crew. Activities will be from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31.

Come dressed in your Halloween costume and get ready to have a ghoulish time. To keep all little ghosts and goblins safe, we will be hosting a Virtual Costume Contest this year. Be sure to submit your entry into Destin Commons’ first-ever Virtual Costume Contest to [email protected] For more information visit the Destin Commons Facebook page or destincommons.com.

The Village at Baytowne Wharf

Calling all ghouls, ghosts, and goblins to the Village of Baytowne Wharf for a spooktacular extravaganza! This Halloween,you are invited to trick-or-treat through the Village streets and visit merchants for your favorite treats. The DJ will play frighteningly good tunes on the main stage where there will also be balloon animals and crafts. Be sure to stop by Coconut Kidz to enter the costume contest and compete to win the grand prize. The night will end with a spooky fireworks display at 8:00 p.m.

If you are planning a weekend getaway and need lodging to vacation in Destin, FL, check out Southern Vacation Rentals for availability.

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Plan Your Holiday Party in Destin

Plan Your Holiday Party in Destin

The holidays are fast approaching, and if you’ve been thinking about planning a holiday party in Destin, now is the time to spring into action! This is the time of year when people are planning their holiday parties, so if there is a vendor or venue you’ve had your eye on, the moment is here. Planning any type of holiday party can be daunting though, so we’ve compiled some tips to help you out. Plus, our pick for the best event venue in Destin as well as accommodations to host your whole gang!

Destin Bay House

  • If the holiday party is just your family, then you’ll have a good understanding of how large the group will be and who can make it. For a corporate event, you will want to ask your attendees to sign up by a certain date to ensure your venue is large enough, and any catering company you use provides enough food.
  • Set a date! Planning your party two to three months out gives attendees enough time to arrange for childcare, travel, and other factors. Don’t plan too close to the holidays – that’s considered “crunch time” and you will likely not get the date you want.
  • Determine a theme! Everyone loves a themed holiday party and now is the chance to let everyone’s creativity shine. Whether it’s a cocktail hour or an “ugly sweater” theme, your guests will love the chance to look festive at your holiday party in Destin.
  • Finding a place to host your party is no easy feat, but fortunately, some of the best event venues in Destin are geared up to host your holiday party. We love our friends over at the Destin Bay House! They have the indoor and outdoor event space to bring your dream to life, with a stunning location right on Choctawhatchee Bay. It truly doesn’t get much better than this!
  • If you have out of town guests coming to your holiday party in Destin, you’ll want to host them somewhere. If you’re hosting your holiday party at the Destin Bay House, then the nearby Cottages by the Bay are an ideal spot for everyone to stay! They are just across the street from the Bay House so you can walk to and from your soiree. Plus, the beautiful old Florida-style interiors invoke a quiet sense of luxury that will have you feeling right at home!

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Try Out This Fall Recipe in Destin

Beer-Battered Hushpuppies

We’re back again with another great coastal recipe! Our beer-battered hushpuppies are the perfect treat to enjoy on your vacation to Destin, whether you are here with family for fall break or away for a weekend with some friends to watch the big game.

To make these beer-battered hushpuppies, you’ll need to grab a few things from your local grocery store. If you are gluten-free, you can get 1:1 gluten-free flour to substitute for the all-purpose flour. You won’t be able to tell it’s gluten-free! For the beer, you can use just about anything from a dark stout to a pale ale. For a fun fall twist, try out a pumpkin beer found at your local brewery. You’ll be glad you did!

Beer-Battered HushpuppiesReady to cook? Let’s get started!

Beer-Battered Hushpuppies

Makes 8 hushpuppies

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 4 tsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped white onion
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup of your favorite beer
  • Neutral oil for frying

LET’S GET COOKIN’!

  1. Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk, then add in onion and beaten eggs until thoroughly combined.
  2. Slowly pour in the beer, whisking together until your mixture has no lumps in it. Let rest for about 30 minutes to let all of the bubbles go down.
  3. In a sturdy pot, pour oil until it fills about 2-3 inches of the pan. Heat until 350 degrees Fahrenheit (tip: use a meat thermometer to gauge how hot the oil is).
  4. Measure out your hushpuppies in balls as big or as small as you would like. Working in batches, carefully lower the batter into the oil and fry for about 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Be sure to watch carefully and rotate them so they cook all the way through.
  5. Using a slotted spoon or spider strainer, transfer to a cooling rack or paper towel-lined baking sheet. Allow at least 15 minutes to cool before eating.
  6. Serve with your favorite sauce – tartar sauce, chipotle mayo, honey mustard, or ranch dip all work great!

Check out some of our favorite restaurants in Destin to try out on fall break! Don’t forget to look for hushpuppies on the menu too.

