Grayton Beach State Park Named Top Ten Beach

October 31, 2016 by SoWal Staff

Grayton Beach State Park has once again been included in the list of Top 10 Beaches in this year's 26th annual picks by coastal expert Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman, the professor at Florida International University also known as Dr. Beach.

Grayton Beach State Park offers sugar-white sand and emerald green water where development is restrained and large sand dunes still dominate the landscape.  At the same time, all the amenities of great restaurants and accommodations are close by in the old town of Grayton Beach or nearby Seaside.  Many people love camping in this wonderful state park dominated by a rare coastal dune lake that provides excellent fishing and boating.

“More attention is being paid to safety and management this year and extra credit is being awarded to beaches that prohibit smoking,” said Visit South Walton Director of Marketing, Jon Ervin. “These changes allowed the list of best beaches to begin anew. This is why Grayton Beach, which has been recognized before by Dr. Leatherman, has once again made the list.”     

As “Dr. Beach,” Leatherman has selected the annual Top 10 Beaches since 1991.  Fifty criteria are used for evaluation including water and sand quality, safety and management. Dr. Leatherman is an internationally-known coastal scientist who has published 20 books and hundreds of scientific articles and reports about storm impacts, coastal erosion and ways to improve beach health and safety. 

SoWal Insider Tip: meet at The Red Bar in "downtown" Grayton Beach to begin exploring the town. The beach is out back and you can walk to the park. The entrance to Grayton Beach State Park is on Scenic 30A just east of town.


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Offering news, features, insider tips & info, photos and video all across the South Walton area.


The water quality at the Walton beaches including Grayton Beach is poor with high concentrations of fecal matter as of July 6. 2016. Is this normal? What is being done to correct this? With the poor rating listed by the Florida public health authorities when will it be safe to at least wade in the water? Thank you
Hi Mike, We post water quality results here - In the summer when we have a lot of visitors and/or a lot of rain, septic tanks drain into lakes and the Gulf. Poor water quality results usually occur near lake outlets or in places where there are septic tanks on the beaches. We have stressed that all septic tanks near water should be removed in South Walton. Usually the poor results are in the summer when there are a lot of visitors. Usually it is from septic tank runoff near the lake outfalls. Dr. Beach probably likely doesn't know about it and would probably be appalled.
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