Top 10 Things to do in Destin, Florida

Looking for the best things to do in Destin, Florida? Here’s the top 10 activities not-to-miss on your next visit to the Emerald Coast!

1. The Beach

The soft, sugar-white sand and emerald green waters on the beach in Destin are the number one area attraction. Destin has 13 public beach accesses to enjoy on your visit where you can soak up the sun, go for a swim, and listen to the sound of the sound of the waves. When you are relaxed and ready for some adventures, check out the rest of this list!

2. Parasailing

Parasailing is the best way to see Destin, Florida and an experience you will never forget! Pelican Adventures offers parasailing trips all year long (weather permitting) with multiple boats going out several times every day. Your flight starts with a controlled take off and ends with a soft landing back on the boat with an optional dip in-between if you want to get your feet wet. Come see the Emerald Coast from the sky! For more information about parasailing with us, check out our frequently asked parasailing questions page and call us with questions or book online!

3. Deep Sea Fishing

A visit to Destin, Florida is not complete without a deep sea fishing adventure in the Gulf of Mexico, which is why they call it the World’s Luckiest Fishing Village! At Pelican Adventures, we have deep sea fishing options for everyone, from beginner to expert. Our party boat fishing trip is a fun and affordable way to get a taste of fishing in the Gulf of Mexico waters and we also have shared charters and private trips available if you want a smaller boat with fewer people. For more information about deep sea fishing with us, check out our frequently asked fishing questions page and call us with questions or book online!

4. Crab Island

Crab Island is a submerged sandbar where visitors arrive by boat to play in the waist deep waters. The water color varies with the tides and storms, but on the best days it is crystal clear and looks like a swimming pool. Crab Island is only accessible by watercraft, so you will either need to rent a boat, or go on a tour with a captain. Pelican Adventures offers a private Crab Island tour that can accommodate up to 6 people on our “Just Right” boat complete with a Captain. This is a great option if you are not comfortable driving a boat yourself and want to be on a tour with just your friends and family. Let our trained and certified captains do the driving while you just enjoy playing at Crab Island!

6. Snorkeling and Shelling

Snorkeling and Shelling is a great way to see the underwater world of Destin. You never know what you will see on a snorkeling trip but we see many varieties of crabs, fish and sometimes even dolphins and sea turtles. Some people try to snorkel on their own when visiting Destin, but this is not advisable unless you are experienced and have knowledge of the tides and currents in various snorkeling spots. Pelican Adventures offers snorkeling and shelling trips so you can let our expert instructors worry about safety and equipment while you just enjoy the experience! Snorkeling trips are available on our “Anticipation” boat that holds up to 25 people or you can book a private excursion for up to 6 of your friends and family on our smaller “Just Right” boat. For more information about snorkeling in Destin, check out our snorkeling and shelling frequently asked questions page. Call for more information or book online!

7. Destin Harbor

The beaches in Destin, Florida are beautiful but make sure to also check out Destin Harbor while you are here. Destin Harbor has shopping, dining, entertainment, festivals, fireworks, kids activities, and more. Take some time when you are here to wander the docks of Destin Harbor and enjoy all the fun, Pelican Adventures is located directly on Destin Harbor so you will see all the sights on your boat ride out with us too!

8. Restaurants with Fresh Caught Gulf Seafood

Cook your Catch at Brotulas

While you are on Destin Harbor, be sure to enjoy one of the many restaurants offering fresh gulf-to-table seafood that you can’t get anywhere else. Some great options include Boshamps, Harbor Docks (located right next door to us!), Dewey Destins, Harbor Tavern, Brotulas, Tailfins, East Pass Oyster House, Marina Cafe, and many more! Better yet, catch the fish yourself on a deep sea fishing trip with Pelican Adventures and have the restaurant cook it for you. Most of the restaurants on Destin Harbor will have a “Cook your Catch” offering where they fix up your fresh caught fish with side items. Our deckhands will clean and bag the fish for you to make it easy and the fish doesn’t get much fresher! For more information on cooking your fresh catch in Destin, check out this post: The Best Places to Cook your Catch on Destin Harbor

9. Dolphin Cruises

Dolphins are abundant in Destin, Florida but seeing them never gets old! They are fun and playful and often hang around the boats on Destin Harbor saying hi to visitors. Make time to try and see dolphins in the wild next time you are in Destin by going on a dolphin cruise or by booking any of our excursions and watching out for them as the boat goes through the harbor and the East Pass. Dolphins are frequently spotted from our fishing, parasailing, and snorkeling boats and the captain will point them out to you along the way. You might even see sharks, sting rays, and turtles too!

10. Watch Sunset or Sunrise over the Water

Sunrise in Destin on a Fishing Boat headed out for deep sea fishing

Watching a sunset or sunrise over the water is a great way to start or end a perfect day in Destin, Florida. Many of the waterfront restaurants on the beach and harbor have beautiful sunset views that you can enjoy with dinner. You can often catch the sunrise or sunset from one of our fishing boats too depending on the time of year and whether you book a morning or afternoon trip. Seeing the sunrise over the Gulf of Mexico as you are heading out for a fishing trip or the sunset as you are heading back in, is a magical experience you will always remember.


We hope this post helps you enjoy the best activities in Destin. Give us a call to book your adventures!

Pelican Adventures

600 Harbor Boulevard, Destin, FL 32541