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Your Guide to a Weekend Getaway in Destin

Weekend Getaway in Destin

Fall is finally here! This weekend kicks off fall break in Destin, and what better time to get away to Destin than in the fall? The temperatures are mild, the beaches are less crowded, and the water is still as beautiful as can be. We don’t know about you, but after a hot summer, we are looking forward to a fall vacation this year. If you can’t come for fall break, don’t worry; there’s still plenty of time to visit Destin. In fact, since most schools have the option for virtual learning and many offices are still working remotely, a weekend getaway in Destin is likely to work for everybody’s schedule. Take a look below at some of our most useful tips and tricks to consider when planning your trip to the beach.

Weekend Getaway in Destin

  • Arrive on Friday to make the most of your time at the beach! Our visitors from cities like New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Birmingham, and Atlanta can be here in just a matter of hours. Check-in time is usually at 4 PM, so you’ll be arriving with enough time to unpack and settle in before making your dinner plans. You’ll also still have plenty of sunlight to enjoy the beach and any amenities your Destin vacation rental may offer.
  • Speaking of Destin vacation rentals, are you wondering where to stay for your weekend getaway in Destin? Lodging is filling up fast for fall, so be sure to explore Destin vacation rentals with our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals to secure your spot on the sand! Beachfront condos are always a hit for a quick weekend getaway, since you can usually get a fantastic view at a great rate. Beach service is also typically still offered during the month of October, and finding a condo with beach service offered is just an extra perk!
  • Fall is considered another peak season for us, so fortunately there are still many things you can do on your weekend getaway in Destin The Destin Fishing Rodeo kicks off in October and lasts the entire month, with daily weigh-ins at the Harbor from 10 AM until 7 PM. You can also still book activities like dolphin cruises and fishing charters, or go for a stroll around HarborWalk village and discover all of the fun things to do there. See some more of our favorite activities in Destin here.

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Fall Activities in Destin

Fall Activities in Destin

Good news: fall break is not canceled in Destin this year! We are very fortunate to have sustained no damage from Hurricane Sally, and our beaches are open and awaiting visitors. In fact, we are slated to have some beautiful weather over the next few weeks, and we couldn’t be more excited! It’s no surprise that fall is one of the best times of year to visit Destin since the beaches are less crowded but the weather is still warm enough to dip your toes in the water. Here are some of our favorite fall activities in Destin to experience when you visit for fall break. Don’t forget to book your Destin vacation rental while there’s still availability!

Fall Activities in Destin

  • Fishing charters – Fall is a great time of year to go fishing in Destin. Rent a fishing charter from one of Destin’s many numerous charter boats and see for yourself. See some of our favorite Destin fishing charters here.
  • Destin Fishing Rodeo – Destin is known as the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village” for a reason, and the Destin Fishing Rodeo is proof of that! Kicking off each year o October 1st, the Destin Fishing Rodeo brings anglers from all over to Destin for a chance to compete for the grand prize. Daily weigh-ins, family-friendly fun, and more can be found here.
  • Shopping – You will also find some great shopping in Destin as well. Three of the area’s best outdoor malls await at Destin Commons, Silver Sands Premium Outlets, and Grand Boulevard. Don’t forget to come on Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year. You are sure to find a great deal when you do!
  • Dolphin cruises – In addition, dolphin cruises are a great way to see some beautiful creatures in their natural habitat. You can also head over into Okaloosa Island to visit the Gulfarium for an exciting dolphin show!

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Thanksgiving at the Beach

Thanksgiving in Destin

Thanksgiving in Destin may seem like it’s months away, but it won’t be long before we’re celebrating here at the beach! We know that this holiday may look a little different this year, but you can still safely celebrate Thanksgiving with your family at the beach. By renting a large beach vacation home in Destin, you can enjoy the luxury of spending time together while safely following social distancing protocols. Even if you’re planning on keeping your group small, this is possible! Take a look below at some of our favorite beach homes with our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals that you can celebrate Thanksgiving in Destin in. Be sure to book soon so that you can secure your spot on the sand!

  • Blue Lagoon – Blue Lagoon is perfect if you are traveling with a smaller group for Thanksgiving, since this four-bedroom home can accommodate nine guests. Located in the Destiny neighborhood, this vacation home has beautiful lake views and nearby beach access at The Crab Trap.Destin Vacation Home
  • Vita La Bella – Or, for extended families traveling together for Thanksgiving in Destin, book Vita La Bella. This home is located in the Destiny by the Sea community and has private beach access, its own pool, and a large gourmet kitchen perfect for cooking a Thanksgiving meal.
  • Aqua Easy– Aqua Easy is another vacation home perfect for a small family Thanksgiving celebration, with three bedrooms and three bathrooms. There is enough room for eight guests here. Located in Destin Pointe, this recently-renovated home also has lake views in addition to community amenities like a pool and private beach access.

