Many visitors will tell you that Destin is all about the beach! This is not surprising since our beachfront vacation rental homes are the most popular offerings. However, others who have made this place their favorite family beach vacation spot and have ventured out by boat on the glowing green gulf will tell you it’s all about the water! This is also not unexpected since the dazzling emerald-hued waters are a favorite place to go for dolphin or sunset dinner cruises and pontoon adventures out to Crab Island. Our Reef Rewards program provides special complimentary discounts for all of the above to our guests.
Now thanks to the birth of Fly the Beach, some folks are starting to say it’s all about the aerial views of paradise! This company just started taking people “up up and away” a couple of years ago, and it has become a very popular pursuit. Their seaplane provides spectacular panoramic 360-degree views of the entire Destin peninsula, which includes the wide-open expanse of Choctawhatchee Bay, the forested gated golf club resorts of Destin, the long white ribbon of the crystalline shoreline and the gorgeous glittering Gulf of Mexico.
This operation is run by pilots Ryan Gore and Rose Bartlett. They have a great passion for taking to the air and are also Flight Instructors who are able to pass their ability on to others to learn to fly themselves. The seaplane they use takes off and lands in the water, so it’s a good thing pilot Ryan also has his boating captain’s license! Just joking, of course, since this is quite safe. However, when the plane is in the water, it can scoot around like a Wave Runner or Jet Ski, only a little slower. Pilot Gore is also the captain of the Boogies Water Sport Glass Bottom Boat at Harborwalk Village, which also serves Margaritas to its passengers. He usually captains his boat late in the day for dolphin spotting cruises during the high season of summer.
Fly the Beach operates beside Jimmy’s sister Lucy Buffet’s new bayfront restaurant called LuLu’s, located on the southeast side of the Destin Mid Bay Bridge. This great place has live music all day, a Kid’s playground on the bay’s beach, great seafood and cold tropical drinks.
Although many people have flown on commercial flights, few have flown on small private planes, and fewer still have experienced a seaplane. The unique take-off and landing on water is a truly exhilarating experience.
Pilot Bartlett says that her “favorite part is landing on the water.” Sometimes they do something called “step-taxing” which is done when the plane dips down low flying right above the water, lands briefly, skims around in Wave Runner fashion and then takes off again! Quite a few of these aeronautic excursions take place in and around Crab Island, which also provides quite a thrilling sight to the parties of boaters who are anchored there.
Fly the Beach receives a Five Star Ratings on TripAdvisor from among over 40 people who have tried this exciting aeronautic adventure. Rave reviews include comments like: “The flight was more than amazing”; “an exhilarating experience”; “It was an awesome experience”; “the most fun my wife and I had”; “enjoyed seeing familiar places and sea life from above!”; “amazing experience and breathtaking views”; “This was a blast!”; “Loved it! and “can’t wait to do it again!”
Fly the Beach offers special introductory flights for $99, which includes 20-minutes of flying time until it lands and ferries passengers to shore. A Family Package is available to be booked for $250, which allows multiple members of your group to take turns going up in the air from the bay and landing over the course of an hour.
If you catch air fever, so to speak, Pilots Ryan Gore and Rose Bartlett can talk to you about learning how to fly since they are both Flight Instructors. They can provide instruction to allow adventuring students to obtain a Sea Endorsement or Sport Pilot’s License over the course of a week. These individual training periods are only available during the “off-season,” which is usually during the autumn and winter months. For more information about the seaplane flights or flight instruction, you may call 850-290-2261.
Have fun taking a look at excellent Destin vacation rentals here on our user-friendly website, which shows multiple images, detailed descriptions, seasonal rental rates, and calendar availability for your next trip down. You may also get a preview of your upcoming flight, since each property includes an aerial view so you can plan to fly like an eagle during your next trip down!