Destin is a city located on the Emerald Coast of Florida, in Okaloosa County. The city styles itself “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village”, and claims to have the largest fishing vessel fleet in the state of Florida. Destin is known for its white beaches and emerald-colored waters. Originating as a small fishing village, it is now a popular tourist destination – according to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, over 80 percent of the Emerald Coast’s 4.5 million visitors each year visit Destin
The white beaches and emerald waters of the Destin area draw many tourists. Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection estimates that more than 80 percent of the Emerald Coast’s 4.5 million yearly visitors travel to the region to visit Destin. Visitors can charter fishing vessels from the harbor, and there are 12 beach access points in the city. Among the access points is Henderson Beach State Recreation Area. A portion of the Gulf Islands National Seashore, the Okaloosa Day Use Area, is just across East Pass on Santa Rosa Island.
The sand on Destin’s beaches is some of the whitest in the world. The sand comes from the Appalachian Mountains, and is made of finely ground quartz crystal giving the appearance of sugar. Residue flows down the Apalachicola River and is deposited into the Gulf of Mexico. Because of the currents the sand drifts west along the Gulf Coast and settles from east of Panama City to the Alabama coast.
The central plaza of Destin Commons.
Several manmade attractions have been built in and around Destin. Nearest the city’s center is Big Kahuna’s water park, a popular water and adventure park. Destin Commons is an open-air shopping mall located to the east of the city, with a 14-screen Rave Motion Pictures cinema, a Hard Rock Cafe, and numerous tenants such as Bass Pro Shops, Belk, Books-A-Million, Banana Republic, and Abercrombie & Fitch. Further east is the Silver Sands Outlet Mall, which claims to be “the nation’s largest designer outlet center.”
Several events also take place throughout the year as well. For the month of October, the annual Destin Fishing Rodeo draws anglers to Destin each year since 1948. Also in the month of October is the Destin Seafood Festival, where fresh seafood and local artists gather for one weekend every October. content via wikipedia