Park Your Stroller & Play, Part 2: WaterSound, Inlet Beach, Santa Rosa Beach
There is an amazing assortment of family-friendly activities in South Walton, but sometimes the kids just need to blow off some steam on their own. Fortunately, there are endless options for open spaces to let the kids be kids, too.
WaterSound is quiet and mostly residential, but don't overlook Deer Lake State Park. With a boardwalk out to the beach, the kids can let loose without disturbing the coastal dunes – and the beach is a great, secluded spot for a picnic. Plus, the views are stunning. Look out on the Gulf or Deer Lake itself, along with the Southern Magnolias, golden asters, woody goldenrod and scrub oaks in their natural habitat.
If the kids just need a nice long walk, the WaterSound Origins Trailhead gives you access to 5 miles of trails, perfect for exploring nature and creating exhausted children.
What most people forget about Inlet Beach is that it has the largest public beach access in South Walton. Once you've shopped 'til you drop at 30Avenue, your kids might need a minute to decompress. What better place to decompress than the sugar-white sand of the beach?
Since Inlet Beach is one of South Walton's most untouched beach neighborhoods, it's the perfect place to let the kids explore. And if they behave, there might be a donut in it for them from The Donut Hole. After all, you're on vacation!
Santa Rosa Beach
Mix things up in Santa Rosa Beach, where you can swing by Arnett's Gulfside Farm & Stables. What kid doesn't like a farm? And horseback riding is a surefire way to blow a kid's mind and wear them out at the same time.
Or trek into nature on one of Point Washington State Forest's three trail systems. Watch for fascinating wildlife and diverse plants that make South Walton unique, and show the kids a different side of the beach!
No matter where you are in South Walton, there's always a family-friendly space to let the kids roam. When you need a break from planning, rely on the tried-and-true strategy of letting kids be kids!