The Best Kids’ Activities on 30A Florida

Vacationing with little ones? Here are the best 30A family activities, broken down by type of activity and location.

If you’re looking for a vacation destination that’s perfect for all ages, look no farther than 30A Florida.

This hidden gem of a vacation spot is nestled between Destin and Panama City Beach, both of which are among the best (and best-known) family vacation destinations in Florida. Within an hour’s drive from the Latitudes and Attitudes on 30A ultimate beach house in Inlet Beach are the waterparks and animal encounters of Destin and the kid-friendly museums and themed cruises of Panama City Beach.

Staying in 30A – one of Florida’s best-kept secrets – means you’re close enough to enjoy all the tourist attractions Destin and Panama City Beach have to offer, but you get to leave behind the crowds once the day trip is over. Once you return to your home-away-from-home, you get to experience the laid-back beach vibes that made the locals fall in love with the Florida Panhandle. This is the real Emerald Coast, and your family is sure to love it.

Check out the Latitudes and Attitudes Guide to 30A for Families below.

The Best 30A Family Activities

Adventure, relaxation, play – families on 30A get it all when they stay with us.

Why the Beaches of 30A Are the Best Florida Beaches for Families

If you’ve even been to Miami, Fort Myers, Key West, or even Panama City Beach when college students flock there for spring break, you have probably realized that not all beaches are equally family-friendly. The loud, drunken crowds of partying college kids aren’t ideal when you’re traveling with little ones.

You want to take them to a beach that’s peaceful but still exciting—where there aren’t loud crowds, but you also don’t have to worry about them being the ones disturbing the peace by making the normal level of noise that kids make when they’re playing.   

The beaches of 30A Florida are the perfect fit for families like yours.

Southern Living and Travel + Leisure have highlighted the wonder of our little section of the Florida Panhandle, naming Inlet Beach among the top “beaches that look like the Caribbean” and South Walton County a “trending destination” for 2022. Read more about what they had to say.  

What Is a 30A Vacation?

A 30A vacation is a trip you take to the area of the Florida Panhandle that’s located along Highway 30A and the Gulf of Mexico. The beaches here are pristine, off the beaten path, and often a lot more family-friendly than what you will find in areas of the Sunshine State that are best-known as party beaches.

The family-friendly 30A beach region is one of Florida’s best-kept secrets. You’ll find things to do for all ages in these charming beach towns, from designated kids’ activities to experiences that are fun for the whole family.

The Best Beach on 30A for Families

We may be a little biased, given the location of the Latitudes and Attitudes beach house, but we’ll make the case that Inlet Beach is the best beach on 30a for families. It’s the largest stretch of public beach in South Walton, extending over more than 13 acres.

Inlet Beach shares the same stunning scenery—crystal clear turquoise Gulf water and white sand—as its neighboring beaches. However, Inlet Beach is a little calmer, without the big, fancy weddings that are common at nearby Rosemary Beach or the bustle of life in Seacrest Beach. Parents tend to find that it’s a little easier to relax here and let the kids be kids—playing without the worry of photobombing a bride’s wedding pictures or encountering the dangers that come with larger crowds.

“Calm” doesn’t mean “boring.” Inlet Beach offers something few other 30A beaches have: its own snorkel reef. Just off the coast of the beach, close enough to paddle or swim to, Cobia Snorkel Reef has become home to sea turtles, octopi, dolphins and all kinds of fish since it was constructed in 2017. This fish-shaped artificial reef is the perfect place for little explorers to learn to snorkel and to get an up-close glimpse of the wonderful world of marine life in action.

Of course, which beach is the “best” is a matter of perception. Kids’ activities on 30A can be found in any of our unique and picturesque beach towns, and we encourage our guests to get to know each of the 30A beaches and their own unique vibes and personalities.

The Best Things to Do on 30A With Kids – by Activity

If you’re planning a 30A vacation with kids, you need to keep them entertained. Fortunately, there are plenty of kid-friendly activities to enjoy here on the Emerald Coast.

Here are some of the best activities for family fun 30A (and approximately how long it takes to get to them from the Latitudes and Attitudes on 30A beach house).

Amusement Parks

Just because you’re not heading to Orlando to visit one of the major theme parks that consumes your entire vacation doesn’t mean you have to skip the thrill rides completely. More than half a dozen low-key theme parks are within an hour’s drive of Latitudes and Attitudes beach house. You’ve got access to all the carousels, Ferris wheels, roller coasters, and other amusement park rides you could want.

Our location is the perfect destination for a more laidback day trip to an amusement park (the kind that won’t make you feel that you need a vacation from your vacation).

