**Updated June 2023**
We have been to Seaside, Florida (and the surrounding areas) four times and there is a reason we keep returning! It is perfect for a family vacation, but we’ve also gone with couples and that was a blast too.
I shared some highlights from our 2023 trip in an Instagram reel over here. I also have a highlight with lots more videos and pictures from our time in Seaside.
It was a fun place to go as group and was pretty easy to get to coming from Houston. The flight was only about an hour and a half, and it was a quick 30-minute drive from the Panama City airport. Key for traveling with a little ones!
We opted to all stay together in a house versus getting hotel rooms. This gave everyone more time together and allowed us to be more flexible with our kids’ schedules. We traveled with a pack and play for sleeping and our Inglesnia Table Chair. This portable high chair easily attached to the granite island in the kitchen and worked like a charm!
I also made sure to pack our favorite sunscreen.
Pro tip – You will save SO much money by renting a place that has a full kitchen. We went grocery shopping and cooked most of our meals at the house. This is also ideal if you have little ones because their eating schedules don’t always align perfectly with the group. It was nice to be able to easily feed the kids whenever they were hungry.
While we normally eat at the house for most meals, we do try and make it to out a few times! Over the years we’ve been to:
- The Perfect Pig. I got the open-faced gulf shrimp sandwich with cherry tomatoes, crisped prosciutto, creamy goat cheese and a lemon dill vinaigrette (two thumbs up), but I think Marcus and my dad won for best orders – the parmesan crusted pulled pork grilled cheese. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
- Bud & Alley’s Roof Deck Bar. I wasn’t as impressed with the food here, but it had a beautiful view of the shoreline. We even saw someone get engaged on the beach! Pro Tip – We almost dined downstairs at Bud & Alley’s Waterfront Restaurant, but it was a little more upscale than what we were looking for. The roof deck was more casual (i.e. better for kids) and had most of the same food offerings.
- They also have a bunch of food trucks in the middle of the action in Seaside, and on the recommendation of a friend, I had to try out The Meltdown on 30A. They sell gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and after much deliberation, I settled on The Smokin’ Turkey. The only downside to this place was the very long line. Just don’t wait until you’re starving if you want one of these popular sandwiches.
- Old Florida Fish House
- La Crema
If it’s in the budget, I recommend renting beach chairs and umbrellas from a service each day you plan to be out on the beach. You are already carrying so much down to the beach, its very nice to have the chairs and umbrellas set up for you. I also suggest looking for a house that comes with a golf cart or bicycles as that is a great way to get around the area.
Seaside has a lot to do, including fun shops to wander in and out of, a huge green space for playing (this was one of Adeline’s favorites) and the cutest post office I’ve ever seen.
We’ve also ventured into Rosemary and Alys beach, both of which have a lot to offer on the shopping front as well. A few favorites are Focus Lifestyle Boutique, Cabana by The Seaside Style and Mercantile. We also stumbled across The Chapel at Seaside, which I loved!
The ocean is stunning in Seaside and the surrounding beach towns. White sand, blue and turquoise water and next to zero seaweed.
Pro tip – I bought some inexpensive beach toys in the Target Dollar Spot to bring with us!
I recommend traveling to Seaside in their off season if you can. We were there in May, which is technically not their peak, and it still seemed like there were a good amount of people out and about. We went very early May this past year, and it was still a little chilly on the beach, so I’d shoot for later in the month. Summer it is much more crowded. You will also be able to find better deals on lodging during the off season.
Overall, Seaside is great for families, especially if you are traveling with different generations. We are definitely putting this small Florida town on our list of places to return!
If you are traveling with your family and are in need of some updated family photos, Seaside is a beautiful place to do them! It was the most beautiful sunset that evening. I am so happy we captured these memories. Photography by Laura Jennings.