Cheapest Time to Visit Destin, Florida (With Budget Activities)

November 30th 2023
Jeannelle Douglas
Cheapest Time to Visit Destin, Florida (With Budget Activities)

Destin, Florida is known for being the “Crown Jewel of the Emerald Coast”, and for good reasons. While this area leans toward an upscale family-friendly destination, there are tons of inexpensive ways to make your trip memorable depending on when you visit the Emerald Coast.

Budget-friendly vacations shouldn’t mean skimping out on time with loved ones in the sun. With TripShock’s help, things to do in Destin don’t have to break the bank. In this blog, we analyze some of the most affordable times to visit Destin. Learn more about the cheapest time to visit Destin, Florida so that you can make an educated decision on a trip that is within your budget.

Table of Contents



Is Destin More Expensive Than Other Nearby Beach Destinations?


Aerial view of the skyline in Destin, Florida

Pictured above is an aerial view of Destin’s beautiful city skyline.


When compared with the travel costs of nearby destinations, Destin is a cheaper place to visit. Not only are the costs cheaper when traveling to Destin but it’s also less expensive to spend time in this Florida destination overall. Destin’s hotels offer rates from $85 to $299 per night, with an average cost for a week-long trip to Destin of around $1,847 for a single traveler and $6,000 for a family of four. The lowest cost for a group of four considering food, travel, and sightseeing is $128 to $256 per day.


November-February (Winter Months)


Aerial view of the beach in Destin

Pictured above is an aerial view of the beach in Destin.


If you’re looking for the cheapest time to visit Destin, Florida, consider visiting between November and February. These months are during the off-season, which means lower prices for hotels, airfare, attractions, and more. While you may not be able to find restaurants that will change their menu prices during this time, there’s a high chance that you’ll still be able to enjoy happy hour specials.


Should You Visit Destin in the Winter (November-February)?


Hampton Suites in Destin

Pictured above is Hampton Suites in Destin. Image courtesy of


Since Destin has mild temperatures in the winter, it’s a welcome escape from snowy and harsh conditions elsewhere. Fewer people come here during this time of year, so you can enjoy reduced traffic on the roads and fewer crowds at the local attractions. Even though it’s too cold to go swimming in the beach waters, you can still enjoy quiet walks on the beach and some of the most breathtaking sunsets. Winter is also a great time to visit Destin—hotels offer nightly rates as low as 65% off!


Why is Winter a Cheap Time to Visit Destin?


Chairs in the sand at the beach in Destin

Pictured above are chairs in the sand at the beach.


Due to the chilly temperatures, winter is the least busy season in Destin, with fewer tourists in the area. With fewer tourists booking hotel reservations and spending time at attractions, there’s a much lower demand for time at the beach. You can get great deals on attractions because many companies are eager to get travelers through their doors.


What are the Best Ways to Save Money During this Time?


Red dice for board game

Pictured above are several red dice for board games on a green background.


On vacation in Destin, Florida, you want to be outside having fun doing all of the activities that the area has to offer. But all of this fun usually means money going out. The good news is that there are plenty of ways to have a great time on vacation without breaking your bank account. Here are some ways to save money in Destin during the winter months.

Dine in: Eating out every day on vacation can add up. A great way to keep expenses down is to cook your own meals in a hotel room or rental. Many hotels and vacation rentals have kitchens, which makes this a realistic and affordable option. This is an easy way to save money by not dining at a different restaurant every day and it also allows you to spend quality time with your family.

Book Accommodations Direct: You can save money by booking your accommodations directly through the property’s website instead of using 3rd party sites. Many of these 3rd party sites charge a service fee when you book through their websites, which can add 4% to 10% to your costs. By booking through the property’s actual site, you can avoid fees and enjoy a more personalized experience.

Family Game Night: Consider spending a night playing games with your family. This can be as simple as playing board games or as elaborate as creating your own scavenger hunt. You don’t need to spend any money at all on this activity, but it will give your family time together while having fun!


What are Some Budget-Friendly Activities Available During Winter Months?


Dolphins jumping out of the water at Gulfarium

Pictured above are dolphins jumping out of the water at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park. Image courtesy of


When traveling to Destin, you can save tons of cash on airfare and hotel fees in comparison to other nearby vacation destinations. In addition to saving on travel and lodging costs, you can enjoy budget-friendly Destin activities all throughout the winter season. You and your family can enjoy activities such as beach bonfires, Gulfarium, and walks on the beach.

