Creating Memories: A Guide to Holiday Magic on the Emerald Coast

As the holiday season unfolds its magic, the Emerald Coast comes alive with a variety of enchanting activities and celebrations. The glow of twinkling lights and daily holiday events, beckon both locals and visitors alike to join in on the joy of the holidays in Florida. The Emerald Coast may just prove to be your favorite backdrop for some new holiday traditions.

Holiday on the Harbor

Kicking off the festive season, ‘Holiday on the Harbor’ at HarborWalk Village invites you to experience the waterfront adorned with twinkling lights. Enjoy live music, delectable holiday treats, and the much-anticipated arrival of Santa by boat. Bid farewell to Santa in style as he embarks on his journey back to the North Pole, leaving behind a trail of festive memories and spreading joy to all who gathered for this heartwarming send-off.

LuLu’s Movie Nights 

Dive into the world of holiday cinema under the stars at LuLu’s Destin during “LuLu’s Movie Nights!” Taking place every Friday evening throughout December, cozy up with your loved ones on blankets and beach chairs and enjoy timeless holiday classics. This holiday treat not only immerses you in the joy of the season but also provides the perfect opportunity to create cherished memories with friends and family amidst the twinkling lights of a Florida Christmas. Check LuLu’s Destin event calendar for specific dates and featured movies.

Grand Boulevard Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides

Experience the romance and nostalgia of the holidays with the Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides at Grand Boulevard in Miramar Beach. This enchanting activity allows you to embark on a journey through the festively adorned avenue of shops, surrounded in the magical atmosphere of the season. The clip-clop of hooves against the backdrop of twinkling lights creates an idyllic setting for holiday memories.

Available from December 1st until December 30th, the Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides offer a timeless way to appreciate the holiday charm of Grand Boulevard. In the spirit of Christmas, the horse drawn carriage rides are complementary, making it an accessible and enchanting addition to your seasonal festivities. Check the official Grand Boulevard website for specific times. 

Holiday Markets

Immerse yourself in festive cheer by exploring the enchanting markets that grace the heart of Destin’s HarborWalk Village and Destin Commons. At HarborWalk Village, the Mistletoe Market beckons with a delightful array of seasonal treasures, handmade crafts, and unique gifts. The air is filled with the joyous melodies of Christmas carols, and the twinkling lights add a magical touch to this coastal holiday market.

Venture on over to Destin Commons, where the Holiday Market welcomes visitors to experience the warmth of the season. From artisanal treats to handcrafted gifts, this market complements the joyful time of year.

The Olde Holiday Market at HarborWalk Village takes you on a nostalgic journey with its vintage charm. This market captures the timeless spirit of the holidays, offering a curated selection of classic and timeless treasures that make for perfect seasonal keepsakes.

Whether you’re searching for unique gifts, delectable treats, or simply want to bask in the holiday spirit, these markets are the perfect destinations. Each one contributes to the festive atmosphere of the Emerald Coast at Christmas in a unique way.  So, wander through the stalls, embrace the seasonal cheer, and discover the magic of the holidays!

Grand Boulevard Festival of Trees

Step into a winter wonderland at Grand Boulevard’s Festival of Trees, where the holiday spirit comes to life amidst a captivating display of beautifully decorated trees. This annual event transforms Grand Park in Grand Boulevard into a festive forest, featuring a stunning array of uniquely adorned Christmas trees. Stroll through the enchanting forest of twinkling lights and artistic creativity, immersing yourself in the magic of the holidays. The Festival of Trees at Grand Boulevard captures the essence of community, art, and celebration, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking the true spirit of Christmas on the Gulf Coast. If you missed the grand opening, the trees will remain up and open to the public through Christmas!

Baytowne on Ice

Lace-up your skates for ‘Baytowne on Ice’ at The Village of Baytowne Wharf. Embrace the winter wonderland atmosphere at a festive ice-skating rink nestled in the heart of The Village of Baytowne Wharf. This seasonal attraction transforms the village into a magical destination where families and friends can glide across the ice, surrounded by the joyous melodies of holiday tunes and the twinkling lights that adorn the surroundings. 

Baytowne on Ice offers a delightful escape into the spirit of the season, providing an opportunity for both beginners and seasoned skaters to revel in the enchantment of an Emerald Coast holiday on ice. Be sure to check the schedule and make time to experience this cherished winter tradition during your visit to Florida.

Destin Commons Jolly Jubilee

Celebrate the season in style at Destin Commons’ Jolly Jubilee, a festive set of events that sets the stage for holiday magic. Held every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in December leading up to Christmas, this event transforms Destin Commons into a cheerful holiday hub. From enchanting light displays to merry musical performances and joyful activities for the whole family, the Jolly Jubilee is a delightful way to embrace the spirit of the season. 

Sandestin Twelve Nights of Lights

Embark on a visual journey of holiday enchantment with Baytowne Wharf’s “12 Nights of Lights.” Running every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 6 pm, 7 pm, and 8 pm throughout December, this glittering light show transforms the night into a mesmerizing display of festive cheer. This event captivates visitors with a symphony of lights synchronized to holiday tunes, creating a magical atmosphere that embraces the joy of the season. 

Holiday Theater Selections

Elevate your holiday experience on the Emerald Coast by immersing yourself in the enchanting theater shows presented by the Emerald Coast Theatre Company and the Mattie Kelly Arts Center. These cultural hubs bring the magic of the season to life through captivating performances, offering a diverse range of theatrical performances for audiences of all ages. From classic holiday tales to contemporary productions, each show is a testament to the region’s vibrant arts scene. Whether you choose to enjoy a heartwarming play, a festive musical, or a whimsical holiday production, the Emerald Coast Theatre Company and the Mattie Kelly Arts Center provide the perfect opportunity to add a touch of theatrical splendor to your holiday celebrations. 

This holiday season, Destin and Miramar Beach invite you to revel in a symphony of lights, sounds, and festivities. Dive into the magic of these activities, shows, markets and traditions, to create cherished memories and experience the true joy of the holidays on Florida’s stunning Emerald Coast. From the quaint streets of Grand Boulevard to the sparkling waters of HarborWalk Village, each celebration adds a unique delight to the holiday enchantment in this coastal haven