"Destin" Top 5 Page for this destination Destin by Aliseeya

Destin Travel Guide: 331 reviews and 390 photos

Beautiful Beaches

I've lived in Florida my entire life, but I was amazed at how beautiful the beaches are in Destin. To be honest, they remind me of the beaches in the Bahamas.

The sand is pure white, fine, and powdery. There is little to no debris found on the beaches, and there is minimal seaweed. In addition, the sand is free from broken shells and stones, making it delightful to walk upon.

The water is usually CRYSTAL clear, and ranges in color from tranquil blue to green.

Another amazing thing about Destin is the plentiful amount of dolphins in this area. It is extremely common to see groups of dolphins playing in the waters; you can even see them driving over the destin bridge!

As A Tourist...

Destin is a GREAT place to visit. It's very accessible: located on the panhandle of Florida, only a relatively short distance away from many other states (Georgia, Alabama, Mississipi, Tenessee, Louisiana, etc.). It's a lot cheaper than going to the Carribean, and you will find the same quality and beauty in Destin beaches.

If you are debating whether to stay on Okaloosa Island or Destin...STAY IN DESTIN! See my "general tips" for more info (trust me on this one!).


Besides all the fun things to do on the beach, Destin offers a wide variety of activities, which will keep everyone in the family happy. Destin is known for its fishing; you can either fish off of a jetty or beach, or take a chartered fishing trip.

For the sports enthusiast, there is surfing, kitesurfing, kayaking, skiing, water skiing, and parasailing. The Track also offeres go-cart racing, bungee jumping, and a variety of other adrenaline-pumping rides.

Other activities in Destin include mini golf (at the Track), dolphin boat rides, sunset/dining cruises, chartered boats, snorkeling, and scuba diving. The Gulfarium offers daily dolphin and marine shows, and is located on Okaloosa Island. Big Kahunas is a fun water park, located in Destin.


Destin also has a wide variety of shopping. The Destin Commons is the most popular place to shop; it is a delightful outdoor shopping center, featuring an enormous Bass Pro Shop. For bargain-shopping, the Silver Sands Outlet mall is located 8 miles east of Destin and is full of top-brand name stores (Coach, Ralph Lauren, Saks 5th Avenue, etc. etc.). The Market Shops of Sandestin is a cute collection of unique shops, located near the Sandestin Resort.


The majority of the restaurants in Destin are....SEAFOOD! Destin has numerous seafood restaurants which are either located directly on the beach, or have wonderful waterfront views. The best place for eating directly on the beach is Pompano Joe's, located on Scenic Hwy 98. It has great food, a fun atmosphere, and great views over the beach. Another great place is Gilligans - a rather small, easy-to-miss place located on Hwy 98. It has a spacious outdoor deck with a spectacular view over the Destin Harbor. Their food is excellent; the seafood is delicious and their hamburgers are the best in Destin!

However, if seafood isn't your thing there is still a wide variety of restaurants featuring other cuisines (although they will be harder to spot!). There are many italian,mexican, japanese, chinese, steak houses, and traditional american restaurants. See my "restaurant" tips for some ideas!


There are several great nightclubs in Destin, each providing a fun and upbeat atmosphere. For those under 21, the only 18+ nightclubs in the area are Howl-At-The-Moon, The Swamp, Fudpuckers, and Nighttown. Everything else is 21 and up. One thing to note...the covers are pretty steep, especially during high season. Covers are typically $10/$15/person over 21, and $15-20/person under 21. See my "nightclub tips" for my favorite places to go out in Destin!!

As A Local...

Destin is an amazing place to live. The weather is beautiful year-round, and there is a constant upbeat and fun atmosphere to the area. However, I do miss the advantages of living in a big city; most of the activities in Destin are touristy, and there is little culture.

Nonetheless, I can walk to the beach in less than 5 min from my house. You just can't beat that!

If anyone needs any tips/advice about an upcoming trip to Destin, let me know -- I'd love to help!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Amazing beaches, beautiful sunsets, friendly people
  • Cons:Little culture, very touristy
  • Intro Updated Dec 12, 2005
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Reviews (73)

Comments (9)

  • Oct 30, 2008 at 12:05 PM

    I disagree completely with Aliseeya, the guy at Wal-Mart is very talented and worth the extra money and the wait, you’re on vacation get off your wallet and live a little, this is why the kids want the shirts any way.

  • Aug 17, 2007 at 9:13 PM

    I really like the Donut Hole as a place for breakfast. It's soo busy in the morning but it's worth it. I love their home fries! I love their omelets and my boyfriend likes their sandwiches. Mostly everything is under ten bucks, too.

  • Jun 3, 2007 at 7:34 AM

    I have received several pure henna tattoos, and I also do them myself. They only last, at best, 2-3 weeks. If you swim in a chlorinated swimming pool, on the beach, etc., it will fade quicker. Cheers...

  • Mar 19, 2007 at 7:46 AM

    I posted a separate comment about the Neighborhood Cafe. Happy eating!

  • mimzda's Profile Photo
    Feb 25, 2007 at 7:41 PM

    Was in Destin last July with the kids, we all LOved it. You page is right on......

  • Jul 1, 2006 at 8:31 PM

    I have a daughter getting married in Destin in October and need help!! Who can I get to do her hair? Which bakery is the best? Where can we (all 12) go somewhere nice to eat where there is a fun band and we can relax and have fun? Any help would be great.

  • Pimilan's Profile Photo
    May 17, 2006 at 7:52 AM

    Great tips of Destin.

  • icunme's Profile Photo
    May 12, 2006 at 8:24 AM

    Nice to hear about this city in FL - read lots of good information in your tips - photos would be great too. Will return again. Ciao, Carol

  • Mar 8, 2006 at 7:46 PM

    Hello! Destin is expensive, if you want cheap go to Mexico and buy your pottery there!

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