Make your escape a little more adventurous and become one with nature on the Emerald Coast. South Walton’s charm invites excursionists to bike and hike scenic 30A with a variety of nature trails in the unique beach villages and communities nestled between Panama City Beach and San Destin, Florida.
The stunning sights of the pearly white sand dunes, and coastal forests and lakes offer a sense of serenity that will make anyone forget the hustle and bustle of work. There are over 200 nature trails in Walton County. Learn more about the web of trails in 30A and how the more popular systems intertwine before planning your next exciting getaway!
Western Lake Loop At Grayton Beach State Park
The Panhandle has three coastal dune lakes: Alligator Lake, Little Redfish Lake, and Western Lake. There are only four other countries in the world that have coastal dune lakes by the ocean, and Grayton Beach is home to one of the two geological miracles in the United States- the only one in the state of Florida. Take in the views of the rare, natural phenomenon by hiking or biking on the Grayton Beach Nature Trails.
There are multiple ways to experience the wonderland. Begin the Grayton Beach Hike and Bike Trail on County Road 30A across from the park entrance or start in the parking area by the beach inside the state park. One Grayton Beach nature route is about a mile long while another trail is nine miles round trip; taking visitors through its coastal forests that features views of Western Lake and the sound of wildlife. While hiking or biking throughout the easy/moderate system, learn more about the park that serves as a sanctuary to a variety of species and watch for different birds and trees, such as the red cardinal and southern magnolia.There is also an optional Lake Loop Trail that connects with the other coastal trails and the scenic 30A bike trail. Pick up a trail map from the park ranger station and follow the direction of the salty breeze to a new adventure!The rates begin at $5 a vehicle and Grayton Beach State Park is open 365 days a year and closes at sunset.
Beach Tram Path At Topsail Hill Preserve State Park
One of Santa Rosa’s treasures, the nature trails of Beach Tram Path at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park has breathtaking views of cypress swamps, sand dunes, coastal dune lakes, and a range of plants. Rent a bike at the park store between 9am and 6pm. and follow the paved roads of Beach Tram or Campbell Lake Bike trail. There are a variety of options to hike stretching over 15 miles that showcase Long Leaf pine trees and historic relics from the era of World War II including the No Name Lake trail, Turpentine trail, Deer Track trail, Old Growth trail, and Morris Lake trail. A number of the nature routes at the state park are rated easy because of its flat and paved system great for walking or biking the mile long distance. The rates begin at $4 a vehicle and Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is open from 8am until sundown, 365 days a year.
Want to experience half of the beach villages and neighborhoods of 30A in one trail? The Timpoochee Trail is a popular scenic 30A bike route named after Timpoochee Kinnard, a prominent Indian Chief of the Euchee Indians. Take in the 18.6 miles of idyllic views of the coastal dunes and the emerald paradise as you navigate from west to east through Dune Allen, Blue Mountain, Grayton Beach, Santa Rosa Beach, Watercolor, Seaside, and Water Sound.
Locate mile 0 on the west side of Highway 30A in Dune Allen with the entrance to Topsail Preserve State Park located on the right. There is a convenience store that has supplies, snacks, and sun protection to help prepare you or your family for the adventure ahead. Throughout the trail there are restrooms, water fountains, frozen treats, mini-marts, and restaurants for you to rest and refuel for the route. Timpoochee Trail provides the ultimate 30A experience along the coast, ending in the alluring Inlet Beach.
Eastern Lake Bike/Hike Trail at Point Washington State Forest
Take the family for a bike ride among the sea of trees and enjoy the nature routes in Point Washington State Forest.There are 9 public entrance points to the village green. The coastal forest is home to natural communities including Sandhill, basin swamps/titi drains, wet Flatwoods, wet prairie, and cypress swamps. The trails at Point Washington State Forest are popular for hunting, hiking, and off-road biking. The Eastern Lake Trail System is well-known for its three double-track loop trails that are 3.5, 5, and 10 miles long. The pathway is accessible to the public at the parking lot and trailhead on County Road 395. Longleaf Greenway Hiking Trail can also be accessed from the forest and the 8 mile system does not loop. There is another greenway pathway under the works that will be 27 miles long! The nature system is designed to connect to other outdoor recreational areas such as: Grayton Beach State Park, Deer Lake State Park, Topsail Hill State Preserve, as well as a primary school and a number of residential areas.
Places to Stay In 30A & South Walton Beaches Area
Enjoy a luxurious getaway in one of the charming communities surrounding the beach village of Grayton Beach. Explore the variety of 30A beach rentals Condo-World has to offer in Inlet Beach, Seacrest Beach, Blue Mountain Beach, and more. Stay in the shady canopy by the emerald coast at Rosemary Beach and take a bike ride or stroll to the farmer’s market on Sunday’s in Barrett Square. Choose a relaxing stay in Seagrove and enjoy a delectable bite from an assortment of food trucks or from an upscale restaurant on the emerald Gulf Coast. Plan a romantic or family escape to South Walton for a vacation filled with adventurous water activities, scenic routes, picturesque sunrises and sunsets, and so much more!