Destin- Florida's Paradise!

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May 23rd 2005
Published: August 21st 2005
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The water at Santa Rosa Island near Destin Pass Bridge was the most turquoise I had ever seen it Sunday!
Hello from Destin's Barnes & Nobles coffe shop!

I haven't written in a while so I will try and recap the last two days. We left off Saturday morning. April and I ended up heading to Destin Commons, once again we WERE going to rent a Pontoon boat, but the water was still a brownish color, so we decided to wait. We headed out around noon and went to lunch at The Hard Rock Cafe. This one is really nice. Not too big and lots of retro 80's music. The staff is also eclectic and down to earth. I ordered my usual...grilled chicken dinner and Ape got fajitas. It was such a gorgeous day out that after lunch we walked and walked (and walked) around the village area and then the strangest thing happened, I had an urge for -- ICE CREAM which is VERY ODD for me since I never eat ice cream. This was the perfect place to get that craving because there was a Cold Stone Creamery in the village. For those who have been there, you know how amazing this place is. For those who have been deprived, allow me Stone Creamery is a "make

Just amazing!
your own flavor" ice cream parlor. You choose a base ice cream and then have them mix in whatever you like. Here is an example of ingredients you can choose from.....kit kats, oreos, twix, cookie dough, brownies, heath bar, snickers, m&m's, grahm cracker crust, etc., etc., -- you get the idea. Not a health food place, but sometimes you just have to have something "good"! They even have cheesecake mix, peanut butter cup mix, birthday cake mix....everything! Because we had been good (no deserts at all since we left home), we didn't feel too guilty about getting a small cup of chocolate ice-cream mixed with mushed brownies, oreos, and kit kats. The funny thing is, after 5-10 bites...I was done. I get sick of ice cream REALLY fast, but I will tell you, I enjoyed every bite I had! April got vanilla frozen yogurt with cookie dough and peanut butter cups. She said it was good but liked mine better. Definitely worth the $5!! What a treat!!

We then decided to go to a movie, we saw CRASH with Sandra Bullock and Brendan Fraiser. It was very, very good. A very intense, moving movie. We liked it a lot.

Lots of people boat, fish, snorkel, and just hang out here!
I am not the world's best writer or reviewer, so I will just say it was a solid movie with a good cast! 😊 What a great way to spend a day I thought to myself during the show. Spend the morning at the beach, go for lunch, shop, have a snack, see a movie and head back to your property and relax (or go for a stroll on the beach at night).

After the movie, April and I opted to "crash" ourselves. We were SO tired. We went to bed and woke up early Sunday as it was check-out date at The Pelican Beach Resort. We were very, very sad about this. We didn't want to move to The Hilton Sandestin Resort 5 miles down the road. We loved our little paradise. We loved seeing the sunrise and the emerald/turquoise water. We loved the size of our unit and we loved how inexpensive it was!! Nonetheless, we had to leave because it would've been too expensive to extend our stay there. We got a great travel agent rate at The Hilton ($99 + tax) and it was located on the beach. From what I heard, the Hilton's "grounds"

Look at all the different shades of blue and green!
were sappose to be quite nice. They have 2 huge pools, a jacuzzi/hot tub, 5 restaurants including a beach front burger joint, an onsite gift shop and small market and have won numerous awards. All this was true when we arrived, buuuut....the room themselves were outdated. Maybe April and I are spoiled (cheap rates and beautiful digs are very easy to get use to), but there was something about this resort that just didn't rub us right. They had even given us a free upgrade to ocean view room (not ocean front, ocean view). But the room's spread and curtains were a mucky color and ugly. The carpet was hideous, the wood furniture out of a 1979 movie, and the TV smaller than my computer monitor! The view was nice....the bathroom was nice.....but the overall feel of the room was mucky and definitely not worth the $369 they are charging average people this weekend! The breaking point was the internet access -- there was hardly any. It would only allow one of us at a time to sign on and even then it was SLOW! There was no way this was going to work. We decided to stay the night

April soaking up the sun!
and then called some different places this morning. Wouldn't you know it, when we called The Pelican Beach Resort this morning, not only did they have a room available, they had a less expensive rate!!!! We booked that until Friday when we will leave for Florida's west coast (Clearwater/St. Pete Beach, Siesta Key).

That brings us to now, here at Barnes & Nobles. We are such workaholics we had to come here to a.) catch up on work and b.) cool off (boy is it hot today--close to 90 degrees)! Our room at the Pelican Beach Resort won't be ready until 3:30 or so.

OH, I forgot to mention what else we did yesterday!!! Dare I say we started the day with a visit to.....The......Waffle.......House. YES....I know....I know....I promised myself I would NOT go at all on this trip, but what I discovered is on Sunday mornings in Destin, everybody and anybody is out to breakfast. I was ecstatic there were seats available at the first waffle house we stopped at (Destin must have close to 10 of them on one road). I feel SO bad we went here, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta

I think we were a little too over dressed! We wished we had our baithing suits on!
do. Especially two VERY hungry girls!

Here are some lyrics to my Waffle House song written this winter....

oh waffle house
hard to say goodbye
but oh waffle house
just look at my thighs
oh waffle house
have to let you go
oh waffle house
but it's so tough you know...

isn't it true?
you always want the things that aren't good for you?
oh waffle house....
have to let you go....

