Family-Friendly Things to Do in Navarre Beach

The school year is starting, but with many families choosing to homeschool or do remote learning this year, the pressure is on to find fun, educational activities for everyone to enjoy. May we offer a suggestion? Make your way to Navarre Beach!

With our beautiful nature parks, uncrowded beaches, great deals on vacation rentals and numerous fun, educational attractions, Navarre Beach is just the family-friendly getaway you and your little ones are dreaming of! Here are just a handful of some of our favorite attractions we know you’ll all love.

Navarre Beach Marine Park

By the Navarre Beach Bridge, the Navarre Beach Marine Park connects the Santa Rosa Sound and the Gulf of Mexico with three wonderful ocean attractions: the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station, the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center, and the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary and Artificial Reefs.

The Marine Science Station is located along the Gulf Islands National Seashore and has multiple activities to engage families and visitors of all ages. Be sure to come view the aquariums swarming with interesting sea life and check out the dolphin rescue center.

At the Sea Turtle Conservation Center, visitors can meet the resident green sea turtle Sweet Pea and learn more about how to protect her species, other sea creature friends and our oceans.

Lastly, the older kids will love exploring our marine sanctuary and artificial reefs. Here, visitors can snorkel or dive in the Santa Rosa Sound or Gulf of Mexico and see underwater life in its natural habitat.

Scuba Divers waving
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Learn about the wildlife from all over the globe when you visit the zoos and wildlife refuges of Navarre Beach like the Gulf Breeze Zoo and The Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge.

Home to more than 800 animals, the Gulf Breeze Zoo is the perfect way to have fun and learn at the same time. Get up close and personal when you hand-feed giraffes, experience the interactive petting area, watch an alligator feeding or walk through the free-flight Australian aviary. Kids of all ages will love seeing and learning about the majesty and beauty of rhinos, hippos, gorillas, orangutans, bears, big cats, antelopes and more.

The Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge Zoological Park is another worthwhile trip. It offers a lovely collection of more than 130 rescued animals, including peacocks, turkeys, sloths, wallabies, lemurs, baboons, tigers and bobcats.

Girl feeding giraffe
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There really is no shortage of natural wonders and parks to explore in the Navarre Beach area. Take your pick from numerous trails for all skill levels to enjoy hiking, biking or riding horseback. From Blackwater River State Park and the Naval Live Oaks Reservation to more historic sites like the Arcadia Mill Archaeological Site & Museum or the Bagdad Mill Site Park, kids can get hands-on educational experiences trying to identify plants and wildlife while learning about the area’s rich history.

Besides traveling the trails, the kids can wet and wild on the Blackwater River. Tubing, kayaking and paddleboarding are our favorite ways to journey down this crystal clear, pristine river. What’s more, learning about how the Blackwater was named (the natural tannins in the water) and why the sand banks are so pure (white quartz remnants of erosion from the Appalachian Mountains) is another worthwhile lesson in itself!

Coldwater Gardens

Whether you want to stay in their super-comfortable glamping tents and cabins or just come for the day, Coldwater Gardens is a great place to take the family. It gets its name from the beautiful Coldwater Creek and the unique agricultural gardens they’re famous for. Learn about the special growing methods Coldwater utilizes to produce food, like aquaponics, hydroponics and Shiitake mushroom cultivation. You can also explore their happy organic chicken flocks, honeybee cultivation and more. Eating is more interesting when you realize how much effort and skill goes into the food that goes onto your plate.

Best of all, these activities are just a taste of the many you can experience in Navarre Beach. Plan your safe, family-friendly trip today and learn all about them for yourself!