Destin sugar sand

What Is Sugar Sand?

White sandy beaches. Emerald green, sparkling clear waters. Breathtaking sunsets.

These are the images that come to mind when locals and visitors alike think of Destin.

Downy white sand. Sugar sand. Squeaky clean sand.

It is this quintessential beach powder that has caused many a beachgoer to swoon while sunbathing, beachcombing, or making a picture-perfect sandcastle. This unique sand not only stays cool even in the summer heat, but reflects the sunlight to give our waters that trademark emerald hue.

It is the perfect backdrop for candid and professional family photos and romantic coastal weddings on the beach. The unique look of Destin’s sand is one reason our beaches are consistently ranked among the most beautiful in Florida.

What makes Destin sand so white?

Among the most homogenous and consistently white beach sand in the world, our beaches are actually covered in small quartz particles that began travelling to the Gulf of Mexico from the Appalachian Mountains and the Apalachicola River at the end of the last Ice Age.

Water from melted ice caps 20,000 years ago carried these beautiful little quartz particles hundreds of miles from the rock that forms the Appalachian Mountains. Deposited in the Gulf of Mexico, the quartz sands eventually formed our stunning shoreline.

The sands today continually replenish from the sea, keeping our beaches that gleaming bright white so popular in the postcards of a bygone era and the Instagram feeds of today.

The Palms of Destin offers a seasonal complimentary three minute air conditioned beach shuttle to Henderson Beach State Park, one of the most pristine white sand beaches on the Emerald Coast.

Offering more than 6,000 feet of scenic quartz sand shoreline along the equally stunning emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico, visitors also enjoy nature trails, boardwalks, and pavilions for picnicking and grilling, plus air-conditioned bathhouse facilities.

Our Concierge Staff can assist you with planning for any white sandy beach exploration, event or transportation need.

Sunset Plans, Car Rental, Deep Sea Fishing, Beach Rentals, Parasailing and Waterfront Dining Reservations are just a sample of the many services that can be arranged for your convenience. 

Call 877-447-3767 today to learn how we can make your best white sandy dreams come true.


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