Destin/Ft. Walton ... a couple of questions?

Old Sep 4th, 2006, 08:06 PM
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Destin/Ft. Walton ... a couple of questions?

Because of all the Red Tide creeping up the Southwest coast of Florida, I might try the Panhandle beaches instead. First, are they just as calm (the water) as the beaches at Indian Shores, Clearwater, Sanibel, etc.? In a few threads I've seen something about seaweed at the Panhandle beaches?

Has anyone stayed at the Marriott Sandestin Resort in Destin? I'm considering the Residence Inn there ... it would mean a tram ride to the beach, but other than that, any negatives?

Actually, I wouldn't mind a really nice little Mom & Pop motel or cottages on the beaches there ... does anyone have any recommendations in that category? Knowing nothing about the area, I wouldn't know where to start. YES, I've been on TripAdvisor ........ so much that my eyes were crossing!

Old Sep 4th, 2006, 08:20 PM
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bb, you can't go wrong with any of the Panhandle beaches. For mom and pop type hotels on a beach that isn't crowded, you may want to look at Mexico Beach. Destin/Sandestin/Panama City Beach are too crowded for me.
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Old Sep 5th, 2006, 04:58 AM
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When are you going, Bonnie? The beaches are beautiful, but crowded in the summer, especially on weekends. Not crowded in the fall on weekdays. Weekends in the fall won't be as crowded unless the weather's still warm enough for swimming (like now).

I think the wave action will be about the same as Clearwater, etc, although naturally weather can affect this. Seaweed can be a problem like Red Tide that may be seasonal, and comes and goes. I hope SunshineSue or some of those FL Fodorites come along with more pertinent information. Good luck with the planning!
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Old Sep 5th, 2006, 05:10 AM
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I think a condo would be the best option. My favorites are further east, along highway 30A, in an area referred to as the Beaches of South Walton. IMHO, the advantage of the Panhandle is the variety and affordability of the condos available for rent--it seems much less an area of hotels and motels.
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Old Sep 5th, 2006, 05:26 AM
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I agree with Marilyn. Check out rental homes on 30A. I just looked at and saw many available with Fall lower rates. Just click on Florida, then Panhandle, then Beaches of South Walton.
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Old Sep 5th, 2006, 10:12 AM
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There has been lots of seaweed on Panama City Beach this summer. The Gulf in the Panhandle is generally a bit rougher than southwest Florida. Earlier this year, my friends and I had reservations at SeaGrove Villas. We checked it out, and it seemed to be a delightful "old Florida" style motel, often mentioned in Southern Living. However, our group decided we needed a condo, so we changed our reservations to Dunes of Seagrove through Resort Quest and we were very happy.
Most of the Panhandle schools, if not all, started schoool around the first of August, so it has not been very crowded around here, except for Labor Day weekend. Many of the attractions for kids are already closed for the season. In fact, rates are already down for the fall.
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Old Sep 6th, 2006, 02:40 PM
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Thanks so much to all of you. I will check out all your info in the next few days. It sounds like a great area! We will go there as early as next Saturday if we are not able to get on a beach from Tarpon Springs to Sanibel without Red Tide! I think either way, we will have a wonderful time. As always, your replies are immensely appreciated!
Old Sep 6th, 2006, 02:55 PM
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We just returned from Seaside/Water Color, FL. The beaches along 30A are beautiful. Weather was perfect...warm but not humid (perfect beach weather).

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Old Sep 12th, 2006, 08:58 AM
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Yes this is GREAT time to head to 30-A!!
I try to spend as much of my Sept and Oct there as's that good!
One Seagrove Place (condos) is a good value and fabulous location. If you decide on this area let us know so we can make other recommendations for you...restaurants, etc...
Have a great trip wherever you go!!
seagrover is offline  
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