Oh, so you wanna know what to do in Seaside? Good news! The answer is just about anything you want. Here is a breakdown of how we spent our time though.
You may recall from our Foodie Mecca blog, that there is no shortage of amazing places to eat along 30A. Thus, I won’t make you sit through another round of food pictures to get your tummy grumbling and mouth watering. I could! Let that be a warning!
(I know that’s not a word, work with me here) We still cannot get over how pristine the beaches are. Usually, areas with this much tourism you’ll find that the beaches are trashy, brown, over-crowded, loud. This just wasn’t the case. Beaches were plentiful, pretty, and calm. You can re-visit our beach blog here.
Since everything is SO close, we rented bikes for the week. We barely got in our cars. There’s something so quaint about hopping on your bike and taking a calm bike ride to the town center. No pressure, no rush. No time-frame. You’re on vacation! Plus most people choose to get around by walking or biking to keep traffic to a minimum!
Knoxville, TN is a haven for hiking being in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. In other words, we’re a little spoiled with hiking options at home. Florida is a different beast. Flat, hot, humid, no shade, sand, wetlands…and pretty poorly maintained trails. We got lost in both Grayton Beach Park & Topsail Hill State Preserve. Next time around, we may spend our time in the parks doing other activities like kayaking, although it sure was pretty! Also, here is a great blog our friends wrote that focused solely on our hiking adventures.
Bring a fat wallet to 30A! There are a TON of great places to shop. Clothing stores, book stores, art shops featuring local artists, outdoor bazaars, and if you haven’t had enough, the Outlet Mall in Destin is a short drive away. 30A can cater to the shopaholic in you. Oh, and friendly blogger tip: If you’re looking for merchandise with the official ‘Seaside’ logo, it is only sold at the Seaside Beach or the Seaside Classic stores near Amavida. Apparently, they own the logo trademark. That’s smart business 101 for ya! Persipacity in Seaside was one of the wife’s favorites – I think she could have spent hours here alone. It’s an outdoor bazaar style market with clothes, shoes, hats, bags and accessories.
Check out the 30a Farmers Market in Seaside on Saturday mornings and in Rosemary Beach on Sunday mornings! We went one Saturday morning to the Seaside town square and picked up a bag full of goodies that we could cook up at home!
Fired Up Pottery:
We killed an entire afternoon in here. It’s a neat concept. Pick out some blank pottery and then paint up whatever you want on it. They have all sorts of templates you can follow, stamps, tricks, or just wing it – they’ll even show you neat processes like sponging it on, painting with bubbles, etc. Once you’re done painting, they’ll glaze it for you and it’s ready to pick up the next day. I mean, I might not use my cheesy Seaside coffee mug, but it’s a great keepsake! Highly recommend this place if you’re looking for a low-key time. (Also, again, excuse my touristy beach hat…I LIKE IT, OKAY!!!) Oh, and I realize that when the four of us take a group picture together, I always look like a giant. Those peeps need to get taller. I feel left out up here…where the air is so crisp. I’ll just have to start singing “Short people…”
There are several towns within a few miles of each other along 30A. They are all unique in their own special way and certainly worth checking out. Every building in Aly’s Beach is white stucco, reminiscent of the Greek Isles. Rosemary Beach has stone streets and European Buildings, which was crazy to see at the beach. In my case, with designing houses for a living, I was soaking it up! Hop on a bike and explore! Or…ya know, drive if you’re worn out from all that vacationing. It’s rough, I know.
(Again with the made-up word) Last but not least….veg out at home. Our house had a pool, which we took advantage of. And a grill….which we took advantage of. Lots of eating, drinking, laying out by the pool, watching late-night movies, and more drinking. It’s vacation, and what’s a vacation without margaritas and grilled shrimp? Exactly.
And of course, because bloggers gotta band together, check out Matt & Erin’s very thorough write-up of where we stayed.
Hope you’ve enjoyed the Seaside posts so far! Only one more to go!