Okaloosa Island
Okaloosa Island
4.5
About
Crowds flock to the beautiful beaches on this narrow strip along Florida’s Emerald Coast for the world-class clear waters and white sugar sand. The western end of the Okaloosa has family-friendly beach parks with picnic areas and playgrounds, a boardwalk with restaurants and shops, and attractions like the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park. The beaches on the eastern tip tend to be more secluded and less crowded, offering a peaceful escape. Visit in April and May for warm waters and comfortable weather or during fall when fewer crowds make for a quieter experience. Book accommodation well in advance if you plan to visit in the summer. – Tripadvisor
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travelers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travelers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travelers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.

Top ways to experience Okaloosa Island and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles1,581 reviews
Excellent
1,232
Very good
264
Average
53
Poor
19
Terrible
13

saragorlick
Austin, TX15 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
Stayed on Okaloosa island to avoid the higher prices and crowds of Destin. Loved our stay. Was quieter, cheaper, and less busy than Destin area. Went into Destin for food though as not a ton of options other than Seafood, which I don't eat a lot of. Was a short 5 minute drive across the bridge into Destin and enjoyed the view while driving. Water had more seaweed than Destin or Miramar beaches but I think that is based on tides and seasons.
Written August 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Paragone9
Carol Stream, IL84 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2019
This is a quieter area of Ft Worth. It’s all about the beautiful beaches. Better for families than singles. Many oceanfront condos occupied by snowbirds (retirees) October through mid-March then college kids arrive mid- March for spring break.
Written January 30, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

rjr88
Mebane, NC330 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2022
What a great place. The water is emerald green and the sand is lily white. They had the purple flags flying every day but not too many jellyfish. Out of 7 days it only rained one time from 7pm to 6am. Not nearly as crowded as the Destin side.
Written October 19, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rachel C
Panama City, Panama218 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
After a week staying in Miramar Beach for a conference, we decided to spend our last night in the area on Okaloosa Island (we stayed at the Island Resort at Fort Walton). The beach itself is nice - wide with options for rental chairs and umbrellas ($40 for 2 chairs and an umbrella, which is a little cheaper than Miramar Beach where it was $60 for 2 chairs and an umbrella depending on the beach). The pier is nice and the boardwalk has a few different options for bars/restaurants.
Written August 31, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AMI-OHIO
Racine, OH51 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020 • Family
This was a wonderful vacation for our family even during a pandemic. Most people wore a mask in public places. Lots of site seeing and relaxing. Beautiful white sandy beaches and blue clear water. We had beautiful weather. Some small sea weed and jelly fish during our week but seem to be worse in the morning.
Written September 17, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Robert R
huntley, United States11 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
My wife and I have been snow birding for several years to the Florida Panhandle. This is our first year in a condo on Okaloosa Island, previously staying around the Destin area. January and February are ideal here as the island is not terribly populated. Most all condos are right on the beach which are absolutely spectacular.. The sand (actually ground quartz) is like powder. The condos are mostly all low rise (usually 4 to 6 floors). Fort Walton Beach and Destin are very convenient for shopping, restaurants, and activities. We plan on staying at the same condo on 2021.
Written February 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ric B
Weatherford, OK487 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020 • Family
I consider myself a beach freak! The beaches on Okaloosa Island are as good as they get! White sand, warm water, gentle waves. Not very crowded. Just doesn’t get any better than this. I grew up in New Jersey and spent a lot of time on Atlantic Ocean beaches with the crowds, cold water, and “knock-you-down” surf. Wonderful to discover a beach like this! Well worth the 950 mile drive from my now home in Oklahoma. Also, the many seafood restaurants are fantastic, especially if you like shrimp!
Written August 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

February J
Texas1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021 • Solo
I didn't like this beach.
I usually stay on Navaare beach but wanted a different beach this year.
The condo I was staying in was a 9 unit private building. My condo was ok.
The problem was all the other high rise condos surrounding me AND the people Okaloosa Island attracts.

I had a gulf view of ocean.
I was there 2 weeks in August 2021.
There was so much noise and partying going on into the wee hours every night in the surrounding high rise balconies and on the beach. These weren't college kids, these were adults with kids.
Most of the adults looked like they just got out of prison and were addicted to drugs. Trailer park trash. That's who this Island attracts.

I was woken up every night around 1-4am with drunks on the beach or a nearby balcony.
I had to call the poile 3 times and the fire department once from a group starting a bonfire in the parking lot in the middle of the night.

These people would leave cigarette butts, beer cans and trash everywhere on the beach.

Under the pier there was a homeless camp and walking through there I was concerned about stepping on needles in the sand.

I was always concerned about my car being broken into or my unit when I was gone.

There's no way I'd ever come back to this Island or Fort walton unless I'm driving through....
Thanks.
Written August 14, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Roger C
Powell, Ohio, United States1,302 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
I've been to beaches all over our country. East coast, west coast, east Florida, grew up in Sarasota, on the west coast which sports Siesta Key Beach, which is beautiful but just too crowded for me. I've been to Clearwater, Fort Myers, Venice, Key West, South Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Jupiter, Palm Bay, Dayton, St. Augustine, Destin.

Okaloosa Island is my favorite out of all that I have been to. I go on a beach vacation to relax. I want my toes in the sand, beverage in hand, and stare at the water until I am done. That's what Okaloosa affords you. It is remote enough that it is quiet. It isn't over crowded. There isn't much traffic. If you need something, a store isn't far away. Ditto if you want to eat. If you want something busier, Destin is only 10 minutes to the east.

If you want quiet and relaxing, this is where you want to be. There isn't much to do without going east to Destin, and that's just fine with me. I like a quiet beach with nothing to do but soak in the sun. If this describes your speed, you will love Okaloosa Island.
Written March 1, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cheryl F
Fort Walton Beach, FL13 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019 • Friends
Okaloosa island is a about a 15 mile long island connected by Brooks Bridge to Ft Walton Breach and Destin Bridge to Destin Florida. The main tourist attractions are the Okaloosa Board Walk, the Gulfarium, fishing pier, and Wild Willeys.
The Board Walk is a delightful mix of restaurants and small shops. Behind the complex is a playground for children and volleyball courts. The Gulfarium offers Marine shows and aquariums. This venue is not the fancy complex of a Sea World type experience, but of a old Florida road side attraction. The staff is knowledgeable and truly enjoys instigating close up contact between fish and human. Expect the opportunity to stroke a sea ray and get wet courtesy of a playful dolphin. Okaloosa fishing pier is the perfect place to enjoy a day of angling, chatting with the local fishermen or taking lovely photos. Wild Willeys is located across the highway from the boardwalk and is a fun family complex with climbing towers for the daring.
Accommodations are numerous. Hotels and condos provide waterfront views and large expansive white sand beaches.
Much of the land on this island belongs to the United States Air Force and remains in it's natural state. A truly breathtaking area of the Florida Gulf Coast. I highly recommend especially for family groups.
Written January 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 1,557
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

Okaloosa Island - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

Frequently Asked Questions about Okaloosa Island




All Fort Walton Beach HotelsFort Walton Beach Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Fort Walton Beach
All things to do in Fort Walton Beach
Zoos & Aquariums in Fort Walton BeachAmusement Parks in Fort Walton Beach
RestaurantsFlightsVacation RentalsTravel StoriesCruisesRental Cars