There is no shortage of fun and exciting things to do in and around Destin. Whether you’re cruising along the water in a comfortable recreational vehicle, swinging your fishing rod over the pier, letting your hair down as you indulge in the bubbling nightlife or immersing yourself in the rich history and culture of one of the many museums, your itinerary will certainly be filled to the brim with adventure. But when it comes to adventure, don’t forget your hiking boots, because Destin will no doubt deliver. There are plenty of easy and accessible trails for you and your family to embark upon, giving you the chance to discover breath-taking views of Destin, while also getting the opportunity to see some beautiful wildlife. Here are our recommendations for local and beginner friendly trails that anyone can enjoy!
The Timpoochee Trail is a paved multi-use trail that spans 18 miles along Scenic Highway 30A, which is known for its charming beach towns and stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico. This trail is perfect for beginners as it is relatively flat and easy to navigate. Along the way, you’ll pass through several small towns such as Seaside, Grayton Beach, and WaterColor, offering plenty of opportunities to take a break and grab a bite to eat.
One of the unique features of the Timpoochee Trail is that it passes through several state parks, such as Grayton Beach State Park and Deer Lake State Park. These parks offer additional hiking trails and beach access, making it easy to turn your bike ride into a full day of adventure. The Timpoochee Trail also provides access to several beach access points, allowing you to stop and take a dip in the Gulf of Mexico whenever you please.
Henderson Beach State Park Nature Trail:
Located in the heart of our beloved city of Destin, Henderson Beach State Park is home to a short and easy 0.9 mile nature trail that winds through a coastal forest. This trail is perfect for beginners who want to experience the beauty of nature without taking on a long hike. The trail is well-maintained and stroller-friendly, making it a great option for families with young children.
As you walk along the trail, you’ll see a variety of coastal flora and fauna, including sand live oaks, magnolias, and saw palmettos. The park also offers a boardwalk that leads to the beach, providing easy access to the ocean. Henderson Beach State Park is a great place to spend any part of your day, whether you’re taking a leisurely stroll along the nature trail or with your feet up, soaking up the sun on the beach.
Topsail Hill Preserve State Park Morris Lake Trail:
Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is located just a few miles east of Destin and is home to the Morris Lake Trail, a 3.2-mile hiking trail that takes you through a variety of landscapes, including sand dunes, pine forests, and wetlands. The trail is a great option for beginners who want to explore a little away from the coast.
One of the stand out features of the Morris Lake Trail is that it leads to Morris Lake, a picturesque spot for a picnic or a swim. The lake is surrounded by towering sand dunes and provides a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of the beach. Along the way, you’ll also have the opportunity to see a variety of wildlife, including birds and alligators. Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is a must-visit destination for nature lovers and anyone looking for a peaceful break from the beach.
Grayton Beach State Park Dune Nature Trail:
The Grayton Beach State Park Dune Nature Trail is a 1-mile loop trail that takes you through the stunning dunes of Grayton Beach State Park.
Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to see a variety of coastal plants, such as sea oats and saw palmettos, as well as birds and other wildlife. The trail also offers several boardwalks and observation decks, which provide stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico and the surrounding dunes.
One of the exceptional features of the Grayton Beach State Park Dune Nature Trail is that it offers access to Western Lake, a very rare coastal dune lake. The lake is surrounded by massive sand dunes and provides a peaceful oasis from the crowds at the beach. Visitors can swim, paddle, or fish in the lake, or simply relax on the sandy shores.
Point Washington State Forest Eastern Lake Trail:
Located just a few miles east of Grayton Beach State Park, Point Washington State Forest is home to the Eastern Lake Trail, a 3.5-mile hiking trail that takes you through a variety of landscapes, including pine forests, wetlands, and coastal dunes.
A huge advantage of taking this trail means you’ll gain access to Easter Lake which provides a tranquil escape from the crowds in town and around the city. Along the way, you’ll also have the opportunity to see a variety of wildlife, including birds, turtles, and alligators.
In addition to the Eastern Lake Trail, Point Washington State Forest offers several other hiking and biking trails, including the Eastern Lake Bike Trail, a 3.5-mile trail that is perfect for beginners. The park also offers picnic areas and a playground, making it a great destination for families.
As you can see, there are so many great options in and around Destin to bust out your walking shoes and get moving. These trails are really only the beginning of what is on offer, and we encourage you to get out here and speak with locals and local businesses, who possess a wealth of knowledge for other accessible and special spots to find. Indeed, there is something for everybody! After stretching those legs and flexing those calf muscles, come join us on the water where you can ride around in comfort on one of our pontoons or jetskis, contact us for more info here!