National seashore and historic fort re-open to the public

Here on Navarre Beach we are blessed to neighbor one of the most iconic national parks in the U.S.

The Gulf Islands National Seashore offers an uninterrupted stretch of Florida beach in its undisturbed natural state, with huge white dunes and some of the world’s most beautiful sunsets.

The seashore has re-opened most of it’s public areas, and this May the historic Fort Pickens re-opened to visitors. This massive brick fortification has stood on the tip of Santa Rosa Island since the 1830s protecting the mouth of Pensacola Bay.

Just a short drive from Navarre Beach, this location offers a rich peak into nearly two centuries of history, bathed in sunshine and the smell of salt water from the shoreline.

 The Pensacola Bay Cruises are starting up as well with a modified schedule. Visit the cruise web site (www.cruisepb.com) for more information. Starting May 23, the tram service at Fort Pickens will start back up and passengers on the Pensacola Bay Cruises will be dropped off and picked up at Fort Pickens.

For now, Fort Barrancas, the Fort Pickens campground, discovery center and bookstore will remain closed as well as the headquarters and indoor exhibits at the Naval Live Oaks Area. We hope to see these areas re-opening soon as safe practice will allow.

More information on the fort and national seashore can be found at nps.gov/guis.

Ready to come see all we have to offer? Book your vacation in one our deep-cleaned rentals at NavarreListings.com.

Navarre Beach a top scenic drive in 2020

Southern Living has announced what us locals already know: Navarre Beach is beautiful.

The magazine has named State Road 399 in Navarre Beach to the top 10 list of “The South’s Best Scenic Drives 2020.” Winding through our beach peninsula, this road takes your through the unspoiled beauty of Gulf Islands National Seashore. 

Southern Living says:

“Start at Navarre Beach and head west toward Pensacola right around sunset. It’s an unforgettable drive, with the Gulf of Mexico on one side and Santa Rosa Sound on the other, unspoiled white sand and blue water all around, the whole scene softened by a coastal sky painted in pinks and corals.”

The description is wonderful, but words don’t do it justice.

For a perfect day, leave out from your beachfront condo in the morning with a picnic lunch and a few fun items for a day on the shore. Start driving west along Gulf Boulevard and the road will transition into the national seashore.

Enjoy the ride and be sure to slow down for our nesting shore birds. If you are lucky, you may spot snowy plover chicks during the warmer months, camouflaged among the sand.

Roll down your windows. This is mandatory. The smell of saltwater and sun is wonderful. Eventually you will come upon some wooden pavilions to the right with a parking area.

Park the car and use the beach walkover to go have some fun on the shore in one of the most ecologically unspoiled areas left on the gulf coast. Be sure to wear sunscreen and pay attention to posted flag conditions.

Then enjoy your picnic lunch and some family memories that will last a lifetime.

As sundown approaches, load back up in the car for a spectacular view on your way home. Sunsets here are truly one of a kind.

Once back on the main drag, enjoy a delicious dinner at one of our local restaurants or cook a family meal in the kitchen of your comfortable condo.

Ready to see the beauty for yourself? Book today at NavarreListings.com.

5 health benefits of beach life

It might seem obvious but living on the beach has been proven to improve the state of your physical and mental health. Recent studies have compared the lifestyles of people who live by the beach versus those that live inland. According to Lifeinahouse.net, the results show that “a coastal lifestyle is a lot healthier for the average human being.”

Less stress is associated with people that choose to live near the ocean, as they enjoy a better quality of life that is coveted by all their friends that are landlocked in a major city.

From enjoying the crashing waves, breathing clean air, and eating fresh seafood, beach life along the Emerald Coast has countless benefits. Here are the top 5 health benefits of enjoying Navarre Beach.

1. Natural skin care

The beach is considered an outdoor spa. There is nothing better for your skin than an organic sand exfoliant, to rid your skin of dead cells and impurities. According to Joya.life, exfoliation “helps to prevent premature aging, activating the circulation and favoring a better oxygenation of the epidermis.”

It will make your skin silky smooth and soft and you will look a lot younger because of it. Another good thing about the ocean is that it heals and soothes your muscles and joints, too.

Saltwater can be good for your skin and overall health too. Ocean water is full of good minerals that heal wounds and leave you feeling revitalized. So make sure to spend some time walking barefoot on the beach and playing in the water when you’re on the beautiful Gulf coast.

