17 Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida as a Student | 2023 Study Abroad Guide

Destin, a picturesque coastal village in northwest Florida, is well known for its fine dining establishments and white sand beaches. So we sighted some of the top best places to eat in Destin Florida and have shared it here.

It offers a wide variety of culinary experiences, from classy restaurants to simple seafood shacks.

We will take you on a culinary tour in this post, highlighting the most amazing restaurants that are sure to sate your appetite.

We will also share our knowledge, personal stories, and recommendations to make your trip to this coastal city worthwhile. 

Pack your luggage, then read the reviews listed below to embark on a culinary vacation.

Why Visit Destin Florida?

1. Sugar White Beaches

In Destin, Florida, you may find some of the most breathtaking beaches in the world, with pristine white sands and emerald-green oceans around them. These distinctive sugar-white beaches, which extend from Pensacola to Port St. Joe, are genuinely exceptional. If you pay close attention, you can even hear the sand squeak as you walk to your destination since it is so smooth and clean.

2. Crab Island

Every other place in the world cannot compare to Crab Island; it is absolutely unique. 

At one time, Crab Island was an island, but over time, eroding sands from the Gulf of Mexico left us with what is today a sandbar where thousands of boats moor. 

The depth of the water can vary depending on where you park your boat, from up to your waist to as low as your calves! Since Crab Island has grown to be so well-liked, there are even a number of restaurants, pizza delivery services, waterslides, and watersports equipment rentals on-site for everyone to enjoy.

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3. Deep Sea Fishing

The phrase “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village” was invented for Destin, Florida, and it makes sense! With 20 kinds of edible game fish, deep-sea fishing in Destin offers the greatest diversity of catches in the Gulf! 

There are numerous fishing competitions held throughout the year that draw skilled anglers to the region. The majority of fishing vessels provide full-service trips with qualified crew, equipment, permits, bait, and ice. 

Another fantastic thing is that the crews will clean, file, and bag the fish you caught once you have docked after a delightful day of fishing!

4. Big Kahuna’s

Big Kahuna’s has more than 40 water activities, providing a wide range of outdoor recreation for people of all ages. Also, Big Kahuna’s will be a hit for everyone, regardless of whether you prefer the rush of a waterslide or want to unwind in the lazy river. 

For those who are still at heart surfers, there is even a half pipe with 36,000 gallons of water flowing every minute.  For more than 25 years, Big Kahuna’s has been the only water park in Destin.

5. Gulfarium

Sea turtles and dolphins are beloved by all. You can engage with the animals in a wide range of exhibits at the Gulfarium. Several interesting displays include kissing a harbor seal or snorkeling with stingrays! 

The Gulfarium also offers a sunset camp that lets parents enjoy an evening alone while their kids participate in activities like a dolphin encounter, beach exploration at dusk, ocean-themed games, scavenger hunts, and even a meal with seals!

What are the Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida as a Student? 

1. Brotula’s Seafood House and Steamer (Editor’s Choice)

2. Louisiana Lagniappe

3. Crackings

4. Mama Clemenza’s

5. Vinny McGuire’s Pizza

6. Slick Lips Seafood and Oyster House

7. Bijoux

8. Sarah K’s Gourmet

9. Jackacuda’s Seafood and Sushi

10. McGuire’s Irish Pub and Brewery

11. Fish Out of Water

12. Beach Walk Cafe

13. Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

14. Marina Cafe

15. 790 on the Gulf Restaurant

16. Lulu’s

17. Tailfins Waterfront Grill

1. Brotula’s Seafood House and Steamer (Editor’s Choice)

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

One of Destin’s top-rated eateries is this family-run eatery.

It is close to the Destin Harbor and is well-known for its local seafood specialties.

This restaurant’s atmosphere, with its open-air design and feel of an island paradise, will be to your taste.

In Destin, you may enjoy your best lunch while taking in the breathtaking harbor views.

This is the place to go if you’re searching for a casual location to eat.

To develop its New South and traditional coastal offerings, the restaurant buys all of its seafood from local suppliers.

Additionally, it provides a hook-and-cook service, meaning that after going fishing, you can bring your catch to the chefs, who will be happy to make brunch for you.

2. Louisiana Lagniappe

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

In 1984, this acclaimed eatery made its debut.

It serves seafood with a Creole flavor inside the Sandpiper Cove apartments.

Louisiana Lagniappe, with its elegant plating and subdued outdoor lighting, epitomizes great dining in Destin.

The restaurant is the ideal place to be at night because you can take in the brisk harbor breeze while eating a delicious meal.

One of the nicest supper spots in Destin is without a doubt Louisiana Lagniappe because of the harbor light views.

3. Crackings

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

With its live music and laid-back ambiance, this family-run restaurant is one of Destin’s hippest hangouts.

Check this out if you’re the kind who thinks breakfast is the most significant meal of the day. In keeping with that concept, the restaurant staff puts a lot of work into producing these morning delicacies.

