The Emerald Coast

After the long, arduous months in the rivers, we finally received the pay off: the powdered sugar sand beaches and the clear, sea green waters of Florida’s Emerald Coast. From Pensacola to Panama City Beach, this strip of glorious coastline served up its healing powers to my hungry heart. Glorious beaches by day and spectacular sunsets every evening. This area was hit hard last year by Hurricane Michael but they are slowly recovering – some marinas are all fixed up, others are in progress, and some were completely wiped out. A girl could live in this beautiful spot (well, in the winter!)

Our friends Michelle and Berry were our first guests to travel a section of the Loop with us – they joined us during the Fairhope to Orange Beach, AL leg. We met them in Traverse City, MI (their summer home) and connected with them again in Fairhope, AL (their winter home. They know how to live, right?) We’ve heard tell that Berry caught the “boat bug” along the way…sorry, Michelle, lol.

Pensacola is a trendy, historic spot with great restaurants and bars. It was a perfect place for me to stay while Craig celebrated his Mom’s 90th in Chicago…

Niki’s stay in Pensacola…

We spent four vacation days at Treasure Island Marina in Panama City Beach. I couldn’t stop grinning as we biked a mere 5 minutes to the beach each day, collected shells, ate lunch at the beach side restaurant and had the best She Crab soup EVER. Captain Craig isn’t a beach guy but was very patient as I soaked up the beauty and even shot his own surf relaxation video.

Today we are traveling to Apalachicola located in the Forgotten Coast, at the eastern tip of the Panhandle. We’ll stay about a week since our next leg is crossing the Gulf (gulp!) of Mexico and we need a good weather window to make that 20+ hour, overnight passage to Clearwater. Right now, that window may not open until next Tuesday or Wednesday. Thankfully, it’s rumored to be a charming town and I found The Owl Cafe, a waterside restaurant in a historic building that’s serving Thanksgiving dinner (turkey AND fried shrimp!)

Speaking of the crossing, I might be interviewing for a new Captain to transport me across the Gulf. While Craig may not have good taste in beaches, he does seem to be tasty…

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving! Although we miss family and friends, we are very grateful for our incredible blessings.

4 thoughts on “The Emerald Coast

  1. R. J. Hanna

    Beautiful pictures- brings back memories of our trips to beaches and the ocean at Hilton Head and Sanibel Island- do you cut across Florida or go down around the keys? Have a Happy Thanksgiving


  2. Michelle Zeeman

    Hello Niki and Craig!! Wonderful post and great pix! Knew you’d love PCB. The best part is that you have many more weeks to enjoy sun and sand. Will enjoy following along on line. Maybe I can convince the big guy to take a trip to the Sunshine State! Happy Thanksgiving! Bet you have oyster stuffiing in Apalach, and hope you get to see SGI park. Bon Voyage friends!

    Liked by 1 person

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