Gulf County, Florida is an ideal location for those who love to relax and experience all the beauty nature has to offer when on vacation. I don’t know about you, but I love getaways that are off-the-beaten-path and allow me to connect with the great outdoors. That’s one of the reasons my husband and I have returned to tent camping now that our kids have grown. After spending years in hotel rooms, we desired to reconnect with our surroundings. In the process, it’s allowed us to reconnect with each other- something important for early empty nesters. Besides, tent camping is always an adventure. Gulf County Florida is brimming with activities for all types of travelers, from families to couples to solo travelers, there are many adventures to be found and I’m here to show you how to find it.
Find Adventure and Plan your Gulf County, Florida Vacation
1.Use Instagram to help you plan your trip to Gulf County.
More and more travelers are beginning to use Instagram to help them find incredible photo-worthy destinations to visit. You’ll find Gulf County is very photogenic- but how does using Instagram translate to vacation planning? Allow me to walk you through some easy steps. First, follow the @gulfcountyfl Tourism Board. You’ll find dreamy photos, learn about upcoming events, and get some ideas of where to eat and drink.
Next, explore hashtags of the destination you want to visit. For Gulf County, you can check out #gulfcountyfl and #InGulf. Both will allow you to view the spots locals and vacationers to the area deem photo worthy. You’ll even learn a few tips for visiting plus, you can interact with the Instagram accounts that interest you.
Finally, click on geotags to see where photos were taken and to learn about other attractions in the area.
Win a 7-Day Adventure Vacation
Gulf County has an adventure for everyone- from their pristine beaches and waterways to biking, diving and camping and you’ll find pictures of these on Instagram. You can even share your experience for a chance to WIN a 7-Day Adventure to Gulf County. Sound like fun? Here’s how you enter.
Do you enjoy hiking, going for a bike ride or camping with your family? Snap a picture engulfed in the outdoors, tag @gulfcountyfl and post to Instagram using #InGulf and you could win a 7-night stay in a 5- bedroom luxury beach home, a guided 1 ½ hour glass bottom guided canoe tour and $300 in gift cards. Learn more about the contest here and find out how you can enter to win this incredible prize package.
2.Visit the Gulf County, Florida website and peruse their adventure guides.
You’ll find information on where to hike, bike, kayak, boat, fish, and camp but Gulf County also provides opportunities for eco-tours, horseback riding and diving to one of Florida’s best wreck dives for experienced divers. Do you know that Gulf County is home to 40 percent of the sea turtle nests in Florida which makes them the largest nesting place in the state? If you visit from May 1st to the end of October, you may even join a Turtle Patrol for an early morning stroll on the beach to seek new nests. That’s just one of the adventures you’ll find on the website.
3.Familiarize yourself with Gulf County, Florida through the Visitor Guide.
You can either view the Visitor Guide online or place an order for a free guide to help you learn about the many areas and attractions in Gulf County.
4.Utilize the Gulf County Concierge Program.
When it comes to travel, I love to plan but I know the process can be overwhelming for many. And what happens when you get overwhelmed? If you’re like me, that’s when things don’t get done. Gulf County has engineered a solution with the creation of the Gulf County Concierge Program. This program allows potential visitors to contact a representative of Gulf County via email or phone and they will assist you by suggesting activities that may be best suited to you and your family. I took the time to email the concierge and gave some ideas of what type of activities my husband and I enjoy when vacationing. Within two days, I received some email back offering suggestions based on the interests I shared and inviting me to set up a phone call for more detailed ideas and assistance. When writing to the concierge, I shared that my husband and I enjoy hiking, biking, beachcombing, and camping. I also expressed my interest in photography. The concierge responded with the following recommendations:
It sounds like you may enjoy staying at St. Joseph Peninsula State Park or Indian Pass Campground. Both have great tent camping options! The State Park has some beautiful primitive camping sites right in between large sand dunes. The option to bike, hike, beachcomb, kayak, and much more are all available in the State Park. It is a little further from civilization, so you may depend on bringing everything with you. Plus, you’ll be right smack dap in the middle of Gulf of Mexico and St. Joseph Bay, so you get beautiful options to take photos at sunrise or sunset. Indian Pass Campground is a little more rustic, but they have a really cool tent camping island right on Indian Pass Lagoon. The beaches are great there to beachcomb and then St. Vincent Island is right over the pass and you can take a shuttle over there to hike and then photography would be great there too because the sunrise is beautiful over the pass.
I was impressed by the suggestions I received and realized that not only would I enjoy visiting Gulf County with my husband, but that it would make a perfect beach vacation for my older kids as well. There’s plenty of activities to appeal to our varied interests.
5.Plan your spring or summer getaway early.
You won’t find the crowds at Gulf County as you find in other parts of Florida, but that doesn’t mean that you should wait until the last minute to plan a vacation. Plan early for your pick of accommodations and tours.
6.Select a vacation destination where you can truly spend time together.
There are many benefits to travel. You get to see parts of the world that are often much different from where you live. You’re able to meet people that remind you that the world is still a kind and loving place despite what you may see on Facebook or watch on the nightly news. But there is one reason above all the others that leads me to travel. For me, travel is all about making memories with those you love. Gulf County, Florida provides the ideal laid-back atmosphere to do just that.
I imagine waking up with my husband and kids to beautiful sunrise views on the porch of our vacation rental on Cape San Blas, spending the afternoon kayaking, snorkeling or attempting to paddleboard in the gulf. Walking along the beach at Indian Pass in search of seashells before dining at the Indian Pass Raw Bar which gets rave reviews and serves lagoon oysters raw, steamed and baked. Taking an eco-tour through the Dead Lakes which is sure to provide plenty of photo opportunities for this snap happy mom.
In the evenings we’d gather around the table at our beach house to play Catch Phrase or Cards Against Humanity before traipsing out on the beach to roast marshmallows over a bonfire. And because Gulf County is dog-friendly, we could enjoy all this with our dog, Vincent. It’s not easy finding a destination that appeals to both my husband and I and our young adult children, but you can be sure that Gulf County, Florida has all the makings for an incredible family vacation with plenty of options to allow us to make memories we’d cherish for years to come. While some vacations require a vacation to recover once it’s over, a trip to Gulf County will leave you rejuvenated and rested.
When is the last time you planned a getaway that left you refreshed? Enter the #InGulf Instagram contest and you could win a trip of a lifetime to Gulf County, Florida.
Photos provided by Gulf County, Florida.
© 2018, Tonya Prater. All rights reserved.