As a result, you receive enormous portions of great cuisine, which should come as no surprise.

In addition, you’ll adore the atmosphere here.

The relaxed atmosphere with live music makes this one of the most sought-after eateries.

Additionally, the staff goes out of their way to be accommodating and polite.

4. Mama Clemenza’s

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

This multi-awarded restaurant, whose owners have Irish and Italian ancestry, is well known for its opulent European-inspired fare.

Compared to Crackings and Louisiana Lagniappe, Mama Clemenza’s offers a distinctive variety of breakfast items with European influences.

Check out Mama Clemenza’s if you’re seeking eateries in your area.

With each taste of the delicious prepared food served at the adjacent restaurant at Miramar Beach, you’ll be transported to Europe.

You’ll adore the cozy, bistro-like ambiance as well.

Both the bar and the covered patio offer seating.

The personnel are so welcoming that they constantly circle the room to see if there is anything extra you require.

5. Vinny McGuire’s Pizza

Located just adjacent to McGuire’s Irish Pub and Brewery, this is one of the top eateries in the city.

Italy’s pasta and pizza are the restaurant’s star dishes; the menu is influenced by European cuisine.

This is unquestionably one of the greatest restaurants in Destin. Not merely the meal is deserving of praise.

With its distinctive blending of Italian dining and pub characteristics, the ambiance is also something to be commended.

You’ll adore the distinctive eating experience that sets this restaurant apart from the rest on my list of Destin restaurants.

With more than a dozen toppings, including Cajun sausage and even artichoke hearts, you can create your own pizza.

6. Slick Lips Seafood and Oyster House

This hip restaurant, which is tucked away in the scenic Baytowne Wharf, is well known for its delectable seafood dishes and raw oysters, which will keep you going back for more.

The establishment’s interior’s flawless combination of trendy and traditional components puts it on my list of top restaurants in Destin.

The antique photos and the fish wall sculptures give attention to tradition, while the mini-chandeliers guarantee that the space has a global feel.

Of course, the food is delicious and some of the best in Destin or the surrounding area.

Because the workers will be preparing the food at the bar, in full view of everyone else, you can even watch some of that oyster-shucking action.

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7. Bijoux

This award-winning restaurant is well known for its New Orleans-inspired coastal cuisine.

It may be found in The Market Shops, a posh shopping mall designed to resemble a community.

Here, a distinctively elegant dining experience is made possible by the subtle lighting and chic decor.

Private dining choices are available as well, but if you enjoy views as part of your meal, head to the courtyard outside for the rich vegetation.

8. Sarah K’s Gourmet

Since it opened 16 years ago, this upscale delivery service across from Destin Commons has won accolades for its delectable chef-prepared ready-to-heat food.

If you want a dinner that is both delicious and quick, go here in Destin.

Each variety is packaged in an aluminum tin and cooks in 20 minutes or less, making it perfect for the busy beaver.

A wide range of take-and-bake products are also available at the venue for a complete dining experience.

For its exceptional flavor, Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes are well-known throughout the world.

Keep in mind that there are no fillers; they are all crab.

For a flavorful explosion, don’t forget to dip the cakes in Sarah K’s homemade hot sauce.

9. Jackacuda’s Seafood and Sushi

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

This restaurant, which initially opened its doors in 2014 and is named after a well-known fishing spot close to Destin Harbor, continues to win fans with its dishes influenced by the South and Asia presented in a relaxed atmosphere.

This institution is a favorite hangout for both residents and tourists because of its laid-back atmosphere.

You’ll adore the beachy furnishings and pop art on the walls, and the stunning harbor views top it all off.

As the proprietors planned, the restaurant has the appearance of a contemporary farmhouse where friends gather.

The traditional Hawaiian meal poke is a perennial favorite because it uses locally sourced, freshly chopped raw fish.

10. McGuire’s Irish Pub and Brewery

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

Since its opening in 1996, the Destin location has captivated customers attracted to the pub’s roaring twenties New York saloon atmosphere. Unquestionably unique, the atmosphere.

As soon as you enter, you’ll notice that the walls and ceiling are covered in more than a million signed dollar bills.

When the first employee of the bar left her first tip, it began a custom that succeeding customers have continued.

Every night there is live music playing, and you’ll appreciate the lively atmosphere where people are just out to have fun and strike up discussions.

Go to the deck to take in the mesmerizing view of the harbor if you’d want some peace and quiet.

11. Fish Out of Water

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

The eatery, which has a view of the Gulf of Mexico, emanates a beachy vibe that is both enjoyable and soothing. It serves delectable Southern fare with a fresh, coastal flair.

If you’re a foodie who arrived alone, you’ll definitely get more than what you ordered for as it’s the only sizable family-style restaurant in the region.

However, the large food platter is ideal for sharing, which explains why this is one of Destin’s top birthday restaurants.

The Fish Out of Water signature burger, cooked with wagyu beef, buttered brioche buns, lettuce, and house-made pickles, is a must-try.

