Miami Beach Vs. Destin

While iconic Miami Beach is a vibe city, Destin offers a relaxed beach vacation with stunning scenery, so if you can’t decide where to have your next vacation – no one could blame you!

Miami Beach, situated on the Atlantic coast, is a vibrant city with a popular beach, great shops, and nightlife. It’s also walkable with a good public transport network. Destin, located on the Emerald Coast with a Blue Wave Beach status for its outstanding coastline, is a family-friendly destination.

Comparing Miami Beach with Destin is difficult as both are incredible. However, if you want to know which city has the best beach, activities, food, and nightlife, including their pros and cons – read on!

Things To Do In Miami Beach Vs. Destin

Miami beach has several great attractions, like the spectacular Italian Renaissance era-styled 43-acre Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, including The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science planetarium and aquarium.

Then you can head over to the iconic Ball & Chain bar, which was once frequented by the likes of Billy Holliday in the 1930s, to listen to live jazz bands and enjoy salsa dancing lessons, followed by dinner at the glamorous Versailles Cuban restaurant.

If you are looking for a great nightlife scene, Miami is the place to be with its 13,500 square foot 24/7 “E11even” nightclub and Miami Beach Fontainebleau Hotel LIV, a mega-club; you can party the night away!

Miami beach is also a shopper’s paradise as Lincoln Road, commonly known as the “Fifth Avenue of the South,” is a fantastic area to shop until you drop. There are also several fabulous boutiques, lounges, and cafes, including cultural sites in the area.

Destin has many family-orientated attractions like Destin Harbor Boardwalk, where you can hop on boat tours with your kiddos, go shopping, and enjoy great food, and it’s all within walking distance.

Another great family day out is in the French Quarter-style Village of Baytowne Wharf, where kids can go zip-lining, play games, enjoy a tower climb, and eat snow cones. Alternatively, pack your car and enjoy visiting all the picturesque little coastal villages in South Walton on the Scenic 30 A.

Bargain shoppers can indulge in a little retail therapy at the Miramar Beach Silver Sands Premium Outlets, which features 110 designer stores at significantly discounted prices.

Destin also hosts several festivals, concerts, and special events throughout the year, which include Destin Seafood Festival, The National Songwriters Festival, Wine Tasting Events, Christmas Boat Parade, and Art Shows, including several other fun seasonal celebrations.

Who Has The Best Beach: Miami Or Destin?

Situated on the Atlantic coast, Miami beach water is colder than the gulf and features a grey-tinted, muted green color due to the inflowing sediment from tributaries and rivers.

While Miami beach is spectacular and has a great vibe, you will need sandals to go for long walks on the uneven beach as the tan-hued sand comprises, of course, seashell pieces and little pebbles.

Situated on the Emerald Coast, Destin’s award-winning beach features a blindingly white, twenty-six miles beachfront with powdery quartz crystal sand which glimmers so much you will need sunglasses, including warm, luminescent water that is a joy to swim in.

It’s no wonder that Destin beach has been voted as one of the nation’s best beaches by Coastal Living, Forbes, including USA Today magazines.

Destin is the only twenty-six miles beach in the USA with a Blue Wave Beach accreditation for its outstanding water quality, cleanliness, and magnificent beauty. So, it is clear to see that Destin is the ultimate champion in the category of the best beach. 

The Best Nightlife Scene: Miami Beach Vs. Destin

In this regard, Miami is (hands-down) the winner as this vibe city has a thriving nightlife with several glamorous clubs in the trendy South Beach area and fun salsa dancing clubs in quirky Little Havana.

Destin caters more to families, and the city is not a prime partygoer destination. Although if you want to have a little nightlife fun, head over to the Harbor area.

Who Has The Best Food: Miami Beach Or Destin?

While most foodies consider Miami a prime destination for culinary delights, it depends on your taste and whether you like a great variety.

The food scene in Miami beach is as diverse as the city’s population and is famous for its delicious staples like Stone Crabs and Key Lime pie, including Cuban and fish sandwiches.

Destin is known for their incredible seafood dishes like seafood gumbo, fried fish, and crab chowder, with several award-winning restaurants to choose from.

Best Couples Vacation Spot: Miami Beach Vs. Destin

For a romantic getaway, you are spoilt for choice as both Miami and Destin are great options, but it does depend on your personal preferences.

Miami is great if you and your partner like going to glamorous beach clubs and award-winning restaurants and exploring the city’s pulsing nightlife.

While Destin is the perfect romantic getaway for a relaxing holiday with long walks on the beach, you will most likely have to stay in a less romantic condo instead of a cozy resort.

The Best Family Vacation: Miami Beach Vs. Destin

While Miami does have several kiddie-friendly museums and activities, it is not commonly seen as a family destination.

On the other hand, Destin is better suited for family vacations as it has a gorgeous beach, peaceful water, and great family activities like the Big Kahuna’s Water Park, where your kiddos can splash around.

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Miami Beach Vs. Destin: The Final Verdict

So, now that you have a greater insight concerning what Miami beach and Destin have to offer. Let’s look at their overall pros and cons, including additional helpful information.

Miami Beach

The city’s pros include its diverse cuisine, thriving nightlife, and trendy beach. It’s also perfect for romantic getaways, and the city is walkable with a great public transport system. However, Miami’s overarching con or downside is that it is less family-friendly than Destin.


Pros include the city’s spectacular beach, coupled with the fact that it is family-friendly and a romantic destination for couples’ vacations.

While the city’s cons include that it is less popular with food-lovers, high-end shoppers, and partygoers, it is also less walkable than Miami, without a properly functioning public transport system.


Comparing Miami beach with its diverse community, pulsing nightlife and food scene with Destin’s spectacular beachfront, and kiddie-friendly activities is like comparing chalk and cheese. They both have so much to offer, so book your next vacation in either city, as you can’t go wrong!