Beach Bonfire: A beach bonfire is a great way to warm up during the winter months. Whether you’re in town for a special event or simply traveling with family and friends, a beach bonfire is a perfect activity.

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park: A visit to Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park is a great way to spend the day. From exhibits to shows, and training demonstrations, this low-cost attraction is one of the best things you can do in Destin during winter.

{Read Reviews & Book Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park Tickets Online}

Go for a Walk Along the Beach: A walk along the beach is the perfect activity to get your body moving and enjoy the scenic views.

Party Boat Fishing: Destin has been touted as the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village” for good reasons. Not only can you reel in a keeper during the winter months, but you can do so all year round. When you book Destin Party Boat Fishing, you’re in for an exciting and affordable adventure this winter. What’s more? The crew can fillet your catch for you to take to one of the local seafood restaurants for a delicious meal.

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Fishing Trips Online}


Late April-Early May (Between Spring Break and Memorial Day)


Aerial view of Crab Island

Pictured above is a distant aerial view of Crab Island.


You will find that the cheapest time to visit Destin, Florida is also in the spring. You will be able to take advantage of cheap hotel accommodations that are still left over from winter. This is also a time for great weather with daytime temperatures in the mid-70s to 80s.


Should You Visit Destin in the Spring?


Man paddleboarding at sunset in Destin

Pictured above is a silhouette of a man paddleboarding at sunset.


Destin is a great destination in the spring. The weather is warm and sunny, and you can enjoy water sports as well. There’s also less rain than during other seasons, but you may get lucky and have great weather for your entire trip. You can also benefit from avoiding the peak prices that the summertime brings, which makes it a great time to plan a trip. In April and May, you will see lower prices for flights, hotel stays, and car rentals.


Why is Spring a Cheap Time to Visit Destin?


Aerial view of Destin's buildings and coastline

Pictured above is an aerial view of Destin’s buildings and coastline.


There are several reasons why spring is a cheap time to visit Destin. As one of the most popular vacation destinations in Florida, Destin can get pretty crowded during the summer months. The crowds are smaller than they are during peak season and you’ll be able to find better rates on hotels and flights. Hotel stays are as low as $100 per night In addition, spring is a great time to take advantage of special deals at restaurants and other attractions.


What are the Best Ways to Save Money During this Time?


Airplane in flight

Pictured above is a view of a jet airliner in flight.


With its many activities and attractions to enjoy, springtime is the perfect time of year to spend in beautiful Destin, Florida. From booking flights to free things to do, here are some tips for anyone looking to save money when spending their vacation in Destin.

Book Flights Early: The cost of airfare is often one of the most expensive parts of traveling. Booking early can help you save money and give you more opportunities to compare prices.

Stay in a Budget Hotel: If you’re planning on staying at a hotel while in Destin, try searching for one that is economical. It’s worth checking out if you’re planning on staying multiple nights! There are plenty of options available if you’re just looking for a place to crash after a long day at the beach or to get some rest before heading out again in the morning.

Take Advantage of Free Things to Do: To experience everything Destin has to offer without spending a fortune, take advantage of the area’s many free things to do. Some of the most popular attractions include Destin Commons, Village of Baytowne Wharf, and James Lee Park.


What are Some Budget-Friendly Activities Available During Spring Months?


Destin Harbor Boardwalk

Pictured above is the Destin Harbor Boardwalk. Image courtesy of


Spring is a time to get outdoors and enjoy the warmer weather. The weather starts to warm up and the winter blues begin to fade away. Just something fun to do with your family, there are plenty of activities to keep you occupied. If you’re planning a trip to Destin, Florida, this spring, here are some budget-friendly activities to help you make the most of your vacation.

Visit the Beach: One of the main attractions in Destin is the beach. The white sand beaches and clear water are beautiful and relaxing. The warm weather and nice beaches make this an obvious choice for springtime fun in Destin. It’s a great way to spend time with your friends or family while also enjoying some sun and sand! There are also plenty of places to rent jet skis or boats if you want to go out on the water.

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Jet Ski Rentals Online}


Go Fishing: Fishing is popular in Destin during the spring. You can go fishing right off of the dock or take a charter and head out into the Gulf of Mexico. If you are lucky, you may catch enough fish to make a tasty meal!

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Fishing Charters Online}

The Destin Harbor Boardwalk: The Destin Harbor Boardwalk is full of activity. From beach access to delicious restaurants and unique shops, there’s something for everyone in your group. For more information on the Destin Harbor Boardwalk, visit


Late August-September (After School Returns)


Couple walking on the beach at sunset in Destin

Pictured above is a happy couple enjoying a walk on the beach at sunset.


When looking for the cheapest time to visit Destin, Florida, consider visiting between August and September. Just because summer break is over doesn’t mean families will stop taking vacations. With school starting up again, the beach town of Destin is less crowded, making August and September some of the best months to visit the area. The weather is still warm enough to enjoy some of the popular outdoor activities. You can also enjoy lower prices on airfare and lodging since the off-peak season is right around the corner.


Should You Visit Destin August-September?


Mother and kid snorkeling underwater

Pictured above is a mother and kid snorkeling underwater.


Late August and September are ideal times to visit Destin. You can enjoy the warm water, lower rates, and fewer crowds. Rates for hotel rooms and beachfront vacation rentals are cheaper than during peak season. In the summer, the beaches and restaurants and flooded with tourists, but once school starts, things are back to normal. Since it’s still warm outside, you can take advantage of fun outdoor activities such as paddleboarding, snorkeling, or simply soaking up the sun at the beach.


Why is August-September a Cheap Time to Visit Destin?


Father and son having fun on a jet ski in Destin

Pictured above is a father and son having fun on a jet ski.


There are many reasons why August to September are cheap times to visit Destin. One reason is that fewer tourists are visiting the beach during this time of year. Additionally, there is less competition for hotels and vacation rentals during this season. This means that you can get better deals or even last-minute discounts on your stay in Destin!


What are the Best Ways to Save Money During this Time?


Cheapest Time to Visit Destin, Florida (With Budget Activities)

Pictured above are waves crashing onshore at the Okaloosa Island Fishing Pier.


As summer comes to a close, it’s time for a lot of people to start booking their vacations. While August and September are at the tail end of summer, the weather still allows for plenty of activities. If you’re planning a trip to Destin, Florida, at this time of year, here are some of the best ways to save money and make your vacation more affordable.

Avoid Expensive Tourist Attractions: You don’t have to go to every attraction to have fun on vacation. There are plenty of free and inexpensive things to do in Destin. You can visit the Okaloosa Island Fishing Pier and enjoy watching fishermen reel in their catch or take a stroll down Miracle Strip Parkway for shopping and restaurants.

Bring Your Own Food and Drinks with You: You’ll save money on the cost of meals, especially if you plan to eat out every night. If you’re going to cook, buy groceries before you leave home so you don’t have to pay for them once you get there.

Try Alternatives to Hotels: If you have friends or family in the area, consider staying with them. Also, consider options like Airbnb which offers more space and cheaper accommodations.


What are Some Budget-Friendly Activities Available During August-September?


Cheapest Time to Visit Destin, Florida (With Budget Activities)

Pictured above is a happy couple kayaking on a lake together.


August and September are some of the best months for cheap activities in Destin. If you’re looking for budget-friendly activities to do in Destin during August and September, you’re in the right place! From dolphin tours to parasailing, there are plenty of cheap activities available in Destin during this time of year.

Take a Dolphin Tour: One of the best ways to see dolphins in action is by taking a dolphin tour. These tours will take you out on the water, where you can see dolphins up close and personal. You may even get to see them jumping out of the water!

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Dolphin Tours Online}

Parasailing: If you’re looking for a thrilling activity, then parasailing is a perfect choice. You’ll be able to see all of Destin from an incredible vantage point! You’ll get to see the beautiful scenery, including the beach and the surrounding area.

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Parasailing Online}

Kayaking: If you’re looking for a way to get out on the water, then kayaking is another great option. You can see all kinds of wildlife while kayaking, including dolphins and stingrays! Just minutes from the Destin Harbor, Crab Island is also a great place to visit, and a kayak is the cheapest way to get to Crab Island. Just be sure you are wearing a life jacket, and are aware of other boats in the area when exploring the Harbor and Pass. Kayaking is simply a great way to spend the day and relax. If you don’t have your own kayak, there are kayak rentals available.

{Read Reviews & Book Destin Kayak Rentals Online}



So, What is the Cheapest Time to Visit Destin, Florida?


When you’re choosing the cheapest time to visit Destin, Florida, we suggest November through February. You can find lower rates for lodging, airfare, and more since it’s not peak season. You can still go on many of the most popular attractions and tours year-round. To learn more, check out TripShock’s informative blog post about what locals do year-round in Destin, Florida!

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