Top 12 things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida

April 29, 2021

Are you looking for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida? If so, keep reading!

Though it may not be the most well-known spot in Florida (hello Miami and Orlando!) there are so many wonderful Things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida. Pensacola Beach, Florida is one of the state’s hidden gems.

With stunning sandy beaches, endless opportunities to practice water sports, and some of the best food around, it’s no wonder people just love this little slice of Floridian paradise. So, if you’re looking for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida – we’re got a great list of ideas and activities.

things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida

If you’ve got an empty itinerary, you might be wondering what the best things to do in Pensacola Beach are. Well, we’ve done the legwork for you and found some of the most popular and well-loved things to do in the area that are sure to inspire you!

So, whether you’re a history buff or just want to chill with your dog on a designated beach, you’re sure to find something on this list that will tickle your fancy! 

Ready to build that to-do list? Let’s explore!

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Things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida


Fort Pickens

One of the finest things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida is to pay a visit to Fort Pickens. Located on Santa Rosa Island, this historic military fort is named after American Revolutionary War hero Andrew Pickens.

As one of the few forts in the South that remained in Union hands throughout the American Civil War, it’s an interesting spot to check out if you’re in the area. Though you can do self-guided tours of the area, the guided tours are excellent. This is an interesting choice for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida.

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National Naval Aviation Museum

Next on my list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida – it’s the National Naval Aviation Museum. Another great thing to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida is the National Naval Aviation Museum. Now, you don’t have to be a full-blown fan of the military to appreciate this stunning museum.

Packed with models and ships of World War I and II aircrafts, it’s an amazing testament to what the fighters of generations past went through. And hey, it makes for some great photographs! If you’re looking for educational things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida this is a great choice.

Read more about visiting Florida: 40 things to do in Daytona Beach


Pensacola Lighthouse & Maritime Museum

Can’t quite get enough of those museums? Well, be sure to add the Pensacola Lighthouse & Maritime Museum to your list of things to do in Pensacola Beach!

Though you’ll need to be physically fit to climb to the top of the lighthouse, the view from the top of the Gulf is truly unbeatable. With plenty of history to discover, you’ll be able to spend an entire afternoon here! Yes, so many of the things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida are museums – so if you love museums, you’ll love it here!

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Pensacola Beach Gulf Pier

Next on my list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida, it’s the gulf pier! If you’re looking for a “beachy” thing to do at Pensacola beach, then you’ll want to explore the Pensacola Beach Gulf Pier.

Though it provides some of the best views in the area, that’s not all it offers. If you happen to be a great angler, then you’ll want to bring your rod along and try and catch some fish! Simply head to the edge of the pier, cast your rod and hope for the best.


Fort Pickens Area of Gulf Island National Seashore

Next on my list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida it’s the Fort Pickens Area of Gulf Island. If you love sinking your feet into lush sand, then you’ll want to add the Fort Pickens Area of Gulf Island National Seashore (a bit of a mouthful, sorry!) to your list of things to do in Pensacola Beach.

Whether you want to indulge in a little picnic or just want to wile away an afternoon walking along the sand, you’re sure to have a relaxing time here. This is a wonderful choice for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida, especially if you love the outdoors!

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things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida

Portofino Boardwalk

Portofino Boardwalk is next on my list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida. Located on the Pensacola Beach Pier is the Portofino Boardwalk. We totally recommend checking out the Pensacola Beach first, but the Portofino Boardwalk is (in our opinion!) special.

With a bunch of open-air bars, restaurants and shops that are always packed to the rafters with happy patrons, you’re sure to have an amazing time! If you’re heading to a restaurant on the boardwalk, be sure to call ahead – they tend to book out. This is a great choice for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida, especially if you’re a foodie and love shops!

Read more about visiting Florida: 22 things to do in Port St Lucie


The Paradise Bar and Grill

One of the top eateries in Pensacola Beach is The Paradise Bar and Grill, so if you love food, then you definitely need to add this place to your list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida.

Now, this place isn’t the most refined restaurant in Florida, but it provides great drinks, quick food, and even live music! So, if you’re looking for a cool night out with friends at the beach, then The Paradise Bar and Grill should be your first port of call. 


Try Joe Patti’s seafood

Another great eatery to add to your list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida. Another great joint to check out if you’re feeling peckish but fancy cooking your own food in is Joe Patti’s seafood.

You’d assume that there was great seafood available at the beach, but we mean it when we say that Joe Patti’s is next level. Popular with both locals and visitors, this place is perfect if you’re looking for fresh fish and seafood to take away and cook.

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Blue Angels Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron

Next on my list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida, it’s this amazing flight demonstration. If you’re looking to get your heart racing, then be sure to head down to the Blue Angels Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron. Offering free shows on the reg, this is a great activity to fit into your day in Pensacola Beach.

If you’re confused about where you need to be to watch the demonstrations, there are signs posted everywhere that direct visitors to viewing areas – so don’t stress! This is a great activity to pair with the Naval Aviation Museum as you can see a display of the Blue Angels’ jets there. This is such a fun option for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida.


Go Swimming and try your hand at other water sports

One of the top things to do in Pensacola Beach is to check out the stunning waters. Swimming is extremely popular here, but there are also tons of revellers that head down to Pensacola Beach to indulge in water-skiing, kayaking, and more!

As the beach occupies almost eight miles of Santa Rosa, there’s plenty of space to spread out and go wild! What’s more, there are plenty of spots nearby at which to rent any equipment you need – so don’t worry about being caught out, the Pensacolans have got you!


Bring your pup to the Dog Beach

If you’ve got your pup in tow, then be sure to check out the ever-popular Pensacola Dog Beach! Dogs are welcomed in designated areas only, but there’s plenty of space for your four-legged friends to roam about. Just be sure to keep your dog on a leash at all times, keep them close, and of course, pick up any waste! This is such a wonderfully fun choice for things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida.

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Hopefully this list of things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida has given you loads of ideas and inspiration!

There are so many things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida – and you won’t have any problems filling your days with loads of activities and plans!

things to do in Pensacola Beach, Florida

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