Things to do in Destin

Things to do in  Destin

Sunny days and happy hours

A panhandle town with Gulf of Mexico views, Destin draws visitors to northwest Florida with its sugary beaches, quiet nature trails, and challenging golf courses. There's plenty of family fun to be found here at attractions such as the Destin Harbor Boardwalk and Henderson Beach State Park, while outdoor enthusiasts will find a long list of things to do in Destin—from fishing charters, dolphin-spotting tours, and kayaking excursions, to scenic sunset cruises, pontoon rentals, and snorkeling.

Top 2 attractions in Destin

#1
Big Kahuna's Water & Adventure Park

Big Kahuna's Water & Adventure Park

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In the Florida heat, families of all ages can cool off in the Big Kahuna’s Water and Adventure Park, which is home to dozens of thrilling water slides and rides. With its flowing waters and tropical theme, it attracts thousands of people every summer. The Big Kahuna is home to lazy rivers, cabanas, and shaded children’s areas for those who prefer to keep it low key, while white water raft rides and high speed flumes await the adventurous. Park visitors can choose from a variety of slide lengths, intensities, and speeds to race down guided by the water. There’s also a halfpipe surfing simulator, for those who prefer to hit the waves. It is the largest water park on the Emerald Coast.For those opting for adventure out of the water, the adventure park has a Go Kart race track, tropical mini golf course, and several thrilling rides on land. The Sky Coaster reaches heights of 100+ feet before flying toward the ground.More
#2
The Track Destin

The Track Destin

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Think of The Track as a permanent fair: In addition to five Go Kart courses, there’s also bumper boats, mini golf, a carousel, a Ferris Wheel, a Red Baron Plane ride for youngsters, a family-friendly arcade, simulated skydiving and more. This chain of family fun activities (the other two locations are in Pigeon Forge, TN and Gulf Shores, AL) is right off Emerald Coast Parkway (Highway 98) east of downtown Destin near Henderson Beach State Park.One of the most popular rides is the three-story Wild Woody, a slatted wooden figure-8 format race track where family members can rev engines in single or double seated cars, waving from overpasses as they compete for the finish. Set amid palms, the elaborate – if a bit kitschy – Surfin’ Safari Golf course takes visitors under multi-tiered waterfalls, past giant giraffe and elephant statues and challenges them to putt through a miniature windmill.Unless you’re strictly interested in mini golf or the carousel, however, chances are someone in the family won’t be able to partake: The park maintains strict height and age requirements that vary by ride. The Kid’s Country section of the park is most suitable for kids under five and has nine rides including a Kiddie Kart race track.More

Top activities in Destin

ORIGINAL Destin Tikis 3hr Crab Island Sandbar Adventure
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Dolphin-Watching Speedboat Cruise in Destin Harbor
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Crab Island: Pontoon Boat Rentals

Crab Island: Pontoon Boat Rentals

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89
From
$179.00
per group
Sunset Dolphin Watching Cruise in Destin Harbor
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Hydrojet Dolphin Cruise

Hydrojet Dolphin Cruise

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$40.00
Destin Dash Scavenger Hunt
Special Offer

Destin Dash Scavenger Hunt

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From
$17.60
$22.00  $4.40 savings
Crab Island Dolphin Jetski Adventure
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Crab Island Dolphin Jetski Adventure

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From
$227.00
per group
Destin Harbor Firework Show by Boat
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Learn to Surf - Destin

Learn to Surf - Destin

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$100.00
Destin Inshore Fishing Charter

Destin Inshore Fishing Charter

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$860.00
per group
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All about Destin

When to visit

Destin’s well-known hangout, Crab Island, is crawling with people throughout the summer months due to the warm weather. No one can deny that summer is a great time to visit and enjoy the beach life—but you should consider other seasons as well. Autumn brings cooler weather and cool festivals, like the Destin Seafood Festival and Destin Fishing Rodeo, to the area. These October events are great ways to savor the local culture without the need to swim or sunbathe.

Getting around

Destin comprises less than 8 square miles (2.4 square kilometers), so this small beach town doesn’t require a car. Public transportation is limited to bus routes, so the ideal method of travel without a private car is renting a bicycle, moped, or scooter. You can cruise around the beach with ease, especially if you’re staying near the shoreline. As for getting to Crab Island, your options include a shuttle boat, private charter, and renting kayaks, pontoon boats, and even floating tiki bars.

Traveler tips

You will have no trouble spending days visiting Destin’s outdoor attractions like Crab Island and Henderson Beach State Park. Crab Island can get crowded, though—so if you want shorelines with fewer sandals, head west to Navarre Beach. The pier is an excellent spot for dropping a fishing line and watching the sunsets. Spend a few hours on the water with a kayak or paddleboard so you can see turtles swimming in the sea.

Local Currency
US Dollar ($)
Time Zone
CST (UTC -6)
Country Code
+1
Language(s)
English
Attractions
2
Tours
176
Reviews
4,464
EN
56c1d2ec-4b99-4f3e-bf4a-6ef0c5417585
geo_hub

People Also Ask

What is Destin known for?

Destin is known for its exceptional white sand beaches and the popular Crab Island sandbar. Small quartz crystals give the sand its stark white shine, providing a serene setting for sunset viewing. Crab Island is a 4-acre sandbar where locals swim, float, and spend the day under the sun.

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How many days do you need in Destin?

Destin is a small city that can be seen in a single day if you’re taking a road trip along Florida’s Gulf Coast. However, there’s plenty to see and do both in Destin and in the surrounding area, making the city a convenient home base for a weekend or weeklong vacation.

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What is the best month to go to Destin, Florida?

April and May are the best months to visit Destin because they boast ideal water and weather conditions. The summer months draw in vacationing crowds when the sun and heat are at their highest. Though the beaches are open year-round, cooler temperatures from September through March may make swimming uncomfortable.

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Where do locals go to the beach in Destin?

Crab Island is the most popular beach in Destin for locals. Visitors flock to this sandbar as well, as it’s a perfect place to swim, float, drink, and sample food from the floating eateries. Henderson Beach State Park is another popular local spot featuring nature trails, a boardwalk, and a campground.

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Why is the sand so white in Destin?

Destin, and some other beaches along the Florida Panhandle coast, are a bright white color thanks to small quartz deposits that originated from hundreds of miles away. The weathering of northern regions like the Appalachian Mountains sent quartz crystals down the Apalachicola River to rest on Destin’s shores.

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Is Destin, Florida, a party town?

Destin welcomes partiers of all ages, and the party scene is less crowded than what you would find in a spring break destination like Panama City Beach. Alcohol is allowed on Destin Beach, and drinking and dancing fill the bars and clubs around the harbor when the sun goes down.

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Frequently Asked Questions
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