  • A Destiny Retreat
     – Feel right at home at A Destiny Retreat, another home located in the Destiny neighborhood. The spacious kitchen offers enough room to prepare your Thanksgiving feast and the dining table has plenty of room for everyone in your party as well. When you aren’t lounging in your vacation home, enjoy the community amenities offered here or explore Destin’s scenic streets on the four provided bikes.

View more Destin vacation rentals here to book for Thanksgiving in Destin!

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Mattie Kelly Arts Festival & Concerts Slate Return

Exciting art news! One of our favorite Destin events, the Mattie Kelly Arts Festival, will be held next month. New precautions will be in place due to the pandemic, but organizers are hopeful that the safety measures will lead to a successful event. The annual event will be held October 24-25 and will feature artists from across the United States – a perfect stop while on your Destin vacation. Other highlights include musical entertainment and various food vendors.

Festival tents will be spaced 10-feet apart. In addition, festival goers are asked to help in these ways:

  • Maintain 6-feet distance between your group and other attendees
  • If in line for food, stay 6-feet behind the next person in line
  • Wash your hands frequently and bring hand sanitizer
  • Wear a mask if you so choose

In addition, more good news involve the outdoor concerts that will once again bring the music to the Mattie Kelly Cultural Arts Village. A full slate of evening concerts are scheduled for the next several weeks. Gates will open at 6:00 p.m. with the concerts beginning at 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased on-site with general adult admission $15. Tickets are free for MKAF members and all children under the age of 12.

Sept. 10: Casey Kearney

Sept. 17: The Shakedown

Sept. 24: The Bonehoeffers

Oct. 1: Pickled Pickers

Oct. 3: Shania Twin

Oct. 8: Emerald Gold

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Planning for Thanksgiving in Destin

Planning for Thanksgiving in Destin

It’s almost time to start getting your plans together for Thanksgiving! If you are planning for Thanksgiving in Destin, you’ll want to act fast when it comes to booking your beach house. With vacations to Destin more popular than ever this year, we just know that everyone is going to be planning for Thanksgiving in Destin this November. Here are some ways you can go ahead and start planning for your vacation to Destin, Florida this holiday season. We’re looking forward to hosting you and your family at the beach!

Planning for Thanksgiving in Destin

  • Determine the size of your group – How many people will be coming to your Thanksgiving trip in Destin? Are you wanting to include extended family members like grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins, or do you want to keep it in the immediate family? Whatever you choose, our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals have properties of all sizes to accommodate your group.
  • Book your beach house – Once you’ve decided how many people are coming to the beach for Thanksgiving, it’s time to book your Destin vacation home! We love celebrating Thanksgiving in a private beach house for a number of reasons; for starters, it’s the perfect way to practice social distancing away from other beachgoers. You also have more space in a home, and with a large group, everyone will want to stretch out and be comfy. For a large home with a lot of space, check out Commander’s Palace in Destin.
  • Cooking in or ordering out? – We have yet to see which restaurants are offering to-go meals for Thanksgiving this year, but we can only imagine that they will. After the spike in demand for to-go meals this spring and summer, we anticipate that this trend will carry into the fall as well. To-go Thanksgiving dinners are not new to the restaurant industry, so you will possibly still be able to enjoy your favorite meals in the comfort of your Destin vacation rental. Take a look at some of our favorite restaurants in Destin to start planning!

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Join the Flock This Year

Our 2020-2021 Destin Snowbird Season

Destin Snowbirds, it’s almost time to head south for the winter! This year has certainly proved challenging, and we’re sure you’re ready for some Florida sunshine and warm weather after quarantining up north. Sadly, the 2020-2021 Destin Snowbird season looks a little different this year. The Destin Snowbird Club has elected not to hold its annual events this season in order to keep visitors to Destin safe.

Even with the shift in schedule from your normal snowbird activities, there are still plenty of things you can do in Destin during your winter getaway! If you are staying in a Destin vacation rental with resort-style amenities, you can make use of the community pool and enjoy a great morning swim. Going for a walk on the beach morning, noon, or night is not only a great way to get some exercise, but to fully appreciate the beauty of our area. The tide is usually low in the winter, and the uncrowded beaches mean you won’t be interrupted during your walk. Destin Snowbird Rentals

Visiting with friends during your winter vacation to Destin? Visit The Donut Hole, a local favorite, and enjoy an all-day breakfast and the best donuts in town. Don’t forget to take a slice of key lime pie to enjoy at your Destin vacation rental! Another way to spend time with friends is to head to Destin Commons or Silver Sands Outlets in the morning, before opening, and go for a brisk walk around the shopping centers. Just be sure to bring a mask with you if you want to go in once the stores open!

Are you still looking for Destin Snowbird rentals for the 2020-2021 Destin Snowbird season? Our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals are still booking snowbirds for the upcoming season and would love to host you in one of their rentals. Here are a few of our favorite resorts below that accept snowbird rentals:

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