Fort Walton Beach
It's better here...
Natural breathtaking beauty is Fort Walton Beach's biggest attraction. Snow-white sandy beaches and clear emerald-green waters continue to draw families year after year. Blessed with 24 miles of pristine beach, the slower pace is southern hospitality at its best. A favorite beach activity is watching dolphins play offshore. This location is ideal for those seekingfamily Florida beaches orvalue Florida beaches.
The area is considered one of the top five shelling destinations in the world. If you're into seafood this is the place to be, with the harbor offering four times the variety of fresh fish per season than any other destination in Florida, outside of Key West. But visitors enjoy a mixture of activities both on the water and dockside; hike, swim or sail into the Florida sunset. Or, if you prefer, try:
- Golfing: Championship tees, challenging courses and more than 1,000 holes against a backdrop of spectacular scenery make a golfer's dream come true.
- Fishing: Florida's largest charter boat fleet offers deep sea, inshore and bottom fishing for reasonable prices. Some even clean the fish for you.
- Shelling, scuba diving and snorkeling: Crystal-clear waters and highly concentrated marine life are so close to shore you don't need a boat to have exceptional underwater adventures.
- Gulfarium: One of America's original marine parks, here you can catch a sea show or get in the water and pat a dolphin.
- Emerald Coast Science Center: With more than 250 hands-on exhibits, kids of any age can explore the wonders of science.
- Indian Temple Mound and Museum: More than 6000 artifacts bring 12,000 years of Native American history to life.
- Air Force Armament Museum: Military buffs will love this collection of planes from several different war eras.
- Destin Fishing Rodeo (October): This no-fee, month-long fishing tournament draws more than 30,000 anglers hoping to hook some of the $100,000 jackpot.
- Christmas Boat Parade (December): A traditional event gets a Floridian twist. Swapping his sleigh for a boat, Santa floats along the Shoreline in the Christmas Parade. The whole town is aglow with local homes, businesses and boats competing with light decorations.
- For adults, nightlife can be found anywhere, from tiki hut hangouts to nightclubs. AJ's Club Bimini boasts the five-rum cocktail dubbed the Bimini Bash. Take in a leisurely dinner at one of the 400 local eateries.
- The kids will love some after-dinner fun at Island Golf Center, Fenway Park Batting Cages or Lost Lagoon Golf.
From luxury to economy, Destin and Fort Walton Beach offer more than 18,000 rooms in hotels, condominiums, private cottages, bed and breakfast inns and beach homes. You'll enjoy reasonable rates year-round, but greater savings occur between Labor Day and mid-October when rates dip by one-third. Even better savings can be had from October to February. Try the Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce for some great ideas.
Need to Know
- Spring / summer highs reach 77 to 89 F with lows between 60 and 74 F.
- Fall / winter highs are 61 to 80 F, while lows are 42 to 60 F.
- ADA accessibility
Fort Walton Beach is the perfect marriage of pristine beaches and man-made fun. If you're ready to explore, these Fort Walton Beach escapes should get you started.
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