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Destin is the quintessential Florida beach town. With some of the most beautiful soft, white sands in the world, beach activities are naturally the number one thing to do in Destin. Once you see the area’s beaches, there will be no doubt why it’s been voted “Best Beach in the South,” several years in a row by Southern Living Magazine. The stunning emerald green waters of the Gulf are what gave “The Emerald Coast” its name, and an endless variety of activities are available to compliment the natural beauty of the area. Fishing and boating are tops, with Destin being home to the largest fishing fleet in the state of Florida. As such, you can expect to find all types of charters for fishing, sightseeing, snorkeling excursions and romantic dinner cruises. Other beach activities include swimming, surfing, scuba diving, parasailing, shelling, sunbathing, beach volleyball and more. Non-beach activities are golf, tennis, hiking, canoeing, camping and the combination of the dazzling white sands and perfect emerald green/turquoise water makes photography a very pleasurable activity here, as well. If you enjoy biking, the Eastern Lake Bike/Hike Trail is a ten-mile loop in the Point Washington State Forest, and a newly paved trail on the south side of Scenic 30-A gives spectacular views of the Gulf and seaside towns.

Besides outdoor sports and the beach, things to see in the Destin/Fort Walton Beach area include the Gulfarium, a 10,000-gallon aquarium that has one of the oldest performing-porpoise shows in the country. The mission of the aquarium is to educate and inspire, as well as entertain the public about sea life. It’s fun for all ages and visitors can take their time to explore the park’s attractions that are located on a sun-splashed beach right along the Gulf of Mexico. You can interact with dolphins, watch sea life shows and see animal and science exhibits. Other attractions in Destin include a 25-acre water and adventure park, a recreation center that features go-karts, miniature golf, bumper boats, a bungee jumping tower and an arcade. The Indian Temple Mound Museum and Focus Science Center in Fort Walton Beach also make great outings for the whole family. The Arts Center at Okaloosa-Walton College offers a beautiful, state-of-the-arts complex that presents Broadway shows and various other events such as dance productions and art exhibits. Destin is also home to a 4,000 square foot gallery featuring art by many local artists, as well as works of nationally recognized artists. There is a full array of shopping possibilities in Destin, and the Emerald Coast is known for having some of the finest dining in the state. No matter what type of atmosphere or food you’re in the mood for, you’ll likely find it in the Destin/Fort Walton area. With so much to offer visitors, it’s no wonder Destin is one of the number one family vacation destinations in the country.


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