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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife wants to do a beach vacation early this summer. I'm looking for somewhere to drive to from Southern Illinois that has some decent MTB/CX/Gravel riding nearby. We like the Destin area, but I have been disappointed in the past with cycling options there. I know Alafia has some good trails, but that is a long haul from IL. I'm not opposed to Alabama as long as the beach is nice for the wife. Also, I'm not opposed with driving an hour or so from the beach to ride if needed. We would like to stay on the Gulf side as the beaches are nicer and the drive is shorter. Let me know if there is somewhere I should be looking into.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That is great info. I will check into that trail system. It looks like I could make the drive over from Destin or Fort Walton if that is where we end up staying.

Thanks!
 

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We usually stay near Rosemary Beach and Santa Rosa area. There are some trails in that area. Look for Point Washington State Forest Trails. The only one of these I saw on MTBProject.com was Longleaf Greenway Trail, but there is also the Eastern Lake Trail. There are some gravel roads in this area through out the state parks.

The other thing to note is that there is a bike and walking path all along the 30A highway section. I think this is about 18 or so miles long.
 

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We usually stay near Rosemary Beach and Santa Rosa area. There are some trails in that area. Look for Point Washington State Forest Trails. The only one of these I saw on MTBProject.com was Longleaf Greenway Trail, but there is also the Eastern Lake Trail. There are some gravel roads in this area through out the state parks.

The other thing to note is that there is a bike and walking path all along the 30A highway section. I think this is about 18 or so miles long.
+1. I love Santa Rosa. Grayton Beach is very nice as well. Lot's of trees and cool little cottages.
 

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Much less crowded than Destin. Destin is a hellhole on the beach if you ask me. Hwy 30A is 25-30 minutes East of Destin. No high rise condos, they have a 4 story maximum on buildings in Santa Rosa. I stay at Gulf Place Caribbean, right across the street from the beach access. There's a coffee shop, pizza joint, beer place, and a nice restaurant all in the same block.
https://www.vrbo.com/240041 that is the condo I stay in every year.
 

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We normally stay in the Perdido area, have been for the past 20 yrs or so and while it's grown considerably it's still much less crowded than other areas and beautiful beaches. I generally tote the MTB along and hit the UWF trails mentioned above. Was considering bringing the CX bike next trip to make it more challenging but the trails are a little sandy (duh) so that might be a bit of a pain.
 
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