And yes, the song goes on. On our last road trip I surcame to the call of the Waffle House many a time's for their (quite delicious) waffle. I never went crazy. One waffle thank you very much, but they are addictive and from what I've heard, VERY, VERY bad for you!! 😞 We had decided to give it up. No more waffle house for these girls. Well that all ended Sunday, May 22! LOL! I hadn't eaten much the night before and well, I was a bit hungry! LOL! I gave in to the evil temptation and found myself sitting at one of their booths! OH THE SHAME, but oh what TASTY SHAME IT WAS! 😊

I did get into a scuffle

I love all the colors in this picture!
with Trash Talking Terry however. She wanted out of the bag big time. She said she had worked at a waffle house down the bayou in New Orleans a few years back. That is where she met her now ex-husband, ball busting barry. A red neck if ever there was one. She said all he did was putter around, drink beer, and fix things with his trusty tool belt. He would ball bust her all the time and she would kick his ass, so needless to say, their union ended in divorce, but she WAS feeling nostalgic and wanted to ask our waitress, Stormie (seriously) if she could work the griddle a while. I explained to terry that while she was in my care she could NOT work the griddle.....too many things could go wrong. SHE WENT OFF.....all the way back to the car! She tried to steal the car but I had the keys. I may need to send her to rehab or something, because she has become addictive to BAD BEHAVIOR. She yelled all the way to Santa Rosa Island, which was our next stop.

Ah, Santa Rosa Island. What to say about this paradise? Santa Rosa

Another view of Santa Rosa Island. As blue as the water in Cancun!
Island is a barrier island near the Destin Pass Bridge. This area is drop dead gorgeous. This is where we plan on renting the pontoon boat. Sunday the brown muck had finally vanished and the water was out of this world. It was the most turquoise blue I had ever seen. I mean, I had seen pictures of Cancun's turquoise ocean, but this was even more blue -- mixed in with an emerald glow. The water was so shallow and, oh my God, words just can't describe it. People boat, fish, snorkel, and sun around Santa Rosa Island. It seems like mostly locals come to this quiet area, which is very nice. We took tons of pictures and just basked in the beauty. THIS is what DESTIN is all about!!!! Too bad it was almost noon, or else we would've rented our pontoon then--but the game plan is Tuesday or Wednesday of this week.

After getting some sun we headed to the Hilton to check-in (as mentioned above). The grounds of the hotel were great...lots of nice stuff and scenery, but the rooms were AWFUL! Neither April and I really admitted it to each other right away, but we

View of Destin Pass from the bridge.
were both uncomfortable there.

After poking around the resort we realized it was well past dinner time so we headed back to The Crab Trap which not only had a great beach front location but excellent food! We took our time and enjoyed the view and warm temps/cool breezes. We then headed back to the room for the evening.

As mentioned above, we checked out of the Hilton this morning and back into The Pelican Beach Resort. This time we are in room # 1606 (last time we were in # 1704). This unit is beautiful. It is very exotic and tropical. It is decorated better than the last unit and has nice lighting. It does have a lot of fake plants and animal prints, each their own style! 😊 Before we checked in (and went to Barnes & Nobles) we went to Fudpucker's for lunch. Fud's is an adorable (and very popular) Destin restaurant. The decor is colorful and fun and the place is HUGE! They have live entertainment every night, a great gift shop, and an alligator attraction downstairs. You can feed and (gulp) pet the gators! They are baby's (most of them) and actually

Beautiful James Lee Park Beach near Pompano Joe's (Scenic 98)!
are kinda cute. I had a delicious salad with grilled chicken on top and a virgin pina colada for lunch and Ape a burger. We couldn't believe how packed this place was at 11:45am! Almost every seat was taken. Another cool thing about Fud's is that you can write on the walls and tables. For some reason I find this to be very fun! LOL!

We also checked out Holiday Isle, which is the area of Destin that took the hardest hit by Hurricane Ivan. We didn't notice much damage. They must've spent the past 8 months fixing everything because it looked great to us. I did find myself at the opposite end of Destin Pass and Santa Rosa Island. I had a great view of the bridge and marina and an odd view of a huge cross and American Flag. I wonder if something happened on this part of Holiday Isle. Maybe somebody was killed during the hurricane. The area was beautiful and serene. No one was there when I arrived so I took a lot of pictures and just admired the view.

By the time we checked back into the Pelican Beach Resort it was after

Lots of great water sports are available.
4pm. April was anticipating the season finale of 24 which came on at 7pm here and was 2 hours long. We then watch Medium and some show about tornados.

When I got up to come to the computer around 10pm I went out on the balcony and OH MY WORD.....what a beautiful full moon! It is that pretty yellow color and it is reflecting off the ocean....I mean, completely bouncing off the ocean. It is so big, like one of those moons you think you could lasso! LOL! I tried taking pictures but they didn't come out nearly as good as it looks in person. There is nothing more relaxing that sitting on the balcony, listening to waves, feeling the strong/cool ocean breeze! It just calms me. I know April feels the same!

Anyway, on that note I am going to try and get some sleep! It is 12:50am and I am exhausted!

Happy Travels!

Des & Ape

Additional photos below
Photos: 41, Displayed: 30



View of the Hilton Sandestin property...near their private beach.

Hilton Sandestin's beach bar restaurant.

Could the water be any more perfect? This is like Tahiti, Maldives, Fiji, Caribbean, Bahamas...only it's FLORIDA!

I am not happy with myself! I gave into the waffle house temptation pull!

Poor crock of shit! We had to deflate him when we packed up our car!

Trash talking terry got "dry" after yelling so much -- she drank lots of water!

Trash talking terry trying to steal the car! LOL!

Beautiful day!

Fudpucker's Restaurant!


5th July 2005

Wow! pictures are gorgeous!
Hi! We are coming Sat. the 9th to Pelican Beach for a week! Was thrilled to hear you loved it, and am hoping my family and I do too. We have a two bedroom, and those aren't as good of a view I hear. The water is amazing! Thanks so much for your comments, we are really looking forward to our trip if Hurricane Dennis stays away.

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