Whether you are planning a quick weekend getaway or looking for a week-long family vacation, you can find amusement parks, beaches, downtown galleries, and plenty of cultural venues in Pensacola Beach. Also known as the City of Five Flags, Pensacola is an area with an interesting historical past that‘s worth exploring. Here, you can go scuba diving, hiking, kayaking, and fishing, or tour one of the local museums located downtown. Pensacola Beach Vacation rentals range from cozy cottages and beach bungalows that are ideal for two to spacious multi-level water front homes situated directly on the beach. This guide will direct you to 10 popular rental locations within easy reach of the city.

1. Pensacola Beach

pensacola beach
Source: Flickr/katie wheeler

Head to Pensacola Beach for some of the most luxurious vacation rentals on the water. From here, you can sign up for a boat tour to view the city from the water or go scuba diving and snorkeling. You might even get lucky enough to see the dolphins playing in the water. The Pensacola Beach Gulf Pier if the perfect place to go fishing or people watching, or hop on a fishing charter to grab the catch of the day.

2. Navarre Beach

navarre bridge
Source: Flickr/chapstickaddict

Navarre Beach is located on the barrier island of Santa Rosa. Condos, apartments, and expansive homes can be found as vacation rentals directly on the water. Here you can fish from the longest pier on the coast, spend time at the marine park, or move inward and kayak on the Blackwater River. The Gulf Breeze Zoo is close by and is home to over 900 animals. Take a train ride and enjoy the animal encounters.

3. Perdido Key

perdido key
Source: Flickr/Infrogmation of New Orleans

Head to the Perdido Key where you can relax away from the stress of the office and enjoy your Florida vacation. The white-sand dunes are ideal for sunbathing or building a sandcastle. Pack a picnic lunch and head to one of the covered pavilions by the beach. If you want to dry off, head to the Big Lagoon State Park and go hiking the trails, or you can beat the heat of the day at one of the local art galleries.

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4. Gulf Breeze

gulf breeze
Source: Flickr/BKL

Located just across the Bay from Pensacola. Gulf Breeze is the perfect spot for snorkeling, hiking, and bird watching. For dinner, enjoy one of the fresh seafood restaurants. You can also visit the Gulf Breeze Zoo to see giraffes, monkeys, otters, alligators, and over a thousand other animals. If you are looking for a bargain, you can stroll through the Gulf Breeze Flea Market, or visit the antique mall where you can find vintage items to take home. If you like fishing, you can schedule an inshore charter and cast your fishing line out for trout, flounder, and bass.

5. Fort Walton Beach

fort walton beach
Source: Flickr/TravelingOtter

Enjoy vacation rentals downtown near restaurants, shops, and museums, or opt for a spacious abode right on the gulf waters at Fort Walton Beach. The beach offers miles of white sandy shores that are perfect for collecting seashells, jogging, or volleyball. Go parasailing over the water, or rent some jet skis and brave the waves coming into shore. Further inland, visit the Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park for hiking, fishing, or for boat access. Downtown is lined with quaint boutiques, and the Topsail Hill Preserve State Park overlooks the Santa Rosa Sound.

6. Orange Beach, Alabama

ferris wheel

Less than 30 minutes away to the west, Orange Beach is a great vacation rental spot for families. Rent a sailboat and experience the thrill of coasting along the gulf waters, attend a free concert on the beach, or visit a local wine festival. The Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail is the perfect spot to go hiking, and you can stop by the Orange Beach Welcome Center to pick up some pamphlets and other memorabilia. To see the beach from a different vantage point, ride the wharf Ferris wheel, which takes you high above the city streets.

7. Escambia Bay

garcon point bridge
Source: Flickr/chapstickaddict

Travel along the Escambia Bay Bridge from Pensacola and cross Escambia Bay. Vacation rentals located along the waterways offer access to boating and fishing. Take a day trip to visit Fort Barrancas, or climb the 177 steps to the top of the Pensacola Lighthouse and browse the collection at the Lighthouse Museum.

8. West Pensacola

pensacola blue wahoos
Source: Flickr/Rusty Ray

West Pensacola is an area alive with history. Take a Civil War tour to learn about the region’s role in the conflict. You can also sign up for a walking tour of North Hill historic homes. Stroll through the Palafox Market for local fruits and vegetables and to locate bargains on nearly anything. If you like baseball, you can attend a minor league baseball game at the Blue Wahoos Stadium.

9. Destin

beach umbrella
Source: Flickr/kylesteed

Destin is filled with excellent vacation rentals centrally located to everything. Henderson Beach State Park provides over 6,000 feet of shoreline, three miles of hiking trails, and a playground for the kids. You can stroll along the boardwalk, go swimming, and there are several pavilions location along the beach for grilling out or escaping the summer sun. If you want to head indoors for a bit, the History and Fishing Museum provides a respite on a rainy afternoon, or you can stop by the Destin Commons for shopping or let the kids cool off in the water park.

10. Milton

paddle boarding
Source: Flickr/g – s – h

Head inland, to reach Milton, a small city in Santa Rosa County that offers modest vacation rentals away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Just to the North of Pensacola, Milton plays host to a variety of activities. Bring your kayak and go paddling down the Blackwater River. You can also grab an inner tube and float down the Coldwater River. The Imogene Theater puts on performances periodically, and you can take a tour of the Museum of Local History.

 
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