2. Endless opportunities to exercise

Whether you’re swimming in the Gulf of Mexico, playing beach volleyball in the sand, or going for a jog where the water meets the land, there are endless opportunities to exercise at the beach!

With so much to beauty to gaze at, you will find it easy to get outdoors and get active. There’s nothing more fulfilling than walking on the beach as the sun sets into the horizon. It’s suitable for all ages, you can walk or jog at your own pace, and it doesn’t require a watch. By walking on the beach regularly you will reduce your stress levels, recharge your batteries, and begin to feel calmer overall.

3. The beach literally improves your mood

You are a product of your environment and if you don’t control your atmosphere, it will control you. Let’s face it, life can be stressful, especially the hectic pace of a landlocked city life. And when we are stressed, our bodies release the hormone cortisol as a response. Cortisol goes on a rampage in our bodies, and if its levels are not kept on track, it can damage our health.

On the contrary, a simple trip to the beach releases happy and calming hormones in your brain.

According to the University of New Hampshire, “the calming effects of the waves and sun combined is enough to make a person leave their stress behind. The heat of the sun, the sound of the waves, and your feet in the sand can help to fight off any feelings of anxiety and stress.”

The beach lifestyle is laid back and dramatically reduces stressful stimulus. The relaxing environment that the beach provides eliminates cortisol production and releases endorphins instead that increase vitality and well-being.

4. Technology detox

Whether you believe it or not, just simply being on the beach will reduce your need or maybe your addiction to reach for your cell phones or laptop. The digital screen will be there when you’re done at the beach.

“It’s not like you will never use them again, but you won’t be addicted to technology in the way you are now,” Outdoor Revival writer Stef Zisovska wrote. “Spending more time outside without spending hours and hours staring at a screen will change the way you think and your perspectives of life.”

Try to spend as much time as possible by the ocean, and less time in front your laptop screen and witness the first-hand difference.

5. Restful sleep

Whether spending the day swimming, walking the shoreline or surfing the waves your body will want to rest. You will sleep longer and the quality of your sleep with improve! You’ll be dreaming about only the positive things…like more swimming and surfing.

March fun coming to Navarre Beach

There’s no shortage of fun events coming to Navarre Beach. Here are a few ideas.

Snowbird Activities Series at the Navarre Beach Visitor Information Center

Join the Navarre Beach Visitor Information Center for a morning of fun, socialization, and learning. Each session will be a different theme or activity. This program is designed for visiting snowbirds and local seniors. Space is limited to 40 attendees. First come, first serve. For more information, visit http://www.getrelaxing.com or call 850-981-8900.

•             March 3, 9 – 10 a.m. – Aliens of the Deep Lecture
•             March 4, 9 – 11 a.m. – Coffee and Crafts – St. Patrick’s Day Fun
•             March 6, 9 – 11 a.m. – Ask a Bird Biologist – Audubon Lecture
•             March 9, 9 – 10 a.m. – Photography Class with John Starrett
•             March 10, 9 – 11 a.m. – Flower Arranging Class with the Navarre Garden Club
•             March 12, 9 – 10 a.m. – Chair Yoga (limited 15 attendees)
•             March 17, 9 – 10 a.m. – Whales Lecture
•             March 20, 10 – 3 p.m. – Bon Voyage Snowbird Party (Drop In)
•             March 24, 9 – 10 a.m. – Animal Babies and Hatchings Lecture

20th Annual Seagrass Awareness Celebration
Shoreline Park South, 800 Shoreline Dr. Gulf Breeze
March 6, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Local organizations and agencies will be providing free hands on activities for the whole family. Activities include games and prizes, live marine life for viewing and touching, safety boating information, seagrass information, kayaking, food vendors, fishing and more. For more information, contact Chris Verlinde, chrismv@ufl.edu or call 850-777-7884.

Snowbird Sessions by the Sea at the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station8638 Blue Heron Count, Navarre

Learn about the marine life and ecosystems on Navarre Beach. Each session is a different topic with a presentation, discussion and hands-on demonstration. This program is for visiting snowbirds and local seniors. Cost is $10 per person. Pre-registration is required. Each participant receives a session-themed gift. For more information and to register, visit http://www.navarresciencestation.org or call 850-261-2141.

