A beautiful photo from Destin, FL

Vacation Homes for the Whole Family

Vacation Homes for the Whole Family

Aqua SoundIt’s summer, and what better time to get together with the whole family than now? The kids are out of school, you’ve got vacation days, and everyone needs a little break from the daily routine. Whether you want to get away with just the immediate family or bring everyone into the mix, our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals have plenty of vacation homes for the whole family that everyone is sure to love. Check out three of our favorite vacation homes for the whole family below! 

Aqua Sound

Sleeps: 12 | Bedrooms: 4 | Bathrooms: 3 Full

Located in the exclusive Destin Pointe community, Aqua Sound is truly a beautiful vacation home in Destin that you won’t want to miss out on. This home sits right on the water, so you can step out of your balcony and look out over the waves. When you want to head down to the beach, you only need to take a few steps! There is nothing like the ability to prepare family-style meals on vacation, and you can certainly do it all with the full kitchen. You’ll also have access to Destin Pointe amenities as well as four bikes at the home with which you can cruise around nearby Holiday Isle and Downtown Destin. What’s not to love?

Frangista Retreat

Sleeps: 12 | Bedrooms: 3 | Bathrooms: 3 Full, 1 Half

Then, there is Frangista Retreat, found in Destin’s luxe Frangista Beach community. You’ll find this home nestled among the trees, giving you an additional sense of privacy on your beach vacation. Make the most of your home away from home, with everything you need right at your fingertips. From a full kitchen to en-suite bathrooms in each bedroom, this home truly has it all. In addition, vacationers at Frangista Retreat have access to community amenities as well, including a pool and private beach.

Griffin’s Getaway

Sleeps: 8 | Bedrooms: 4 | Bathrooms: 3 Full

Griffin's Getaway

There’s a reason we keep coming back to Griffin’s Getaway, and the reason is that we truly love this home. Situated back in Destin’s gated Caribe neighborhood, Griffin’s Getaway is one-of-a-kind. Three of the bedrooms and two bathrooms are located in the main house, with one bedroom and one bathroom in the adjacent carriage house. Community amenities make your stay here even sweeter, with two pools, lighted tennis courts, and beach access at the end of Rue Martine. Did we mention beach service is complimentary in-season as well?

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Beach Safety in Destin

Begin each beach trip by checking the flag color for the day. The local flag warning system is universal across all of our beaches. You can also check out the Destin Beach Safety page on Facebook.

Double Red Flag: Water is closed to public due to dangerous water conditions

Red Flag: High hazard due to surf and/or strong currents

Yellow Flag: Medium surf and/or current hazard

Green Flag: Low hazard and calm conditions, remain vigilant

Purple Flag: Marine pests present, such as jellyfish, stingrays or dangerous fish

Rip currents, powerful currents of water moving away from shore, are also something you should heed while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico. These currents can sweep even the strongest swimmer out to sea.

How to Survive a Rip Current:

  • Don’t fight the current. It’s a natural treadmill that travels an average speed of 1-2 feet per second, but has been measured as fast as 8 feet per second—faster than an Olympic swimmer.
  • Relax and float to conserve energy. Staying calm may save your life.
  • Do NOT try to swim directly into to shore. Swim parallel to the shoreline until you escape the current’s pull. When free from the pull of the current, swim at an angle away from the current toward shore.
  • If you feel you can’t reach shore, relax, face the shore, and call or wave for help. Remember: Wave and yell…swim parallel

We hope you have a wonderful beach vacation planned for this summer. If you need help with lodging, check out our lodging partner, Southern Vacation Rentals, for help finding the perfect place to vacation in Destin, FL.


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Best Barbecue Restaurants in Destin, Florida

Best Barbecue Restaurants in Destin, Florida

There’s little we love more in the summertime than grilling barbecue outdoors with our friends and family. However, if grilling isn’t your forte, then that’s okay as there are many delicious barbecue restaurants in Destin, Florida! These restaurants are top-rated for a reason, and you’ll only need to take one bite to believe it! We’ve tried just about all of the barbecue restaurants in Destin, Florida but if we left anything out be sure to let us know on our Facebook page. After all, the best recommendations come from you all!


