We have scoured the coastline of Okaloosa county and compiled a list of the very best waterfront beach bars Destin, Florida has to offer. Let’s face it, there is nothing more refreshing than a cold drink overlooking the bay on a hot day. Here is a list of our favorite places to do exactly that.
Tailfins Ale House & Oyster Bar
172 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541
When you walk into Tailfins, you’ll realize why locals consistently recommend this three-story restaurant. Famous for their KC Ribs and fresh seafood, they are also known for their open air restaurant, 100 flat screen TVs, 2 mega screen TVs, and of course the rooftop bar with live music and dancing. Locals also praise this establishment for their extensive selection of both American and local craft beers on tap as well as a couple dozen of your favorites by the bottle and plenty of specialty cocktails served frozen or on the rocks.
4607 Legendary Marina Dr, Destin, FL 32541
Attention moms and dads – this one is for you! Now, I can’t say that we condone excessive drinking around your children, but it’s not uncommon to have a drink or two to unwind while the little ones play. This open-air restaurant is the perfect spot for exactly that. There are picnic tables out back on the white sand beach, where Lulu’s provides beach toys, a “fountain for youth” that allows kids some water play, and an outdoor shower for rinsing all that sand off (a change of clothes for the little ones isn’t a bad idea). On top of all that, their menu has healthy options and is allergy friendly. Ok, maybe the bread pudding made from local Krispy Kreme donuts isn’t the healthiest for your body, but it’s definitely good for your soul.
Jester Mardi Gras Daiquiris
34 Harbor Blvd. #106, Destin, FL 32541
Get a taste of Bourbon Street right here in Destin, Florida! The only other place short of New Orleans to get the world famous “Jester” Daiquiri. It’s green, tastes like strawberry kiwi and packs quite the punch! Plus, you get the cool novelty cup to take home. If this lime green frozen concoction is just isn’t your thing, don’t fret! Jester’s has all the best daiquiri flavors including: Margarita, Mango, Orange, Fruit Punch, Mudslides, and White Russians. All Frozen and made with a lot (I mean, A LOT) of alcohol.
AJ’s Seafood and Oyster Bar
116 Harbor Blvd., Destin, FL 32541
This wouldn’t be an article about Destin if we didn’t include AJ’s Seafood and Oyster Bar. There is a reason that when you ask about the best Destin beach bars, all the locals will tell you, AJ’s is the place to be. What started out as a small oyster bar in the 1980s has now flourished into one of Destin’s most iconic beach bars. It’s more than a bar though – it’s a village! There are tiki huts, tiki bars, live music, concerts, drinks, vendors, docks, and upscale dining along with casual game food. All of this with the best view of Destin Harbor. Whether you arrive by car or by boat, AJ’s is a spectacle that you absolutely must see.
Crab Island: From Floating Bar to Sand Bar
Crab Island, Gulf of Mexico
In July 2018 Okaloosa County commissioners voted and approved an ordinance immediately banning the sale and/or gifting of alcohol by commercial businesses on Crab Island. In other words, no more floating bars on Crab Island. Don’t give your hopes up on the tiny sandbar just yet! Visitors are still allowed to bring their own alcoholic beverages along with them. Just keep in mind that boating under the influence is dangerous and will land you in jail. So just like if you were driving a car, make sure to bring your designated driver along. Crab Island occasionally has food vendors floating around but you may want to pack your own picnic.
The emerald coast invites you to come and have a great time, BUT it is more important that you have a SAFE time. Always make sure to have a designated driver or plan to take a taxi. Okaloosa County Jail does not have a waterfront view and that is not where you want to spend the majority of your vacation. Please drink responsibly.
The Back Porch Seafood & Oyster House
1740 Scenic Hwy. 98, Destin, FL 32541
It all started with a small A-frame house on the beach in 1974 and instantly became a hit with anyone visiting Destin’s beautiful beaches. The Back Porch is the inventor of the Amberjack sandwich and also has some of the most phenomenal views on the coast. There are plenty of ways to whet your whistle at the beachfront bar! The menu offers domestic and imported bottled beers, a variety of draught brews, house made cocktails and fun bucket drinks. Don’t forget to take your white souvenir cups home and pose for a picture in the famous Adirondack chair out back to remember The Back Porch!
Destin Condo Rentals
While exploring these oceanfront bars can be fun, let’s not forget the classy bars that are already in your condominium building! No maps, navigating, parking or any of that hassle. Just take the elevator down, enjoy your favorite drink under the stars while the gulf breeze surrounds you. When your heart is content, your room is only an elevator ride away. Here is list of our favorite condos in Destin.