ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Travel and Places»
  • Visiting North America»
  • United States

Visiting Fort Walton Beach, Florida ~ Dazzling White Sand

Updated on August 5, 2017
Peggy W profile image

The southern states have a charm all their own. From beaches to deserts there is a wide array of landscapes to please almost anyone!

My young niece on those dazzling white sands of Fort Walton Beach.
My young niece on those dazzling white sands of Fort Walton Beach. | Source

The Emerald Coast

Several times Fort Walton Beach has been on the route between our home in Houston, Texas and our destination of various places in Florida. One particular year in 1986, my mother, niece and I actually decided to spend a little extra time in Fort Walton and enjoy the dazzling white sand beaches and emerald green waters which lure many tourists to that spot for those very reasons. These pictures and memories are from that distant time in the past.

My mother is now gone and my niece is a grown woman with a daughter older than the little girl shown in these pictures.

So please pardon this reverie and come along for the ride if you are so inclined to see the beauty of what is known as part of the Emerald Coast.

View from a pier at Fort Walton Beach
View from a pier at Fort Walton Beach | Source

White Sands

This upper northwestern part of the Panhandle of Florida which includes Fort Walton Beach and nearby Destin boasts one of the top 10 beaches in the country.

Adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico these brilliant white sand beaches are pure Appalachian quartz which has been broken down over eons of time into small grains of sand.

Originally part of the Appalachian Mountains this quartz has been washed down and pulverized by the Apalachicola River which runs over 100 miles East of Fort Walton Beach.

Because these grains of sand are such a bright white color, these sands do not absorb the heat such as darker grains of sand do and therefore are much more comfortable in which to walk and play especially when barefoot.

My niece having fun in the white sand at Fort Walton Beach.
My niece having fun in the white sand at Fort Walton Beach. | Source

It is some of the cleanest and softest and brightest sand that one is likely to encounter almost anywhere which is why people have been coming to this location for years.

This sand is matched with the clear emerald green water lapping onto the pristine shoreline delighting native residents as well as tourists just passing through while on vacation.

The emerald green waters and wondrous white sands make for a beautiful and scenic combination!

Sunrise at Fort Walton Beach
Sunrise at Fort Walton Beach | Source

Indian Temple Mound & Museum

An interesting bit of Indian history can be found right in the town of Fort Walton Beach. An Indian Temple Mound and Museum dominates the normal sea level topography of this place.

It is thought that around 1400 to 1500 AD indigenous peoples built this 15 foot (4.5 cm) high and 223 feet (68 m) wide mound for multiple purposes including ceremonial, political and religious reasons. The chief would have had his residence on top of the mound.

It also serves as a repository for bones of the deceased. Pottery shards and other remnants are what give archaeologists an idea of the timeline when this mound was actively in use.

Indian Temple Mound Museum at Fort Walton Beach
Indian Temple Mound Museum at Fort Walton Beach | Source

Today the Indian Temple Mound is sheltered and protected with a structure built over the top of it and a museum shows many artifacts from not only that area but elsewhere as well.

Obviously native peoples relished this gorgeous spot now called Fort Walton Beach in previous centuries much as do tourists of today.

Native American pottery in Indian Temple Mound Museum, Fort Walton Beach, Florida
Native American pottery in Indian Temple Mound Museum, Fort Walton Beach, Florida | Source

Great Place to Live and Work

There are many reasons besides sheer beauty that people would wish to live in and around Fort Walton Beach in Florida.

  • Eglin Air Force Base is nearby and employs many people.

In fact the communities around Fort Walton Beach have some of the lowest unemployment rates in not only Florida but most of America at this time.

A U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II aircraft assigned to the 58th Fighter Squadron, 33rd Fighter Wing (FW) at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., flies over the coast of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., May 16, 2013. The 33rd FW trained Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy
A U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II aircraft assigned to the 58th Fighter Squadron, 33rd Fighter Wing (FW) at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., flies over the coast of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., May 16, 2013. The 33rd FW trained Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy | Source
  • Anyone interested in fishing would be drawn to this spot.

