Indoor Activities in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, and on Okaloosa Island

Spending lots of time outside is a perk of the beach life here in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, and Okaloosa Island. However, lots of indoor activities give you a needed respite from the sun and sand. With so much indoor fun to be had, convincing your friends and family to join along will be easy, especially on rainy days.

The Gulfarium

The Emerald Coast is a natural paradise with the beach as the main attraction, so it makes sense that indoor activities reflect how attuned to nature the locals are. That’s why places like the Gulfarium Marine and Adventure Park on Okaloosa Island exist ― to share knowledge about the environment around us.  

The Gulfarium is an attraction that could be classified as an indoor/outdoor hybrid. Dolphin shows happen in the outdoor theatre rain or shine, so bring a raincoat if you don’t mind getting a little wet. Covered awnings throughout the park provide some shelter during rainy days.

Inside at the Gulfarium, explore marine life exhibits. Their exotic aquariums will mesmerize you for hours. The entire main hall is a corridor that circles around the main pool with lots of portholes for viewing dolphins underwater.  

The Aquatic Wonders exhibit is where you’ll find everything from an octopus to seahorses and jellyfish. And the 33-thousand gallon Living Sea exhibit is home to hundreds of vibrant tropical fish. Grab a bench nearby and take it all in.   

Shopping at Destin Commons

For more active lifestyle pursuits, Destin Commons is the place for retail therapy, chic eateries, and the latest movies ― a must do for a rainy-day matinee or after a day well spent on the beach.

Women’s apparel, salons, and high fashion makeup counters make it easy to grab everything you need for a girl’s night out. Kiddos love the playground and splash pad. And Bass Pro Shops has a huge outdoor adventure center to prepare you for your next day on the water.

HarborWalk Village

For a respite from the outdoors along Destin Harbor, go shopping or find some indoor fun in HarborWalk VIllage. With a variety of beach apparel, edible treats, and gift shops, you can find great beach outfits, new flip flops, or uniquely Destin mementos.

For a challenging activity, try The Gulf Coast Escape Room, which will task your group with riddles and puzzles to solve in order to escape. Be sure to book ahead and choose the scary room from which you will escape. Choose from Zombie Autopsy, The Doll Room, Bates Motel, or The Voodoo Cabin.

America’s Fun Spots in HarborWalk Village includes a Mirror Maze and Shooting Gallery for classic boardwalk entertainment. For a more 21st century entertainment, try Atomic Rush, games for multiple players that require speed and coordination to meet the touch screen challenges.

For a virtual reality movie experience, take the Ultimate 7D ride and choose from several action-adventure and fantasy short movies. Each movie is packed with exciting creatures, and you take an audio-visual thrill ride from aboard the Enhanced 7D Simulator.

Wild Willy’s Adventure Zone

On Okaloosa Island, Wild Willy's Adventure Zone is dinosaur themed park with a massive arcade. With over 65 games in their climate controlled 16,000 square foot arcade, you’ll find high tech games like Typhoon ― a simulator that can make flying a virtual fighter jet feel like real life― as well as old school Skee Ball and PacMan games that make the arcade a novelty for all ages.

The park also has a fully animatronic mini-golf course with moving dinosaurs, and a Tree Top Challenge Ropes Course with views of the Gulf at the apex. Pizza from Salvati’s and frozen yogurt on site make it the perfect place for a party or just to hang out.

The Track

For more indoor arcade fun, visit The Track in Destin, which has nearly 50 games in a climate controlled space. Try your skills at classic games like Skee Ball, Down the Clown, basketball, and prize cranes. Play games such as Monster Drop, Wizard of Oz, and Big Bass Wheels or game show inspired arcade games like Plinko, Wheel of Fortune, and Deal or No Deal. Exchange your tickets for prizes including candy and toys.

Rock Out Climbing Gym

You will want to hang on at Rock Out Climbing Gym in Destin. As the premier indoor rock-climbing facility on the Emerald Coast, this bouldering gym (meaning no ropes or harnesses) gives you the freedom to pursue a little adventure and make new friends, all while getting in some exercise. Kids as young as three years old are welcome.

From rock climbing to watching sea life swim by, indoor activities provide imaginative ways to have fun on the Emerald Coast. Chalk it up to all the fresh ocean air.

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