Florida’s Gulf Coast has long been a favorite beach destination for sun seekers in southwestern Indiana. After all, you can be on the beach in just over nine hours. Last year, a quicker option was introduced by Allegiant Airlines — low-cost, direct flights to the beautiful Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) from Evansville (EVV). Service this year begins May 16, with evening flights on Thursdays and Sundays, perfect for a long weekend. An added bonus is departing from the newly renovated EVV.
Our family tried the service last August, right before flights for the season ended, for a long weekend (Allegiant flies from EVV to Orlando, Florida, year round.) Driving, we typically stay in one of the towns along the scenic Florida Highway 30A. This trip we opted to stay in Miramar Beach, closer to the airport and away from the 30A traffic snares. Working with Newman-Dailey Resort Properties, we chose Mediterranea, a small beachside resort in Miramar Beach. Newman-Dailey’s vacation rentals range from beach condos to townhomes and spacious Destin and South Walton rental homes. We rented a car, but didn’t stray far, choosing to enjoy the less crowded white sand beach in front of our condo.
We tried a restaurant we’d never before dined in — Cuvee Kitchen + Wine Bar in Destin and a Miramar Beach coffee shop that was new to us, 2 Birds Coffee + Café. The popular beach restaurant and bar, Pompano Joe’s, is conveniently located right across the street from the Mediterranea.
After an easy and relaxing long beach weekend, we boarded Allegiant’s Monday evening flight back to Evansville. A couple of hours later we were on our doorstep. As this magazine went to press, one-way flights to and from Destin were priced between $54 and $103.