A Local’s Perfect Day in Panama City Beach
If you’re like me when you travel, you want to know where do the locals go and what do they do? Because chances are they have separated the wheat from the chaff when it comes to food, drinks and entertainment. Well my friend, here is a local’s inside scoop on a perfect day in Panama City Beach.
Breakfast Is the Most Important Meal of the Day
Well, that’s what momma always said didn’t she? In any case, if you are going to do it right in Panama City Beach, you have to start your day over at Andy’s Flour Power. With a laid-back atmosphere, you can enjoy omelets crepe-style or a hearty Café Skillet.
According their website, “Owner, John Certo, is a third-generation chef from New York City. He started cooking at 9 years old, and has always had a passion for cooking up delicious food that people enjoy.” When you eat here, you can tell John has a passion for what he does.
You want to make breakfast an early start, so you have plenty of time for next up on the agenda.
Soak Up the Sun at an Island Oasis
Just off the coast of Panama City Beach is Shell Island with sugary white sand, clear water and plenty of sunshine. You have to take a boat or one of the many shuttles to the island. If you go by boat, you can link up next to other boats and make a yacht club just off the shore while enjoying the sun and good company. Or if you like, you can take in the rays on the gorgeous beach. If laying out is not your thing, you can walk the island via the nature trails or even spot dolphins, as it has one of the highest concentrations of bottle-nose dolphins in the world.
Once you’ve had your fill of the sun and are looking for some good grub to refill on, head back to the mainland for lunch.
South of the Border, Next to the Beach
After spending the morning in the sun, there is nothing better than heading over to Diego’s Burrito Factory to let them roll you a fat one! While they fix you up with a burrito that’s enough to share, head over to their margarita bar, within the restaurant, for a fresh mixed margarita. Nothing better to refuel after spending hours in the sun.
From here, you can try to push through or do what most of us do, and take a snooze back in the room. You’re on vacation, you deserve it!
Feel refreshed? Good.
The Local Beach Bar
What would a trip to Panama City Beach be without a cocktail on the beach? Schooner’s is the place for you. Dubbed the last local beach bar, this is a good description of this joint. It has an open floor plan and opens up right onto the beach. Order your drink, pull up a chair, and take in the views under the patio or head down to the sand to get a closer look.
This is a perfect place to spend the afternoon, relax and enjoy the company of fellow beach bums.
The One, Two Combo for Dinner
After a fun day enjoying the best of what Panama City Beach has to offer, it’s time to put the finishing touches on a perfect day. Now, any ordinary traveler may ask, ‘what’s the best place for dinner in Panama City Beach?’ But not you, my adventurous connoisseur of the “local experience.” You ask, what would a local do? Since you asked for it, the true way a local does dinner in Panama City Beach is to hit a one, two combo at the hottest dinner spots at the beach.
First, you will want to get drinks and some of the freshest sushi you can find over at Firefly. To relegate Firefly to a simple sushi place would be an insult. This place has a sweet bar lined with guitars, library lounge, and the main dining room is under the grand old oak tree. This place is going for “casual elegance,” and man, do they nail it. It is very possible for you to come here for drinks and appetizers, and look no further for your entrees.
But if you are the traveler I think you are, you will not want to miss the final leg on our perfect day journey.
Capt. Andersons: This is a Panama City Beach classic. Having been around since 1967, this place has more accolades than you can shake a stick at, all of which are worthwhile. I can’t think of a better place to sit down and have a nice meal with family or friends, and enjoy a traditional Panama City Beach atmosphere.
Well my friend, there you have it, a perfect day according to a Panama City local. Of course, you and I both know this is not the end – the night just begins after dinner – but the night scene could be its own series of posts. I hope on your next trip you are able to try one or all. Enjoy!
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About the Author: Brooke Newell was born and raised in Panama City Beach, FL, an experience for which she is grateful and will never forget. Brooke attended the University of Florida in Gainesville and currently works with her team at Latitude’s Realty to help others achieve their real estate ownership dreams.