Best hotels in Pensacola Beach
Pensacola Beach IntroductionThe brilliant white quartz of Pensacola Beach has been delighting visitors ever since the first Spanish explorers anchored offshore in the 16th century. Life in this family-friendly, eco-friendly, and even dog-friendly resort on Santa Rosa Island still revolves around the ocean, although today’s vacationers are just as likely to be parasailing over it or diving beneath it. Futuristic buildings, a historic fort, and a famous air show lend Pensacola Beach its unique appeal, while the sun-kissed boardwalk with its iconic shell landmark is home to some of the liveliest restaurants, bars, and stores on Florida’s Fairpoint Peninsula.
Hotels in Pensacola BeachFrom upscale resorts to simple condos, hotels in Pensacola Beach cater for all kinds of vacationers. Family groups will appreciate the convenience of a well-appointed resort hotel with plenty of on-site amenities to keep everyone entertained from breakfast till sundown. For those looking to save, discount Pensacola Beach hotels offer budget-friendly family rooms, allowing you to save your dollars for sightseeing. Alternatively, cozy up in a romantic beachfront condo and enjoy the flexibility of self-catering, splash out on a sea-view suite with 4-star service on tap, or enjoy familiar comforts in a tried-and-tested national chain.
Where to stayPensacola Beach hotels may vary in terms of facilities, price, and star rating, but they all share the same stunning location—and this long, narrow strip of perfectly manicured sand always provides the perfect setting for a dream vacation. It’s hard to choose between 4-star treats like Portofino Island Resort or the homey Emerald Isle condos, many of which boast panoramic views over the Gulf of Mexico. Cast your cares away in the luxurious surroundings of the elegant Margaritaville Beach Hotel, or snap up a deal on a room at Days Inn Pensacola Beachfront and enjoy the same views with fewer frills.
Things to seeA visit to Fort Pickens offers the chance to delve into Pensacola Beach’s storied history. Built at the western end of Santa Rosa Island in 1834, the fort was in use for coastal defense until World War II, when new technology rendered it obsolete. It is now open to the public as one of the heritage attractions of the protected Gulf Islands National Seashore. Take a tour to see gun batteries and officers’ quarters and learn about the fort’s most notorious prisoner, Geronimo. Time your visit to coincide with the July 4th celebrations and catch a flyby starring local heroes, the U.S. Navy’s legendary Blue Angels. Back in the open air, you can explore Pensacola’s quirky ‘novelty’ houses, catch a concert in the seashell auditorium, or enjoy free outdoor entertainment on the beach. For nature lovers, the ‘Footprints in the Sand’ eco-trail is an environmentally friendly way to enjoy the unspoiled beauty of the island and learn about its wildlife.
How to get to Pensacola BeachPensacola Beach epitomizes the ultimate away-from-it-all escape, yet it’s surprisingly easy to reach, with flights to Pensacola International Airport from major U.S. hubs including Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, and Atlanta. Hop in a waiting cab or pre-book a limo to drop you direct to your beach hotel in around 30 minutes. Highway access is just as easy from Interstates 10 and 110, or Route 98. Travel in Pensacola Beach is provided by the bus network of Escambia County Area Transit (ECAT), and during the peak summer season there’s a free beach-trolley service.