20 Best Things To Do In And Near Fort Walton Beach, Florida

things to do in fort walton beach florida
| 7 min read

Fort Walton Beach offers everything that a famous vacation in Florida should have: sugar-white sand beaches with restrooms and picnic tables, the turquoise, shallow water of the Gulf of Mexico, and the hot sun with an amazing climate. There are also places to go fishing, water parks, and interesting museums.

Fort Walton Beach lies on the western side of Florida, very close to the Louisiana border. The temperatures vary from 61°F (16°C) in the winter, to 88°F (31°C) in the summer. If you’re ready for a vacation in paradise, book a stay at the best Vrbo and Airbnb vacation rentals in town, and check out this list of the fun things to do in and near Fort Walton Beach, Florida.

1. Challenge yourself at The Ratchet Hatchet

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Wednesday league night at @grizzlyaxes #axethrowing #weekend #axepert #theratchethatchet #lumberjack #vikings...

Posted by The Ratchet Hatchet on Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Fort Walton Beach is not all about the waters when it comes to entertainment. If you’re on the hunt for some unique, adrenaline-kicking fun, head over to The Ratchet Hatchet. This sports club is an axe throwing range providing various axes like the classic tomahawk, the hardcore rifleman axe, and the Viking axe. If you want to bring your own, you may do so, but it is subject to inspection and approval. Spending your day here is a great way to have fun with friends in town when you’ve had enough of the beach!

The Ratchet Hatchet

Address: 304 Perry Ave SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: The Ratchet Hatchet

Opening hours: Mon - Tue: 2pm - 10pm; Wed - Thu: 2pm - 12am; Fri - Sat: 2pm - 2am; Sun: 12pm - 10pm

2. Snorkeling with Destin Snorkel

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Posted by Destin Snorkel on Sunday, May 23, 2021

Just 13 minutes by car from Fort Walton Beach is the equally beautiful beach town of Destin. Bring your entire family to this place and spend a day of fun with Destin Snorkel. Besides snorkeling in the best areas of the beaches, this tourism company also offers dolphin-watching tours, sunset cruises, various water sports, and fireworks cruises. They also offer SNUBA tours, an experience of a lifetime, where you can dive down to 20 feet and have equipment that will allow you to breathe for about 30 minutes underwater. If you’re up for the challenge, book a tour today with Destin Snorkel!

Destin Snorkel

Address: In the Harborwalk Village, 66, 10 Harbor Blvd unit f, Destin, FL 32541, United States

Website: Destin Snorkel

Opening hours: 9am - 7pm (daily)

3. Catch a game at Salty Duck

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Life is BREWtiful! Happy Monday! Happy Hour from 3:30-7PM for $1 off drafts and .50c off bottles! (Sun-Fri)

Posted by Salty Duck on Monday, January 22, 2018

Ice-cold drinks and delicious comfort food are infinitely better when shared with friends over good laughs and a homey setting. If you’re big sports fans, take your viewing rituals to Salty Duck. This sports bar is one of the best hangout spots in Fort Walton and is one of the local favorites. Having a few pints of beers with fellow sports enthusiasts is the name of the game here. Not only do you get to watch sports here, but Salty Ducks is also a spot for games like cornhole, beer pong, skeeball, tabletop shuffleboard, big Jenga, and many more!

Salty Duck

Address: 209 Ferry Rd SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: Salty Duck

Opening hours: 3pm - 4am (daily)

4. Splurge at Uptown Station

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Everything you need for #WineWednesday is waiting for you at Wine World

Posted by Uptown Station, Fort Walton Beach on Wednesday, June 22, 2022

When you want to go out shopping in Fort Walton Beach, there’s no better place to be than Uptown Station. It is located right in the town center and is home to more than 60 shops as well as excellent dining spots. This commercial center not only is a premium shopping destination, but it also features Central Park, an area with dancing fountains, a playground, and a village green. Occasionally, special events are held on-site too. For all your shopping needs, don’t miss out on Uptown Station!

