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Panama City Beach is an Emerald Jewel
15th February 2007
Author: Jennifer Weiss

Although Panama City Beach is one of the most popular spring break destinations in Florida, rest assured that there is more to this wonderland along the shore than partying students and endless commotion. As a pristine jewel that rests along the stunning Emerald Coast, visitors of all ages will certainly find something to cheer about during their getaway in gorgeous Panama City Beach.

Highly-acclaimed for its 27 miles of soft white sand, Panama City Beach continually ranks in the top 20 for beaches in America. While pictures can tell one story, the sight of the endless silky sand that slides towards the sparkling emerald green waters of the Gulf of Mexico is always breathtaking in person. The sand, blindingly white, is the perfect place to nestle in for an afternoon of sunbathing, while the crystal clear waters offer boundless inshore and offshore pursuits to occupy your vacation, including swimming, snorkeling, surfing, scuba diving, and anything else you can imagine.

Beyond the expansive waters of the Gulf, marine mammal lovers can catch a glimpse of their favorite underwater creatures at the always popular Gulf World Marine Park. Offering entertaining shows and informative exhibits on a range of mammals, including dolphins, sharks, penguins, sea lions, and river otters, a day of excitement awaits around the countless attractions. Throughout the year the shows are changed, but a few that should not be missed when offered are the Dolphin Show, Reptile Show, and Sea Lion Show.

For those who prefer to explore the wilderness outside the confines of established exhibits, St. Andrews State Park has everything you need to create an adventure along the coast. There are two nature trails that wind through picturesque coastal plant communities, and offer excellent bird-watching opportunities, in addition to one-and-a-half miles of beaches on the Gulf of Mexico and Grand Lagoon. You can even hop aboard a tour boat and make your way to nearby Shell Island, an uninhabited stretch of land that runs adjacent to the park and offers a diverse selection of activities such as sightseeing, snorkeling, dolphin watching, and jet skiing.

Surrounded on three sides by the Gulf of Mexico and Lake Powell, Camp Helen State Park offers countless recreational pursuits in a gorgeous, naturally stunning setting. Hiking along the nature trails and viewing Lake Powell, an extremely rare coastal dune lake, are worthwhile excursions, while freshwater and saltwater fishing are also available in this scenic park. Other popular activities include swimming off a secluded stretch of sand and birdwatching for shorebirds as well as bald eagles.

While the natural attractions of the Panama City Beach area are the highlight of any vacation, family-friendly activities are the perfect complement to an already exciting getaway. The Shipwreck Island Waterpark is home to exhilarating thrill rides such as Raging Rapids along with more relaxing, family-oriented rides like the Lazy River. There is also a section for younger children to create the perfect, water-filled day away from the shore. At the Coconut Creek Family Fun Park, there are two, 18-hole mini-golf courses with a tropical island theme and a Gran Maze, which is a human maze the size of a football field, for an easygoing afternoon with your loved ones.

Whether spring break relaxation is your destination or a cozy family retreat is on the agenda, Panama City Beach vacation rentals can easily accommodate your entire group for a Florida getaway to remember. With enough bedrooms and space to keep everyone in the same centralized location, your vacation is more like a day at the beach than you ever imagined. Plan every day with ease by conferencing in the living room and enjoy easy access to your favorite stretch of sand, which lies just steps outside your Panama City Beach rental. To experience everything you love about the Gulf Coast of Florida without any of the stress or hassles that can crop up during vacation, book your Panama City Beach vacation home rental today.