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The Best 30A Tours to Book in 2024

Looking for the best tours and day trips in 30A? Lucky for you, I’m here to guide you to the top excursions in the Florida Panhandle. As a seasoned traveler to this region, I’m excited to explore the best excursions for guests new to the region or returning guests looking for a new adventure. I’ve been visiting this region for over 15 years and love sharing about our family’s favorite beach.

Along the pristine Gulf Coast, there’s a stretch of a scenic highway known as 30A, a haven for travelers seeking a blend of natural beauty, coastal charm, and unforgettable adventures. From emerald waters and sugar-white sands to charming communities brimming with personality, 30A offers excursions that cater to guests of all ages.

Short on Time? Go ahead and book this 5⭐️ Tour HERE!  

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a water sports aficionado, a history buff, or a foodie craving local flavors, 30A has something exquisite in store for you. For instance, explore the turquoise waters by paddle board or kayak, discovering hidden coves and coastal dunes with marine life. Or indulge in the vibrant arts scene, where galleries and festivals showcase local talent and craftsmanship. Lastly, enjoy dolphin sightings or a stunning sunset cruise.

This guide will navigate the top excursions, unveiling the best-kept secrets and must-visit spots along 30A. I’m excited to share my knowledge of this region and highlight the best adventure options on 30A. 

My Top 3 Picks: The Best 30A Tours to Book

#1 TOP PICK

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Shell Island Snorkel and Dolphin Catamaran Cruise
✔️ snorkeling & dolphin sightings
✔️ paddle boards included
✔️ friendly crew

#2 PICK

Private Crab Island Double Slides Pontoon
✔️ guided trip
✔️ family friendly
✔️ water toys included

#3 PICK

Small Guided Fishing Trip on Choctawhatchee Bay
✔️ experienced guide
✔️ small group

Check out my guide to the best condos for families!

Day Trips in 30A

Fondly known as the Emerald Coast for its gorgeous waters, 30A is a fantastic vacation option for the whole family or young adults. Some enjoy long days at the beach, while others seek out adventure and want to explore the region. I will highlight the best tour options for the adventure seeker visiting this beautiful stretch of South Walton county.

1. Shell Island Snorkel and Dolphin Catamaran Cruise

Shell Island Snorkel and Dolphin Catamaran Cruise

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 3 hours | ✅ Check Availability 

The Shell Island tour leaves out of nearby Panama City Beach for an exciting three-hour sea adventure on a catamaran through the scenic waters of the Gulf of Mexico. On the trip, you will soak in the beauty of the Gulf Coast while enjoying marine life on this dolphin cruise. 

Perks

  • Paddle boards & snorkeling equipment included in cost
  • Very affordable 
  • Friendly crew
  • Shaded seats available 
  • Some of the catamarans have water slides 
  • Dolphin watching 
  • unforgettable adventure 

Tips

  • Bring cash for tips
  • Bring snacks or $ to purchase food and alcoholic beverages 

⭐️ ⭐️Book your Shell Island Snorkel and Dolphin Catamaran Cruise ⭐️⭐️

2. Sunset & Dolphin Catamaran Cruise

Beach Sunset on 30A

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 2 hours | ✅ Check Availability 

Leaving Panama City, this scenic sunset cruise guides guests through the Grand Lagoon into the Gulf of Mexico. Guests are granted beautiful views of a golden sunset while searching for dolphins out for a late-night swim.

This is the best way to end a day, and families with kids are welcome to join in on the fun. 

Perks

  • Guests can purchase drinks on board (you cannot bring your own beverages)
  • Knowledgeable guides
  • enjoyable for all family members 
  • amazing sunset trip 

Tips

  • Bring a light jacket if traveling during the spring/fall as temps drop when the sun goes down

⭐️ ⭐️Book your Sunset & Dolphin Catamaran Cruise⭐️ ⭐️

3. Private Crab Island Double Slides Pontoon Charter with Captain

Crab Island Tour is one of the best tours on 30a

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 3 hours | ✅ Check Availability 

If you are looking for a private pontoon rental for a day trip to Crab Island, this is the trip for you! Leaving out of nearby Destin Harbor, Emerald Island Charters plans an exciting and relaxing day on the water for your family or small group.

Perks

  • The trip includes a Captain, so you don’t have to worry about navigating on your own
  • Pontoons include water toys such as floating mats
  • 6 Passenger Pontoon includes two water slides 
  • Tour company is highly rated on Trip Advisor 

Tips

  • Bring sunscreen and bottled water 
  • Bring cash for a tip 

⭐️⭐️Book your Private Crab Island Pontoon Cruise!⭐️⭐️

4. Banana Boat Ride in the Gulf of Mexico

Banana Boat rides are a great experience for the whole family

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 1.25 hours | ✅ Check Availability

If traveling with kids, consider booking a Banana Boat ride in the Gulf of Mexico, an unforgettable experience for all. The excursion allows small groups of  4-6 people, guaranteeing a great time for the entire family. 

Perks

  • Great family adventure 

⭐️⭐️Book your Banana Boat Ride HERE!⭐️⭐️

5.Inshore Fishing on the Waters of the Choctawhatchee Bay

Choctawhatchee Bay

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 4  hours | ✅ Check Availability

Check out a small guided fishing trip on the Choctawhatchee Bay. The boat tour is fairly small, with a maximum of 4 people, so it is a unique experience you’ll never forget, with beautiful scenery. 

Perks

  • Small group with personalized attention 
  • Knowledgeable tour guide 
  • Opportunity to catch redfish, snapper, flounder, and trout 

Tips

  • Bring water, snacks and sunscreen 

⭐️⭐️Book your Small Guided Fishing Trip on Choctawhatchee Bay!⭐️⭐️

6. Blue Sky Fishing 30A

fishing charters

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars | ⏰ Tour Length: 4  hours |

Guests rave about their experiences with Captain Nick of Blue Sky Fishing. With this company, you can schedule a fishing charter in the Gulf of Mexico for a beautiful day on the water. 

The company organizes tours on one of their two boats, which hold six people each, so the guided tour is a small and personalized experience. 

Perks

  • Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice Award|
  • Family friendly 
  • Experienced tour guide who takes guests to the best fishing spots
  • Strong reviews 
  • Small group similar to private tours 

7. Backwater Tours

⭐️ Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️   

If you want a unique glimpse into the region, consider booking with Backwater Tours for a guide through the historic Choctawhatchee Bay and River Basin. It is a wonderful time and a great educational experience. 

Captain Andy Coleman leads you through an exquisite tour of North Florida’s ecosystem such as natural springs.

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Your Beach Packing list

FAQ: Visiting 30A

🏖️Where should I stay?

30A has the most beautiful beaches, in all of Florida. Blue Mountain, Seagrove, Seaside, Watercolor and Rosemary Beach are my favorite communities and where we typically stay on our trips.

🏖️What’s the best time to visit?

30A is enjoyable in all seasons, but fall is my absolute favorite time to go. There are fewer crowds, and rental properties are more affordable. In addition, restaurants aren’t as packed. Winter is relaxing as well. Spring Break is a popular time as well.

In Conclusion: The Best 30A Tours to Book, 2024

My guide to the best 30A tours helps you plan your next great adventure to the most beautiful beaches on the Gulf of Mexico.

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