Uptown Station

Address: 99 Eglin Pkwy NE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: Uptown Station

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 9am - 10pm (closed on Sun)

5. Be rejuvenated at Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Welcome To Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage

Posted by Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage on Monday, June 3, 2019

With all the things and adventures you can do in town, a time for relaxation is always welcome. If you feel like treating yourself or your loved one to a night of pampering, let it be getting massages at Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage. This establishment may be small and unassuming, but its services are not to be downplayed. From head to toe, you’ll find a service suitable for all your needs. You can either splurge on a Four Handsish, which is a massage where two therapists work on one client, or indulge in a Thai Massage or Chinese Tuina. Couples’ massages are available for booking too.

Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage

Address: 745 Beal Parkway Northwest #7th, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547, United States

Website: Fort Walton Asian & Thai Massage

Opening hours: 9:30am - 10pm (daily)

6. Step back in time at Indian Temple Mound Museum

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Infrogmation used under CC BY 2.5

Indian Temple Mound Museum is a fascinating facility located at the heart of the historic downtown area. It houses more than 1,000 artifacts of stone, bone, clay, and shell. This Fort Walton Beach attraction also has the best collection of prehistoric ceramics in the Southeastern United States. Aside from that, it boasts interpretative exhibits that chronicle 12,000 years of Native American occupation. Another amazing thing about this museum is that its surroundings were of immense religious and political value for the ancient civilizations. This museum is handicapped accessible and is close to quite a few other museums.

Indian Temple Mound Museum

Address: 139 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: Indian Temple Mound Museum

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 3pm (closed on Sun & Mon)

Price: 5 USD

7. Have fun at Full Range Paintball

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Wow! Look at that shine! We couldn’t wait till tomorrow, who’s gonna put the first paint on the new bunkers?! #paintball #newnew #nxl @supairball @nxlpaintball @mvpspaintball

Posted by Full Range Paintball on Friday, May 28, 2021

Have a blast with a game of paintball with friends and family. You get a choice of three different courses to choose from as well as different fields on an age-wise basis. For everyone’s enjoyment, there’s a choice of no impact, low impact, and ultra-low impact too. The facility also offers paintball gear on rent if you haven’t gotten your own. This place is perfect for bachelor parties, corporate team-building outings, and church group events.

Full Range Paintball

Address: 601 Transit Way, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547, United States

Website: Full Range Paintball

Opening hours: Tue - Fri: 12pm - 7pm; Sat - Sun: 8am - 6pm (closed on Mon)

Price: 15 - 55 USD

8. Ride a bike or hike along the Timpoochee Trail

The best way to enjoy the Timpoochee Trail is with a leisurely bike ride. Set off along this 18.5 mi (30 km) trail that runs parallel to the Scenic Highway 30A. You can rent bikes anywhere along the length of this trail, and stop to explore the attractions along the route. If biking is not your cup of tea, choose to hike the trail in sections according to your skill level. This attraction in Fort Walton Beach winds past Coastal Dune Lakes and connects Inlet Beach with Dune Allen.

Timpoochee Trail

Address: Fort Walton Beach, Florida

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

Price: Free

9. Browse the collections at De'France Indoor Flea Market Antiques

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

De'France Indoor Flea Market Antique Shop Small! Shop Local! We are packed out and ready for shoppers. Home decor,...

Posted by De'France Indoor Fleamarket Antiques & Collectibles on Thursday, June 16, 2022

Spend a few hours browsing the beautiful collection of antiques at this indoor flea market and antique store. Located in the downtown area, this establishment is perfect for those times when you’re looking for unique items for decor, souvenirs, and gifts. They have a large selection of furniture, jewelry, home decor, glassware, and salvage items to choose from. The helpful staff is always at hand to help you make the right choice and answer any questions you may have.

