Bet we can tell you where you got your sandals - on the shore here in Destin and along 30A! These world-class, white sand beaches demand more than just the single-piece Dollar General special. One's footwear must complement the brilliant hues of the Gulf, not resemble something in need of recycling. At the very least, we can point your feet in the right direction to find the most apropos flip flops for your toes. So let's not tip-toe around the issue any longer – here are the top seven places to find the perfect open-toed shoes, sandals, and possibly the best beach kicks along these sun-kissed dunes.
Moving West to East, we start by jumping in with two feet, with the area's very best place for shoes, period. Sunset Shoes is located in 4 locations, HarborWalk, Destin Commons, Grand Boulevard, and The Hub. Simply put, selection sets Sunset apart. More styles, more variations, and honestly more sizes than any other place in this part of the Gulf of Mexico can be found here. This is THE place to shop for guys or girls; they have what you're looking for, maybe even what you weren't looking for, and in almost every case, your size. Other places may propose that size 14 is only available online or special order; they're lying to you - Sunset has them. The fact that they specialize strictly in footwear sets them apart from the fru-fru boutiques and surf shops, but, eh, um, moving right along…
Related article: Things to do at The Hub
Ok, not all boutiques are created equal. Consider a certain Ms. Lilly Pulitzer. She shot to fame when First Lady, and former schoolmate, Jacqueline Kennedy wore a "Lilly," one of her bright, floral color dresses, on vacation. The dress was actually made from recycled kitchen curtain material! All that history and classic Americana combine in a special little place tucked away in The Village of Baytowne Wharf called Barefoot Princess. Promoted as an "exclusive premiere boutique," the Barefoot Princess actually presents as a colorful feast for the eyes. Everything for your princess, or inner princess, can be found in this quaint little shop. A wide selection of clothing, jewelry and, accessories complement some of the brightest, happiest flip flops in town. Floral patterns are de rigueur, but there are plenty of other styles (uh, women obviously) to choose from. You can also go directly to the source at the Lilly Pulitzer company store in Grand Boulevard.
Related article: Complete Guide to the Village of Baytowne Wharf
Let's face it; you can't really be an international surf pro without some championship level styling sandals, bro. Billabong, located in Grand Boulevard, near Sandestin, does not disappoint. The moment you walk in the shop you're greeted by helpful sales staff, ready to find the exact style you are looking for. They're knowledgeable on just about every single thing they sell, and again, they're oh so accommodating. The surfer vibe doesn't stop when you walk through the door. Just past the sunglasses, you'll find the hottest brands of flippity floppies around, for women and men. The fact that you can combo them with a 10 foot Gordon + Smith longboard really sweetens the deal. The manager here is actively involved in the local surf community. If you're at a surf contest or sponsored charity event, you are almost guaranteed to see the Billabong peeps. They are an active part of the community along 30A, firmly planted on 98 near another well known Grand Boulevard tropical paradise.
Get a Free Grand Boulevard Coupon Book as our guests!
With a great staff and an equally great vibe, we have our next contestant. Known for their aplomb sense of style in both the clothier and culinary arts, Tommy Bahama's motif is best described as Beach-Casal. This not-for-everybody, Hawaiian-print vibe, is one part Tom Sellick, one part Jimmy Buffet and two parts Air Force Retiree. Are you going to save money here? No. But you are sure to encounter a wide variety of unique beachwear for everyone on your beach pilgrimage. G-Ma and G-Pa's will find EXACTLY what they are looking for. The Dad and Mom crowd are going to love every minute of your visit. The Flip Flop collection here is strong. Lots of styles, no backroom storage, so what you see is what you get. You're sure to find something worth talking about once you return home far from this place, so close to the Gulf of Mexico.
The next stop on our stroll down flip flop lane is Gulf Place. Such a nice little collection of stores, shops, and artists on the Western edge of Scenic Highway 30A. Here we find SOHO Beach. Specializing in female attire, Soho offers a complete cornucopia of beachy fun style, with a no-shoes no-problem groove. They pride themselves in the personal shopping experience, meaning the attentive staff will work with you to curate your own individual items, just the right for the busy beach vacationer the needs a little nudge to find the right throw, sarong, or in our case, flip flops! Lots of colors here, from the hats and dresses right on down to the footwear offerings, which tends to lean a little conservative-modern in its overall presentation. Styles are hot and beachy, with the perfect location to match.
Ono Surf Shop
We find ourselves in Seaside, the classic American beach town, for our final two must-see flip flop shops. First off, Ono Surf Shop is really the crown jewel of the town. A place where 60-year-old surfers, charter school teachers, moms, and roaming bands of teenage kids on vacation from Birmingham tend to congregate. Located in the valley of architectural shadows, between Bud & Alleys Roof Top Deck and the iconic, pyramid-esque OB Pavilion, Ono has the largest selection of flip flops this side of Grand Boulevard and a local surf shop presence, stretching back decades in this spot that is very simply unmatched along these shores. They also have an interesting flip flop sizing chart, made with real flip flops for girls and guys. You won't go home empty-handed; if you come here for sandals, you'll go home with two pairs, a suit and maybe a pizza from next door.
Plan a day trip: Best Things to do in Seaside, Florida
Town Square Shoes
Strolling through Seaside's Central Square, just west of Modica Market, we come to our final flip flop stop Town Square Shoes! When we talk about range, this place has casual footwear from $100–$600 a pair. Needless to say, the sandals here are a cut above the rest, all the best brands and, a buyer with a finger on the pulse of what's hot on the shore. In the winter months, they even offer some fantastic boots and cozy slippers when the time is right. The staff here is extremely knowledgeable about their full line of beachwear and fun flip flops. They will find the best fit for you and your style. Town Square Shoes is a level up boutique with a comfortable ambiance, a place where you and your feet will fit right in.
So on your next Destin or 30A vacation with Ocean Reef Resorts, come barefooted and ready to slip your toes into more than just our white sands. Find the right flip flop for you, and truly enjoy your time here on the shore!