Located along Florida’s famed Emerald Coast, Destin is one of the most popular destinations in the world for trolling, jetty fishing, and deep sea fishing. The popular Destin Harbor Boardwalk is another family-friendly activity that is worth checking out. There’s always something happening on the boardwalk, which stretches nearly a quarter of a mile along the harbor. It features stunning views of the sandy beaches and sparkling shoreline, as well as a number of fun shops and restaurants.
Beyond the beachfront, you’ll find excellent modern restaurants serving all types of delicious fare. Plus, live music, theater, and art galleries.
So read on and start planning your next trip — and if you need lodging, book a Destin vacation rental to save money and gain so much more space & privacy over a traditional hotel.
Top 9 Destin Activities
In their own words: The Destin History & Fishing Museum is a 501 C-3 Non-Profit run by a Board of Directors opening to the public October 1, 2005. The museum is a tourist destination and key historical repository for the Destin area. The exhibits present the history of Destin and journey from a small fishing village to a major tourist attraction. The museum includes:
- 5,500 sq. ft. of exhibit space in the main building covering early Indians through development and growth of the village.
- Exhibits in the outdoor Museum Historic Park Complex including the historic seine boat “Primrose”, mullet boat “Lil Jimmy”, seine net reel, and the original Old Post Office as well as the “Footprints in the Sand” memorial walkway.
- Over 75 mounts of locally caught fish.
- Historic photographs, artifacts, fishing equipment and documents of early Destin and the Fishing industry.
- Mike Long Memorial Fish Wall featuring many fish mounts on a mural showcasing the science why the local fishing is so good.
- Science of “Why Destin Sand is White”.
- Historic and genealogical data on the founding families and those that shaped the growth of early Destin.
- Destin Fishing Rodeo Gallery featuring “all things” Rodeo in videos, photos and artifacts.
In their own words: Our tour leaves at set times throughout the day and lasts about 3 hours. This very popular tour takes you to two areas and then on a dolphin tour. We’ll go into the bay where you’ll shallow water snorkel looking for crabs and shells.
After approx. 1 hour snorkeling in the the bay, we pull anchor and search for dolphin before we set anchor again near the Destin east jetties where you will snorkel for schools of small fish and a variety of wildlife. The jetties are located on the beaches of Holiday Isle where you will also have free use of our single and double kayaks. When you snorkel at the jetties the water will be as shallow as the beach, or as deep as you’re comfortable with.
Destin Snorkel boats are made for snorkeling; comfortable seating, restroom on board, and canopy for shade. Our snorkel tours are fun for all ages and abilities.
We provide sanitized snorkeling equipment (fins, masks and snorkels) along with free soda and bottled water. In addition, you have FREE use of our single and double kayaks while snorkeling at the jetties!
In their own words: Along Route 98, between Destin and Fort Walton Beach, lies the Gulfarium Marine Adventure & Water Park. This place is amazing! Young or old, you can’t help but be wowed by the dolphin and sea lion shows. Take your time and stay a few hours, learning all about sea life in the Florida area, while getting up close and personal with some of your favorite ocean friends. The location is convenient and the pricing is fair, especially if you buy a ‘season pass’.
Come snorkel with stingrays and sharks, feed penguins and watch otters play at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park. Featuring dolphin and sea lion shows, the marine park is also a place where kids can receive VIP training from staff on proper animal care.
In their own words: Cuvée is quality. It is precision. It is passion and dedication, manifest. It is a cultivated expression of creativity, cuisine, and community.
After undergoing a transfer of ownership and an extensive six-month renovation project in early 2017, the new Cuvée Kitchen + Wine Bar has resumed its legendary status as one of the hottest and most electrifying dining experiences on the Emerald Coast. Propelled by a seasonal menu, focusing on local seafood, farm fresh ingredients and premium cuts, and backed by a beverage program highlighting craft cocktails and an international wine list – Cuvée Kitchen + Wine Bar is the latest venture of local restaurateurs Christopher Ruyan and Tyler Jarvis of Brotulas Seafood House and Steamer and Jackacudas Seafood & Sushi.
In their own words: At Destin’s most awarded restaurant, Marina Café, it is all about sensational food, attentive service and breathtaking harbor views from the candlelit dining room that envelopes you in soft colors, and high ceilings. Relax and enjoy our extensive wine collection with over 100 wines that perfectly complement the wonderfully progressive cuisine. With fresh daily seafood selections, USDA prime steaks, pastas, sushi and wood-fired pizzas, there is something for everyone at Marina Café.
In their own words: Aside from the unbelievable taste of our ice cream, our stores have a motto — “have fun!” And that is exactly what visiting Bruster’s is: fun!
Participating stores have events like Banana Thursday’s – bring in your own banana for half off a banana split, and free doggie sundaes for your furry friends, and free kiddie cones for pipsqueaks under 40” tall.
In their own words: Described as the “best family activity ever!”, Sand Castle Lessons have joined the fun filled activity line ups in Destin and Fort Walton beach. Rick Mungeam, the CEO of the company said, “Fort Walton Beach is a beautiful vacation destinations. SandCastle Lessons are adding something distinctive and truly memorable, and we have received a great reception with this new location.”
A SandCastle Coach will meet clients at their resort beach, with all the tools and equipment necessary to teach “SandCastle Success”. The 2 hour lesson begins with a demonstration of tools and their usage. Sandcastles that stand approximately 3 ½ feet tall frequently cause “SandCastle Envy”. People have described this quality activity as the highlight and crown jewel of their family vacation. A father from Little Rock, Arkansas expressed, “We were completely amazed. Now we can create sandcastles like the pros. Make sure to purchase the sandcastle tool kit so you can create after your lesson. Let’s face it, what we remember most about vacations are unique and interesting experiences. My family is still talking about it! We highly recommend it for anyone. Worth every penny!”
In their own words: Are you planning a deep sea fishing or bay fishing charter in Destin, Fl? How would you like to get hooked up to a drag screaming Amberjack on top-water? Want to catch some gorgeous Gulf Red Snapper and have a local restaurant prepare it for you within hours? How about a dip in the crystal clear Bahama blue water after a long day of fishing? We can make it happen! We specialize in making sure YOU have an awesome day on the water! Give us a call to book your next Destin fishing charter! We are open year-round and can accommodate parties up to 17. Come experience the World’s Luckiest Fishing Village with Gulf-Angler Fishing Charters. Located on the beautiful Destin Harbor!
In their own words: Just Chute Me Parasail will take you where you’ve never been before—
up to 800 feet of line and up to 400 feet in the air for a breathtaking panoramic view of the beach and surf.
As winner of the WSIA Parasail Operator of the Year award, we maintain a strong commitment to providing our customers with an outstanding activity that is as safe as it is exciting! Just Chute Me uses only the latest certified equipment. We maintain a fleet of reliable boats. And our captains are highly trained and experienced in all aspects of parasailing and watercraft safety.