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Top 8 Rainy Day Activities in Destin, Florida

As one of the most popular vacation spots on the Florida Panhandle, Destin is renowned for its pristine white-sand beaches and emerald waters, offering breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico.

Although this Florida gem enjoys many bright and sunny days, the weather can be unpredictable. Thankfully, in Destin, rainy days are not a problem. The city is brimming with top-notch indoor activities that will keep you and your entire family entertained. The best way to handle rain is to cheer up and explore the amazing entertainment venues, restaurants, and museums that Destin has to offer.

In this blog, we have curated some of the top rainy-day activities in Destin that will make you forget the rain outside and have the best time indoors.

Grab your umbrella and follow us!

1. Unleash Your Inner Marine Biologist at
Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park 

A visit to the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park is one of the best activities for rainy days in Destin. It’s not only educational but also fun. The chance to watch fascinating creatures up close, learn about them in depth, and even get personal with them is appealing to people of all ages.

The aquarium has fantastic dolphin shows and exhibits featuring incredible marine mammals, fish, and reptiles that are unbeatable. However, the grand attraction is the animal encounters — a truly one-of-a-kind experience. You have the opportunity to swim and engage with dolphins, get a kiss from a sea lion, or feed cute penguins. All this happens under the care of the extremely professional and friendly staff, who will also give you insights about these wonderful creatures.

This is an immersive and special activity that will certainly make you forget about the bad weather and lift your mood to a brighter one.

Heads up: This is an outdoor, open-air facility. While the walkways are covered with awnings, it’s a good idea to bring an umbrella or rain jacket on rainy days. Rain or shine, our shows and encounters continue, except in cases of extreme weather.

2. Indulge in the City’s Best Seafood

Dubbed the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village,” Destin boasts exceptional restaurants and eateries offering the freshest seafood the Gulf of Mexico can provide. If the weather is not ideal for fishing, enjoying the beach, or other outdoor activities, what’s better than taking shelter in a great restaurant savoring coastal flavors? 

Here are some of the best restaurants for you and your family to indulge in fresh Gulf of Mexico seafood delicacies: 

  • Harbor Docks: A local gem for over 45 years serving dishes cooked to perfection. Order their catch of the day or try some Asian flavors like Pad Thai or sashimi. 
  • Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House: Located right on Destin’s harbor, Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House serves perfectly cooked southern-style seafood and, as its name suggests, super fresh oysters. 
  • Pompano Joe’s: Charming wooden beach shack featuring Gulf-to-table seafood dishes with Caribbean nuances.

3. Level Up Your Fun at
Wild Willy’s

Located on Okaloosa Island, Wild Willy’s Adventure Zone is home to a 16,000-square-foot indoor arcade that is heaven for game lovers. The state-of-the-art redemption arcade includes over 60 games catering to all tastes. From high-tech games like Mach Storm and RPG flight simulator to classics like Jurassic Park, PacMan, and Sonic Air Hockey, people of all ages will have a blast!

That’s not all! This entertainment complex also has an amazing 4D Movie Experience with spectacular special effects, and the family favorite Urban Assault Laser Tag, an immersive experience in a fun setting featuring burned-out buildings, brick walls, and obstacles.

4. Dive Deep into Destin’s Fishing Culture at
Destin History & Fishing Museum

This charming museum tells the history of Destin and its fishing culture through lovely permanent and temporary exhibits. If the rain doesn’t allow you to enjoy the outdoors, this is a great chance for you to learn the local history — and it will certainly enhance your experience while visiting this Florida darling.

The exhibits take you as early as the 1830s to tell about early pioneers and the history of the fishing industry, showing all the developments throughout the years. There is also a great collection of old Destin photos, antique fish rods and reels (including the original Penn Reel that belonged to Ernest Hemingway), household items, and beautiful shells. One of the highlights, though, is the wall displaying over 100 fish mounts.

The museum is also great for kids, thanks to interactive displays, games, coloring books, and other activities. Fishing enthusiasts also love the Rodeo Gallery, which focuses on telling the story of one of the longest-running fishing tournaments in the US. Also, check out the museum’s store selling super cute and affordable gifts to take home.

5. Win the Big Prize at
Fat Daddy’s Arcade

Just a short drive from Destin Boardwalk, Fat Daddy’s Arcade is another mecca for game enthusiasts and a great option for rainy days in the city.

