Pin on the map of Florida showing the location of Destin

8 Things to do in Destin on check-in day

Once you arrive at the beach, most families have mixed feelings of excitement and exhaustion from the trip. Since check-in time isn't until 4 p.m., vacationers often find themselves with some free time before their Destin rental is ready. 

While your vacation rental is being cleaned, sanitized, and inspected, there is no reason why your vacation should be on hold. Start living the salt life! Here are 8 things to do in Destin and South Walton to begin enjoying your vacation immediately!


Head to the Beach

Be sure to pack a separate bag with a swimsuit and beach towel and head down to one of the public beach access points and put your toes in the sand.

Pompano JoesPorch

Gulf-Front Restaurants

Not ready to get sandy? Visit one of our Gulf-front restaurants in Destin overlooking the beach and enjoy a meal or just a cold beverage. Destin restaurants along Scenic Gulf Drive include: Surf Hut, Whale’s Tail Beach Bar & Grill, Pompano Joe’s, Kenny D’s Beach Bar, Crab Trap, and Camille’s Sidewalk Café at the Beachside Inn. South Walton restaurants along Scenic Hwy 30A include:Vue on 30A, Chiringo in Grayton Beach, and Bud & Alley’s in Seaside.

Topsail Reserve

Visit Topsail State Park

This expansive state park includes 3.2 miles of secluded, white sand beaches, majestic dunes, 3 rare coastal dune lakes, and 2 trails (Morris Lake Nature Trail (2.5 mi.) & Campbell Lake Nature Trail (5 mi.). Hike or ride to the beach on the tram (picks up every hour on the hour). Park is open 8 a.m. to sundown daily. Admission to Topsail Hill State Park is $6 per vehicle (*Fee is waived during the summer season courtesy of Visit South Walton). 


Rent Bikes or a Pontoon Boat

Enjoy a bike ride along Scenic Hwy 98 or Scenic Hwy 30A. Our partner La Dolce Vita offers 2 convenient bike rental locations: Seascape Resort in Miramar Beach or at San Remo on Scenic Hwy 30A. Half day bike rentals start at $15 and half-day pontoon boat rentals start at $245 at Sandestin or $270 at the Destin Harbor. Newman-Dailey guests receive 10% off with coupon in Be Free Bundle (located under the activities section).



Now is the perfect time to shop for souvenirs, beach items, and toys and gifts. Recommendations for shopping in Destin and South Walton, include Destin Commons, Silver Sands Premium Outlets, as well as boutiques and galleries.


Destin Harbor

The Destin Harbor is home to the largest fishing fleet in Florida and the boardwalk is filled with shops, restaurants, and activities, including a rock-climbing wall and zip line.


Village of Baytowne Wharf

Located in Sandestin Golf & Beach Resort, the Village of Baytowne Wharf is a vibrant bayside village filled with shopping, dining and attractions. Fun for the whole family, mom will enjoy the boutique shops while kids love the Adventure Zone with zip line, tower climb, ropes course, EuroBunge and more, as well as carousel and playground for younger kids.

Family Track Group.JPG

The Track

The Track in Destin is your family headquarters for fun. The action-packed recreation center features everything from the ultimate in go-cart tracks to big fun for little tykes at Kids Country to the arcade. While you're there, challenge your friends and family to miniature golf, Bumper Boats, or test your courage at our bungee jumping tower. Guests of Newman-Dailey receive a special offer of $10 off when you spend $50 or more. Use online code GOKARTS15 at

While you're here be sure to explore all the special offers that are part of Newman-Dailey's "Be Rewarded" program, including special offers at restaurants, activities and services. 

Need an additional vacation rental for your friends, explore our collection of premier beach vacation rental homes and gulf-front condominium rentals online or call one of our vacation specialists at 1-800-225-7652.

See you @ the beach!