Because the beef is from a quality cow breeder on a farm in Louisiana, it is richer and more flavorful.

12. Beach Walk Cafe

The upmarket eatery is well-known for its American food with Asian and European influences and emits a beautiful coastal setting ambiance.

Couples will enjoy the eating experience at this restaurant, which is located right across the Gulf Coast’s emerald waters. Beautiful views may be seen from the terrace.

If that’s not enough, there’s also the “Toes in the Sand” eating option, which lets you eat by the water’s edge.

New Orleans-Style Dishes Barbecue Favorite dishes include shrimp and grits, which have the ideal balance of seafood and sausage flavors over a bed of smoked gouda and are all drenched in delectable Worcestershire sauce.

13. Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

This is one of the numerous nearby restaurants with wonderful views in a relaxed beach environment, and it is situated on the lovely Destin Harbor.

The Southern-style cuisine served at Boshamps Seafood & Oyster House is renowned for using regionally produced products.

Here, you’ll have a full-on culinary experience thanks to the exquisite ambiance and mouth watering meals.

Whether you’re inside the restaurant with its wooden floors and hanging fish sculptures or outside with its stunning harbor views, the beach feel is impossible to miss.

14. Marina Cafe

This multi-awarded restaurant is directly across from the Emerald Coast and offers its patrons breathtaking views of the water.

The restaurant has a large menu with everything from sushi to pizza.

Both residents and visitors enjoy the breathtaking vistas of the Emerald Coast and the opulent atmosphere.

Anyone who likes eating is welcome here because of the innovative cuisine, which includes sushi, wood-fired pizzas, and pasta.

With its exquisite taste blending, the Grilled Blackened Gulf Swordfish with Lyonnaise potatoes and basil steeped in beurre blanc is a gourmet marvel.

15. 790 on the Gulf Restaurant

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

With its laid-back atmosphere and well-known Florida meals with a Louisiana touch, this lovely place is among the greatest dining options in Destin.

Because of the restaurant’s large windows, you may enjoy stunning views of the port even when you’re inside.

The white theme, wooden tables and chairs, and other elements of the restaurant’s interior view all add to the beachy atmosphere.

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16. Lulu’s

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

Another tropics-themed outdoor restaurant that will make the whole family happy is Lulu’s. The kids will love the bright colors and open-air design on their own, not to mention the picnic table-style sitting near to the beach from which you can watch kites fly. 

Between tours, little ones will be dancing in the sand to live music while picking at their lunches. One of the most entertaining places to eat in Destin is Lulu’s. 

However, if you want to spice things up, Lulu’s is also a terrific spot to pick up a juicy burger or a stacked sandwich. 

Additionally, the experience wouldn’t be complete without the outstanding selection of wines, beers, and cocktails.

17. Tailfins Waterfront Grill

Best Places To Eat In Destin Florida

A huge operation, Tailfins Waterfront Grill. The enormous sports bar boasts lovely waterfront views of the marina. Both the top outdoor deck and the main level both have seating.  

The deck’s shaded picnic tables provide a good time in the sun. Large flat-screen TVs are available in the indoor bar, where customers cheer on their preferred teams on game days. 

The dining area, which is decorated with sports banners, remains active.

Frequently Asked Questions 

What Restaurants In Destin Are The Most Well-liked?

The top eateries in Destin are Jackacuda’s Seafood & Sushi, East Pass Seafood & Oyster House, and Brotula’s Seafood House & Steamer.

What Are Destin’s Top Restaurants That Deliver?

Merlin’s Pizza, Miller’s Ale House – Destin, and Roberto’s Pizzeria are the most well-liked eateries in Destin that offer delivery.

What is So Special About Destin, Florida?

Destin is a little Floridian paradise. The gorgeous 30A beaches, world-class golfing, and water sports bring tourists from all over the globe. Being the home of the largest fishing fleet in Florida is the town’s actual claim to fame. 

If hotel rooms in Destin are difficult to come by, travelers can find some amazing amenities at Fort Walton Beach hotels, a nearby beach town.

What Are the Most Popular Restaurants in Destin? 

East Pass Seafood & Oyster House, Brotula’s Seafood House & Steamer, Jackacuda’s Seafood & Sushi, and Crackings are some of the most popular restaurants in Destin. The city is full of so many delicious places to eat! 

What Are Destin’s Top Restaurants with Delivery? 

Italian restaurant brands like Jet’s Pizza and Merlins Pizza are among the greatest eateries in Destin that deliver. In Destin, Florida, some Mexican eateries also provide delivery. La Paz and Burrito Del Sol are two popular local restaurants.


One of Florida’s top Gulf Coast beaches is located in Destin, which is also a breathtakingly gorgeous and exciting destination. 

You can always dine well in Destin, whether you want to have a family-friendly beachside meal, a romantic candlelit dinner, or even curbside delivery! This establishment has you covered for every occasion when it comes to food. 

We wish you a pleasant time and savor every meal along the route, whether you’re planning a romantic break or the family vacation of a lifetime.


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