Destin – Located in the panhandle of Florida, the weather here can be chillier than down south but the beaches are just as gorgeous. Of course, chilly to me, being a Floridian, is when it gets below 60 degrees. Visit Gator Beach or Henderson Beach State Park, play a round of golf at Kelly Plantation or Emerald Bay Golf Courses or fish to your heart’s content.
First stop south along the gulf, is Clearwater Beach. A large expanse of soft white sand, a pier with a nightly craft fair and interesting beachside eateries. Fun for the whole family.
The gulf coast has some of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the US and the Naples/Marco Island area is no exception. This area is a little more upscale but the beaches are beautiful and there are plenty of golf courses and restaurants to please everyone’s tastes. Nearby Ft. Myers Beach is a little more reasonable and laid back and better for family getaways.
Head over to the east coast for some Atlantic wave action and lovely Ft. Lauderdale (main pic above) – I love Beach Place, which offers a wide expanse of beach, plenty of nearby restaurants and a water taxi to take you to Las Olas Blvd. If it is a cloudy day, you can even take in the Museum of Science and Discovery complete with IMAX theater.
A little further south is Miami Beach. We are having great weather lately, one of the warmest winters I can remember, with temps in the low 80s. Perfect for strolling along the beach or along Ocean Avenue. This is more of a single/couples area rather than families with plenty of upscale shopping on Lincoln Road and too many to mention gourmet restaurants, bars and night clubs.
Last stop, and I do mean last stop, is Key West. Closer to Cuba than to mainland Florida, you will find beaches (although not as large or white as the west coast of Florida), great fishing, boating and snorkeling, plenty of nightlife, restaurants from steak houses to shacks, and always friendly and fascinating people. There is never a dull moment in Margaritaville.
So what are you waiting for, head on down to sunny Florida and give yourself that extra Vitamin D and much needed R&R!