Last June, my family and I drove to Destin, FL from Fort Worth, TX. It was approximately 731 miles, which took 12 hours. Unfortunately, my brother did not get to go, since he had to work. Every day we checked the progress of the devastating oil spill to see if it had reached the Destin beaches. The day before we left, it hit Panama City Beach and a decision had to be made whether or not to go. It appeared the current and wind had changed course and would miss the Destin Beaches during our stay, so we decided to take a chance and go. I am very glad we did.
To get some experience, since I had never driven on the highway, my dad let me drive part of the way there. I survived in spite of my mother’s back seat driving, which was making me extremely nervous. When we were driving through Mobile, Alabama, I spotted an alligator in a river. We pulled over to get a closer look. We had never seen one in the wild.
Vacation reservations were made through Resort Quest and we stayed at the Sun Destin Beach Resort in a condo, which was right on the beach. The condo was beautiful, spacious and fully equipped. All we had to buy was food for when we wanted to snack or cook. Our balcony overlooked the beach, which was an awesome sight. Resort Quest supplied us with a “Passport to Fun” coupon book, which came in very handy.
Our first night there, from our balcony, we watched a sunset wedding that was being performed on the beach. It was very peaceful and beautiful. Besides the beach, my favorite area was the Harborwalk Village at the Destin Bridge, which was close to the condo. There are many cool shops and businesses there. We rented waverunners there at Boogies Water Sports and went out on a 2 hour Dolphin excursion, where we became surrounded by dolphins very quickly as we entered the Gulf, and then we had free time in the Bay, where dolphins were around us frequently. It was great to be with the dolphins in the wild. Only my family, the guide and one other waverunner were with us. On free time, we were allowed to be out on our own, as long as we returned at a certain time. I was able to drive my own waverunner after I successfully took a test to get a Florida license. A place in Harbor Village is the Lucky Snapper Bar and Grill Restaurant. The food was great and the atmosphere was laid back. Another fun night was taking a two hour sunset dolphin cruise on the Original Sea Blaster, a large passenger boat that serves free beer, wine (to the adults) and sodas for everyone, the entire trip. It is also located in the Harbor Village.
Due to the oil scare hitting the beaches, there were few visitors in Destin, so no crowds anywhere. There were times that the wind was high, creating high, rough waves, causing a long stretch of the beach to be closed for short periods of time. We would go shop or play Frisbee on the beach at those times. Otherwise, the water and waves were awesome.
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.