Top 17 Family-Friendly Things to Do in Panama City Beach

Family-Friendly Things to Do in Panama

Panama City Beach, located on the Gulf of Mexico, is a perfect destination for families looking for fun and sun. With its beautiful white sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, and abundance of attractions, Panama City Beach offers something for everyone in the family. From thrilling water parks to interactive marine life experiences, there are plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy. In this blog, we will explore the top 17 family-friendly things to do in Panama City Beach, ensuring that your family vacation is one to remember.

1. Visit Pier Park for Shopping and Dining

Visit Pier Park for Shopping and Dining
Visit Pier Park for Shopping and Dining

When it comes to family fun, Pier Park is a must-visit destination in Panama City Beach. This outdoor shopping and dining complex offers a wide range of options for everyone in the family. With over 120 stores, including popular retailers and specialty shops, there’s something for every taste and style.

After a day of shopping, the whole family can enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants, ranging from casual dining options to upscale eateries. And don’t forget to satisfy your sweet tooth with a scoop of ice cream or a visit to one of the candy shops.

Pier Park also offers entertainment options, including a movie theater, live music, and outdoor events. With its vibrant atmosphere and variety of activities, Pier Park is the perfect place for some family-friendly fun.

2. Experience a Day at Panama City Beach Shores

Panama City Beach Shores
Panama City Beach Shores

Nestled along the sparkling shores of the Gulf of Mexico, Panama City Beach Shores offers endless opportunities for family fun.

The whole family can enjoy a day at the beach, basking in the sun, building sandcastles, and taking refreshing dips in the crystal-clear water. For a unique adventure, consider exploring the sunken treasure of a shipwreck, which offers a glimpse into history and provides a great opportunity for underwater exploration.

Panama City Beach Shores is also home to picnic tables and beachside grills, allowing families to enjoy a delicious meal while taking in the breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico. Whether you’re lounging on the beach, searching for treasure, or enjoying a beachside picnic, Panama City Beach Shores is the perfect place for some family fun in the sun.

3. Splash Around at Shipwreck Island Waterpark

Shipwreck Island Waterpark
Shipwreck Island Waterpark

For some fun in the water, head to Shipwreck Island Waterpark, one of the top family-friendly attractions in Panama City Beach.

This tropical-themed water park offers a variety of thrilling water slides, a lazy river, a wave pool, and interactive water play areas, providing hours of fun for the whole family. Whether you’re racing down a slide, riding the waves in the wave pool, or floating along the lazy river, Shipwreck Island Waterpark has something for everyone.

The park also features a snack bar, picnic area, and sun deck, ensuring that families can stay fueled and comfortable throughout their day of water-filled adventures. So pack your swimsuits, towels, and sunscreen, and get ready to make a splash at Shipwreck Island Waterpark.

4. Dolphin Watching in Panama City Beach

Dolphin Watching in Panama City Beach
Dolphin Watching in Panama City Beach

Dolphin watching is a must-do activity for families visiting Panama City Beach. The waters off the coast of Panama City Beach are home to a thriving population of bottlenose dolphins, and numerous tour operators offer boat rides for dolphin sightings.

These tours provide the perfect opportunity to see dolphins in their natural habitat, swimming, playing, and leaping out of the water. In addition to dolphins, you may also spot other marine life, such as sea turtles, which adds to the excitement of the experience.

A dolphin-watching boat ride is not only a fun and educational way to spend time with family, but it also allows for a deeper connection with nature and conservation. So, make sure to include dolphin watching in your family vacation itinerary and create lifelong memories.

5. Discover Wonders at Ripley’s Panama City Beach

Ripley’s Panama City Beach
Ripley’s Panama City Beach

If you’re looking for a place to discover the world’s oddities and wonders, look no further than Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum in Panama City Beach. This family-friendly attraction is filled with exhibits that will leave both kids and adults in awe. From bizarre artifacts to interactive displays, Ripley’s offers a unique and educational experience for the whole family.

Marvel at marine life exhibits, see exotic animals up close, navigate your way through a mirror maze, and challenge yourself in the gran maze. With its eclectic collection of curiosities, Ripley’s Panama City Beach is sure to provide hours of entertainment and wonder for the whole family.

6. Sail with the Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise

Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise
Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise

Set sail on a thrilling pirate adventure with the Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise, a family-friendly activity that promises fun and excitement for all ages. Climb aboard the Sea Dragon, a fully rigged pirate ship, and join the crew in search of sunken treasure.

As you sail the waters of Panama City Beach, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in pirate games, dance to the rhythm of live music, and even get your face painted.

The Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise offers an immersive pirate experience, complete with sword fighting demonstrations and pirate storytelling. It’s a perfect way to create lasting memories of family fun and adventure. So, hoist the anchor, raise the sails, and embark on a swashbuckling journey with the Sea Dragon Pirate Cruise.

7. Explore St. Andrews State Park

St. Andrews State Park
St. Andrews State Park

For nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts, a visit to St. Andrews State Park is a must. This pristine park offers a wealth of outdoor activities and natural beauty for the whole family to enjoy. Explore the park’s nature trails, which wind through coastal dune systems and maritime hammocks, providing opportunities to spot wildlife and take in breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico.

The park is also home to Shell Island, a barrier island accessible only by boat, where you can enjoy even more outdoor adventure, including swimming, snorkeling, and picnicking. With its diverse ecosystems and untouched natural habitat, St. Andrews State Park is the perfect place to reconnect with nature and create lasting family memories.

8. Encounter Wildlife at ZooWorld Zoological Park

ZooWorld Zoological Park
ZooWorld Zoological Park

Get up close and personal with wildlife at ZooWorld Zoological Park, a family-friendly attraction that is home to a variety of exotic animals. Explore the park and encounter animals such as lions, tigers, giraffes, and monkeys. Learn about different species, their habitats, and conservation efforts through educational exhibits and interactive presentations.

Don’t miss the tropical bird show, where you can see colorful birds perform amazing tricks and displays. With its focus on education, conservation, and animal welfare, ZooWorld Zoological Park offers a fun and educational experience for the whole family. So, grab your camera and get ready to embark on a wild adventure at ZooWorld.

9. Experience Gulf World Marine Park

Gulf World Marine Park
Gulf World Marine Park

Immerse yourself in the wonders of marine life at Gulf World Marine Park, where you can experience up-close encounters with dolphins, sea lions, tropical birds, and more. Watch as dolphins and sea lions perform amazing tricks and demonstrations, showcasing their intelligence and agility.

Take part in interactive experiences, such as swimming with dolphins or feeding stingrays, to create unforgettable memories.

Gulf World Marine Park also offers educational exhibits and informative displays, providing valuable insights into marine life and conservation efforts. With its focus on entertainment, education, and conservation, Gulf World Marine Park offers a family-friendly experience that will leave a lasting impression.

10. Tour the Man in the Sea Museum

Man in the Sea Museum
Man in the Sea Museum

Embark on an underwater adventure at the Man in the Sea Museum, where you can explore the history of diving and the marvels of marine life. Discover a collection of submarines, diving bells, and other fascinating artifacts that showcase the evolution of underwater exploration.

Learn about the pioneers of diving and their contributions to our understanding of the oceans. The museum also offers educational exhibits on marine life, providing a deeper appreciation of the underwater world. Whether you’re interested in diving history, or marine biology, or simply want to be awed by the mysteries of the sea, the Man in the Sea Museum is a must-visit attraction for families in Panama City Beach.

11. Test Your Skills at Hidden Lagoon Super Golf and Super Racetrack

Hidden Lagoon Super Golf and Super Racetrack
Hidden Lagoon Super Golf and Super Racetrack

For some friendly competition and adrenaline-fueled fun, head to Hidden Lagoon Super Golf and Super Racetrack, a family-friendly amusement park that offers a variety of activities for all ages. Challenge your family to a round of miniature golf on one of the park’s beautifully landscaped courses, or test your driving skills on the super racetrack with exhilarating go-kart races.

Hidden Lagoon also features bumper boats, batting cages, an arcade, and much more, ensuring that there’s never a dull moment. With its wide range of activities, Hidden Lagoon Super Golf and Super Racetrack is the perfect place for families to bond, create memories, and unleash their inner competitors.

12. Ride the SkyWheel for a Bird’s Eye View

SkyWheel for a Bird's Eye View
SkyWheel for a Bird’s Eye View

For a truly unforgettable experience, take a ride on Panama City Beach’s iconic SkyWheel. This towering Ferris wheel offers spectacular panoramic views of the city, the Gulf of Mexico, and the surrounding coastline. Step into one of the gondolas and be whisked high into the sky, where you’ll be treated to breathtaking vistas that stretch as far as the eye can see.

The air-conditioned gondolas provide a comfortable and safe ride for the whole family, making it a perfect way to create lasting memories together. Whether it’s a romantic sunset ride or a thrilling daytime adventure, a ride on the SkyWheel is a must-do activity for families visiting Panama City Beach.