  • Moe’s Original BBQ – The first Moe’s Original BBQ opened in Tuscaloosa, Alabama and has since spread to over 60 locations in the U.S. and even Mexico! At Moe’s BBQ in Destin, you’ll find daily smoked meats, fresh-off-the-boat seafood, and down-home sides and desserts. Dine indoors or outdoors or grab your food to go. Weather permitting, there is even live music at Moe’s!
  • Jim ‘n Nick’s BBQ – Jim ‘n Nick’s is full of homestyle comfort foods like their beef brisket, baby back ribs, and unforgettable mac and cheese. Be sure to also save room for their famous cheese biscuits and homemade pie! The cheese biscuits are so popular, in fact, that you can buy the mix to take home and make yourself.
  • Big Red Grill – You’ll find the Big Red Grill & Bar on Destin’s Harbor, serving delicious food accompanied by an even better view. Their Harbor-Q tacos are not to be missed out on; slow smoked pulled pork with house made BBQ sauce, topped with sweet slaw and dill pickles. If you’re lucky enough to catch the Big Red Truck around Destin or head to the Harbor, these are a must!
  • BarbecueLillie’s Q – Originating in Chicago, IL and making their way down to “barbecue country” in Destin, Lillie’s Q is a special treat for barbecue lovers in Miramar Beach. With exceptional house-made sauces and slow-cooked meat, you’ll be hard-pressed to not order everything on the menu. Their moonshine cocktails are also something to savor if you’re 21 and up.
  • Hog’s Breath Saloon – One of many popular barbecue restaurants in Destin, Florida, Hog’s Breath Saloon only has one other location in Key West, Florida. It’s famous for live entertainment, great food and drinks, and even world-famous T-shirts. You can’t go wrong with the BBQ pork sandwich or even the pulled chicken sandwich. Their house specialty, the Hogzilla Platter, is touted as a “bountiful sampling of smoked selections. 1/2 rack of dry rub ribs, 1/4 slow smoked chicken and pulled Boston butt pork”

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Destin Rainy Day Fun

If the weather forecast is not in your favor, here are some great ways to spend a rainy day in the Destin area. Our list of family fun has a little bit of something for everyone:

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Seared Tuna Kebabs Are Your New Favorite Seafood Recipe

Seared Tuna Kebabs Are Your New Favorite Seafood Recipe

Seared Tuna KebabsIt’s no secret that Destin is the “world’s luckiest fishing village;” it’s even printed on the iconic sign when you drive over the bridge into Destin. Deep-sea fishing is a popular activity in Destin that produces some beautiful results. Summer is actually the perfect time to fish offshore, especially if you have anywhere from 12-14 hours to go offshore. You’ll find some large fish out here too, including tuna and marlin. Tuna is one of our favorites to fish for, and certainly is tasty too! If you’ve booked a fishing charter in Destin, Florida, you’ll usually be able to have your fish filleted to take it home to prepare. There are so many different ways to cook tuna; blackened, grilled, and lightly battered just to name a few! One of our favorite ways to enjoy this fish is by making seared tuna kebabs.

The tuna kebabs are light, fresh, and full of flavor. We made these recently and only wish we had had more to enjoy! This recipe is sure to be a hit at the next barbecue. Plus, it’s a welcome respite from the usual hamburgers and hot dogs!

If you aren’t able to catch your own tuna, don’t worry – there are many great seafood markets in Destin, Florida that carry delicious and fresh tuna. Stop by Sexton’s Seafood Market and ask for about one and a half pounds of tuna; this will make about eight kebabs. Grab fresh vegetables at your local grocery store or on the weekends head to the Farmer’s Market at Grand Boulevard on Saturday morning to pick up fresh produce.


Tuna Bell peppers
Cherry tomatoes Red onions
Baby Portobello mushrooms Montreal Steak Seasoning
Skewers* Lemon juice

Your skewers should be about 8″ long. If you are using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for an hour or more before cooking to keep them from catching on fire!


  1. Rinse all vegetables with a vinegar and water solution before preparing. Chop peppers and onions into bite-size pieces. Leave the mushrooms and cherry tomatoes whole.
  2. Seared Tuna KebabsCut the tuna into 1″ cubes and season with Montreal Steak Seasoning. Rub the seasoning into the tuna. Set aside the lemon juice.
  3. Prepare your kebabs! We garnished ours like so: onions, tomato, peppers, tuna, tomato, onions, pepper, mushrooms. However, this is completely up to you depending on your preference! Add more tuna, create kebabs with only tuna and only vegetables – it’s up to you!
  4. Set your grill or skillet to medium-high heat with olive or avocado oil. Sear for 2-3 minutes per side. For crispier vegetables, prepare skewers with vegetables only and cook 10-12 minutes per side. Drizzle lemon juice onto the tuna after it cooks to prevent tuna from overcooking.
  5. Enjoy!

