Santa Rosa Beach FL Travel Guide

Santa Rosa Beach FL Travel Guide

We recently took a family vacation to Santa Rosa Beach FL and it was so nice. It’s hard to travel during a pandemic, and with a toddler, but this vacation ended up being pretty great. I’m sharing where to eat, where to stay, and what to do in this Santa Rosa Beach FL travel guide.

What do I love about Santa Rosa Beach? It’s less crowded and more secluded than Destin, which makes it a perfect family vacation destination. The white sand and warm water made our beach-going experience very pleasant. It’s also super convenient to go to a few restaurants and a grocery store so you’ll be set for a week at the beach. 

Santa Rosa Beach FL Travel Guide

Where in Florida is Santa Rosa Beach?

Santa Rosa Beach is part of the 30A scenic highway in the Florida Panhandle. It’s located in between Destin and Panama City Beach. There are many charming towns, stunning beaches, and fantastic restaurants along the 30A highway. 

30A is really as wonderful as I had heard. There are a lot of wonderful places to stay in 30A. I was delighted with our stay at Santa Rosa Beach.

Where To Stay

We rented a beach house and it was perfect. I highly recommend renting a beach house with a golf cart. It was so convenient to get to the beach or restaurants by just hopping in the golf cart. Our beach house was also within walking distance to the beach and restaurants. Plus, it’s nice to have a house to yourself, rather than rent a hotel room. 

There were a few hotels around too but it seemed like the majority of visitors also rented beach houses. 

Best Places To Eat

Perfect Pig – This was my favorite restaurant in Santa Rosa Beach. The food was so delicious. 

Local Catch – Really good fresh seafood restaurant with outdoor seating near the beach. 

Pizza By The Sea – Surprisingly good pizza. It was a little pricey, because, ya know, you’re at the beach, but definitely a great lunch spot.

Shunk Gulley – Ate here for the raw oysters but the food and drinks here were also pretty good. 

South Of Philly – The philly cheesesteaks here were delicious, probably the best one I’ve ever had. Another good lunch or budget food option. 

Pecan Jacks Ice Cream – The only place you need to go for ice-cream. So, so, so good. They even had alcohol-infused flavors.

Things To Do

Chill At The Beach – That’s the point of a beach vacation, after all. We stayed near the Gulfview Heights Beach Access, which was really nice. It did get crowded near the entrance but if you walked a little bit down the beach it was a lot less crowded. 

Visit Nearby Towns Along 30A – Seaside, Watercolor, and Alys Beach are all cute and charming towns that should definitely be visited. We only had a chance to visit Seaside on our recent trip. I loved the common area with shops and restaurants but it was A LOT more crowded than Santa Rosa Beach. (Just something to keep in mind.) Each town is unique and I would love to visit the others next time we visit 30A.

Drive To Destin – There’s so much to do in Destin and it’s only a short drive away from Santa Rosa Beach. Definitely recommend checking it out. You can read my Destin FL Travel Guide for all of my specific recommendations. 

Explore Nature – There are a lot of things to do outside besides going to the beach, including local walking/hiking trails and state parks. 

Go ShoppingDestin Commons and the Silver Sands Outlet Mall are two great shopping options near Santa Rosa Beach. 

I hope you are able to take a vacation to visit this little slice of Heaven which is 30A.

Looking for more Travel Guides? Read these posts:

Asheville NC Travel Guide

Charleston SC Travel Guide

Knoxville TN Travel Guide


Hannah Bubp

Hannah Bubp lives in Knoxville, TN with her husband, Kyle, baby girl, Claire, and two dogs. She is a professional photographer and a new Stay At Home Mom. She enjoys writing, cooking, hiking, traveling, and navigating life as a new mom.

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