Considering how many time that we’ve stayed in Sandestin, I can’t believe I’m just now putting together a Sandestin travel guide! We’ve been coming and staying here for YEARS. Between weddings, both friend and family vacations and my dad’s annual business conference trips, I’d like to think I’ve done it all and have some pretty good pointers including why staying at the Hilton Sandestin is the perfect hub for every type of activity. I’m sharing all of my favorite things to do if you’re planning a summer trip to these white sandy beaches (the MOST beautiful you’ll ever see.)
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Where to Stay: Hilton Sandestin
One of the best parts about staying at the Hilton Sandestin is the fact that you are RIGHT on the beach. Other accommodations on the Sandestin property can require a little more prep time to get to the actual beach – like hoping in a golf cart or car or on a bike or shuttle. There are also two pools (one heated) on the massive pool deck, so if you’re seeking some time in the sun, you’ve got really great choices. Beach or pool? These are the kind of decisions I’d like to be faced with.
And with any great vacation hotel, you’ve got great food choices as well. Let’s start with breakfast because the Hilton Sandestin coffee shop serves Starbucks. The last time I stayed here with my sister, we hit this up every single morning. Clutch. If you’re more of a person who likes to get down with a big breakfast, there’s also a massive breakfast buffet with every breakfast food imaginable.
For lunch, I like the two pool deck options. Barefoot Bar is an open air restaurant that serves up delicious lunch foods – I recommend both the nachos and the grilled shrimp tacos. There’s also a grab-and-go food store called Picnix where you can walk up and get salads or hot dogs or ice cream. This is a big hit with the kids who want to grab their food and get back to their pool life.
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If you’re looking for fruity drinks while on the beach or by the pool, Barefoot Bar is located right between the two pools – how convenient right? And as you head down to the beach, you’ll pass a little tiki hut where you can walk right up and order drinks AND food to be delivered down to your beach chair setup.
Okay dinner time! Hilton Sandestin has a few options for dinner including a restaurant with a lounge atmosphere but also includes a sushi bar. It’s basically the best of both worlds. You can order off both the full dinner menu and the sushi menu. (Highly recommend the pork egg rolls and the cucumber wrapped sushi roll.) If you’re looking for a formal dining option, Seagars is located downstairs and is one of my FAVORITE steakhouse meals.
True story, my sister and I went to dinner at Seagars by ourselves two nights in a row, ordered lobsters and charged it to my dad’s room during his business trip. I don’t think he ever called us out. Sorry dad if you’re reading this. I’m pretty sure we got dessert too.
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What to Do: Village of Baytowne Wharf
Right across Hwy 98, you will find Baytowne Wharf. It’s made up of shops, restaurants, a carousel, a boat marina, outdoor activities and more. (If you’re staying at the Hilton Sandestin, there is a complimentary shuttle that goes to and from Baytowne Wharf throughout the day!) My favorite time to head to Baytowne Wharf is early evening when the restaurants light up to grab dinner and drinks. During the summer, this place gets really busy, so you will want to call ahead for reservations at any of the restaurants.
The Village Door is a popular bar if you want to go somewhere and dance!
Another Broken Egg Cafe serves up some delicious breakfast.
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More to Do Around Sandestin:
If you want to head out and explore, Destin Jeep Rentals is SO fun for even just a day rental. They will take the sides off the jeeps for you, so that you can cruise around and check out some of the state parks and public beaches
One of the best outlet malls that I’ve ever been to! Definitely go in the morning to beat the traffic and crowds though because Hwy 98 can get congested during the day.
Blue Mountain Ice Creamery
Not a far drive from Sandestin, you’ll have to visit Blue Mountain Ice Creamery on 30A – it’s housed in the cutest pastel house and is the best way to cool off during summer.
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Cruise down 30A
Take a ride and see the cutest beach towns on 30A! I love stopping by Seaside, Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach which are all completely different and unique.
For even more suggestions including state parks and family activities, check the Hilton Sandestin’s guide here!
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What are your favorite things to do in Sandestin? I’d love to hear, so I can check them out next time I’m there!
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