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(2019 - Winter Issue)


Northwest Florida encompasses 10 counties, ranging from historical fishing villages in the east to the renowned sugar-white sand beaches on the Gulf of Mexico. Here, where high-rises and crowds don’t exist, walkable small towns with friendly people and interesting shops still thrive.

Mother Nature has blessed this region everywhere you look. Play golf on a beautifully manicured course in the morning, and paddle or hike through virgin wilderness and unique ecosystems in the afternoon. Roam through towns like Apalachicola or Marianna, where history lives on in classic old buildings. Or let the gentle breeze embrace you as you lounge on the world-famous beaches of South Walton.

Explore crystal-clear natural springs—20 C year-round—at Ponce de Leon Springs State Park or Merritt’s Mill Pond by boat or on a snorkelling or swimming excursion. Survey nature from the bluffs at Torreya State Park on the Apalachicola River. In fact, a dozen state parks here offer camping, on both coastal and inland sites, where you can get up close and personal with Florida wildlife.

At Florida Caverns State Park in Marianna, explore an amazing subterranean system of caves featuring incredible rock formations and green ponds. Hike a beautiful trail to the waterfalls at Falling Waters State Park or along any of the two dozen other trails in Northwest Florida.

Observe dolphins rollicking in the Gulf of Mexico surf from the numerous white-sand beaches or sand dunes along the coast, or up-close on board one of many fishing boats or charters. Try your hand at paddleboarding, surfboarding, kayaking or rowing.

For divers, there are a half-dozen watery caves and offshore artificial reefs to explore. And fishing, both inland and on the Gulf, has been popular here for generations.

Take time to cruise the country roads and discover scenic little towns filled with one-of-a-kind shops and locally owned restaurants serving Southern and coastal cuisine. Local specialties include grouper throats, boiled peanuts and oysters. Also capturing the region’s Southern heritage are beautiful old mansions such as the plantation-style Gregory House (circa 1840s) in Torreya State Park.

Northwest Florida is simply packed with stunning natural beauty, restaurants featuring down-home cookin’, amusements for the whole family and exciting discoveries with every bend in the road as well as plain old-fashioned enjoyment!

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Discover a world of adventure in Northwest Florida at ExploreNWFlorida.com.

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