Pin on the map of Florida showing the location of Destin

5 Things You Can Do in Destin, FL That Will Make Your Trip Special

The Emerald Coast of Florida, which runs along the Gulf of Mexico for 24 miles, is known for its sugar-white sand beaches. For spectacular beaches that are consistently voted among the best in the country, as well as some of the best fishing in the world, look no further than Destin, Florida. It has been called the "Crown Jewel of the Emerald Coast" and the "World's Luckiest Fishing Village." If you're looking for things to do in Destin to keep yourself entertained and make the visit extra special, this list is a great place to start! Check out this list of 5 Things to Do in Destin, FL that will make your trip special:

Gator Beach, and Fudpucker Bar and Grill - Hold an Alligator
Fudpucker's Destin restaurant offers a unique dining experience as well as an opportunity to hold a live Florida alligator. Huge portions of prepared and homemade seafood, chicken, and alligator dishes, as well as incredible burgers, are here. Families visiting Fudpucker's Destin restaurant will find a variety of activities for their children. The majority of kids will want to visit Fudpucker's Gator Beach to see the live alligators that live in the pond in front of the building. The gator pond, where they all swim around below, is visible from a large raised deck in the back of the restaurant. To make the trip special, kids can get their picture taken holding a live gator, and feed them prepared gator food provided by Fudpucker's as well as seeing alligators up close. If you're in the mood for a safe alligator adventure while visiting Destin or Miramar Beach, we recommend Gator Beach. With over 100 gators to see and experience, they call themselves the "World's Greatest Alligator Park." Learn more at


Grayton Beach State Park - Snorkel the Artificial Reef
Grayton Beach is rated as one of America's most beautiful and pristine beaches. Experience camping at one of the nicest camping areas along the Gulf Coast, or stay overnight at a cabin nestled in the pine woods only minutes away from the Gulf of Mexico with miles of sugar-white beaches. Go snorkeling at the reef that is teeming with marine life. View fish, urchins, and even sea turtles. Swim around the collection of submerged concrete structures that form the shape of a Sea Turtle. Paddling and fishing activities are also available. For land activities, you can traverse four miles of hiking trails through a coastal forest that leads visitors through the dune ecosystem, salt marsh, and pine flat woods. On your trail, you might even see Florida black bears, white-tailed deer, grey foxes, and a variety of other animals and birds that are home to the Park. 


Boat Tours - Watch Fireworks at the Harbor from the Water
Destin offers a wide range of watersports experiences as well as opportunities for relaxation. Destin does not disappoint when it comes to a variety of options! If you're looking for the perfect family outing, look no further than a day out on the water.  Trips such as going to Crab Island, dolphin sightseeing, firework trips, and water adventure tours are available. Tip: Every Thursday night from Memorial Day to Labor Day, Destin hosts a free fireworks display over the harbor. On a fireworks cruise, get out on the water for the best views. Whether you opt for a relaxing sunset cruise or a thrilling adventure, you're sure to have an unforgettable experience during your Destin vacation.

Dolphins experience - Be an Assistant Dolphin Trainer
With around 40,000 dolphins in the Gulf of Mexico, vacationers on the Emerald Coast have plenty of opportunities to see these magnificent creatures. Crystal Beach, Eglin Beach Park, Miramar Beach, and Henderson Beach State Park are all known for dolphin sightings. Destin has a large population of year-round resident dolphins. The dolphins don't need to migrate because the waters along the Emerald Coast are warm all year. Female dolphins from other areas come to Destin for the mating season from late spring to late summer. This makes this a fantastic time of year to see them. Guided boat tours take passengers to popular dolphin viewing locations, but a private boat charter, such as a pontoon, gives you a little more flexibility. Swimming with dolphins in the wild is never a good idea. Harassing wild dolphins is not only illegal, but it can also be dangerous for even strong swimmers. If you want to get up close and personal with dolphins, the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park in Fort Walton Beach is the place to be. They allow you to swim with dolphins. A 20-minute "dolphin splash encounter" allows visitors ages 8 and up to interact with and touch a bottlenose dolphin alongside a Gulfarium trainer.


Visit Crab Island - Rent a Boat
Crab Island, the water is very shallow and blue-green, and crystal clear at high tide. Due to its distance from the shore and the strong tidal currents and boat traffic that surround it, Crab Island is only accessible by boat. You can either rent (or bring) your own boat and captain it yourself, or you can go on an excursion and have someone else take you there. Renting a pontoon with a group of friends or family is a great way to enjoy the beautiful Destin waters and access Crab Island. These boats can accommodate up to a dozen people, making them ideal for large groups. In most places, the sandbar is only a few feet deep. Crab Island is more than another sandbar hangout spot. The shallow water is ideal for wading or floating alongside your boat while taking in the tropical scenery. The influx of Destin-area visitors looking to take in the area's unrivaled beauty, combined with local businesses that have set up shops to offer something different to do, has created a tourist attraction. Hundreds of boats flock on a daily basis during the hot summer months to take in the scenery and unwind. The sandbar continues to be populated by mobile food boats and smaller floating restaurants selling everything from ice cream to fresh coconuts.

Destin, Florida is the ideal vacation spot for creating memories with the family, relaxing on the beach, and eating fresh seafood. With countless attractions and activities for the whole family, you will never get bored. Its emerald green waters, sugar-white sand, and incredible beach lifestyle will melt away all of your worries and will leave you wanting more. 

Start planning your next Destin vacation, by booking a room at the Beachside Inn. For those seeking larger accommodations, view Newman-Dailey Resort Properties' collection of Destin vacation rentals online or call one of their local vacation specialists at 1-800-225-7652.

This blog was contributed by Kleise Neil from


Published on Monday, March 22, 2021