•             March 5, 2 – 3 p.m. – Coral and Zooxanthellae: A Love Story
•             March 12, 2 – 3 p.m. – Tentacle Talk: Octopus and Squid Dissection
•             March 19, 2 – 3 p.m. – Deep Sea Secrets

Spring Jam 2020
1451 Navarre Beach Cswy., Navarre
March 22, 3 – 9:30 p.m.

The Cat Country 98.7 Spring Jam 2020, starring LoCash with special guests Gabby Barrett and Gone West is presented by Gulf Winds Credit Union and the Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Office. Spring Jam 2020 is an open-air concert on the beach benefitting the Santa Rosa Kids’ House. Bring a beach towel to sit on; no chairs permitted. General admission is $10. For tickets and information, visit http://www.juanaspagodas.com/Spring%20Jam.html.

Trash Bash with the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center
8740 Gulf Blvd., Navarre
March 28, 8 – 10 a.m.

Meet up to clean up! Volunteers for a beach cleanup will meet in the main Navarre Beach parking lot near the Sand Crab Pavilion. A limited supply of gloves, buckets and pickers are provided or bring your own. For more information, visit http://www.navarrebeachseaturtles.org or call 850-684-3347.

Book your week (or month!) of fun today at NavarreListings.com.

Celebrating Vacation Rental Week, March 9-13, 2020!


Navarre Properties is thrilled to participate in the first annual Vacation Rental Week—the vacation and holiday rental industry’s first of its kind! We’d like to use this opportunity to highlight the value and key benefits of professionally managed vacation rentals for both guests and property owners alike, and to encourage you to book a stay or choose a professional manager to rent your vacation property.

As a guest, vacation rentals are a great alternative to hotels in every aspect, offering you much more for your money, with additional space, privacy, convenience and amenities included. Along with this added value, your options are constantly increasing as the industry itself experiences rapid growth each year, meaning there are more available properties, more variety and more destinations to choose from.

Vacation rentals also present you with a unique opportunity to create a more personalized, memorable vacation experience when compared with traditional hotels. You’ll have the practical comfort of an actual residence, the ability to explore the neighborhood and the opportunity to discover aspects of your destination you might not encounter when staying at a hotel.

If you’re vacationing with a group of family or friends, vacation rentals are an excellent option, typically offering multiple bedrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms and easy access to local entertainment.

Finding a vacation rental to book is fast and easy. Just check out NavarreListings.com for a comprehensive list of our beach front properties! And be sure to join the conversation on social media as well with the official #VacationRentalWeek hashtag. 

Wine and Dine for a good cause on Navarre Beach

Fine wine you can feel good about sipping along Florida’s most beautiful beach. Who doesn’t like that?
Folks will be wining and dining in support of the Dravet Syndrome Foundation on the Navarre Beach Feb. 28 during the annual Wine & Dine for Dravet in Honor of Charlotte organized and hosted by Cheryl Chant and Ken Rudzki, Charlotte’s grandparents.

It will be held at Juana’s Club Pagodas and Sailors’ Grill in Navarre, an award-winning beach bar. The event will feature live music by Stevie Hall and a wine tasting with featured dinner available. The event runs from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and will also feature a silent auction and door prizes.

All funds raised will benefit the Dravet Syndrome Foundation. Dravet Syndrome Foundation, is a 501(3)c nonprofit organization based in Connecticut whose mission is to aggressively raise research funds for Dravet syndrome and related epilepsies, while providing support to affected individuals and families. Since its inception in 2009, DSF has awarded over $4.2 million in research grant awards and over $160,000 in patient assistance grants.

Pretty awesome, right?

Charlotte is close to the hearts of many locals here. She was born a healthy baby girl, but at almost five months old, this abruptly changed when she had her first seizure. Unfortunately, the seizures kept coming. Genetic testing was done as no other reason for her seizures could be found. A month later, a diagnosis of Dravet Syndrome was made.

Dravet Syndrome is a rare and catastrophic form of intractable epilepsy that begins in infancy and for which there is currently no cure.

Nowadays, Charlotte’s seizures are more controlled with medications. At 6 years old, she’s wonderful and very active. She adores her big sister and loves school. She looks forward to seeing her friends and teachers every day.

Help children like Charlotte find a cure for Dravet while enjoying a night of music and fun along beautiful Navarre Beach by reserving your table by calling Chant at 850-240- 3880 or email flourgirl54@bellsouth.net.

