Hotel at a Glance: The Majestic Beach Resort
The Majestic Beach Resort sits on a private white-sand beach that stretches out along the Gulf of Mexico. A new condominium-style resort, it features spacious suites with fully equipped kitchens, washers and dryers, and private balconies. In addition to these homey conveniences, the resort offers amenities such as sparkling lagoon pools and onsite boat rentals.
- Choose your adventure: Go snorkeling in the gulf’s emerald waters or lounge in one of five swimming pools.
- Jet skis, sailboats, paddleboards, and other sporting equipment can be rented right off the beach.
- Tee off: Guests receive preferred access to Hombre Golf Club, whose 27-hole championship course is surrounded by water.
- Dining options: Grab a casual lunch and dinner at the poolside H2O Bar and Grill or head to a local restaurant such as the Wine Spectator award-winning Firefly. The onsite Majestic Market has a Starbucks and food options.
- Peace of mind: The resort offers round-the-clock guest services for lockouts or maintenance issues.
Panama City Beach, Florida: Sugar-White Beaches and Scuba-Diving Spots
Panama City Beach’s slogan—“The World’s Most Beautiful Beaches”—may seem boastful. But TripAdvisor helped back up this claim in 2013, naming the local St. Andrews State Park as having 1 of the top 25 beaches in the United States. The park also has two fishing piers, a jetty, and a boat ramp, plus nature trails for bird watching. Elsewhere in town, you can arrange a scuba-diving trip to explore the area’s dozens of natural and artificial reefs.
The atmosphere is relaxed and geared toward families. There are numerous amusement parks along the 20-plus miles of shoreline. Many of the popular seafood restaurants and bars here overlook the Gulf of Mexico.
If you’re looking to escape the crowds, take the ferry to Shell Island, an uninhabited, 7-mile-long barrier island. On the ride over, you might see some of the bottlenose dolphins that frequent these warm waters. Once there, you can soak in the sun on the empty beaches and go snorkeling. It’s also worth it to visit the nature preserve at Conservation Park, which has 24 miles of trails. One 11-mile trek goes past wooden boardwalks and wetlands; keep your eyes peeled and you might see woodpeckers in the trees and alligators lurking beside cypresses.