There’s a clue to one of the biggest plus points of Destin holidays in the town’s nick-name: ‘The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village.’ If you’re a fisherman, then there’s no finer place to be than out in the calm emerald waters of the Gulf, reeling in red snapper and king mackerel by the dozen. But there are plenty of other reasons to come here too – dazzling white beaches with pristine sands; superb shopping; great night-life; and plenty to keep the kids happy from dawn till dusk.
If you like your sand powdery soft and your ocean warm and clear, then the beaches on Destin holidays make for the perfect fit. With the sun up high and the waters of the Emerald Coast doing what they do best – sparking like a beautiful green jewel – the beach is where it’s at. There’s an especially fine stretch at Henderson State Park, where you can happily while away the day building sandcastles, messing about in the shallow surf, and watching seabirds catch their lunch.
But there’s plenty of action out on the water too. Besides fantastic fishing, there’s all kinds of watersports and some classy scuba diving. Divers will get a kick out of exploring the sunken military craft littered around the coast, courtesy of the area’s several navy and army bases. Or you can take a trip out into the Gulf to spot dolphins or soak up the sunset – just drop by the harbour with its fleet of gently bobbing boats to see what’s on offer.
As for the kids, they’re more than catered for, since besides all that fabulous beach action, there’s Big Kahuna’s waterpark for rides, slides and plenty of thrills, plus alligators to examine at Fudpucker’s…all of which goes to prove, Destin is a destination not to be missed.
Even if you’ve never got to grips with a rod and reel before, on Destin holidays it’s a must. There are friendly boat captains to show you the ropes, or if you already know your floats from your flies, head straight for the pier or out into the Gulf. The water is brimming with red snapper, grouper, trigger fish, amberjacks – even swordfish, tuna and cobia.
The lure of the greensward is particularly strong around Destin. There are some top-class courses, and there’s a lot to be said for playing a round with the beautiful Emerald Gulf as a backdrop. The Kelly Plantation Golf Club is an impressive championship golf course with more than 7,000 yards of large contoured greens, wide-manicured fairways and picturesque views.
There’s always something going on at Destin Harbour, so it’s the perfect place to hang out. With fishing boats and party boats coming and going, it’s a good spot to check out both the catch and the crowd. Plus there’s waterside restaurants and bars, trampolines, a carousel and even a zip ride.
If you can tear yourself away from the beach, there’s plenty of retail therapy available. Destin Commons is open-air with 70 high-end shops, while at downtown Ft. Walton there’s a selection of boutique-style stores and a farmers market.
There’s a buzzy after-sundown scene on Destin holidays with restaurants serving everything from succulent steak to fresh seafood, plus plenty of bars. Families stroll the lively harbour; music lovers head to AJ’s Club Bimini for live reggae or Hogs Breath for rock, blues and jazz; clubbers go to Nightown; and the after-dinner crowd relax at the Ocean Club.