Things To Do In Destin In December

December is a magical time to visit Destin, Florida. With its stunning white sandy beaches and mild winter weather, this coastal paradise offers a plethora of activities and events for all ages. Whether you’re a nature lover, a foodie, or a shopaholic, there’s something for everyone in this charming city. In this blog article, we will explore the top things to do in Destin in December, ensuring you have a memorable and enjoyable experience.

Enjoy Festive Lights and Decorations

Destin truly comes alive during the holiday season, with vibrant lights and festive decorations adorning the streets and buildings. One of the must-visit spots is HarborWalk Village, where you can immerse yourself in the magical atmosphere. Take a leisurely stroll along the harbor, surrounded by twinkling lights and charming decorations. The Village of Baytowne Wharf is another enchanting destination, offering a winter wonderland experience with its sparkling lights and beautifully decorated Christmas tree.

For a unique experience, hop aboard the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade. Watch as boats adorned with dazzling lights float along the harbor, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. You can also embark on a sunset cruise to witness the stunning sunset and the transition into a breathtaking display of lights as the city comes alive after dark.


Immerse yourself in the magical atmosphere of Destin during the holiday season by exploring the festive lights and decorations. Visit HarborWalk Village and The Village of Baytowne Wharf to witness the stunning displays. Don’t miss the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade and sunset cruises for a truly enchanting experience.

Explore Henderson Beach State Park

Nature enthusiasts will find solace in the beauty of Henderson Beach State Park. This coastal preserve offers a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Explore the park’s scenic hiking trails, which wind through sand dunes and coastal forests, providing breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. Keep an eye out for the diverse wildlife that calls this park home, including sea turtles, birds, and even the occasional dolphin sighting.

One of the highlights of Henderson Beach State Park is its pristine beaches. With crystal-clear waters and sugar-white sand, the beaches offer the perfect backdrop for relaxation and tranquility. Pack a picnic and spend the day lounging under the sun, or take a refreshing dip in the Gulf waters. December offers mild temperatures, making it an ideal time to enjoy the beach without the summer crowds.


Henderson Beach State Park is a haven for nature lovers. Explore the park’s scenic hiking trails and enjoy breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. Relax on the pristine beaches and soak in the beauty of the surroundings. Keep an eye out for wildlife, and don’t forget to pack a picnic for a memorable day in nature.

Indulge in Water Sports

Despite the cooler temperatures, December still offers plenty of opportunities for water sports enthusiasts in Destin. Take advantage of the calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and try your hand at kayaking or paddleboarding. Glide along the shoreline, taking in the stunning coastal scenery and enjoying the peacefulness of the water.

If you’re seeking a bit more adventure, consider renting a jet ski. Feel the thrill as you zoom across the waves, experiencing an adrenaline rush like no other. Many local rental companies offer guided tours, allowing you to explore hidden coves and scenic spots while enjoying the thrill of the ride.

For those who prefer a more leisurely water activity, consider booking a sunset dolphin cruise. Set sail on a comfortable boat and witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitat. December is an excellent time to spot dolphins, as they often gather in larger groups during this time of year. Marvel at their playful antics and enjoy the peacefulness of the sea as the sun sets on the horizon.


Destin offers a range of exciting water sports activities in December. Try kayaking or paddleboarding for a serene experience, or rent a jet ski for an adrenaline-filled adventure. Don’t miss the opportunity to go on a sunset dolphin cruise and witness these incredible creatures in their natural habitat.

Shop Till You Drop

Destin is renowned for its shopping scene, and December is the perfect time to take advantage of the holiday sales and find unique gifts for your loved ones. The city boasts several shopping centers and outlet malls, offering a wide array of options for every budget.

If you’re looking for high-end fashion brands, head to the Silver Sands Premium Outlets. This upscale outlet mall features over 100 designer stores, including Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, and Coach. Enjoy substantial discounts on your favorite brands and find the perfect holiday outfit or gift.

For a more relaxed shopping experience, explore Destin Commons. This open-air lifestyle center offers a mix of well-known retailers like H&M and Sephora, as well as local boutiques and specialty stores. Browse through the eclectic selection of clothing, accessories, and home decor items, and discover unique treasures to take home.


