The long-awaited blog post is finally here! Max’s family decided to take a trip at the end of August to celebrate (a little late) Max’s 30th Birthday to Seaside, and it was one of the best trips I have ever had! The house, the food, the people, the town, the beach…it was everything and more. I am so thankful we got to make this happen, and maybe I am more grateful due to everything that has happened this year. Either way, I am missing it so much and would give anything to go back. Seaside is a quaint town, like something out of a movie. Fun fact, "The Truman Show" was filmed here, and we were able to go see the actual house they used! White picket fences and different colored houses made you feel like you were in a different world for a moment. There was so much to explore and so much depth to this little town on highway 30A that we fell in love with. I had heard amazing things about the area for several years, but finally seeing everything in person was a whole different story.
COVID & SAFETY
Before I dive into all the details, I want to preface this by saying that traveling this time of year is obviously up to each individual and family with that they feel is best for them. I am of the opinion that I am comfortable with doing things safely while still living my life as safely as possible! Masks were worn inside any store, and since we were in a private beach house,
we stayed socially distanced with family the entire time.
I got so many questions on THE house!
It was breathtakingly beautiful – this all white dreamhouse – it was everything and more! It was only block away from the square, so we did not need to rent a car. We walked almost everywhere, just like many locals. We also had access to a private beach entrance in this gated community. It was convenient to say the least.
Here are some of the basic amenities:
Indoor Swimming Pool
Free WiFi, Free Parking
Outdoor Seating Area
Here is the link if you wish to read more about this gorgeous house!
23 E Ruskin Street, Santa Rosa Beach, FL
Seaside Beach - 1 min walk
Grayton Beach State Park - 33 min walk
Central Square - 2 min walk
Seaside Repertory Theatre - 2 min walk
Seagrove Beach East - 9 min walk
Eastern Lake - 2.6 mi
Santa Rosa Beach - 6.5 mi
Northwest Florida Regional Airport (VPS) - 65 min drive
Northwest Florida Beaches Intl. Airport (ECP) - 42 min drive
We spent quite a bit of time at the house obviously! Many of our meals were at the house, we did a puzzle, played games and spent a lot of time in the pool! The indoor pool was truly one of the best parts of the house. When we would get back from the beach & even at night, we would sit in there, listen to music and hang out. The bed that Max and I slept in was SO comfortable. We were all just in constant amazement at this gorgeous house, talking about how we were going to buy it. I WISH. When we walked up and down the streets, there were so many beautiful homes all around us! Of course, I found plenty of pink ones!
Some tips when renting a place on 30A
Make sure it has a washer & dryer - this was a lifesaver!
Reserve your beach chairs before you leave - this saved so much time for Max's mom, and we never had to worry about having chairs at the beach.
Buy groceries & eat at your place - it saved money, and it was so convenient!
Hit up the beach in the evening - It isn't nearly as crowded, a perfect time for photos and so relaxing!
All the sunscreen! :)
We picked up food at the local Modica Market on the square and made a few runs to the local Publix - a 3 minute drive. Most meals were in the house – breakfast was cooked by Max’s mom or his sister, Emma, and her husband, Hunter. We also got sandwich stuff, which is always convenient, plenty of snacks, drinks, etc. Emma and Hunter also cooked a Chicken Alfredo dish one night with salad, and it was DELICIOUS! On the square, they have food trucks all around, and you can get sandwiches, tacos, desert, and hot dogs. Basically, anything you want! We definitely took advantage of that and they did NOT disappoint.
For Max’s big birthday dinner, we had a private chef come cook dinner for us – SURF AND TURF BABY! WOW. That meal was unbelievably good. Crab cake appetizer, shrimp, steak, potatoes, asparagus, and for dessert, we had blueberry cobbler and ice cream. Shout out to @costemeraldchef – he was amazing, and we highly recommend him if you are interested in doing something like that in the area!
Food Trucks & Places on the Square:
The Meltdown On 30A (best Cuban sandwich)
Crepes Du Soleil - BEST FROSE!
Wild Bills Beach Dogs - Got several of their hot dogs!!
Bud & Alley's Taco Bar
Heavenly's Shortcakes & Ice Cream
& many more to choose from!
We went to an a restaurant one evening on the square - Bud & Alley’s Waterfront Restaurant & Bar. It has a casual bar with an ocean front view and a more formal dining environment. A little on the pricey side, but the food was great!
My friend, Stephanie, recommended a popular ice cream place not too far from us,
Blue Mountain Beach Creamery, and it was WORTH IT!
You feel like you are in a scene from a movie walking around the square. They have small boutiques, a few kid's stores, a post office, and bookstore. If you walk back even further, there is an entire section of rentals and small homes - each one unique and decorated with charm.
As I mentioned before, "The Truman Show" was filmed in Seaside!
I am so glad I got to partner with @hey30a! I was very impressed to learn that all of their apparel is made from recycled plastic. In fact, 30A has saved over 5 million plastic bottles from ending up in our oceans and landfills. I got 2 t-shirts - including the one in the picture above, a nice blue 30A polo for Max, the pink 30a hat, and a 6 pack of their official rose beer - it was made with saltwater and had more of a tart taste to it. Most everyone in the house (with the exception of a few) really liked it! Their motto is "Beach Happy" - Shop here if you are interested in seeing more from their store!
This was by far the cleanest and prettiest beach I have been to. There was hardly any seaweed or trash. We saw some crabs and 2 tiny jellyfish. It was even more gorgeous in person than in the pictures. Even on the cloudy days, it was beautiful. I could sit out there all day and just listen to the ocean waves. Although we were in Seaside/Santa Rosa Beach the entire time, I have heard amazing things about many of the beaches along highway 30A including Rosemary Beach, Grayton & others. I can't wait to go back and explore a bit more and catch some vitamin D. The highlight of 2020 for sure!