And book your condo for the night at NavarreListings.com.

Snowbird fun in February

The snowbirds are back in town, and we’re happy to see them! If you are one of our lovely snowbirds, I would like to say welcome and thank you for continuing to support our beautiful community.

We’ve got some extra fun planned for you this February!

For those who might not know, a snowbird is a senior visitor to the beach who comes to the area during mid to late winter, typically from states to the north and northwest.

Our lovely visitors center is hosting a variety of fun events for the snowbirds this year, each with a different theme or activity. Space is limited to 40 attendees on a first come, first serve basis.

Sessions include:

Feb. 10, 9 to 11 a.m. – Photography class with John Starrett

Feb. 11, 9 to 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Estuaries 101

Feb. 13, 9 to 10 a.m. – Chair Yoga (limit 15 attendees)

Feb. 18, 9 to 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Marine Mammal Neighbors   

Feb. 24, 9 to 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Terrapins

Feb. 27, 9 to 10 a.m. – Chair Yoga (limit 15 attendees)

Additional snowbird-centric events will include:

Pickleball every Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 6 p.m. at the Gulf Breeze Recreation    Center.

Feb. 13, 5 to 9 p.m. – A Sweethearts Dance at the Navarre Conference Center at Days Inn & Suites

Visiting seniors are encouraged to come to the visitor center to learn about the area, get a seniors’ coupon book and receive a printed calendar of events for the 2020 season.

Book your snowbird escape at NavarreListings.com.

It’s Book Direct Day!

It’s Book Direct Day!

As the saying goes, “cut out the middle man.” On Feb. 5 each year, vacation rental managers across the country take a moment to educate the public about vacation rental booking best practices under #BookDirect.

Some things you might not have known:
1. You are paying more to book through third-party sites like AirBnB and VRBO. They add fees on top of the cost of the rental, so the companies can make money on the rentals. Booking direct means eliminating the middleman’s costs.

2. Third-party sites will not likely have the best homes in that area listed. For example, our gulf front condos with full kitchens won’t show up on those sites, but Uncle Jerry’s spare bedroom in the basement 13 miles from the beach might be. It’s a vacation, and you deserve the best. (No offense Uncle Jerry!)

3. Locals know the area best! When you #BookDirect, you are connecting with people who know Navarre Beach inside and out. They are better equipped to find the rental that best meets your needs and recommend the best places to visit on your trip! With a third-party site, you might not know exactly what you are getting.

4. Flexibility is also a bonus! When you talk directly to the people managing a property, you are more likely to be clued in to deals and paired with the rental that best matches your family’s needs and budget.

5. Those with special needs and requests can work directly with owners when they #BookDirect, taking a lot of the stress out of trip planning. I mean, this IS supposed to be a vacation, right? Work directly with companies to relieve the headache! You’ll be well taken care of.

So, #BookDirect today at NavarreListings.com!

February events at Navarre Beach

Snowbird Activities Series at the Navarre Beach Visitor Information Center

Join us at the Navarre Beach Visitor Information Center,8543 Navarre Parkway, Navarre, for a morning of fun, socialization, and learning. Each session will be a different theme or activity. This program is designed for visiting snowbirds and local seniors. Space is limited to 40 attendees. First come, first serve. For more information, call 850-981-8900 or visit http://www.getrelaxing.com and http://www.facebook.com/RelaxInNavarre

•             February 4, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Nutrition

•             February 5, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. – Coffee and Crafts – Mardi Gras Masks

•             February 7, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. –  Ask a Bird Biologist – Audubon

•             February 10, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. –  Photography Class with John Starrett

•             February 11, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. –  Lecture Series

•             February 13, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. –  Chair Yoga (limited to 15 attendees)

•             February 18, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Marine Mammal Neighbors

•             February 24, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. – Lecture Series Terrapins

•             February 27, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. – Chair Yoga (limited to 15 attendees)

Snowbird Sessions by the Sea at the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station – Beachcombing 101

February 5, 12, 19, 2 – 3 p.m.

Learn all about seashells with a guided walking tour of our marsh, dune and swash zone ecosystems during our Beachcombing 101 classes. This program is for visiting snowbirds and local seniors. $10 per person. Pre-registration is required. Each participant receives a session take-away. The Navarre Beach Marine Science Station is located at 8638 Blue Heron Ct. on Navarre Beach. For more information and to register, call 850-261-2141 or visit http://www.navarresciencestation.org.