Destin is a shopper’s paradise, and December provides the perfect opportunity to indulge in some retail therapy. Visit Silver Sands Premium Outlets for high-end fashion brands at discounted prices. Explore Destin Commons for a mix of well-known retailers and local boutiques. Find the perfect holiday gifts and treat yourself to something special.

Discover Local Cuisine

Destin’s culinary scene is as diverse as it is delicious. From fresh seafood to Southern comfort food, the city offers a wide range of dining options that will satisfy even the most discerning palates. December is an excellent time to explore the local cuisine and indulge in some mouthwatering dishes.

Start your culinary adventure by visiting one of the many seafood restaurants dotted along the coast. Feast on succulent Gulf shrimp, freshly caught fish, and delectable oysters. Whether you prefer them fried, grilled, or in a flavorful seafood boil, you’ll find a variety of options to tantalize your taste buds.

For a taste of Southern comfort food, head to one of the local diners or cafes. Indulge in classics like fried chicken, collard greens, and cornbread. Don’t forget to try the famous Key lime pie for a sweet and tangy dessert that perfectly encapsulates the flavors of Florida.

Destin also boasts a vibrant food truck scene, offering a fusion of flavors from around the world. From Mexican tacos to Korean barbecue, you can satisfy your cravings for international cuisine without leaving the city.


Destin is a haven for food enthusiasts, with its diverse culinary scene. Sample fresh seafood at one of the many seafood restaurants or indulge in Southern comfort food classics. Don’t miss the opportunity to try international flavors at the city’s food trucks. Embark on a culinary adventure and savor the deliciousness of Destin.

Attend Festive Events

December in Destin is filled with exciting events and festivals that capture the holiday spirit. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere and make lasting memories by attending some of these delightful celebrations.

One of the highlights of the season is the Destin Christmas Parade. Gather along the parade route and watch as beautifully decorated floats, marching bands, and local organizations pass by. Feel the holiday cheer as participants wave and toss candies to the crowd, creating a joyous and lively atmosphere.

For a unique shopping experience, visit the Holiday Market at Grand Boulevard. Browse through the stalls filled with local crafts, artisanal products, and holiday-themed gifts. Enjoy live music, festive decorations, and food vendors as you shop for one-of-a-kind treasures.

Another event not to be missed is the Winter Guest Fest at HarborWalk Village. This family-friendly festival features live entertainment, interactive games, and winter-themed activities. From ice skating to snowman building contests, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.


Destin comes alive with festive events and celebrations in December. Attend the Destin Christmas Parade to experience the holiday spirit, or visit the Holiday Market at Grand Boulevard for unique gifts. Don’t miss the Winter Guest Fest at HarborWalk Village for a fun-filled family-friendly festival.

Take a Dolphin Cruise

Embark on an unforgettable dolphin cruise and witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitat. December offers a great opportunity to spot dolphins, as they often gather in larger groups during this time of year. Cruise along the Gulf of Mexico on a comfortable boat, guided by experienced captains who will take you to the best dolphin-watching spots.

As you sail through the sparkling waters, keep your eyes peeled for dolphins swimming alongside the boat. Watch in awe as they leap out of the water, playfully riding the waves. The knowledgeable crew will provide interesting facts and information about these incredible creatures, adding to the educational aspect of the experience.

Many dolphin cruises also offer the chance to explore other marine life. Spot sea turtles, birds, and even the occasional manatee. Enjoy the serenity of the sea and let the beauty of nature captivate your senses.


Experience the magic of witnessing dolphins in their natural habitat by going on a dolphin cruise. December offers a great opportunity to see these majestic creatures in larger groups. Cruise along the Gulf of Mexico, enjoy the serenity ofthe sea, and keep an eye out for other marine life like sea turtles and birds. Join a knowledgeable crew who will provide interesting information about dolphins, making this a truly unforgettable experience.

Visit Destin History and Fishing Museum

Delve into the rich history and heritage of Destin by visiting the Destin History and Fishing Museum. This museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the city’s beginnings as a small fishing village and its transformation into the beloved coastal destination it is today.

Explore the exhibits, which feature artifacts, photographs, and interactive displays that showcase the area’s maritime history. Learn about the early settlers and the challenges they faced as they built their lives around the bountiful waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Discover the evolution of fishing techniques and see antique fishing equipment that was once used by local fishermen.

