Just a few miles north of Seaside and Seagrove, you can experience the dreamy romance of a bygone era at Eden Gardens State Park. This 161-acre park is a wonderland of ancient moss-draped oaks, punctuated by gorgeous views of Choctawhatchee Bay and Tucker Bayou. With March typically being the peak blooming season, camellias and azaleas still offer dazzling displays from October through May.
Eden Gardens is also home to tended rose gardens, a butterfly garden and a reflection pond filled with lilies and Koi.
Be sure to treat yourself to a tour of the Wesley House here, home to the second largest collection of Louis XVI furniture in the United States. Offered Thursday-Monday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. ($4 for adults, $2 for children), this historical tour provides a showing of these rare antiques and an education on what South Walton was like in the pioneer days. (Be sure to ask about the cottages that were transported to Grayton Beach and then create your own self-guided tour as you walk through Grayton in search of them.)
Eden is a truly magical place for a picnic, or a wedding, if one is so inclined. You’ll see why.
For official information about Eden Garden State Park, visit https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Eden-Gardens.