Ultimate FAQ Guide About Destin Florida


Ultimate FAQ Guide About Destin Florida

Curious about Destin, Florida? Every day, millions of people are asking questions about Destin. Where is Destin? What is Crab Island? Can we camp on the beach in Destin? In order to help you find your answers, we have compiled a pretty extensive list of these common questions and we are adding to it all of the time. So please check back!

Where is Destin located?

Destin, Florida is located on Hwy. 98 in the Florida Panhandle. 30.3935° N, 86.4958° W.

It is about 48 miles from Pensacola and 57 miles from Panama City.

In what time zone is Destin?

Destin is in the Central Standard Time Zone

What county is Destin in?

Destin is in Okaloosa County in Florida.

What is Destin’s zipcode?

The zip code for Destin, Florida is 32541.

Is Destin good for shelling?

No, not really. This is not to say that you won’t find shells on the Destin beaches, but it is only a fraction of what you would find at Sanibel. It’s very common to find broken bits of sand dollars, conch shells, and lightning whelks. But as for whole shells, seekers will find the common American Auger, Dosina, Calico Scallop, Olive Shells, and coquina clams. Snorkeling at the jetties or combing the beach right after a big storm can give you a better selection of shells than a normal day on the beach.

Are fireworks allowed on Destin beaches?

Fireworks are not permitted on any Destin beach.  If you would like to see fireworks, the Destin Harbor Fireworks Show is a lot of fun. It’s every Thursday at 9 p.m. from Memorial Day through mid-August. You can view these from the Harbor Walk, take a Fireworks Cruise or watch them from Norriego Point.

Which Destin beaches are dog friendly?

Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed on any of Destin’s beaches. If caught you could be fined up to $500.  The City of Destin has a very nice, free dog park.  The Nancy Weidenhamer Dog Park located at 4100 Indian Bayou Trail. Also, Destin has many dog-friendly restaurants that welcome your fur babies. Most will provide water bowls and special treats for them.

Are bonfires allowed on the beaches of Destin?

No, but yes. Bonfires are only allowed by special permits. There are several companies in Destin that will provide the full service for you.

Are tents allowed on the Destin beaches overnight & can we camp out?

Pop-up tents are allowed on Destin beaches, yet, camping out overnight is not allowed. Also, whatever is left on the beach overnight, will be disposed of by the early morning beach crews.

Why does Destin sand squeak?

Destin sand is actually Quartz! It came down from the Appalachian Mountains 20,000 years ago. Over time, it has been ground down and the quartz polishes itself. So when you scrunch your toes in the lovely soft sand, it makes that wonderful little squeaky noise!

Why is the sand in Destin so white?

Again, it’s the quartz!

What is the best beach in Destin?

Henderson Beach State Park is by far the most beautiful beach in Destin, which is saying a lot! There is over a mile of unspoiled beachfront.

Find out more about Henderson Beach State Park as well as all Destin’s public beaches and trails in our Destin Public Beaches and Public Beach Access Trails blog post.

Are all Destin beaches public?

No. Destin has 6 miles of the beach but only about 1 ¼ are public beaches.

What is Destin known for?

Other than its beautiful emerald waters and soft white sand, Destin is known as the World’s Luckiest Fishing Village. In 1956 Governor LeRoy Collins made a comment at the Pensacola State Fair, “What do you expect when fishing from the world’s luckiest fishing village?”. That comment stuck.

Of course, there are other factors on why this is true. Destin’s East Pass allows fishermen quick access to the Gulf. Destin is also the closest land to the deepest part of the Gulf of Mexico. Both of which make for the best saltwater fishing in the world.

What airports are closest to Destin?

Destin/Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) is about 30 minutes from Destin. **Closest Commercial to Destin**

Destin Executive Airport (DTS) is located in the center of Destin. Community airport.

Allegiant, United, American Airlines, Southwest, Delta

Panama City Beach (ECP) is about an hour and a half. Commercial

United, Delta, Southwest, American Airlines

Pensacola International Airport (PNS) is about an hour and twenty minutes. Commercial

United, Delta, Southwest, Frontier, American Airlines, Silver Airways, Boutique Air

What is the best time of the year to visit Destin?

Pretty much any time is a great time to visit Destin. However, if you are looking for cheaper rates and fewer people, September (after Labor Day) and October are very good months to visit. The water is still warm, kids are back in school – so fewer families, and hotel/condo rates drop.

How can I get to Destin?

The best way to get to Destin is to drive or fly. Destin does not have a train station nor does it have a bus station. 

When is Hurricane Season?

Hurricane Season runs from June 1st to November 30th. 

When is High Tide in Destin?

The high tide and low tidee in Destin change every day. There is no set time for high tide or low tide. If you want to know what time high tide or low tide is when you are visiting Destin, use this page

I want to swim with wild dolphins when I am in Destin. 

Marine mammals are protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. It is illegal to harass marine mammals in the wild.

Also see the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service page. 

If I find turtle eggs on the beach, can I keep some?

Again NO. Sea Turtles are protected under the Endangered Species Act

Can I fly my drone in Destin? 

Yes, but, according to the City of Destin,  “You must be aware of the FAA rules and regulations. As technology constantly changes please be sure to stay up-to-date on drone operations”

Please see the City of Destin’s website for more help. 

Are there casinos in Destin, Florida?

No. The closest casino is the Wind Creek Casino and Resort located in Atmore, Alabama. 103 miles from Destin.

Are there sharks in Destin?

Yes, there can be. Destin is on the Gulf of Mexico and that’s where sharks live. Bull sharks, Nurse sharks, Hammerhead Sharks, Black Tip Sharks, and Reef sharks all call the gulf “home”. There have even been sightings of the gentle giants, Whale Sharks. Click here to learn about the sharks of Destin. 

What kind of fish can you catch in Destin?

Grouper, Amberjack, Red Snapper, Cobia, Tarpon, Sailfish, Wahoo, Bluefin Tuna, Triggerfish, and Mahi Mahi are the most popular fish that you can catch in Destin. 

Can you buy beer on Sundays in Destin?

Alcohol can be purchased in Destin from 7 A.M. – 4 A.M. 7 days a week. 

Will the beach be clear of seaweed on X day? 

Sargassum seaweed is the brown seaweed that clumps up on the beach.  This is almost impossible to predict. If there has been a storm or a lot of rain, that seems to stir it up. However, these are not the only factors. As sure as it will come, it will also go. 

What is June grass?

Junegrass is algae. It loves warm water. Visitors may find heavy days from May – October. It gets in your bathing suit and smells like asparagus. No one can say when it will come or go. Junegrass is not harmful to humans. It’s part of the Destin life.

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