Animal Encounters

The 30A Florida region is home to amazing animals on land and in the Gulf (not to mention the animals living in our zoos and aquariums). If you’d like a close encounter with one or more of these species, consider scheduling an event with one of the following companies.

Arcades and Indoor Gaming

Who doesn’t have fond childhood memories of whiling away an afternoon playing pinball, Skee-Ball, and classic video games? Recreate your own youth and share the fun with the kids at one of the 10 arcades and indoor gaming establishments within an hour’s drive of Latitudes and Attitudes on 30A beach house.

Art-Making Activities

Show off your creative side and make a one-of-a-kind souvenir to remember your travels to 30A with art-making classes and activities—like painting, 3D multimedia art, and glass art—guided and inspired by professionals.

Biking Trails

The peaceful communities of 30A were practically built for bicycles. In fact, bikes are the inspiration for the name and logo of the shopping and retail center Peddlers Pavilion in nearby Seacrest. You’ll find plenty of great biking trails in 30A Florida, but certain trails are particularly family-friendly and good for children due to their fun and easy routes, scenic surroundings, access to attractions, and of course, their safe and well-maintained paths.

Note: If bringing your family’s own bikes isn’t possible, bike rentals for all ages are widely available across the beaches of 30A. If you stop to shop, dine, or explore on foot, remember to lock your bikes for your security.

Bowling

Bowling has been a favorite activity for kids for generations, and it still hasn’t gone out of style. In fact, fun, themed bowling alleys in the 30A area make an afternoon spent at the bowling alley even more special. Whether you bowl a strike or a gutter ball, your whole family is sure to enjoy a game or two (or more!).

Dolphin Watching Tours and Cruises

Dolphins are a perennial favorite, as playful and fun as they are sleek and graceful. Dolphin-watching tours and cruises—sometimes held on jet skis instead of traditional boats—are among the most popular activities in the area.

Fishing Charters

Fishing is a favorite activity among 30A visitors and locals alike—but not every fishing charter is suitable for children. All-day trips can be too long to hold kids’ interests, and little ones may need help to learn the fundamentals of fishing. Fishing charters that offer shorter trips and child-friendly instruction, like the ones listed below, are ideal for families traveling with children.

Go-Karts

Go-Karts are the perfect joyride experience for kids—and, for that matter, for the whole family. Feel the wind in your hair as you zoom around traditional, elevated, and formula tracks and race your friends and family members in one-person and two-person cars. Some of the tracks in our area even offer special tracks and cars for the little ones.

Gymnastics

Gymnastics is a serious sport, but one-off activity classes can also be a lot of fun—especially for little ones. In addition to offering ongoing classes for locals, the following gymnastics studios in our area offer special activities (and, in some cases, childcare that allows parents to enjoy a night out) for visiting little ones.

Live Theatre

30A is the perfect place to catch a live show. Symphonies, concerts, dance performances, plays, and musicals are just some of the events that guests can attend at live theatres within an hour’s drive of our ultimate beach house. While parents should look up age recommendations for any show they are considering, there have historically been numerous family-friendly performances and events that will entertain and enthrall young audiences.

Mini-Golf

The Emerald Coast has its share of golf destinations for grownups, but kids can get in on the fun, too, at charming putt-putt courses that are sure to amuse golfers of all ages and skill levels. From perfectly manicured landscapes that tie into the natural beauty of the Florida Panhandle (plus an artificial waterfall or two) to heavily themed mini-golf courses inspired by pirates or safari animals, our area has a mini-golf course that’s sure to please your family—including indoor courses perfect for a rainy day.

Movie Theatres

If going to see the latest family film or the current blockbuster is part of your vacation tradition, you’re in luck. Movie theatres are plentiful in our area. We all know that nothing compares to seeing a movie on the big screen (just don’t forget the popcorn!). Going to the movies is also a great way to cool off after a day at the beach or to while away the occasional rainy afternoon.

Museums (Science, Art, Cultural, and More)

Museums dedicated to science, art, history and culture can help you expand your horizons and make learning fun. Three museums are within an hour’s drive of the Latitudes and Attitudes ultimate beach house, and half a dozen more are located within an hour-and-a-half to two hours from the rental property.

Nature Parks and Preserves

The beaches aren’t the only natural wonders our area has to offer. Explore our coastal dune lakes and unique local wildlife at our amazing state parks, half a dozen of which are less than an hour’s drive from our vacation home in Inlet Beach.

