15 Best Beaches Near Panama City Beach, FL

Panama City Beach, Florida, is a picturesque beach town located on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.

Guests worldwide flock to Panama City Beach to enjoy the area’s luxurious resorts, thrilling theme parks, and breathtaking coastlines.

Because of its coastal location, however, Panama City Beach is close to many other noteworthy beaches.

This guide to the top beaches near Panama City Beach, Florida, is meant to help you plan a trip you won’t soon forget.

  1. Camp Helen State Park Beach — Panama City Beach

One of Panama City Beach’s most well-known and beautiful sand stretches at Camp Helen State Park.

White powdery sand and clear, turquoise water are its defining features.

Why We Recommend This Beach

You can do various enjoyable things on a Camp Helen State Park Beach trip.

Beachcombing and shell hunting, swimming in the clear water, saltwater fishing, and water sports like kayaking, canoeing, boating, and paddle boarding are just a few options.

The facilities include restrooms and showers after a day at the beach or in the water, a visitor center with an interpretive exhibit, barbecue pits, and picnic tables for preparing and eating food.

Expert Tip

Camp Helen State Park Beach rents out kayaks for an exciting new experience.

You can always opt for this convenient alternative if you don’t want to bring your own.

  1. St. Andrews State Park Beach — Panama City Beach

The stunning shores of St. Andrews State Park are split between the Gulf of Mexico and Saint Andrew Bay.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Bring your pals, family, or significant other on a memorable journey to St. Andrews State Park beach.

Here, in the clear waters of an emerald sea, you can go scuba diving, snorkeling, canoeing, kayaking, surfing, or paddleboarding, among many other water sports.

Take a day trip to the beach and relax in the soothing ocean air.

You can find amenities like picnic areas to enjoy a meal, fishing piers to sit with a cooler, reel in some fish, and hiking trails.

In terms of safety, there is no better place to take the kids than to the beach at St. Andrews State Park.

Jetty structures block the bay’s waves and currents from reaching the beach in that area.

Expert Tip

A restaurant and concession stands are available at St. Andrews State Park Beach for those who don’t feel like cooking or forget to bring food.

Delicious snacks, refreshing drinks, fishing bait, unique keepsakes, and more can all be purchased here.

  1. M.B. Miller County Pier Beach — Panama City Beach

Famous for its magnificent pier, white-sand shoreline, crystal clear water, and endless ocean views, M.B. Miller County Pier Beach is a popular coastal destination.

Why We Recommend This Beach

M.B. Miller County Pier Beach is one of the most beautiful places in Florida to escape city life’s hustle and bustle.

This is the ideal beach for a date because you can stroll hand in hand along the pier as the sun sets.

Alternatively, you can stretch out on the sandy shore and get some much-needed sun.

Swimming in the clear water, fishing, building sandcastles, searching for rare shells, and many other pursuits are all possible here.

You could see dolphins, manta rays, and sea turtles if you went at the right time of year.

Expert Tip

Check out what’s happening at M.B. Take a look at Miller County Pier Beach before you go.

This beach occasionally hosts fun events, such as a music festival in April, that you might find enjoyable to attend.

  1. Rick Seltzer Beach — Panama City Beach

The beach at Rick Seltzer Park.

Convenient hotels, dining options, and commercial areas surround the area.

Why We Recommend This Beach

I would suggest Rick Seltzer Beach as the closest and most convenient beach destination.

The powdery, soft sand, the panoramic ocean views, and the abundance of on-site amenities make this stretch of coast genuinely magnificent.

There are shaded picnic areas to eat your lunch out of the sand, drinking fountains to quench your thirst, clean restrooms and showers, vigilant lifeguards, and so on.

This beachfront is perfect for lounging in the sun, building sandcastles of all sizes and shapes with your kids, exploring the shoreline, and cooling off in the water.

Expert Tip

It’s not uncommon for Rick Seltzer Beach to reach capacity on summer weekday afternoons, holidays, and weekends.

Parking could be difficult during these times, so it’s best to get there early in the morning to secure a spot.

  1. Crooked Island Beach — Panama City Beach

The beach at Crooked Island is a great place to relax and unwind. It’s the perfect hideaway for those in search of a secluded beach.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Do you long for some beach time to unwind and forget your worries?

Next, visit Crooked Island Beach.

This stretch of coast is tranquil, making it ideal for some much-needed R&R.

Lay out flat on the beach all day and soak up some rays while you work on your tan.

The favorite shows can serve as background music as you read or catch up on some good music.

Stunning scenery, perfect for a beachside picnic or a hunt for seashells.

Expert Tip

Crooked Island Beach doesn’t have a lot of dining options.

Do not forget to bring your refreshments if you plan on spending the day here.

  1. Grayton Beach — Santa Rosa Beach

The stretch of coast known as Grayton Beach in Grayton Beach State Park is one of the best in the country.

It has a lake with water the color of jade and sand as white as a diamond.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Grayton Beach, a short drive from Panama City Beach, is where you and your loved ones can enjoy one of the best vacations ever.

This stretch of coastline is picture perfect, making it the ideal spot for a day trip with friends or family.

Water sports like kayaking, canoeing, fishing, paddle boating, stand-up paddleboarding, and countless other exciting and fun ways to spend time with a friend or loved one.

Expert Tip

Grayton Beach has many other options besides camping if you plan on staying for more than one night.

RV parking lots and cabins that sleep six people each can be rented.

  1. St. George Island Beach — St. George Island

St. George Island Beach, located in Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park, is one of Florida’s most beautiful stretches of coastline.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Located close to Panama City Beach, the beach at St. George Island is one of the best in the area.

It’s the best place to go if you want to have a memorable vacation with your friends, family, or significant other.

The beach offers various facilities to ensure a relaxing and enjoyable vacation.

After a dip in the pool, freshen up in one of the nearby showers or take a break and watch the kids play on the playground.

Expert Tip

St. George Island Beach is the premier location in Northwest Florida for stargazing, so you should plan to spend extra time there.

  1. Pensacola Beach — Pensacola Beach

If you’re looking for a fantastic beach, look no further than Pensacola Beach.

It’s stunning and surrounded by many high-end lodging options, dining venues, and retail centers.

Why We Recommend This Beach

If you’re looking for weekend beach getaways from Panama City Beach, I recommend Pensacola Beach.

Beautiful and untouched, this stretch of coast features powdery white sand, crystal clear water, and breathtaking vistas of the Gulf of Mexico.

Stunning in its beauty, this beach is ideal for a day at the beach.

You can take it easy, get some sun, bury the kids, build sandcastles, and go on a hunt for seashells if you spend some time at the beach.

There is a wide variety of thrilling activities that can be done in the water.

Activities such as parasailing, snorkeling, scuba diving, jet-skiing, paddle-boarding, boogie-boarding, and stand-up paddleboarding are just a few examples.

Expert Tip

Travel agencies abound in the Pensacola Beach area, each offering a unique itinerary.

Plan to join a tour while on your weekend getaway.

Cruises, dolphin-watching excursions, guided scuba trips, and many other options are available.

  1. Santa Rosa Beach — Santa Rosa Beach

Diamond-white sand and emerald-blue water characterize the expansive Santa Rosa Beach.

The area around this beach is filled with high-end hotels and fine dining options.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Santa Rosa Beach is a beautiful stretch of coast where visitors can bask in the sun and enjoy water sports and other beach activities.

Pick up a lounge chair and head down to the shore, where you can get some sun and listen to some tunes.

Stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, surf fishing, boating, cruising, boogie boarding, skimboarding, and surfing are just a few enjoyable pursuits that can be shared with friends and family.

Expert Tip

Near Santa Rosa Beach is the Point Washington State Forest, a popular vacation destination.

Don’t forget to stop by this fantastic park before or after your day at the beach.

Trails for walking, biking, horseback riding, and other outdoor pursuits abound.

  1. St. Joseph Peninsula Beach — Port St. Joe

T.H. has the stunning St. Joseph Peninsula Beach. State Park Dedication Tombstone on the St. Joseph Peninsula.