The arcade features over 120 games ranging from Basketball Hoops, Air Hockey, Wheel of Fortune, and Big Bass Wheel to Pac-Man, Jurassic Park, Wizard of Oz, and e-claw prize games, to name a few. The recently renovated space offers brand new games and a fun and colorful atmosphere for the entire family to enjoy together.

Win tickets and exchange them for great prizes. Unlike other arcades, at Fat Daddy’s, winning points are not extremely difficult and the prizes are not lame or cheap — these are super cool and well-curated items.


6. Strike Up Some Fun at Hurricane Lanes

Rain or shine, bowling is always a good idea. At Hurricane Lanes, the activity gets even better with its 26 Brunswick-powered bowling lanes featuring a modern, interactive, and fun system. Another great touch is the black lights that give the lanes a psychedelic effect. 

Besides bowling, you can also enjoy pool tables, ping-pong, and an arcade with fun games such as air hockey, skeeball, racing, and Pac-Man. If you want to watch your favorite match, Rupert’s Sports Bar has large screens, and if you feel like grabbing a snack, StrikeZone Café serves delicious pizza.



The beach is not the only place you can relax and unwind in Destin. The city is brimming with top-notch spas and self-care spots where you can escape the rain and enjoy a day filled with massages, skin treatments, and much more. Taking care of your body and mind in a specialized place is always a good idea when the rain is pouring outside.

Here is a list of some of the best spas in Destin:

  • Float Brothers Float Spa: The Emerald Coast’s first and only flotation therapy spa offers private pods in themed rooms, allowing you to enjoy all the benefits of float therapy, including stress relief, mental clarity, and better sleep quality. 
  • Om Relaxation Spa: full service Day Spa providing specialized treatments and massages, such as couples massage, Swedish, and prenatal. Check the Tiki Spa services — the Whiskey on the Rocks, a bourbon vanilla body scrub removed with hot towels, and a 50 minute Swedish Hot Stone Massage with a Vanilla Bourbon infused body oil is highly recommended for rainy days. 
  • Family and Friends Massage Spa: They offer a great variety of services like Himalayan salt hot stone massage, deep tissue, Swedish, body polishes, lavender body wrap, to name a few.
  • Beverly Hills Day Spa: Their body and skin care treatments are amazing — they include Brown Sugar & Ginger Body Scrub, Strawberry Body Buff, and Pumpkin Exfoliating Mask. Massages are also available, such as Swedish, aromatherapy, deep tissue, hot stone, reflexology, and foot massage, among others.
  • Spa Lilliana at hotel Effie Sandestin: located in Miramar Beach just a short drive from Destin, this spa is everything you dream of when you think of a luxury spa experience. Wear a fluffy rope and indulge and explore their vast list of massages, body treatments, and skin care. 

8. Make the Most of Your Rental and it’s Kitchen

Another great tip for rainy days in Destin is staying in your vacation rental and enjoying quality time with your family or loved ones. When you’re on vacation, you don’t need to stress about getting active and doing something all the time. Sometimes we forget that traveling also means being closer to the ones you love and strengthening the bond between all of you.

If you’re staying in a comfy vacation rental, take advantage of it! Play games, watch a movie, or cook a great meal that everyone can enjoy together. And hey, you’re in the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village,” which means you’re always a short drive away from excellent seafood markets where you can buy fresh Gulf seafood and savor the coastal flavors in the comfort of your vacation rental.

Most of our rentals at RealJoy Vacations boast amazing amenities and well-equipped kitchens, ensuring you forget all about the bad weather and relish every moment of indoor living.


Stay Dry & Have Fun: Top Rainy Day Activities in Destin

Now you understand why we said earlier that there’s no need to worry about the rain when vacationing in Destin. With the tips above, you’re more than covered for making the best out of a rainy day in the city.

Want more tips on Destin? Head over to our destination blog for insights on all things Destin and Emerald Coast. From the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants to the reasons you should consider living in Destin all year round, all the info you need can be found — and we have many more juicy blogs coming up soon!


Wondering Where to Stay in Destin, FL?

Thinking about traveling to Destin, FL yourself? Then stay like a local by booking one of our RealJoy Vacations rentals.

From spacious beachfront houses to luxurious resorts, we offer a wide selection not just in Destin but along the Emerald Coast. All our properties come with top-notch amenities that will make your experience unforgettable.

Book now with RealJoy Vacations and have the ultimate vacation on the Emerald Coast.

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