Charter boats do not have to venture that far from shore to hit deep waters where such fish as sailfish, marlins and others are typically caught.

Onshore fishing provides great catches of tarpon, bluefish and others.

  • Water-sports abound in this area.

Diving and snorkeling are a natural in these clear waters and swimming is a delight.

For those who are inclined to spend more of their time on land instead of in and around the water, there is tennis and golfing among other sporting diversions.

A Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)perched on the railing of the fishing pier at Ft. Walton Beach, FL.
A Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)perched on the railing of the fishing pier at Ft. Walton Beach, FL. | Source
  • Like to shop? No problem!

Fort Walton Beach provides all kind of shops selling the normal t-shirts and shell necklaces to almost anything else residents of these parts as well as tourists might wish to acquire.

  • Naturally one will find the freshest of seafood as well as other delectables in many of the dining establishments.

Source
  • Numerous lodgings are provided to suit a variety of tastes, budgets and desires.

All in all Fort Walton Beach is a most delightful place to spend a night or a fortnight or even longer.

Sandcastles

Naturally we spent some time on the beach and while we did not engage in creating sand castles of our own, we certainly got to admire those made from the handiwork of others.

Look at the fun some people had making sand castles in that white sand at Fort Walton Beach!
Look at the fun some people had making sand castles in that white sand at Fort Walton Beach! | Source

Fun Things to Do

As some of my pictures show we walked on the beach.

We played in the sand.

The three of us also went swimming in the Gulf.

Lying under the shade of an umbrella relishing the gentle warm breezes, listening to the distinctive voices of the seagulls and omnipresent lapping waves of the Gulf of Mexico also made for a delightful and restful time.

My mother walking on the white sand at Fort Walton Beach
My mother walking on the white sand at Fort Walton Beach | Source

Glorious Sunsets and Sunrises!

Anyone getting up early enough to see the sunrises in Fort Walton Beach are in for a treat!

The same can be said for the typically gorgeous sunsets.

We were lucky enough to see both.

The shimmering hues of light not only paint the sky with fantastic colors out of a well furbished artist's palette but also imbue the waters of the Gulf of Mexico and white sands of the beaches with transient colors that change moment by moment and fill the fortunate observer with wonder.

Residents and people who spend much more time in this panhandle area could probably elaborate as to many more of the benefits of visiting this gorgeous part of the country.

Suffice it to say that we thoroughly enjoyed our brief visit to Fort Walton Beach, Florida and enjoyed the dazzling white sand, emerald green waters and other local sites. Hope you enjoyed these pictures and memories.

Great collection of photos from Fort Walton Beach in this video

A markerFort Walton Beach, Florida -
Fort Walton Beach, FL, USA
get directions

Have you ever visited Fort Walton Beach?

See results

© 2011 Peggy Woods

Comments are welcomed.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 2 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Jodah,

      Your beaches must be beautiful in Queensland if they are similar to those in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Thanks for the vote up. We did have a great time there!

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 2 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Patricia,

      Nice that you and your sister have gotten to enjoy the beaches at Fort Walton as well as others. It is a "Florida gem" as you indicated. Hope angels are surrounding you this evening!

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Very informative hub Peg, lovely images and great videos too. Love the sunrises and sunsets too. Looks like you had a great time spent at Fort Walton Beach. It reminds me of some beach towns in my own state of Queensland. Thanks for sharing. Voted up.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Lovely lovely spot to visit. It is one of our favorites. When my sister and I are on what we call our "world tour" we travel to many beach destinations and one of them is Ft. Walton.

      So much to enjoy and such a relaxing spot

      Thank you for showcasing this great little Florida gem

      Voted up++++ Shared

      Angels are on the way to you this evening ps

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Micky,

      Very pleased to hear that you enjoyed these pictures and memories of our time spent at Fort Walton Beach, Florida many years ago. Those white sand beaches are amazing! I liked the videos also. Thanks for your most generous comment and God bless you also.

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 6 years ago

      Incredible hub Peggy. Your best always seems to be your latest. I think that means you're always on top of it! Great work Peggy. I like all the videos. God bless you!