St. Joseph Peninsula Beach is one of the more remote beaches in the Panama City Beach area.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Take your significant other, family, or friends to St. Joseph Peninsula Beach for a relaxing day.

St. Joseph Peninsula Beach is a great place to make new memories with your travel companions while kayaking, scuba diving, swimming in the clear water, snorkeling, boating, canoeing, shell hunting, or simply relaxing on the beach.

Loggerhead turtles nesting on the beach can see depending on the time of year you go.

Expert Tip

St. Joseph Peninsula Beach has pavilions available for rent.

These are fantastic for parties, celebrations, and other special occasions, especially with family.

  1. Navarre Beach Marine Park — Navarre

Gorgeous Navarre Beach Marine Park can be accessed from any of five different points.

The water is a brilliant blue, and the sand is powdery white.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Navarre Beach Marine Park is a great spot for day trips from Panama City Beach.

This stretch of coast offers a wide variety of exciting opportunities.

Relax on the beach, soak up some rays, and go for a swim in the clear water.

Try more adventurous things, like scuba diving or snorkeling, having a beachside picnic with some grilled burgers, and so on.

Expert Tip

The Mobi-Mats at Navarre Beach Marine Park go down to the sand, making the park accessible to people with disabilities.

It’s easier and more pleasant to take someone with a physical disability to the beach now.

  1. Perdido Key State Park Beach — Pensacola

The Perdido Key State Park beach is expansive, covering about 247 acres, and features breathtaking ocean vistas.

Why We Recommend This Beach

The beach at Perdido Key State Park is a picturesque haven on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.

It has miles of soft, white sand beach, ideal for long, relaxing strolls or lounging.

The shimmering waters are perfect for a cooling dip on a hot summer day.

When you go out to the ocean, you can enjoy yourself by riding the waves and keeping an eye out for marine creatures like dolphins and sea turtles.

Facilities at this beach include showers for removing sand, water fountains for rehydrating, plenty of parking close by, and more.

Expert Tip

Perdido Key State Park Beach is best for experienced surfers looking to ride more giant waves in the winter.

You should come during the summer months if you want to swim at your own pace.

  1. James Lee Park Beach — Destin

Everyone, from kids to their parents, can have a great time at James Lee Park Beach, thanks to the many facilities available.

Why We Recommend This Beach

The beach at James Lee Park is an excellent place to spend the day with the kids.

The expansive beach is perfect for family activities like sandcastle building, tossing the ball, and shell hunting.

Rooms to change into your swimsuit are available, as are places to have a picnic with your loved ones.

Expert Tip

If you’re a golfer, you’ll be happy to know that the fantastic 18-hole course at Emerald Bay Golf Club is only a 6-minute drive from James Lee Park Beach.

  1. Shell Island White Sand Beach — Panama City Beach

Located in St. Andrews State Park is Shell Island, home to a beautiful stretch of white sand beach.

This beach is only accessible by watercraft.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Panama City Beach has many beautiful shorelines, such as Shell Island White Sand Beach, but there aren’t any lake beaches.

Beautiful as it is, the beach is not crowded, making it ideal for a relaxing vacation with loved ones.

This beach is home to a wide variety of watersports, including parasailing, pontooning, snorkeling, kayaking, boating, bodysurfing, boogie boarding, paddle boarding, banana boat rides, cruising the water on catamarans, and countless others.

Expert Tip

The most cost-effective option is taking a shuttle boat provided by St. Andrews State Park to get to Shell Island White Sand Beach.

  1. Miramar Beach — Miramar Beach

A gorgeous coastline like Miramar Beach is a popular tourist destination for people from all over the United States.

The area is surrounded by hotels, eateries, travel agencies, and fun places for families.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Some of the finest beaches in Panama City Beach, Florida, can be found at Miramar Beach.

They have a powdery white beach and pristine blue water.

To have a wonderful time with the people you care about, whether they are friends or family, and to do many of the things you love to do together

Activities such as jet-skiing, parasailing, beach volleyball, stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, frisbee-throwing, and many more are available.

Expert Tip

Don’t want to hassle with bringing your water sports gear?

No worries, because Miramar Beach has you covered.

Activities like jet skiing can be rented at nearby facilities.


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