Parks and Playgrounds

It seems like the little (and not-so-little) ones never get tired of the slides, swings, monkey bars, seesaws, climbers, jungle gyms, and all the other playground equipment around them. Playing on the playground is a simple but timeless activity, one that appears in cherished memories even years later. When your kids need to burn off some energy during vacation, take them to one of the numerous playgrounds—nearly 20 of which are within an hour’s drive of our ultimate beach house.

Roller Skating

A roller skating rink may seem like a blast from parents’ past (remember skating parties when you were in school?), but kids today still love the magical feeling of gliding along at top speed. Strap your skates on and hit the rink—this one is fun for the whole family.

Shopping Destinations (Kids’ Favorites)

The 30A shopping scene isn’t just for grownups. Toy stores, sweets shops, and kids’ clothing stores are sprinkled across the area. After all, what child doesn’t want a souvenir to remember their vacation to the Emerald Coast?

Tennis

A game of tennis fun for all ages, not to mention a great way for little ones to get some of that boundless energy out of their system. You will find paid and free tennis courts within a short drive of our ultimate beach house rental.

Themed Cruises

If it’s a pirate’s life for your little swashbuckler, setting sail on a pirate-themed cruise could be the highlight of your travels (at least for them). Two separate pirate-themed cruises are available within an hour’s drive of Latitudes and Attitudes on 30A beach house.

Tours

When you have little ones to watch out for, especially, planning an adventure all on your own in an unfamiliar place might not feel like much of a vacation. Leave the planning to the professionals and just enjoy the journey with guided tours of our beautiful area, including paddle tours and snorkel tours.

Trampoline Parks

 Bounce on down to our local trampoline parks that are sure to be fun for all ages. A trampoline park trip is ideal for a rainy afternoon or to tire out the little tykes early in the day so you can enjoy a more relaxing beach outing later.

Waterparks 

You already have convenient beach access to the Gulf and your own private 50-foot pool at Latitudes and Attitudes on 30A, but kids know there’s nothing like a day at a waterpark. Slip, slide, and float along at one (or more) of the three fantastic waterparks just a short drive from your home-away-from home.

Watersports

Watersports on 30A range from the serene, like kayaking, to the adrenaline-fueled, like parasailing and waterskiing. Go parasailing or rent WaveRunners and Jet Skis, pontoon boats (including some with built-in waterslides), kayaks, paddleboards, surfboards, and more to make your 30A vacation even more memorable.

Ziplining and Ropes Courses

For an unbeatable view and a thrilling adrenaline rush, consider ziplining your way around the Emerald Coast or exploring the treetops in a ropes course. Most ziplines and ropes courses have minimum height requirements that small children may not meet, so these activities are best for older kids (not to mention adults!).

Zoos



One-of-a-Kind: Wonderworks, Panama City Beach

If you’re looking for something that’s fun and fantastical but also educational, step into the Wonderworks “amusement park for the mind.” Just a 24-minute drive from the Latitudes and Attitudes beach house, this blend of recreation park and museum is something else entirely, full of hands-on activities in the categories of extreme weather, space discovery, physical challenge, light and sound, imagination lab and wonder art gallery. Adults love it as much as the kids do, especially when you’re looking for an inside activity. You’ll recognize Wonderworks instantly—just look for the upside-down building and make your way through the “inversion tunnel” and inside this interactive experience.

Consider a Beach Photography Shoot to Capture Your Family’s Vacation Memories

A 30A family vacation is the kind of trip you will remember for a lifetime. If you find that you always kick yourself after a vacation is over for not taking enough pictures – or if you’re always the one stuck behind the camera so you never appear in the photos – consider hiring one of the many outstanding professional 30A photographers for a family photoshoot at the beach or poolside.

Keep things fun and casual for a quick photoshoot that doesn’t monopolize your day, and you’ll end up with one-of-a-kind photos that your family will look back on for years to come.

FAQS

Where Should Families Stay When visiting 30A?

The Latitudes and Attitudes ultimate beach house in Inlet Beach is an ideal place for families, especially get-togethers of multiple families with kids.

7 bedrooms sleep up to 20 people.

You’ll find 5 distinct master suites, each with their own private bathroom.

1 large bunk room features a shower and bathtub, and 1 small bunk room offers additional sleeping space.

6 full bathrooms and 2 half bathrooms mean no one has to squabble over access to the facilities.

The large, fully-equipped kitchen is perfect for snacks, meal prep, coffee breaks, baking and more, while the covered outdoor kitchen allows you to whip up a quick bite to eat poolside. Dining and seating areas are spacious enough for the whole extended family to get together, so you can stay close without ever feeling cramped.

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