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello ImChemist,

      Glad you liked these pictures of Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Thanks for the comment.

    • ImChemist profile image

      ImChemist 6 years ago

      Nice pictures , i like your family .. i hope me included in this pictures hahah

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi James,

      Fort Walton Beach is a beautiful part of the world as you just said. Nice that you have also gotten to visit that part of Florida and enjoyed those dazzling white sand beaches. Nice to see you visiting here! Thanks for the comment.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago

      Definitely a beautiful part of the world. I have been there a number of times. Highly underrated as a vacation spot. Thank you for the splendid journey. I enjoyed it!

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello katrinasui,

      Fort Walton Beach is truly that...beautiful! Happy to hear that you enjoyed the pictures. Thanks for the comment.

    • katrinasui profile image

      katrinasui 6 years ago

      It is a beautiful place. The pictures are awesome.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello leahlefler,

      This stretch of beaches from Fort Walton Beach to Destin, Florida are known for their pristine white sand beaches. All beaches are nice but if you wish to see something truly spectacular, put this on your list of places to see someday whether you do it this time on your way to Disney World...or another time. Thanks for the visit and comment. Disney World is a great place! I've written about some of our experiences there as well. Enjoy your trip!!!

    • leahlefler profile image

      Leah Lefler 6 years ago from Western New York

      We plan on taking a road trip down to FL one day (probably to Disney World with the kids), and want to visit a few Floridian beaches on our trip. This one is a little out-of-the-way, but it looks like it is worth the trip! Definitely one to put in the trip planning folder: thanks for the beautiful pictures and write-up!

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello Angela,

      Nice that you were able to experience similar vacations with your parents. Have you ever visited the area around Fort Walton Beach in Florida? Those dazzling white sand beaches are amazing! Thanks for the comment.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello agusfanani,

      If you have a similar beach to Fort Walton Beach, Florida in your country...you should write about it. Would love to see some pictures! Ah...yes...eating fresh seafood! Always a plus when one is near the water! Glad you liked this and thanks for the comment.

    • Angela_1973 profile image

      Angela_1973 6 years ago

      Peggy, this is one of my favorite hubs of yours, it reminded me of my own childhood and vacations I spent with my parents on the beach.

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 6 years ago from Indonesia

      Good morning Peggy, what a beautiful beach Fort Walton has. It reminds me to a similar beach in my country which has similar, but has no fort, sand. Of course the seafood would be another reason to visit this beach If I had the chance. This is an awesome hub, thank you Peggy.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello Happyboomernurse,

      Sounds like you had a great vacation in Florida. I've never been as far south as you just got to enjoy. Hope you write about your Florida adventures in future hubs! :-)

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello Gus,

      Sorry that your time in the Air Force did not take you to Fort Walton Beach, but thank you for your service to our country!

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello getgoingcanada,

      Nice to hear that you enjoyed the video I found showing the old scenery from Fort Walton Beach and I was happy to share my pictures and memories with you. Thanks for the comment.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Hello, hello,

      Very happy to hear that you enjoyed this hub about Fort Walton Beach and could learn about some history as well as gaze at the beauty of the white sand and clear waters. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 6 years ago from South Carolina

      Having just returned from an awesome trip to Florida where we drove down to the Florida Keys, across the Everglades and up the gulf coast as far as Tampa, I enjoyed your trip down memory lane.

      The beautiful smooth white sands and crystal clear gulf shore waters were truly breathtaking, especially at sunset.

      Thanks for sharing your family photos.

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 6 years ago from USA

      Howdy Peggy - Thanks for this great visit to FWB. Had I had any great good luck when I was transferred around while in the AF, I might have made it to Eglin AFB and maybe seen the area with my own eyes. Your illustrated article shows me what I missed.

      Gus :-)))

    • profile image

      getgoingcanada 6 years ago

      Thanks for letting us stroll down memory lane with you. I love the old film photos... and the style of clothes too. It's all good.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      Thank you for your splendid hub which contains everything, history, beautiful sceneries shown in your photos and so well described I felt I was there.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Jamie,

      Yes, reliving these memories of visiting Fort Walton Beach and walking on that dazzling white sand are good ones. The three of us had a great time as you can probably tell from the pictures.

