A beautiful photo from Destin, FL

Blue Skies for Memorial Day Weekend

Nothing but Blue Skies in Destin!

It looks like blue skies are in our forecast for this weekend! The above video was filmed right here on our very own Destin beaches this morning, and as you can see, the sun is shining, the waves are rolling in, and we are ready for some fun this Memorial Day Weekend. Vacationers, get ready!

There will be lots to do for Memorial Day in Destin this weekend, so let us be your tour guide. HarborWalk Village is hosting a Memorial Day concert on Saturday, May 26 with fireworks to follow. For the best view of the fireworks over the harbor, book a charter with Destin Premium Charters! This is a great way to cruise the Destin waters while also getting the best seat in the house for what is sure to be a stunning firework display. Give them a call at (850) 240-1142 to reserve your spot on the water.

What are you doing this Memorial Day Weekend? Share your posts with us using #iLoveDestin on Facebook and Instagram!

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Memorial Day in Destin

Will our Memorial Day weekend be a wet one? Storm forecasters say a tropical disturbance nearing the Gulf of Mexico has a 60-percent chance of developing into at least a tropical depression this week. If the system strengthens into a tropical storm, it would be the first of the 2018 season and would be named Alberto.

We are still going to make plans to celebrate! There are several patriotic things to do in Destin, FL this weekend, so rain, rain go away:

  • Memorial Day Concert – Music begins at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 26 with the John Hart Project at HarborWalk Village. On Sunday, May 27, Flash Flood performs at 4:30 p.m. with Departure Journey Tribute Band at 7 p.m. Fireworks over the harbor and a fire spinning show will follow the concert.
  • Memorial Day Celebration – The Village at Baytowne Wharf have activities scheduled for each day. On Saturday, May 26, Farewell Angelina will perform 7-9 p.m.¬†On Sunday, May 27, Baytowne Wharf will host free children activities, including face painting, balloon animals, and lawn games from 6-9 p.m. Local favorites Coconut Radio will perform their signature Americana, Bluegrass and Blues tunes from 7-9 p.m. Also on Sunday, Baytowne Wharf will light up the sky above the lagoon with a patriotic fireworks show at 9:15 p.m.¬†On Monday, May 28, The Sandestin Owners Association and Village of Baytowne Wharf will host a Memorial Day Ceremony beginning promptly at 7 p.m. in the Events Plaza. Please bring a blanket or lawn chair as limited seating will be available. Please join us as we honor the men and women that lost their lives while serving our country.
  • Sinfonia Goes Pops – Sinfonia Gulf Coast orchestra will be performing patriotic music at 7:30 p.m., Monday, May 27 in the Alys Beach Amphitheatre. Fireworks follow the free concert. Bring blankets and low-back chairs. Food and beverages will be available for purchase.

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Special Sale: Get Your Memorial Day T-Shirt!

Show Off Your Memorial Day Spirit in an iLoveDestin T-Shirt

Memorial Day is right around the corner — in fact, just one week from today! If you’re a local, you know what that means: traffic will be heavier, the beaches will be packed, and parking lots will be full.

We love Memorial Day, and for good reason, too. This year, celebrate your spirit with a special Memorial Day-themed iLoveDestin t-shirt at a special deal! From now through May 28, take 30% off your order of this special flag t-shirt with code MEMORIALDAY30, pictured below. Get your iLoveDestin t-shirts in time for Memorial Day weekend here. 

iLoveDestin Tshirt

Available in a light heather gray, this patriotic tee comes in sizes small-2X. You’ll love the soft vintage feel of this ring-spun cotton shirt!

iLoveDestin Tshirt

Each t-shirt purchase comes with a special iLoveDestin sticker, perfect for adorning your cars, laptops, water bottles – whatever you’d like!

iLoveDestin Sticker

The sale is only available for a limited time, so don’t wait! Show off your style around Destin on social media with¬†#iLoveDestin. We can’t wait to see!

Happy shopping!

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16th Annual Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic

Gear Up for the Richest Offshore Fishing Tournament on the Gulf Coast!

It’s that time of year, folks – blue marlin season! Don’t miss out on the¬†16th Annual Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic, from June 20-24. This is the top fishing event in Destin, and for good reason, too! The event is five days full of family fun, live entertainment, and activities for everyone.

The Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic began in 2003 when a group from Galati Yacht Sales and a group from Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort decided the time had come to bring “big money tournament back to the Destin area.”

16th Annual Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic

Since then, the tournament has set the precedent for world-class, million dollar sportfishing tournaments.

