Panama City Beach is a perfect family getaway. There is plenty to explore, from natural land and sea educational tours to simply splashing around in the water. There is a lot to do on land as well, so we have put together a sample itinerary to help you make decisions about your Panama City Beach family friendly journey.
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Day 1: Visit Shell Island
Take a pontoon boat to the beautiful Shell Island. It has a peaceful white sand beach that can provide the kids with hours of shell and sand dollar collecting. You can also go fishing here and admission is not as expensive as some of the other parks. Did you bring Fido on vacation? You can take him to Shell Island! You can also book a tour through Dolphin and Snorkeling Tours Inc., where you can book a private charter or join a scheduled tour. Some of their tours offer snorkeling at Shell Island.
Dining: Finns Island Style Grub offers local fresh and healthy choices as well as organic coffee. If you want more casual dining, try Bayou Joe’s Marina and Grill and Uncle Ernie’s—both are on the waterfront. Gene’s Oyster Bar is very highly rated and has casual counter-style service.
Day 2: Another Day on the Beach
Panama City Beach is one of the free beaches in the area where you can take your family and just have fun in the sand and surf all day. With access points all down the beach, you can find a great spot to toss the cooler and lie in the sun then cool off in the sea.
In the mood for a little more adventure? Book a tour with JetSurf PCB. They have the fastest boards available and are located in an area that restricts motors, which makes it safer for your family. For safety, always bring your own sunscreen and be prepared with a jacket in case the weather cools.
Dining: Either bring your own cooler of food and drinks or try one of the fabulous beach-side restaurants. The eateries mentioned in Day 1 above are near the beach area, as is the Shrimp Boat.
Day 3: Frank Brown Park
To break up the ocean tours a little, try the Frank Brown Park. Admission to the park itself is free, and there are activities you can join for a small fee. This outdoor recreation area is 200 acres of land that houses football fields, soccer fields, tennis courts, softball, and tee ball fields, and has a conservation park with fish pond. The best news is your dog is welcome here, too!
The big attraction is the aquatic center. With a 50,000 square foot pool, locker rooms, showers, and classrooms, this is a great addition to your Panama City Beach family friendly journey.
Dining: There is a concession stand at the Aquatic Center or you check out one of the local restaurants. Montego Bay and Buddy’s Seafood Market are two traveler favorites, and for dessert don’t miss Kilwin’s confectionery, full of handmade chocolates and more.
Day 4: Bear Creek Feline Center
This family-friendly conservation center for felines currently has four different species of wildcats: panthers, bobcats, servals, and lynx. This nonprofit family-friendly attraction requests a donation for guided tours, but it is well worth it to make sure the displaced animals continue to have a well-stocked home to live out their days and to help the facility bring in other cats that need their assistance.
Bear Creek makes it possible for you to enter an enclosure with one of the “safe” species, the servals. They have suggested donations per person, but everyone does what they can. Make sure you call ahead for a reservation.
Dining: The House of Henry Irish Pub is a highly rated local favorite. For some home-style comfort food try Charlie Coram’s Place on 23rd Street.
Day 5: ZooWorld Zoological Park
The ZooWorld Zoological Park is a perfect family friendly Panama City Beach attraction. You can pet sloths, walk through their aviary, get kissed by a giraffe, play with goats and even feed alligators. A must-see here is the Lemur Experience. Lemurs are endangered primates found only in Madagascar. You can learn about these friendly creatures at ZooWorld and even snuggle with them! Check their website at zooworldpcb.com to check on age restrictions for certain activities.
For parents who might need to get a little frustration out of their systems after traveling with children for five days, there is a hatchet throw available at Grand-Papi Jolley’s Hatchet Shack.
Dining: One high-rated casual dining experience for the whole family is Chewie’s Kitchen. With choices ranging from American and Italian to grilled and diner foods, there is something for everyone. If you would like some local tastes, Dat Cajun Place offers authentic Cajun with a kids’ menu.
Your Florida Family Getaway Starts Here
This sample itinerary highlights some of the best the area has to offer. For more choices, contact the Vacations Perfected staff of highly knowledgeable professionals to make your Panama City Beach family friendly journey the best ever. You will enjoy every moment of your for your trip to Panama City Beach, even when you’re headed back to your accommodations when you stay in one of our Panama City Beach vacation homes.