This trip had no agenda except to play on the beach, and that is what we did! We ventured out on colder days (#hurricanesally) and found some local delights! We are in no way experts, amateurs at best, but here’s what we did and liked for the handful of you heading that way soon! So jealous. ♡
Also weaving in some family photos my friend Jenné snapped for us on portrait mode with a Jess Kettle preset. Saving our favorites for a Holiday greeting card. I’ll do outfit links at the very bottom.
FOOD + FUN:
We cooked a ton in the beach house and had Blue Bell Ice Cream every night (none in Utah!) If nothing else grocery shop for the amazing fruit, mangoes and papaya especially. We did eat a a few memorable stops:
Pickles (Seaside) for fried pickles a Dark Chocolate Dipped Key Lime Pie on a stick. Credit for this find: @hellohunterfowler.
The Shrimp Shack (Seaside) – lobster roll was fresh and tasty, but looked like a Fyre Festival sandwich. Unimpressed for the price.
Seaside has a Food Truck Row of Airstreams and lots of food options right by the above two spots. Behind the Airstreams is a town square of sorts with a ton of grass to run and play in. Seaside Style is very popular for a souvenir t-shirt, but every town makes their own version! Also find your way to Natchez Street for the Truman Show house!
Alys Beach is worth a visit, gorgeous and unlike any development I’ve seen.
The Donut Hole (Destin) – the old fashioned was bomb but everything I tried was great.
The Hub (Santa Rosa) – a cool outdoor food court, the pizza was delicious and everything we tried at the taco shop, too!
Fat Clemenza’s Pizza (Destin) – caramelized onion and gorgonzola blew my socks off.
Thai Basil (Destin) – Thai Basil fried rice and the Beef Waterfall Salad were bomb, everything else was pretty standard, but delicious.
We stayed in Destin – lots of grocery stores and inexpensive food. I would suggest staying beach front at a hotel, condo, or beach house that has its own beach access. Seems like every hotel had private beach access and private beach front. Staying even across the street from the beach you’d have to trek to find a public access point and then you couldn’t set your stuff down in any private areas.
30A has more beach town vibes, Seagrove was more commercial. Seaside was amazing and so darling with bikes and golf carts used primarily (Truman Show was filmed there) but the food was expensive. (Rosemary looks similar, but we didn’t go.) Alys Beach is partially under construction still but would be an incredible girl’s trip. A highly curated and aesthetically dictated town where everything is WHITE.
Green manicured hedges hide public parking. It’s white washed old Europe vibes. Santorini without the blue roofs.
We originally planned for April for Spring Break and rescheduled for September (hurricane season is for through October) and the rates went down $2000/week between the two dates. Something to think about! We stayed in a Harmony Beach Vacations property and would not recommend. They were horrible to deal with! Book early, like a year in advance so you don’t get stuck with the crappy property options like we did. Unrelated– Raleigh has recently learned to spot high stakes situations for me. If he can sense that it’s important to me, he takes great joy in being difficult (he thinks it’s funny). I think he can smell fear. 😉 Stinker, but here’s a photo of him in more cooperative times.
Raleigh- Tee + Cut off khakis (old)