This year the festival is held at the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. It attracts players from all over the world, with a new record set in 2016 for largest prize purse in history: $1.95 million! Participants have the opportunity to win cash for billfish¬†dolphin, tuna, and wahoo. If you’re interested in making Destin fishing history, this is the way to do it!

The tournament begins on Thursday, June 21, at noon. Weigh-ins are held the next day at Baytowne Marina from 4-9 PM. Celebrate the event with live music and entertainment! The big weigh-in will be held on Saturday, June 23 from 4-10 PM. Mainsail 202

Finally, the festival rounds out on Sunday, June 24 with an awards brunch at the Baytowne Conference Center from 10 AM – 1 PM. Awards begin at 11 AM.

The festival is a few weeks away, but that doesn’t mean you should wait to book accommodations! Get a group together and stay at Mainsail 202 with Southern Vacation Rentals. You’re less than a ten-minute drive away from Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, but in the meantime still close enough to the beach!

For more information about the Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic, visit here.

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Destin’s Blessing of the Fleet

Blessing of the Fleet

It’s a beautiful sight to see – every year, the annual Blessing of the Destin Fishing Fleet takes place in the Destin harbor on Ascension Day. This year, more than 140 vessels were blessed by clergy along Destin Harbor.

  • On this day, local pastors gather to bless charter fishing boats, boat captains, boat crews, and passengers. The blessings and prayer are for safe sea passage and bountiful catches.
  • Destin area churches, civic leaders, and businesses join together to offer a variety of events under the banner ‚ÄúDestin‚Äôs Week of Blessings.‚ÄĚ ¬†This was the 61st year to celebrate this special occasion in Destin, FL.

Would you like to go fishing in the World’s Luckiest Fishing Village? Our recommended options for some of the best charter boat captains are listed under activities in Destin.

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Stay at Seascape Golf Villas 37D in Destin

Seascape Golf Villas 37D – Perfect for Upcoming Memorial Day or Father’s Day!

Need a last minute vacation condo in Destin for Memorial Day? Or want to start planning something for Dad for Father’s Day? You’re in luck because Southern Vacation Rentals has the perfect solution! Seascape Golf Villas 37D will meet all your criteria, from everything you need in the fully-equipped kitchen to community amenities like on-site golf courses and barbecue grills. This cozy condo is perfect for smaller groups, as it can sleep four guests.

Seascape Golf Villas 37D

You’ll love working on your serve at the tennis courts or cooling off in the community pool. There’s so much to do at Seascape Golf Villas! For those wanting to hit the beach, a convenient beach tram is available. Golf, tennis, a pool, easy beach access – what more could you want? Seascape Golf Villas 37D certainly has it all!

During your stay, be sure to pay a visit to Seascape Towne Center! Located on the north side of Seascape, the center is your one-stop shop for lifestyle and retail shops, entertainment, and dining. It’s the “complete Emerald Coast vacation experience,” and we have to agree! Grab a bite to eat at Acme Oyster House or MezCal Mexican Grill. Get a group together and show off your competitive side at Thrills Laser Tag & Arcade.

Be sure to check out other condos in Seascape, including Ariel Dunes and Majestic Sun!

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Stay on the Go with Gulf Coast Go

Gulf Coast Go to Make Waves in South Walton and Destin

If you’ve visited Destin or 30A at all between Memorial Day and Labor Day, you’ll know that the traffic is bumper to bumper. According to SoWal Life, over seven million people visited South Walton and Okaloosa counties in 2016! That’s a LOT of traffic to sit in! Visitors and locals will know that what would have been a quick 15-minute drive can turn into hours on the road if you don’t leave at just the right time.

Gulf Coast Go

Fortunately, this year we have Gulf Coast Go, a new transportation company aimed at easing some of the traffic issues throughout these areas. Gulf Coast Go will take visitors from South Walton to Destin on a double-decker bus. Trolleys will be used across Scenic 30A while the buses travel along Highway 98 and Scenic 98. Stops will be located in all beach towns across 30A, along with stops at 30Avenue and Grand Boulevard. We guarantee this will make renting a vacation home or condo in Destin that much easier!

In addition to helping solve some of the traffic issues, Gulf Coast Go hopes to eliminate some of the parking issues along the Destin-30A Corridor. If you’re a local going to work, you’re in luck! You’ll be able to ride to work at no cost, which will help alleviate parking problems as well.

Those looking to ride with Gulf Coast Go can purchase bus passes for one, three, five, or seven days and can hop on or off at any time. During peak season – that’s summertime here in Destin! – Gulf Coast Go will operate from 6 AM – 11 PM on weekdays and 6 AM – 1 PM on weekends. Each bus can accommodate up to 100 people. That sounds like a good deal to us!