      Hope you get back to a Florida beach soon!

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 6 years ago from Texas

      Oh, how I envy you!! This beach is so beautiful.. I wish so much that I could see a real beach again. I have been to the beach one time and it was years ago when I was in high school.

      We went to Coco Beach, FL. on our one and only family vacation. It was funny because I complained and really didn't want to leave home because of my boyfriend etc.. (high school stuff) and then once we got there I LOVED it so much that I didn't want to leave. In fact, I cried like a baby the day we left. There was just something about that place that made me feel so calm and so close to God. I swore one day I would come back to see the beach again. I would love to see Ft.Walton Beach..

      I heard after that Coco Beach really wasn't even that great compared to some of the other beaches in Florida so this makes me want to go back that much more!

      I love this hub.. thank you for sharing this! It's beautiful.. and I bet it felt great reliving those wonderful times.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello susannah,

      Since you live in Florida, you must make it a point to go to Fort Walton Beach and play in that dazzling white sand and walk, swim, snorkel, fish or otherwise entertain yourself in those emerald green waters. It is quite an amazing site! Thanks for the visit.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Cheryl,

      It would be fun to spend some time at Fort Walton Beach while on vacation. Those white sand beaches becken! :-)

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello shygirl2,

      Those kayakers in the waters just off of Fort Walton Beach certainly got a close look at the dolphins swimming near them! Must have been such a thrill to see them that close. Glad that this video was taken of that and that we all get to see it. Thanks for the votes and comment.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello wanderingpops,

      Visiting the white sand at Fort Walton Beach would be a different kind of vacation for you. No climbing of mountains, etc., as is your habit. But it is certainly pretty if you like seaside types of vacationing. Thanks!

    • susannah42 profile image

      susannah42 6 years ago from Florida

      Beautiful pictures. I live in Florida but, never been to Ft. Walton Beach. This inspires me to take a trip.

    • Cheryl J. profile image

      Cheryl J. 6 years ago from Houston, TX

      Peggy,

      Thanks for sharing your precious pictures and memories of Fort Walton Beach Florida. They are truly beautiful and the videos are great. I love the white sand on the Emerald Coast beaches as well.Your hub on pictures and memories of Fort Walton Beach Florida dazzling white sand puts me in the vacation mood.

    • profile image

      shygirl2 6 years ago

      Wow, what a great hub! So much to see and learn. I love the video of the dolphins. Thanks for sharing this one with us. :D Voted up, awesome and beautiful!!

    • wanderingpops profile image

      wanderingpops 6 years ago

      Sure makes it look inviting! I haven't been there but I would like to someday.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hello Pamela,

      You would know better than I would as to Fort Walton Beach being the most beautiful beach in Florida. We have not seen them all, but we certainly thought that it was the prettiest beach with the brightest and most dazzling white sand that we have ever seen anywhere bordering water. Thanks for the vote up and your comment.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

      Fort Walton Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in FL in my opinion. Your hub is terrific and I love all those pictures. Voted/rated up.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi dahoglund,

      You will really have to use your power of imagination to turn that snow into the dazzling white sand of Fort Walton Beach in Florida! Haha! You have a few months to go before you will be able to wiggle your toes in beach sand unless you make a trip to the South.

      There is a beauty to all that bright, white snow as long as you can stay toasty and warm. I remember...!

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Maybe if I pretend the snow outside is really white sand it won't seem so cold out.

      It seems that we used to go to beaches when I was young.I liked the feel of warm sand.

    • Peggy W profile image
      Author

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Tony,

      At least some things stay the same! These pictures and memories of Fort Walton Beach in Florida are fixed in my mind and that dazzling white sand on the Emerald Coast beaches will remain the same for years and years to come. Thanks for the first comment!

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 6 years ago from South Africa

      A delightful trip down "memory lane" indeed! Thanks for sharing the photos. Wonderful memories for you and a reminder of the passage of time.

      Thanks again - I really enjoyed this visit.

      Love and peace

      Tony