If you are staying in a Destin, Florida vacation rental this summer and your home or condo has a grill, you’re in luck as you’ll be able to enjoy this delicious treat!

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Spend August at Alerio Condos in Destin

Spend August at Alerio Condos in Destin

Alerio Condos in DestinHappy summer! With the season still heating up, there’s still time to plan your beach vacation. If a July getaway to the beach isn’t in the cards for you this summer, that’s okay! There’s still plenty of time to head to the beach in August. One of our favorite spots here on the Emerald Coast are the Alerio condos in Destin. These vacation condos in Destin offer home-style amenities in a luxurious setting, with the beach just a short walk away so you can enjoy the best of both worlds. What’s better than feeling at home right at the beach?  Our lodging partners Southern Vacation Rentals still have availability at Alerio for August, but don’t let the chance to stay here slip on by.

Inside each Alerio vacation condo, you’ll find the comforts of home and luxurious touches that make your stay here that much more memorable. Rich hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances, and granite countertops are just some of the additions in each Alerio condo. Private balconies accompanied by a pleasant Gulf breeze make a stay here even better! Not to mention, a sliver of the beach is even visible from some Alerio condos in Destin. Each condo hosts 2-3 bedrooms and two bathrooms, with enough room for anywhere from 6-10 people. Resort amenities at Alerio include a pool, hot tub, and picnic area with barbecue grills. There’s even a splash pad that lights up at night, something that is sure to be enjoyed by everyone in your group!

Alerio Condos in Destin

Set back off of Scenic Highway 98, the Alerio condos in Destin put you in the heart of Miramar Beach. You will not find a better location for your beach vacation than Alerio! When you are not lounging about in your condo, you must get out and explore the fun things to do in Destin. Just minutes away from shopping at Silver Sands Premium Outlets and dining at restaurants like Surf Hut and The Crab Trap, everything you need is right at your fingertips. Make the most of your August vacation to Destin and stay at Alerio!

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Spend Your Summer at Spiaggia in Destin!

Spiaggia in Destin is the Beach Home of Your Dreams

Spiaggia in DestinStill searching for the perfect vacation rental in Destin for July and August? Believe us when we say Spiaggia in Destin is not to be missed out on. You won’t want to leave anyone off the guest list since this incredible home sleeps 17 guests! With availability for July in August, you too could experience an unforgettable vacation here! Click here to see more pictures and check available dates.

Spiaggia, or “beach” in Italian, is just that – a beautiful beachfront vacation home in Destin! You’ll find this home in Destin’s upscale Destiny by the Sea neighborhood. If you’ve ever vacationed here, you’ll know that Destiny by the Sea is host to some of the area’s most extravagant Gulf-front vacation homes. Not only is there a private beach walkover for instant beach access, but there is also access to the community pool and hot tub. Believe us when we say there is no shortage of ways to keep cool in the summertime.

Spiaggia in Destin

The inside is just as magnificent as the outside, with a sweeping three floors and careful attention to detail. Thoughtful craftsmanship inside the home extends to every angle, with touches including granite counters, whirlpool tubs, and walk-in showers. A combination of rich hardwood floors and cool tile floors help keep our Gulf Coast sand at bay. In addition to the beautiful interiors, private balconies on each floor invite you to relax outside and soak up the view! An outdoor gas grill is also the perfect spot to bring everyone together for an outdoor cookout.

Plus, with an incredible location in the heart of Destin, you won’t have to go far for fun! Take a short drive down to Destin Commons, Silver Sands Premium Outlet, or Grand Boulevard for a fun day of shopping. Family-friendly fun at places like Big Kahunas, The Track, and HarborWalk await you as well. Scenic Highway 98 also hosts many delicious restaurants like Pompano Joe’s and The Crab Trap; you’ll definitely want to make it a point to sample some of our delicious Gulf cuisines!

What are you waiting for? Make Spiaggia in Destin your next vacation destination today.

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Independence Day Family Fun in Destin

Family Independence Day Celebration – July 2

Shine those wheels & get out your red, white, & blue decorations! The city of Destin will host a Family Celebration & Bike Parade for children 14 and under at 4:30 p.m. July 2 at Morgan’s Sport Center. Bike parade at 5:30 p.m. with registration beginning at 4:45 p.m. The event is free to the public. Come show off your decorated bike, scooter, or wagon. Awards will be given for different categories in each age division. Spectators are welcome and refreshments will be available to all participants. For more information, call 654-5184.