One of the highlights of the museum is the opportunity to step aboard the “Primrose,” a restored fishing vessel that offers a hands-on experience of what it was like to be a fisherman in the early days of Destin. Hear stories from knowledgeable guides who share insights into the fishing industry and the impact it has had on the community.


Immerse yourself in the history of Destin by visiting the Destin History and Fishing Museum. Explore exhibits that showcase the area’s maritime history and learn about the challenges faced by early settlers. Step aboard the “Primrose” and experience the life of a fisherman firsthand. Gain a deeper appreciation for the heritage of this coastal city.

Relax at a Spa

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and treat yourself to some well-deserved pampering at one of Destin’s luxurious spas. December offers a perfect opportunity to unwind and rejuvenate, surrounded by the serene beauty of the coastal landscape.

Indulge in a range of spa treatments, from massages to facials, designed to melt away stress and tension. Enjoy a deep tissue massage to release any knots and tightness in your muscles, or opt for a soothing hot stone massage for ultimate relaxation. Let the skilled therapists take care of you as you drift into a state of bliss.

Many spas in Destin also offer specialized treatments using local ingredients, such as sea salt scrubs or seaweed wraps. These treatments harness the healing properties of the ocean to nourish your skin and leave you feeling refreshed and revitalized.

In addition to the treatments, take advantage of the spa’s amenities, such as sauna, steam rooms, and whirlpools. Indulge in a moment of tranquility as you soak in the peaceful ambiance of the spa environment.


Escape from the stresses of life by visiting one of Destin’s luxurious spas. Enjoy a range of treatments, from massages to facials, designed to relax and rejuvenate. Experience specialized treatments that incorporate local ingredients for a truly unique experience. Take advantage of the spa’s amenities and immerse yourself in serenity.

Experience a Sunset Cruise

End your day on a high note by embarking on a romantic sunset cruise in Destin. Witness the breathtaking colors painting the sky as the sun sets over the Gulf of Mexico, creating a serene and unforgettable experience.

Step aboard a comfortable boat and set sail along the coast, as the sun begins its descent. Feel the gentle breeze on your face and take in the panoramic views of the coastline. As the sky transforms into a canvas of vibrant hues, find the perfect spot on the boat to capture the magical moment with your camera.

Many sunset cruises in Destin offer additional amenities to enhance your experience. Sip on a glass of champagne or enjoy a delicious dinner as you watch the sun’s final rays disappear below the horizon. Some cruises even provide live music, creating a romantic ambiance that is perfect for couples.

Whether you’re looking for a romantic evening with your partner or a peaceful moment of reflection, a sunset cruise in Destin is a must-do activity in December.


End your day in Destin by embarking on a romantic sunset cruise. Witness the stunning colors of the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico and capture the moment with breathtaking photographs. Enjoy additional amenities such as champagne, dinner, or live music for an unforgettable experience.


December in Destin offers a multitude of activities and experiences that cater to all interests. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or cultural exploration, this charming coastal city has it all. From festive lights and events to outdoor adventures, culinary delights, and opportunities to connect with nature, you’ll find yourself immersed in the magic of Destin during this enchanting time of year.

Explore the festive lights and decorations that adorn the city, and attend the holiday events and parades for a joyful experience. Discover the natural beauty of Henderson Beach State Park and enjoy the tranquility of its pristine beaches. Indulge in water sports like kayaking, paddleboarding, and jet skiing, taking advantage of the mild temperatures. Shop till you drop at the various shopping centers and outlet malls, finding unique gifts for loved ones.

Delve into the local cuisine, savoring fresh seafood and Southern comfort food specialties. Attend festive events and immerse yourself in the holiday spirit. Take a dolphin cruise to witness these majestic creatures up close and personal. Visit the Destin History and Fishing Museum to learn about the city’s rich heritage. Relax and rejuvenate at a luxurious spa, or end your day with a romantic sunset cruise.

December in Destin is a time of magic and enchantment. Whether you’re a visitor or a local, there are endless opportunities to create memorable experiences and make the most of this special time of year. So pack your bags, embrace the holiday spirit, and embark on a journey to Destin for an unforgettable December adventure.

Related video of Things To Do In Destin In December

Also Read