What’s your perfect vacation look like? Toes in the sand with a bushwacker in hand? Taking a stroll stopping at various boutiques and eateries? Trying upscale cocktails in a swanky bar? Taking in a ball-game along the waterfront? What if we told you, you could have it all? The Pensacola Bay Area delivers the experience you crave. Even better? You have options. Pick just one way to spend your time with us or mix and match as it suits you.
Nightlife & Entertainment
Whether you prefer the laidback sound of waves crashing and guitar picking – or the thrill of a concert environment – when it comes to the local nightlife and music scenes, the Pensacola Bay Area has got you covered. By venturing from the beach to downtown, indulge in a variety of atmospheres. Mix that together with craft cocktails like an Irish Car Bomb from McGuire’s, a Diesel Fuel from Flounder’s, an Old Hickory from Old Hickory Whiskey Bar or a classic glass of wine or beer and you’ve got a recipe for a good time.
Palafox Street and neighboring walkways feature uptown funk with a downtown vibe. Amidst two-dozen historic buildings dotted with chic stores and eateries, you’ll find chic Southern style that sums up the unique atmosphere of Downtown Pensacola. Shoppers can spend a few hours or an entire weekend searching for gourmet treats, trendy clothing, hand-made jewelry, fine art and eclectic home furnishings. You’ll quickly realize why the main street downtown, Palafox Street, holds the title of the “10 Great Streets in America.”
No matter your sport, and whether you want to participate or just take in a game, you’ll find it in Pensacola. The Blue Wahoos—a Double-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins—play their home games at a 5,000-plus-seat multi-use waterfront stadium overlooking Pensacola Bay and the downtown harbor. In the off-season, the University of West Florida Argonauts play Division II football in the same stadium. For a different speed, head to Five Flags Speedway. Noted as one of the most prestigious short tracks in the country, it plays host to the Snowball Derby each December. Finally, to cool off, head to the Pensacola Bay Center for some Southern Professional Hockey.
As the only destination between Tampa and Mobile to boast the "Big Five", there’s something year-round for everyone. Big-city entertainment like the ballet, opera, symphony, theatre, and art galleries feature shows throughout the year attuned to any cultural taste. Annual festivals like Foo Foo Festival and Great Gulf Coast Arts Festival highlight state-of-the-art artistic happenings.
Gulf-to-Table Gives Fresh a Whole New Meaning
Feast your eyes and your taste buds on delectable flavors with sunset waterfront views along Pensacola’s coastline. Locally harvested oysters, fresh tuna straight from the Gulf of Mexico and seasonal herbs and produce are just a few of the items that will grace your plate. With restaurants that grace the lists of Open Tables 50 best restaurants in the country, Florida Trend and more, you’ll find a big-city taste in Pensacola.
Discover a Historic Melting Pot
Did you know that Pensacola is America’s first settlement? In 1559, Spanish Conquistador Don Tristan de Luna traveled on an expedition that included 11 ships from Veracruz, Mexico, to establish Pensacola. For a peek into Pensacola’s past life, the Pensacola Historic District beckons travelers with living history demonstrations, 19th-century homes and colonial wear. Over in Belmont-Devilliers, known locally as The Blocks, experience the commercial and cultural hub of Pensacola’s historic black community. Today, vibrant murals and the city’s best-fried chicken can be found here. On the west side of Pensacola, the world’s largest naval aviation museum is home to more than 150 aircraft and attractions that the whole family can enjoy. On most Tuesdays throughout the year, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels can be seen practicing from the flight deck outside!
Whatever vacation experience you crave, Pensacola offers a cultural feast for all palates. We hope to welcome you soon.