Smoke on the Coast – July 3

Smoke on the Coast BBQ and Fireworks Festival returns for the 9th year to the Destin Commons. Family entertainment and live music kicks off at 5:00 p.m. with the barbeque feasting starting at 5:30 p.m. You can enjoy barbeque specialities from 18 area restaurants & groups for one dollar per sample. Don’t forget to vote for your favorite. Competitors will be vying for prizes with proceeds benefiting local charities. The evening will cap off with a fireworks extravaganza.

Fireworks Celebration – July 4

Find your favorite viewing spot for Thursday night. The city of Destin and sponsors are hosting an Independence Day Fireworks show. The fireworks show can be seen over the East Pass and will begin at 9 p.m., July 4. Tune in to Z96 (96.5 FM) for the simulcast music. In the event of inclement weather, the fireworks show will take place at 9 p.m. July 5.

Note: The city of Destin encourages everyone to think “safety first” if you plan to set off your own fireworks. Firework laws shall be enforced and please keep in mind that anything that flies or explodes is illegal in Florida. Citizens can use sparklers, fountains, and smokers. If you plan to purchase legal fireworks do so from a state-certified fireworks distributor only. Place used fireworks in a bucket of water before you dispose of them, keep small children and animals away from the fireworks, and never relight those that don’t work.

** There’s still time to make reservations for your vacation in Destin, FL. Check here for availability.

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Summer Vacation Homes in Destin

Summer Vacation Homes in Destin

After Dunes DelightIt’s the first day of the Summer Solstice! Now that summer is officially here, we’re more excited than ever to head to the beach. If you’re in need of some vacation inspiration, our lodging partners at Southern Vacation Rentals have got you covered. Two of our favorite summer vacation homes in Destin, Florida are open for July, so you’ve still got plenty of time to plan your trip to the beach. Pack your beach bag, grab your sunscreen, and get ready for a fun time at the beach!

After Dunes Delight

  • Sleeps 11 Guests
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 2 and a Half Bathrooms

Located in Miramar Beach’s Gulfside Cottages neighborhood, After Dunes Delight is one of our favorite places to vacation in Destin. This home enjoys a quiet location in a peaceful neighborhood while remaining just a short four-minute walk to the beach. You’ll be hard-pressed to find something like this! Adorned with charming coastal decor and sleek furnishings make this home one of a kind. Plus, you’ll also enjoy access to the Gulfside Cottages community pool when you want to leave the sand behind. 

Summer Lovin’Summer Lovin

  • Sleeps 14 Guests
  • 4 Bedrooms
  • 4 and a Half Bathrooms

If you’re traveling with a large group this summer, you’ll love Summer Lovin’! You’ll find that just the right size for 14 guests. Tucked back in the popular Dunes of Destin community, guests at Summer Lovin’ enjoy private beach access as well as the chance to splash about in Dunes of Destin’s community pool. The home is a luxurious piece of architecture on its own, with a recently remodeled interior, large kitchen, and wide balconies to lounge on. Plus, the ground floor features a bedroom and a bunk room with enough space for 10 guests on its own.

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Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic Starts Friday

Destin is considered one the best fishing destinations in the world and one of our biggest events starts this Friday. (Weather has delayed the start by one day.)

The Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic is Northwest Florida’s most successful entry into world-class sport fishing tournaments. It remains one of the richest on the Gulf Coast, attracting major players from across the globe. Last year, 91 teams fished for more than two million dollars!

With cash categories for billfish dolphin, tuna, and wahoo as well as individual angler trophies, fishermen have a multitude of ways to make Destin fishing tournament history. Anglers and spectators will also enjoy nightly entertainment and activities, including a live cooking demonstration, fireworks and live music on Friday.

You don’t want to miss the weigh-ins down at the Baytowne Marina docks. Here’s the updated schedule:

  • Registration: Wednesday, 4-8 p.m.
  • Captains Meeting: Wednesday, 6-7 p.m.
  • Jackpots and Late Entry: Thursday, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Start of Fishing: Friday, 7 a.m.
  • Saturday Weigh-In: 4-9 p.m.
  • Sunday Weigh-In: 2 p.m. to finish (boats must be under the Destin Pass bridge by 4 p.m.)
  • Awards: Sunday After Weigh-In

Want to schedule some summer fishing of your own? It’s one of the best things to do in Destin, Florida. Check out our favorite captains here.

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