It's never too soon to begin planning your next beach trip. Even though I'm an expert (joking) (sorta) when it comes to Destin, the South Walton/30A area has grown so much since I have lived there that I enlisted some help. Chastity Adams is a resident of Santa Rosa Beach (aka South Walton) and along with her daughters, Reese (11) and Maggie (9) and her husband, Chad, the Adams family takes advantage of living the SoWal life more than anyone I know. Chastity just happens to be one of my best friends, so I asked her to write a guest post and guide to 30A for all of you who are ready to plan your next trip to the beach. Chastity is such an inspiration to me and a wonderful example of a mother, wife, and friend. She's beautiful from the inside, out and she's the "big sister" I didn't have. Chastity and her family moved to SRB about 6 years ago and it's so much fun to get to visit them when we are in the area. Without further adieu, here is Chastity:
Hey there!! My name is Chastity Adams and I met Jessica a long time ago, actually 10 years ago - it seems like a lifetime to me. We met while working together at a place called the Pink Palm. Ours was a friendship that only God could've put into place, where one sweet spirit knew another sweet spirit. The more we worked together the better friends we became. Friends grew into better friends, and then into family. Quickly, the name "Aunt Jeka" was born - that's what my oldest daughter, Reese, called Jessica when she was little because she'd often tag along with me to work at the Pink Palm. Jessica has been there for me through the birth of my second daughter, Maggie, helped potty train Reese (which was no simple task, lol), and through the heart-breaking time of my father passing away from cancer. Jessica has always been such a great source of encouragement and Godly wisdom for me. I was so honored to be a bridesmaid in her wedding and my girls were beyond excited to be the flower girls. Jessica is a true picture of an amazing Christian saved by grace, wrapped in His peace, and I feel like the luckiest girl alive to be called her friend/family.
With all that being said, she asked me to write about some of my very favorite treasures in the 30A beach area that I live in, so here goes...
Grayton Beach has some amazing weekly rental homes, all within walking distance of the beach. My favorite place to eat hands down is Red Bar - their crawfish pasta is awesome! They also own another restaurant called Louis Louis on Hwy 98 in Santa Rosa Beach that is awesome too. Some of the menu items are different than the Red Bar, too.
The Inn at Watercolor is a beautiful place to stay. Fish out of Water is wonderful for fine dining or a date night. Pizza By the Sea for amazing pizza and laid back atmosphere - it's one of our favorites!
The Seaside Inn is a great place to stay. There are also a lot of rental homes that sleep 10+ people for family vacations. Make sure to check the amphitheater schedule to see what's going on in the town center (Jessica wants you to know that she played the evil stepmother in a play there in 2nd Grade). Great Southern is a wonderful place to eat, but it's pricey so save it for a special occasion or a date night. Barefoot BBQ is an airstream that has amazing brisket nachos (I crave them!!). Also, Frost Bites has the best snow ones ever, and we frequent this place a lot!
Jessica: If you've ever seen "The Truman Show" with Jim Carrey, it was filmed in Seaside.
Watersound Beach is newer but has just opened a hangout called The Hub where you can catch a movie or ballgame on the big screen. And for places to eat, my favorite is a burger from The Crave! Also finish it off with ice cream from Mr. Freeze.
There is an amazing coffee shop called the Fonville Press. There's also a wonderful outdoor area to hang out and on Tuesday nights they have a band playing. Also on Tuesday nights throughout the summer they have kids movies in the amphitheater at 8:00. Caliza is good for dinner and George's is great for lunch.
Next door to Alys is Seacrest Beach. They have a wonderful Mexican restaurant called La Cocina's - everything on the menu is great especially their salsa!
Rosemary Beach is next on the map, another one of my very favorite places! The Pearl is the place to stay. For fine dining visit Paradis. Cowgirl Kitchen is my favorite casual place to eat. Also across the street is Amivida Coffee, which is great to hang out and enjoy a cup of joe!
There are so many places to choose from along 30A, I just wanted to start my absolute favorites with you as a local!
Thank you so much, Chastity for so many ideas! You can connect with Chastity on Instagram, or find her paddle boarding or along 30A in one of these beautiful communities!
Just for funsies, here are some more pictures of Chastity and me (+ her family) through the years...