13. Explore the Trails at Conservation Park

Trails at Conservation Park
Trails at Conservation Park

Escape into nature at the scenic Conservation Park, where you can explore a network of nature trails and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Panama City Beach. The park features miles of trails that wind through diverse habitats, offering opportunities to spot wildlife, observe native plants, and enjoy peaceful surroundings.

Whether you’re on foot, on a bike, or a family stroll, the nature trails at Conservation Park provide a great way to connect with nature and enjoy outdoor activities. Pack a picnic, bring your camera, and make sure to keep an eye out for birds, turtles, and other wildlife that call this beautiful park their home.

14. Unleash Your Inner Racer at Race City Amusement Park

Race City Amusement Park
Race City Amusement Park

Get ready for high-speed fun at Race City Amusement Park, where families can unleash their inner racers and experience thrilling rides and games. The park offers a variety of attractions, including go-kart tracks, bumper boats, miniature golf, and arcade games, ensuring there’s something for everyone in the family.

Race against each other on the go-kart tracks, navigate the twists and turns of the miniature golf course and challenge each other to arcade games for a chance to win prizes. With its fun-filled activities and family-friendly atmosphere, Race City Amusement Park is the perfect place to create lasting memories of fun and excitement.

15. Find Thrills at Cobra Adventure Park

Cobra Adventure Park
Cobra Adventure Park

For adrenaline-pumping thrills and family fun, head to Cobra Adventure Park, a premier amusement park in Panama City Beach. This park offers a wide range of attractions, from thrilling rides and go-karts to laser tag and arcade games.

Get your heart racing on the park’s high-speed roller coasters, take a spin on the spinning teacups, or challenge your family to a game of laser tag. With its variety of activities, Cobra Adventure Park ensures that there’s never a dull moment. So, strap in, hold on tight, and get ready for an adventure-filled day of family fun at Cobra Adventure Park.

16. Howl with Wolves at Seacrest Wolf Preserve

Seacrest Wolf Preserve
Seacrest Wolf Preserve

For a truly unique and educational experience, visit the Seacrest Wolf Preserve, where you can get up close and personal with wolves in their natural habitat. This conservation center offers guided tours that provide the opportunity to interact with and learn about these magnificent creatures.

From observing their social dynamics to howling with the pack, a visit to the Seacrest Wolf Preserve offers a truly immersive experience.

In addition to wolves, the preserve is also home to other wildlife, such as foxes and skunks, allowing visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the importance of conservation and wildlife preservation. It’s an experience that will leave a lasting impression and inspire a love for nature and wildlife.

17. Have Fun at Coconut Creek Family Fun Park

Coconut Creek Family Fun Park
Coconut Creek Family Fun Park

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some family-friendly activities to do in Panama City Beach?

From splashing around at water parks to exploring nature trails and interacting with marine life, there are plenty of family-friendly activities to do in Panama City Beach. Some popular options include visiting water parks like Shipwreck Island, exploring nature trails at St. Andrews State Park, and enjoying interactive experiences at Gulf World Marine Park. With its beautiful beaches, outdoor adventures, and educational attractions, Panama City Beach offers endless fun for the whole family.

Are there any free or low-cost activities for families in Panama City Beach?

Yes, there are several free or low-cost activities that families can enjoy in Panama City Beach. Frank Brown Park offers playgrounds, picnic areas, and sports fields, perfect for a day of family fun. Conservation Park offers nature trails for hiking and biking, allowing families to explore the natural beauty of Panama City Beach.

Additionally, the beach itself offers endless opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and shell collecting. These activities provide budget-friendly options for families to enjoy the beautiful surroundings of Panama City Beach.

What are some recommended restaurants for families in Panama City Beach?

Panama City Beach offers a wide range of family-friendly dining options. Pier Park, with its variety of restaurants, is a great place to start.

From seafood restaurants serving fresh Gulf of Mexico catch to casual eateries offering kid-friendly menus, there’s something to satisfy every taste bud. Don’t forget to indulge in a scoop of ice cream or a sweet treat from one of the many dessert shops. With its diverse dining scene, Panama City Beach has something for every family’s palate.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Panama City Beach offers a wide range of family-friendly activities that are sure to create lasting memories. From exploring the beautiful shores and indulging in water parks to encountering wildlife and enjoying thrilling amusement parks, there is something for everyone in this vibrant city.

Don’t miss out on visiting popular attractions like Pier Park for shopping and dining, Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum, and Gulf World Marine Park.

For a unique experience, take a pirate cruise or go dolphin watching. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, Panama City Beach has it all. Plan your trip today and create unforgettable moments with your loved ones. Share your favorite family-friendly activity in the comments below!

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