De’France Indoor Flea Market Antiques

Address: 230 Eglin Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: De’France Indoor Flea Market Antiques

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 9am - 6pm; Sun: 10am - 5pm

10. Relish seafood delicacies at The Shack

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Feeling crabby? Enjoy the outside on our deck! Open seven days a week from 11am-8pm!

Posted by The Shack Waterfront Seafood Restaurant on Friday, May 15, 2020

The Shack is a charming seafood restaurant by the waterfront and across the street from City Hall. It makes a great setting for romantic dinners as well as casual family dining. From shrimp tacos to gumbolaya, this welcoming restaurant can satisfy your cravings. Feast on crab and other fresh seafood specialties as you watch the sunset and sailing boats. Their extensive menu also includes a selection of refreshing beverages ranging from exotic cocktails to non-alcoholic fruit concoctions.

The Shack

Address: 104 Miracle Strip Pkwy SW, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, United States

Website: The Shack

Opening hours: 11am - 9pm (daily)

11. Meet the aquatic life at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Even the name of this place sounds fun. At the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park, they have everything to educate, entertain and inspire people to respect wildlife. They have programs for everyone, from young and old and it’s a nice way to spend a fun day with great water creatures.

You can swim with dolphins, touch a stingray, discover gators and turtles, or even feed penguins. The park has many tours on offer that includes different animals and are dedicated to different age groups. Check out their website for more information. General admission cost is 21.95 USD for adults and 13.95 for children.

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

Address: 1010 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, USA

Website: Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

12. Witness the tools of air superiority at the Air Force Armament Museum

MOAB glide bomb
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Greg Goebel used under CC BY-SA 2.0

This museum is located just a 12-minute drive from Fort Walton Beach. It was founded in 1975 and is the only museum in the US that displays Air Force armament. Their exhibits offer a look at interesting historical planes, including World War II and Vietnam War bombers and the famous F-4 Phantom jet.

Guests will also see many bombs, rockets and many varieties of guns and pistols. Their exhibits are both indoors and outdoors, so it’s a good trip in either bad and good weather. Admission is free, and the museum is open daily, from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm. Exploring this place is one of the best things to do near Fort Walton Beach.

Air Force Armament Museum

Address: 100 Museum Dr, Eglin AFB, FL 32542, USA

Website: Air Force Armament Museum

13. Have a lazy day of fishing at the Okaloosa Fishing Pier

Okalooska Pier EZ-GO
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Infrogmation of N... used under CC BY 3.0

Would you like to go fishing but don’t want to spend money on renting a boat? Or maybe you get seasick? Don’t worry! Fort Walton Beach has the perfect solution for you. The Okaloosa Fishing Pier is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for everybody who’d like to try to catch some big fish. They offer pole rentals, sell bait and tackle, as well as beverages and snacks. The only thing left is to sit down, drink a beer and wait for a bite. Visit their website below to read some interesting fishing stories and tips.

Okaloosa Fishing Pier

Address: 1030 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, USA

Website: Okaloosa Fishing Pier

14. Get your heart pumping at the Wild Willy's Adventure Zone

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Are you ready for a trip thousands of years back into the past, to the land of dinosaurs and flying reptiles? Wild Willy’s Adventure Zone will take you there and give you plenty of opportunities to discover prehistoric animals, thanks to their arcade, laser maze, and a 4D movie theater. You’ll also get to breathe some fresh air because they also have many attractions, like a roller coaster, mini golf and a rope course. Thanks to the Salvati’s Pizza Factory, you can get a delicious dinner, so a visit to the park can be a great all day trip. Admission is free but the attractions have their individual prices.

Wild Willy's Adventure Zone

Address: 1306 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

Website: Wild Willy's Adventure Zone

15. Putt around at Goofy Golf

Goofy Golf signage, Fort Walton Beach, Florida
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Mike Towber used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Who doesn’t like spending some time outdoors playing mini golf? Goofy Golf brings plenty of fun for the whole family with their funny looking holes and “goofy” atmosphere. After you complete one or two courses you can find the T-Rex, named “Hummy” and get an awesome picture with him as a souvenir. He’s been with the course for last 50 years and is 23 feet (7 meters) tall! Admission is 3 USD for adults and 1.50 USD for children.

Goofy Golf

Address: 401 Eglin Pkwy NE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547, USA

Website: Goofy Golf

16. Go on a tour around the Heritage Park & Cultural Center

FWB Temple Mound entr01
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ebyabe used under CC BY-SA 3.0

For those who would like to know more about life in the Fort Walton Beach area in olden days, visit the Heritage Park & Cultural Center. You can take a tour of the Indian Temple Mound Museum, where you can find interesting artefacts from Native American history, the Garnier Post Office Museum, to see how the post worked at the beginning of the 20th century, the Fort Walton Temple Mound and the Civil War Exhibit building. The Cultural Centre’s mission is to preserve and present the history and culture of the community in Fort Walton Beach.

Heritage Park & Cultural Center

Address: 139 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, USA

Website: Heritage Park & Cultural Center

17. Check out the exhibits over at the Emerald Coast Science Center

FWB FL Emerald Coast Science Center02
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ebyabe used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Science also can be interesting. Don’t believe me? Visit the Emerald Coast Science Center. They offer many interesting exhibits where children and adults can get knowledge in terms of interactive robotics, engineering, electricity or even find out how to create music using the light spectrum. They also answer all the questions we ask ourselves about airplanes and hurricanes, with their Hurricane Simulator. General admission is 9 USD for adults and 7 USD for kids.

Emerald Coast Science Center

Address: 31 Memorial Pkwy SW, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548, USA

Website: Emerald Coast Science Center

18. Chill out over at the Wayside Park

We can’t talk about a beach town without mentioning a beach. As we mentioned in the intro: white sand, hot sun and crystal clear water makes the perfect background for a good family day out or a beach trip with a group of friends. At Wayside Park, you can swim and get a suntan, while drinking a fancy cocktail, watch people, play volleyball, have a picnic or do any other beach activity you’d like. Wayside Park is a favourite beach for locals.

Wayside Park

Address: 1030 Miracle Strip Parkway Southeast, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

Website: Wayside Park

19. Learn more about the city's past at Camp Walton Schoolhouse Museum

Sink right into the heart of history from the moment you set foot into Camp Walton Schoolhouse Museum, a historic two-room attraction that exposes you to the early history of Camp Walton from the 1911s right up to the 1930s. You will be able to experience the organic and unique experience from back in the day thanks to great perseverance job. The museum is opened for six days in a week, inclusive of education programs conducted by the Museum Division, City of Fort Walton Beach.

Camp Walton Schoolhouse Museum

Address: 127 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, Florida 32548.

Website: Camp Walton Schoolhouse Museum

20. Sign up for a yoga session with Dragonfly Yoga

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

?? Did you miss the awesome specials at the OPEN HOUSE ?? Click the link below for special offers for GIFT PURCHASES! https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/asp/main_shop.asp?pMode=2&tabID=3

Posted by Dragonfly Yoga on Sunday, December 5, 2021

Sit back and relax when you sign up for a Dragonfly Yoga, allowing you to experience extensive yoga training programs ranging from workshops to certification classes. Here, you will get the chance to not only learn the art of zen but it will also help in healing your mind and body to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle. If you are a member of the military, free classes will also be offered as part of the founder’s goodwill.

Dragonfly Yoga

Address: 184 Brooks Street SE, Building 2, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

Website: Dragonfly Yoga

Beach town

Source: Pixabay

Fort Walton Beach is a beach town, famous for its fishing but it has many other interesting attractions to offer. Use this list as your guide on your next vacation to make sure you catch all the highlights!

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


Get Trip101 in your inbox

Unsubscribe in one click. See our Privacy Policy for more information on how we use your data

 Want to contribute as a Local Expert?
Explore Fort Walton Beach
Looking for accommodation?
Good things are meant to be shared!