Navarre Beach recognized as top Florida 10Best Beach

USA Today 10Best has named Navarre Beach to their top 5 Reader’s Choice 2018 Best Florida Beaches.

Of the 825 miles of coastline along Florida, it is no surprise that Navarre’s little slice of heaven stole a spot in the top five, coming in at number four.

The list is created by a group of travel experts who select 20 nominees. Then the public is invited to vote on their favorite, creating a shortlist of 10 destinations.

Praised for our powdery white sands, turquoise waters and uncrowded coastlines, Navarre Beach offers miles of uninterrupted, public access beaches that put other locations in Florida and abroad to shame.

Navarre Beach is southern hospitality, laid back island mentality and natures majesty all rolled into one unique destination.

We also boast the longest fishing pier in the Gulf of Mexico, unique snorkeling experiences along our artificial reef, a one of a kind sea turtle conservation center and so much more.

Also snagging a top spot is neighboring Gulf Islands National Seashore at number 3 on the list. Gulf Islands is located just a few minutes drive west along Gulf Boulevard from our luxury condos.

This park features some of the best preserved sand dunes on the gulf, gorgeous views, native wildlife and plenty of space to spread out for an afternoon of surf and sunbathing.

This national park was also named 10Best Readers’ Choice 2018 Best Florida Attraction beating out overcrowded theme parks like Walt Disney World and other more widely known locations like the Dry Tortugas.

Our home here is known as “Florida’s best kept secret,” but it appears the secret is out. We would love to share our secret with you.

Plan your vacation today at navarrelistings.com.

Know before you go: Beach safety

March marks the beginning of beach season along Florida’s shimmering gulf coast. That also means our lifeguards are back on duty along Navarre Beach.

Between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. lifeguards will be monitoring the public gulf side beach areas each day to keep an eye out for trouble.

Swimming in an area where lifeguards are present ensures your safety and the safety of others. Our lifeguards are trained and experienced lifesavers. I make a point to swim in areas where lifeguards are visible. I’ve grown up swimming in the waters of the gulf, but better to be safe than sorry.

A beach vacation can be loads of fun, but any body of water comes with risks. Being aware of conditions and educating yourself will ensure a safe and memorable beach experience.

The flag system

Lifeguards will post color-coded flags every day along the beach letting visitors know the water conditions forecasted for that day. The flags will be updated according to condition changes.

Here’s what the flag colors mean.

Green: Low hazard

Conditions are calm. There is always a risk when swimming so be aware, but on green flag days risks are minimal.

Yellow: Medium hazard

Use caution while swimming. There will be light to moderate surf, and rip currents are possible. Children should stay close to shore, not going deeper than their waist height.

Red: High Hazard

There are rough conditions, strong surf and rip currents are likely. Lifeguards advise all swimmers to avoid entering the water above the knee. In the event of an emergency, these conditions could prevent rescuers from reaching you. Even professional swimmers have trouble on red flag days. Stay safe. Stay on shore.

Double Red: Water is closed to the public

Conditions are unsafe. Stay out of the water.

Purple: Marine pests

A purple flag may be flown along with any of the above flag colors. This means that animals such as jellyfish, stingrays or dangerous fish may have been spotted in the area. Swimming is likely safe. Ask a lifeguard for more information.

Rip currents

Rip currents are strong, narrow currents that flow outward from the beach. They are a natural occurrence, and potentially dangerous to swimmers. They can be deadly.

When a swimmer is caught in a rip current the flow of water pulls them away from shore. The current will not pull you under, but it can be scary.

It’s tempting to try and swim against the current toward shore. DO NOT DO THIS. The current will lead to fatigue even for strong swimmers.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association outlines exactly what to do in the event of a rip current.

If you find yourself caught in a rip current. Float, don’t swim. Remain calm and evaluate your situation. If people are on shore, wave and shout to alert them that you are in need of help.

Calmly swim parallel to shore eventually making your way out of the current and getting back to shore at an angle.

If you see someone else caught in a rip current, alert a lifeguard. Do not attempt to rescue them yourself. Even trained life savers do not attempt rescues without a flotation device.

Instead send something that floats to the person. Along Navarre Beach, emergency flotation devices are located at the foot of main beach walkover for this purpose.

If a lifeguard is not available, call 911.

With any natural space, there are risks along the coastline. But with proper education and precaution, a beach vacation can be a wonderful experience.

Come soak up the sun with us along Navarre Beach. Book your vacation today at NavarreListings.com.

10 dos and don’ts for your beach bag (and why)

There is nothing funnier to me than watching a family make their first trek down to the Gulf of Mexico.

On that first visit, you have two types: the bring-it-alls and the under-preparers.

Neither is a good camp to be in. Bring-it-alls are the people who think they need to pack everything and then some to go to the beach. They have chairs, grills, three thousand towels, six fully inflated rafts, pounds of sand toys, coolers and eight bottles of sunscreen. They are puffing and sweating just trying to carry all that stuff down to the water. And packing up to leave is a mess.

