Your health and safety is our priority, and we are committed to keeping you up-to-date as we work closely with our local leadership related to COVID-19. Please visit our FAQ page for the latest updates. 

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COVID-19 FAQs for Destin-Fort Walton Beach, Florida

March 22, 2021, 7:00 am CST.


Destin-Fort Walton Beach, Florida places the highest priority on the health and safety of our residents and visitors. We are committed to consistently providing you with the most up-to-date information on the status of our businesses and attractions as the situation evolves. We will continue to update this page as new information and guidelines become available and work alongside our local leadership, including the Okaloosa County Health Department, to keep all well-informed and safe. ​

Are we required to wear masks during our stay? 

  • By Executive Order of the President, face masks must be worn while on public transportation (airplanes, buses, taxis, ride-shares, etc.) and while on board commercial vessels including fishing charters, dive boats and sightseeing cruises. Recreational vessels such as private boat rentals and jet skis do not fall under the order. The CDC and Board of County Commissioners also recommend wearing face coverings in any public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. For additional guidance please visit the CDC’s recommendation found here

Is there a curfew or any restrictions?

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  • There are currently no travel advisories or curfews in place for Destin-Fort Walton Beach. On Friday, September 25th the state of Florida entered Phase III of the Governor’s “Safe. Smart. Step-by-Step. Plan'' to re-open. Vulnerable individuals should continue to avoid close contact with people outside the home, and everyone is advised to continue maximizing physical distance from others. 

Are the beaches and parks closed?

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  • Okaloosa County and Destin beaches are open from dawn until dusk. This includes public and private beaches; restrooms; beach access ways; parking areas solely for accessing beaches; county and city beachfront parks; trails; Marler Park; and the Okaloosa Island Fishing Pier. The Okaloosa area of the Gulf Islands National Seashore has also re-opened as has Henderson Beach State Park’s beach access and parking.

    • Henderson Beach State Park's day-use areas are at 70% capacity, and camping sites are open to advance registrations - no walk-up reservation will be accepted. 

  • Eglin off-base beaches have also re-opened under the following guidelines, with the exception of the East Pass access point.

    • ​Princess Beach, Matterhorn and White Point are open for normal operations from dawn to dusk.
    • Eglin Beach Park will open at 10 a.m. Parking is $5 at the gate with credit card payments only. Beach park hours of operation are Monday-Sunday from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
    • Beach park pavilion reservations will not be accepted at this time. Rental equipment will also not be available at this time.

Are vacation rentals impacted?

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  • Short-term vacation rentals are approved to welcome back guests. They can do so by following safety guidelines in favor of public health and safe vacations.

    • At this time, there are no quarantine requirements for out of state visitors. 

  • Hotels, motels and inns remain open. For specifics on how an individual property may have modified procedures and operations in place we recommend contacting your accommodations directly. 

Are roadways and airports impacted?

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  • At this time, there are no quarantine requirements for out of state visitors. 

  • To help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect toll collectors, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise (FTE) will temporarily not accept cash as a form of payment for tolls including the Mid-Bay Toll Bridge. Tolls will still be required, but they will be collected either via SunPass or toll-by-plate. Administrative fees are waived at this time.

  • At this time, the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) is operating as normal. However, given COVID-19’s impact on the industry and individual carriers, we recommend you continue to check directly with the airline.

Are restaurants and bars closed?

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  • Yes, restaurants and bars in Destin-Fort Walton Beach are open. Restaurants and bars are permitted to be open and operating at 100% capacity while following CDC approved guidelines. Many local restaurants are still offering outdoor seating with tables spaced 6-feet apart.

  • A number of local restaurants have been offering curbside pickup and delivery services and will continue to do so. For a list of area restaurant re-openings, click here

Are attractions and activities closed?

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Our Visitor's Centers on Okaloosa Island and at the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport are now open to the public. Our visitor specialists can also be reached at 800.322.3319. 

We will continue to update this page as new information becomes available, and encourage you to visit/call the following sources regarding travel safety and local updates: