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Hidden Gems: Lesser-Known Spots to Explore in Destin and 30A

SIJI L. July 11, 2024
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Destin and 30A are well-known for their stunning beaches, upscale communities, and bustling attractions. However, beyond the popular spots lie hidden gems that offer a more intimate and unique experience. If you’re looking to explore beyond the usual tourist destinations, here are some lesser-known spots that deserve a visit.

1. Eden Gardens State Park

Located off Scenic 30A, Eden Gardens State Park is a tranquil oasis that features beautiful gardens, towering oak trees, and a historic mansion. The Wesley House, a stunning 19th-century plantation home, is the centerpiece of the park. Take a leisurely stroll through the gardens, enjoy a picnic by the bayou, or tour the mansion for a glimpse into the area's history.

2. Grayton Beach State Park Western Lake

While Grayton Beach is popular, many visitors overlook the serene beauty of Western Lake. This coastal dune lake offers excellent opportunities for paddleboarding, kayaking, and bird watching. The calm waters and surrounding natural beauty provide a peaceful retreat from the more crowded beach areas.

3. Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park boasts over three miles of pristine beaches, rare dune lakes, and old-growth longleaf pine forests. Hike the park’s trails, rent a bike, or simply relax on the uncrowded beaches. The park’s diverse ecosystems make it a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers.

4. The Underwater Museum of Art

Located off the coast of Grayton Beach State Park, the Underwater Museum of Art is a unique attraction that combines art and marine conservation. This artificial reef is home to a variety of sculptures that serve as habitats for marine life. Snorkelers and scuba divers can explore this underwater gallery, which is unlike any other in the world.

5. Norriego Point

Norriego Point in Destin is a quiet, picturesque spot perfect for a day of relaxation. With calm, clear waters ideal for swimming and snorkeling, it’s a great place to escape the crowds. The area also offers beautiful views of the Destin Harbor, making it a fantastic spot for a picnic or simply enjoying the scenery.

Discover the Hidden Charms of Destin and 30A

These hidden gems in Destin and 30A provide unique experiences that go beyond the usual attractions. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or someone looking to unwind in a peaceful setting, these lesser-known spots offer something special. So, next time you’re in the area, take a detour from the beaten path and explore the hidden charms that make Destin and 30A truly extraordinary. Happy exploring!

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