Under-preparers show up with nothing. Maybe a towel. Likely not a single sunscreen bottle. There trek to the water is easy-peasy, but their sunburnt, sandy skin at the end of the day tells a different story.

You need not be either of these unfortunate souls. I’ve been visiting the beach with my mother and sister since I was in diapers, and I now have packing down to a science. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Do pack sunscreen. The UV index, an indicator of how intense the sunlight is, can get to a 10 on a 12-point scale during peak hours of summer. That bright, warm sunshine is what we love most about the Florida coastline, but it can also be dangerous. Sunburn is no joke. Apply SPF 30 or higher sunscreen before you leave your condominium or beach house rental. Bring the bottle with you and reapply every 1-2 hours.
  2. Don’t over pack. The white sands of the beach are beautiful, but they are also hard to walk across with your arms loaded down and a cooler in tow. Limit yourself to one bag/cooler per person at most. This will make the walk to the water much easier.
  3. Do bring water, and lots of it. Like I said, the beach can get hot. While that makes for a fabulous vacation, fun in the sun can dehydrate you. Everyone should drink at least two bottles throughout the day to stay hydrated.
  4. Don’t inflate rafts before you reach the water. I am not a big fan of these floaty devices, but my mother loves them. She’ll float and soak for hours. Plus, little ones may need the added swim protection of water wings. If you do pack them, don’t inflate them until you reach the surf.  When you leave, deflate and roll them to pack up. It will make life that much easier.
  5. Do bring an extra towel. My rule of thumb is a towel per person plus one for every three in a group.  So for example, six people would need eight towels. Undoubtedly you are going to want to sit on one towel or little Jimmy is going to get his towel wet or you are going to need a towel to wrap up those wet bathing suits for transport.
  6. Don’t pack sand toys. Borrow them instead! The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center has a nifty borrow bin filled with sand toys, boogie boards and more, free to use. Swing by the center on the beach and grab a handful before making your way to the water. At the end of the day, return the toys to the bucket.
  7. Do protect your electronics. Water and sand are not electronic friendly. I recommend leaving the camera in the condo and using your cell phone instead. A waterproof or water-resistant case should protect your phone if you are careful, and Ziploc bags offer cheap protection for other necessities.
  8. Don’t leave a trace. Navarre Beach has a “leave no trace” ordinance in place. This means it is illegal to leave items out on the beach after dark. This law protects our local wildlife, especially nesting sea turtles! Remember to pack up everything when you leave.  Bring a grocery bag to carry all garbage, fill in all holes and knock down those sand castles to pave the way for our local wildlife. When we all do a little it goes a long way.
  9. Do grab baby powder.  This stuff is for more than powdering juniors bottom. Baby powder is an excellent tool for getting sand off your toes before loading back into the car. There are shower stations available for rinsing your tootsies, but I have found baby powder works easier and faster. Plus, no dripping in the car. Just sprinkle on your feet and brush it away.
  10. Don’t stress it. This is a vacation. In the end no one is going to look back on your vacation and remember whether or not you packed that one snack or sand bucket. You are going to remember the great moments shared together so relax.

 

Visit navarrelistings.com to book your stay today!

Navarre Beach gets wheelchair friendly

Everyone deserve a chance to take in the wonders of nature.

The beauty and fun of Navarre Beach is for all, and thanks to the new Mobi-mat to be installed on our beach this spring, it will be accessible to all.

We are getting wheelchair accessible beach access!

The Mobi-mat is a permanent fix­ture that rests on top of the sand, allowing wheelchairs, motorized scooters and oth­er mobility devices to access the water.

The blue mat will start at the kayak dune walkover in the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary and run down to the Gulf for 100 feet. The kayak dune walkover is a wide, railless ramp that allows beach patrons to access the sand without being impeded by rails or stairs.

The mat will also have two arms that spread out 16.5 feet each to the east and west to allow multiple families to use the setup at one time. All of the paths will be 5 feet wide and anchored into the sand.

The material is made of recycled plastics, is heavy­weight and remains cool un­der the sun.

Plus it comes is a nautical shade of blue! This mat will allow our visitors to experience the beach up close for the first time, and we are very excited.

In addition to the Mobi-mat, Navarre Beach will be adding two beach wheel­chairs for rolling down to the waves.

These chairs have en­larged, balloon-like wheels that can roll over sand. The chair is construct­ed from PVC pipe and mesh to keep it lightweight. Navarre Beach Fishing Pier management company Growing Santa Rosa Enter­prises has agreed to manage free check-outs of the chairs.

The pier is also wheelchair accessible for those that would like to go out on the Gulf of Mexico’s largest fishing pier. Be mindful that the ramp is steep in places, but the view is spectacular.

We here at Navarre Beach would like to welcome everyone to enjoy our shores. Call us at 866-936-1312 to book your ADA friendly accommodations today.

Vacation like you mean it!

How many times have you said “I want to go on vacation, but work is too busy”?

How many times have you said “it’s too expensive to go right now” or “its not the right time with work” or “I can’t leave because of ‘x’” or even “I’ll go next year”?

How many times have you watched as the year ended and your vacation days expired, languishing from boundless potential to the ashes of what might have been.

At least 55 percent of you have done this to yourselves because on average 55 percent of employees don’t use their vacation days each year. That amounts 662 million unused vacation days. I repeat, 662 MILLION.

That’s crazy!

As travel expert Samantha Brown of Project: Time Off says, we are simply not prioritizing our vacations.

Well I for one say no more!

It is time to get out there and explore the world one sun-soaked beach at a time. It is time to paddle down the ancient Blackwaters and visit historic places. It is time to take a helicopter tour or snorkel on beautiful reefs or meet a sea turtle.

It is time to actually live your life.

Project: Time Off, found at projecttimeoff.com, is a great website to get you started. Their research-based information is packed with reasons why you should be vacationing and a calendar tool to help you get started.

The project has found that taking a vacation now and again boosts overall productivity, morale and prevents burnout. Samantha puts it perfectly when she says “there is no perfect time. Work will always be busy, and you are lying about (vacationing) next year.”

So go out there and seize the moment, your moment. Every wasted vacation day is a crime against not only yourself, but your quality of work and your family. Kids won’t stay kids forever. Young romance only happens once. And your life only happens once.

You deserve to live a full and happy life, and that means taking time to relax and discover a new place (and yourself.)  We can help with that.

Start making the most of your vacation days here on sunny Navarre Beach. Plan your trip today. Visit navarrelistings.com to book your stay with us!

Not your everyday summer camp

The chill of winter is gone and the school year is winding to a close which can only mean one thing: it’s time to plan for summer vacation!

For many families it is time to pick out summer camps for the little ones. Thoughts of summer camp can bring to mind drafty cabins, pesky mosquitoes and poison ivy, but might I suggest a much better alternative?

Send the kids to camp at the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station. From building underwater ROVs to surfing on the waves to deep sea fishing and so much more these camps are so cool and right here on beautiful Navarre Beach.

Camps for this summer include:

 

Dolphin Discovery

June 11-15, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students entering third through eighth grade

$275 (private dolphin cruise included)

 

 

Reefs and Robotics

June 18-22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students entering fifth through eighth

 

Paddlepalooza

June 25-29, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students entering third through fifth grade

$300 (include water sports lessons and activities)

 

Ocean Conservation Mini-Camp

July 2-3, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Students entering first through fifth grade

$100

 

Guy Harvey Fishing Camp

July 9-13, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Ages 9-14

$350 (includes deep sea fishing, fishing gear and custom tee)

 

Arts and the Sea

July 16-20, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Students entering kindergarten through third grade

$175

 

Sea Turtles Mommy (or Daddy) and Me at the Sea

July 28, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Ages 4-5

$75

 

Fins and Flippers

July 30 – Aug. 3, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students entering third through eighth grade

$275

 

Visit www.navarresciencestation.org for more info and to register.

 

P.S. Mom and Dad

Most of the station’s camps will keep the kids occupied for the day, so what are you going to do? Might I recommend toes in the sand, drink in hand and not a care in the world? Walk down to the water from your condominium rental then grab lunch at the new Windjammers Bar and Grill on Navarre Beach Fishing Pier.

Slots and accommodations fill up fast. Find yourself a home away from home today. We offer a variety of options to make your trip relaxing and memorable.

 

Visit navarrelistings.com to book your vacation.

Spring Break with beach education

Just because it’s Spring Break does not mean the learning has to end.

Here on Navarre Beach we pride ourselves on a family friendly spring break, but we offer much more than a beautiful (and PG rated) beach to soak up the sun on.

Infuse your child’s Spring vacation with a healthy dose of marine education thanks to the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station’s Spring Camp Schedule. The NBMSS is an amazing location in the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary.

This beach front learning center offers children a hands-on, feet-wet approach to conservation education through experiencing marine life up close with state certified teachers and trained volunteers.

This year the station has expanded their summer camps to offer spring break mini camps as well. Here’s what’s available:

 

Seuss Science by the Sea

Ages: students in grades K-2

Dates: Monday, March 19 & Tuesday, March 20

Times: 8am-12 pm

Cost: $75 – includes a Dr. Seuss marine themed book

“From one fish two fish, to Clam I am, Seussical sea creatures are everywhere. Learn all about animal diversity in the sea while investigating the marine science themes found in some of Dr. Seuss’s most beloved stories.  Each day begins with a special read-aloud Dr. Seuss book followed by a beach investigation (getting wet) and Dr. Seuss themed activities.  Oh, the places you will go with Seuss Science by the Sea!”

 

Shark Science

Ages: students in grades 3-5

Dates: Monday, March 19 & Tuesday, March 20

Times: 8am – 12pm

Cost: $75- includes a shark goody bag

“Local, non-local and extinct sharks; learn about their feeding habits, where they live, how powerful they are, and why you don’t need to be afraid of them! Includes a shark dissection and field explorations.”

 

And while the kiddos are having a blast at camp, mom and dad can relax along the shores of beautiful Navarre Beach or plan their own seafaring adventure at the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary’s snorkel reef.

More info and registration is available at navarresciencestation.org.

Book your spring vacation at NavarreListings.com