15th Annual Woodstoke and Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Festival

February 8, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Celebrating handmade pottery and historic wood-fired kilns! Attendees are welcome to join the line to view pieces and help to unload two large historical kilns. Art pieces from Gulf Coast Potters will be available for sale. The suggested $10 donation for the commemorative pottery bowl allows you to sample all the specialty seafood and chili dishes. The commemorative pottery bowls contain locally sourced clay. Free event, open to the public. For more information, contact Holley Hill Pottery, 7507 Buckeye Drive, Navarre, at 850-939-2744 or visit http://www.holleyhillpottery.com.

34th Annual Navarre Beach Mardi Gras Parade

February 15, 1 p.m.

Join the Navarre Krewe of Jesters at the Navarre Beach Mardi Gras Parade. This year’s parade theme is “Navarre Beach Life.” The parade beings at the corner of Indiana St. and Gulf Blvd.; Runs east along Gulf Blvd.; and ends at the four-way stop on Navarre Beach. For more information, email contact@nkoj.org or visit http://www.nkoj.org.

Valentine’s Murder Mystery Dinner at Broussard’s Bayou Grill

February 12, 6:30 p.m.

Broussard’s on Navarre Beach is having “A Dinner To Die For” presented by Improbable Cause Mystery Theatre. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and dinner/show starts at 7 p.m. Come out and figure out who-dun-it while eating great food. Tickets are $55 and includes dinner and a special Valentine’s signature drink and the show. Tickets are on sale at Broussard’s on Navarre Beach at 8649 Gulf Blvd. Navarre Beach.  For more information and tickets, please call 850-396-6098.

Sweethearts Dinner and Dance

February 13, 5 – 9 p.m.

Join the Navarre Beach Snowbird Club for their 2020 Sweethearts Dinner and Dance! It will be a romantic evening of great food, dancing and live entertainment from Stevie Hall. Tickets are $35 and includes reception with appetizers, buffet dinner, open bar and dessert. Stevie Hall will be playing all your favorite songs with dancing. Navarre Conference Center, 8100 Navarre Parkway. For more information Call TJ Goulet at 850-776-8355 or visit http://www.navarrebeachsnowbirdsclub.com

Trash Bash with the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center

February 29, 8 – 10 a.m.

Meet up to clean up! Volunteers for a beach cleanup will meet in the main Navarre Beach Parking lot near the Sand Crab Pavilion. A limited supply of gloves, buckets and pickers are provided or bring your own. Call 850-684-3347 or visit http://www.navarrebeachseaturtles.org for more information.

Plan your vacay today at NavarreListings.com.

Mardi Gras season is here!

As the saying goes, “laissez les bons temps rouler!” Or for those that don’t speak Cajun French, let the good times roll!

It’s Mardi Gras season, and the Navarre Krewe of Jesters are in full swing preparing for this year’s festivities including the Mardi Gras Ball at the Navarre Conference Center Feb. 8 and the 34th annual Navarre Beach Mardi Gras Parade Feb. 15.

The theme of the ball and the parade is “Navarre Beach Life.” What a great theme for a great place, right?

The ball is a formal affair, so if you decide to join the fun be sure to dress to the nines! Guests are encouraged to wear tuxedos and formal dresses for this black-tie event. The event is open to the public and BYOB (or liquor). This is not a masquerade ball or a costume ball, but outfits matching the theme are encouraged.

Tickets are $35 each. They are available in advance or at the door. A table for 10 is $270. Tickets can be purchased by emailing contact@nkoj.org.

The 34th annual Navarre Beach Mardi Gras Parade will happen rain or shine along Gulf Boulevard on Navarre Beach. And it’s never been rained on in its entire history! This will be a must attend event for anyone, local or visitor. More than 35,000 people have attended this family friendly event in the past.

The parade starts promptly at 1 p.m., and the Santa Rosa County Sheriff Office will close the bridge around noon or earlier. The krewe has no control over when the bridge closure occurs, and traffic onto the bridge is expected to be heavy. The Krewe of Jesters recommends arriving on the island by 10 a.m.

Those interested in entering a float may apply online at nkoj.org. The parade starts at Indiana Street and Gulf Boulevard, and proceeds east on Gulf Boulevard, ending at the Navarre Beach Causeway.