Blog, Travel

Our long weekend in Destin, Florida

By: Kristen Darkow


The last time I was in Florida was for my 6th birthday. See below.

But last week, my cousin got married in Destin, Florida, which meant we got a nice little family vacation out of the deal! The wedding was on a Monday, which allowed us to enjoy the entire weekend in Florida!

Our flight was bright and early on Saturday. My parents flew in from Minneapolis, my brother from Chicago, and Andrew and I from Madison. We left our house at 4:15am…but it’s so much easier to wake up at 4 a.m. for a flight than 6 a.m. for work, am I right?! All of us got in to the Fort Walton Beach airport around 11:30 a.m. and we rented our car and went straight to…

McGuire’s Irish Pub! I think this place is pretty famous in Destin. Its walls, ceilings, pillars, etc. are all covered with dollar bills! Seriously, there must be a million dollars inside that place. If there was ever a place to be robbed…I’m just saying. This place was seriously awesome, though. They brew their own beer – I had an IPA (Irish Pale Ale) – and it was delicious! We ordered some Irish Potato Skins for the table…also amazing. I had the Shepherd’s Pie (one of my very favorite foods) and it had to be some of the best I’ve ever had. It was massive and made for two meals. Next time we go to Destin, McGuire’s will be our first stop once again.

After, we stopped at the store to get some groceries for the week, and then made our way to the place we stayed. We used VRBO this time, and we ended up in the most amazing place! If you ever find yourself in Destin, I definitely recommend staying here. We were right on the water and overlooking the building’s pool. The bedrooms were huge and the place was just so nice. I wish I lived there! 🙂

For the rest of the day, we just hung out by the pool and relaxed.

I was a little worried about how hot it would be in Florida in August, but it wasn’t bad at all! Definitely muggy at times, but being so close to the ocean it was nice and breezy and just perfect!

On Sunday, Andrew and I started our morning at the beach! There were stormy skies, but it didn’t amount to much.

We went back to our place and played games outside near the pool with my family, and then decided to head to the beach again! My brother and Andrew were all about going into the water with their paddle boards, while I was perfectly fine staying on land and taking in the sights (I hate fish).

Andrew did manage to piggy back me out this far for a photo. I really hate fish, guys.


After this, we got ready for my cousin’s rehearsal dinner! It was at Rum Runner’s, which is a neat piano bar. We got some great family photos!

My mom and her brothers got a photo…

…and then their spouses joined in!

My cousin’s little boys were having fun with the camera. 🙂

And then we got a cousins photo…

…and then Tom and Eddie joined in. (Tom is Andrew. Eddie is Brad. My 90-year-old grandpa thinks they are Tom and Eddie, so we’ve nicknamed them “Teddie”) 🙂

On Monday, it was raining off and on most of the morning, but that didn’t stop us Wisconsinites from enjoying the beach and the pool! We spent the whole morning throwing a beach ball around the pool and giggling like crazy.

Then it was time to get ready for the wedding!

It was at Henderson Beach State Park and it was gorgeous!

The ring bearers enjoyed playing in the sand. 🙂

The reception afterward was at The Destin Bay House…it was stunning!

Tom and Eddie. 🙂

The beautiful bride!

After the dance, we ended the night back at McGuire’s Irish Pub, because why not?

Our flights weren’t until afternoon/evening on Tuesday, so we spent Tuesday morning at Destin Harbor Walk, which is full of fun shops, restaurants, and things to do! We enjoyed a Virtual Reality experience, stopped in some shops, and then my dad and I went zip lining!

Andrew of course crushed it in Virtual Reality. My mom was screaming the whole time.

Love that this guy is always up for an adventure with me!

We had lunch at Margaritaville before heading back to the airport! Just as we were nearing the airport, the craziest downpour started! We missed our exit for the airport because the road was hardly visible. We eventually found out that lightning had even struck the airport and all systems were shut down for a bit! Because of the storms, my brother’s flight and my parents flight were both slow to take off, and my brother missed his connecting flight in Dallas and my parents made their connecting flight in Atlanta by 5 minutes! Andrew and I got to our gate in Atlanta with 2 minutes to spare before boarding. 🙂 It was an adventure!


I really loved this area of Florida and look forward to returning someday. I’m even trying to convince my parents to retire here and I’ll visit often. 🙂 Great idea, right??

Have you been to Destin? What are your favorite sights and things to do there? Share with us in the comments below!

1 thought on “Our long weekend in Destin, Florida”

  1. Awesome weekend! Wish we could have stayed longer! This was our first time in the panhandle of Florida and Mom and I liked it so much that we booked our next timeshare week in that area! The white sand beaches are sweet, and with more time to spend we can play some golf and check out more of the attractions!

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