Cheap Destin Beach Vacation

A sandy beach and emerald waters on Florida's Emerald Coast
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Looking for a cheap Destin beach vacation? If so, I think you'll like what you're about to read.

In case you don't know, Destin is on Florida's Emerald Coast--that beautiful stretch of beach along the Panhandle's shores where the water is--more often than not--a mesmerizing emerald green.

Florida, as you may know, has several different kinds of beaches--the sandy strands of the Palm Beaches with their clear, blue-green waters, north Florida's great Atlantic beaches, the Big Bend's largely empty coastline, the Everglades' wild mangrove-lined Gulf shores, and more. I've spent my fair share of time on all these, and I can say from experience that each type of shoreline, in its own way, is special.

What makes the Emerald Coast's beaches special is their clean, sugar-white quartz sand that actually squeaks under your feet as you walk, and their fairly clear emerald-green waters.

No wonder Destin is a popular beach vacation spot, especially in the warmer months when water temperatures are more enjoyable.

So, how'd you like a relaxing good time enjoying these Gulf shores all for a very low cost? If so, you need to know about HendersonBeach State Park.

The Entrance Sign to Henderson Beach State Park
For a Cheap Destin Beach Vacation

Located right in Destin, the Park offers more than a mile of sugar-sand beach and those famous emerald waters.The park has 60 full-facility campsites arranged in two pairs of loops at the park's east end. You can stay here and enjoy this beach all for the relatively low cost of a campsite.

A Typical Campsite at Henderson Beach State Park
A Typical Campsite

Both RV and tent camping are allowed. If you're tent camping, see if you can get a site with some shade for increased comfort during the sunny hours. If you can't get a shady site, I suppose you could just make up your mind to enjoy the Florida sunshine knowing there are folks in northern, often-overcast and chilly places such as Seattle and London who'd give a pretty penny to trade places with you.

The campgrounds are separated from the park's day-use areas by three-quarters of a mile of sandy beach. The public parking lot is located at the park's west end, while the camping facilities are reached by driving more than a half-mile down a paved road to the east.

The beach is about 300 yards from the campgrounds, and is reached by a paved trail and about a 250 yard wooden boardwalk over the dunes.

The Boardwalk from the Camping Area to the Beach at Henderson Beach State Park
Along the Boardwalk

Fresh-water showers are available along the path to the beach.

The Freshwater Shower Along the Path from the Beach at Henderson Beach State Park

Washrooms with hot showers are available for campers. Another convenience are the on-site laundry facilities.

The Laundry Facilities at Henderson Beach State Park

For a fun morning or afternoon trip, go snorkeling at the Destin Jetties,only about three miles to the west.

More photos:

A View of the Beach at Henderson Beach State Park
Enjoy One of Florida's Best Beaches

A View of the Sand Dunes at Henderson Beach State Park with the Gulf in the Background
The Dunes Separate the Campgrounds from the Gulf


A View of the Boardwalk Leading to the Gulf at Henderson Beach State Park
So, What are You Waiting For?