A beautiful photo from Destin, FL

Destin: Top 10 Southern Beach Town

Top 10 Best Southern Beach Towns

  1. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
  2. Destin, Florida
  3. Panama City Beach, Florida
  4. Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina
  5. Orange Beach, Alabama
  6. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
  7. Gulf Shores, Alabama
  8. St. Simons Island, Georgia
  9. Pawleys Island, South Carolina
  10. Isle of Palms, South Carolina

Southern Living by Caroline Rogers

This is why everyone should plan a trip to Destin, Florida: The emerald waters and white sandy beaches attract visitors from far and wide. There are 13 beach access points so find one, claim your stretch of sand, and settle in for fun in the sun.

Enjoy the daily catch.

You’ll want to track down some of the best restaurants in Destin during your trip. The Panhandle has menus for every palette. Enjoy your crab cakes with a Gulf view at the Beach Walk Cafe.  Make reservations at Marina Cafe for a candlelit dinner you’ll still be talking about months later, or go casual at The Crab Trap, McGuire’s Irish Pub, Lucy Buffet’s Lulu’s, or Boshamps.

Embark on an adventure or two.

Set off with Destin Snorkel for a shelling tour, dolphin cruise, or snorkeling adventure.  Feel the ocean breeze on a sailing tour or boat charter from Smile-and-Wave Sailing Adventures, or get active with Blue Crab Water Sports—they rent wave-runners, kayaks, paddleboards, and pontoon boats to intrepid beachgoers. If you have kids in tow, they’ll love the Buccaneer Pirate Cruises, a sea adventure with sword fights, storytelling, and snacks. (There’s even a treasure hunt!)

Drop your anchor at a Destin marina.

Kick off your deep-sea fishing adventure at one of Destin’s marinas, where you can hire a boat or join a tour. Hop aboard a Swoop deep sea fishing boat at HarborWalk Marina  for a day on the ocean, or drop into Destin Marina if you brought your own vessel. Rent a boat to get to Crab Island, Destin’s famed underwater sandbar, where locals and visitors go to hang out on the water.

Camp out.

Pitch your tent (or park your RV) at Henderson Beach State Park, a 200-acre park with 60 campsites, a playground, nature trail, and boardwalks for beach access. Meander the nature trail and learn about the coastal dune ecosystem and the wildlife of the area, which includes several endangered species.

Go wild at a water park.

Treat the kids to a day at Big Kahuna Water Adventures for rides, slides, waves, rivers, and pools galore. There are attractions for every age, including kiddie rides and racing slides—as well as few meandering rivers with varying falls, chutes, twists, and turns.

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