Gulf Coast Go will hit the streets at the end of May 2018. This summer, travel smart!

For more information about Gulf Coast Go, visit here.

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Planning for Summer Destin Fun

With school almost out for summer, it’s time to secure summer vacation plans. There are 100’s of vacation rental options along the Emerald Coast. Here are some tips to help you find that perfect vacation spot in Destin, FL.

  • Reserve Now. ¬†With so many terrific homes and condominiums to choose from, your options are greater if you can plan in advance. Pick your beach and begin the search >¬†Southern Vacation Rentals.¬†
  • Explore Your Options. ¬†It‚Äôs so much easier now to search for properties online with detailed photographs and maps. Use the search function on rental websites to narrow down your choices. ¬†For example, do you want a private pool or community pool? Hot tub or tennis courts? Beach access or gulf front?
  • Location, Location, Location. ¬†Once you decide on your beach location, enter your vacation dates and the number of people who will be staying in the rental property. Many rentals are Saturday-to-Saturday in the summer time, but you can explore the online calendars for shorter stay options. If you get a rental with a Sunday check-in option, you can possibly avoid the crazy Saturday beach traffic.
  • View the Photos. ¬†Once you narrow down possibilities, take a good look at the online photographs for the places you are considering. ¬†The photos will give you a good idea of location, decor, bedrooms, etc. If the listing says “beach view”, you should be able to see a photo of what that view is like from the property.
  • Additional Reservations. ¬†Once you have nailed down your vacation rental in Destin, Florida, you can move on to planning the “fun” of your vacation. The Destin area offers a slew of activities – everything from deep sea fishing to dolphin tours.

*Photo by Jesse Foy/Foytography

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It’s Not Too Late to Stay at the Beach!

Book Mom a Stay at the Beach with Southern

What better way to tell Mom you love her than a stay at the beach with Southern Vacation Rentals? Don’t worry, there’s still time to book one of their fabulous Destin vacation homes or condos! With plentiful sunshine and warm Gulf air in the forecast for this weekend, Mom will love relaxing with her toes in the sand.

If inspiration is what you need, treat Mom to a stay at Sweet Destiny. Nestled in the highly popular Crystal Beach community, Sweet Destiny is a five bedroom, three bathroom vacation home in Destin that we guarantee Mom will love! It can sleep up to 16 guests, so tell Mom to invite everyone!

Sweet DestinyMom will feel right at home here on the beach since she’s only a few steps away from the emerald green waters of the Gulf. She’ll love the spacious, gourmet kitchen (as long as someone else is doing the cooking!) and exposed-beam ceilings.

Crystal Beach is in a fabulous location, as it’s so close to shopping and dining in Destin. Take Mom out for brunch at any of Downtown Destin’s incredible restaurants, or treat her to a shopping trip at Grand Boulevard. No matter what you do, Mom will love the gesture!

If you know you want to book a stay but aren’t sure which property, don’t fret! Southern also offers gift certificates, so Mom can book whatever her heart wants! Call¬†(855) 844-7356 for a gift certificate today!

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ArtsQuest Fine Arts Festival

Calling All Art Lovers!

Need some Mother’s Day inspiration? Treat Mom to a stay at a vacation condo in Destin this year! Even better, take her to the 30th Annual ArtsQuest Fine Arts & Music Festival in Sandestin. It’s the perfect time to stroll the streets of Town Center at Grand Boulevard! ArtsQuest takes place from May 12-13, so you can dedicate a whole weekend just to Mom.

ArtsQuest

While you’re at ArtsQuest, you’ll be able to view and purchase original art from over 150 artists around the country! You’ll also be able to experience live musical entertainment, student exhibits, and fabulous food and beverage options!

This event is held rain or shine, but that’s no problem as Destin is scheduled for some more gorgeous Florida sunshine this weekend!

For moms with young kids, bring them to the ImagiNation station, where kids rule! They’ll love the hands-on art activities, and you’ll love ending the day with a handmade Mother’s Day gift. This year’s ImagiNation Art Village theme is “Under the Sea,” with interactive art activities all day long!

ArtsQuest is a juried art show, with artists demonstrating their skills in Original Digital Art, Photography, Jewelry, Oils & Acrylic, and more! ArtsQuest participants have the opportunity to win $10,000 in cash prizes for their work.

Visit the ArtWeek South Walton website to learn more about ArtsQuest.

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