The Journey to Walk in the Sand of every beach in Florida started at one of the most beautiful and natural beaches on the planet, Pensacola area beaches. This blog is a personal experience of our walk documenting our month long stay in the Pensacola Area Beaches. Along our journey, we are creating Beach Guides on FloridaSmart.com with in-depth information about each beach, the local businesses and more.
This blog is our personal day to day experiences, the people we meet, and our thoughts on the area and recommendations for each beach for choosing the location for a vacation or a home, based on the experiences, interviews and insights that we uncover.
Our Journey Begins
Heading into Pensacola Beach, as we drove over the bridge on highway 281 into Gulf Breeze, we were literally greeted with a flyover of 4 Blue Angels. Welcome to the home of the Blue Angels Navel Base! They were not directly overhead, and it doesn’t happen all the time, we just had good timing to see them as we were coming in to the area.
Directly in front of us as we came down the bridge onto Santa Rosa Island, was the iconic Pensacola Beach water tower.
No longer in use, the tower still stands as an icon to the community sitting in the parking lot of the notorious Pensacola Pier Park.
Off-Season in Pensacola Beach
Pensacola Beach during the late fall, early winter months, is so peaceful and non-crowded. The lack of locals coming to the beach during our stay could also be the result of the bridge between downtown Pensacola and Pensacola Beach being closed due to damage from Hurricane Sally, and it is a 45 minute drive for those residents to get to this beach without that bridge. Perdido Key is much closer to residents in the Pensacola area without access to the bridge into Pensacola Beach.
Many places were closed during our stay. Some, such as the water park, water activities, city trolleys, and other seasonal businesses were closed for the winter season, while other businesses and parks were closed due to Hurricane Sally damage and COVID closings.
Something important to emphasize for anyone planning a beach vacation:
1. If the beach is a barrier island that is accessible by bridge, there is always a chance that the bridge could close making getting around more difficult.
2. You never know what the weather will be. We were on Pensacola Beach for a whole month in November and saw some of the most beautiful weather, shorelines and sunsets I have ever experienced, while also experiencing cloudy and rainy days with rough, red flag waters. Four days over Thanksgiving weekend were all cloudy, rainy and anything but ideal beach weather.
So it is important to realize that much of your experience in a beach town is related to Florida’s weather and the water currents and not the beach or the town itself.
Our Walk in the Sand Journey
We started at Perdido Key, Florida, then we explored all of the beaches along Pensacola Beach and headed over to Navarre Beach.
Our Beach Rental for the month we stayed on Pensacola Beach was phenomenal! This studio apartment was pet friendly where we were able to bring our cat and it was only 1 block from one of the most gorgeous beaches in the world. Read our featured editorial about this Vacation Rental on FloridaSmart.com or Click the image below to view on Airbnb.