From the pristine emerald waters of our Gulf of Mexico to rare coastal dune lakes to the beautiful Choctawhatchee Bay and river system, South Walton is one of the most eco-diverse places you’ll ever find.
Andy Coleman of Backwater Tours is passionate about showing people the hidden, lush side of the panhandle by touring them around the Choctawhatchee River on his shallow draft 26-foot motorboat. River Run spring, a freshwater swimming hole, is one of the many secret spots he takes you on his tour.
At Coffeen Nature Preserve, you can explore 210-acres of protected land that’s rich with odd history. During WWII, the Air Force acquired the land and used it to test JB-2 missiles, eventually launching as many as 600 from Coffeen’s high sandy ridge. Tours are provided by appointment only (phone: 850-622-3700).
If you’re not feeling the beach for a day, take a guided pontoon boat trip out on the stunning coastal dune lake, Lake Powell. On the trip, you can enjoy fun activities like tubing, paddle boarding and fishing with your friends and family.
Another great way to find out more about South Walton’s rare coastal dune lakes is by renting a stand-up paddle board and paddling through the different lakes and rivers along the coast. A sunset paddle board tour offers visitors a chance to explore the Choctawhatchee Bay and surrounding lagoons, ending the tour at The Bay Restaurant just in time for Happy Hour.
If you’re looking for a truly rare educational opportunity, visit Walton County’s extraordinary E.O. Wilson Biophilia Center.
For even more fun outdoor activity ideas, be sure to check out WaltonOutdoors.com.