My Christmas cards finally went out, complete with a list of 11 things I learned in 2011. Among the lessons? “Sometimes you have to peel shrimp before you eat them. —Dewey Destin’s, Emerald Coast, Florida” (I also learned Yoloboarding in Florida, but I wanted to keep my destinations diversified!)
My point: As the year wraps up, we can’t help but think about the memories we made in the past twelve months and the trips we took. Our Fit Stop readers have heard about staff adventures like Karla’s in Colorado and Marla’s in Mexico, and I’m going to throw another log on the inspiration fire:
When you’re thinking about your affordable options in 2012 and looking to get a little sand in your soul and in between your toes, I’d head toward the "Emerald Coast" (Destin area) in Florida. Because I like lists, here’s why:
*The sand is like perfect, white flour and the water is a pretty, jewel-green. It doesn’t feel like other American beaches. My sun salutations were extra peaceful! *It’s where YOLO/paddle boarding really took off! You can rent a board for $20 from lifeguards and don’t need any special lessons. I scored mine right outside the Inn at Crystal Beach, which is where I was lucky enough to stay. *Locals call it the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village.” I had absolutely no idea what I was doing and just look!*There are a lot of family-friendly things to do, like parasailing, jet-skiing, the “Gulfarium” (sooo fun!), dolphin watching, and more! *There are grown-up things to do, too: golfing, wine and cheese cruises, and even the top level of AJ’s Seafood & Oyster Bar turns into quite the party later at night! *Lastly, the people are so nice and you’re treated like a new friend, rather than a tourist...Which can be a huge sigh of relief when you have no idea how to eat their local cuisine.
For more on the Emerald Coast, visit emeraldcoastfl.com or check out this cool video.