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Is Florida Open?

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update for the Emerald Coast of Florida and Alabama

In response to growing concerns of those traveling to areas covered by, we are attempting to share the most recent information about coronavirus closures and safety precautions.

Baldwin County, AL: 

(Gulf Shores, Orange Beach)

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey unveiled a new Safer-At-Home order Tuesday that will go into effect at 5 p.m. Thursday 4/30/2020. Under this order, Alabama's beaches will reopen subject to social distancing guidelines, including no gathering greater than 10 people.

Local Health Department website:

Baldwin County:

State of Florida:

Governor DeSantis rolled back some restrictions on 4/20/2020. Florida will begin to reopen Monday May 4, 2020 using a multi-phase approach:

Restaurants may offer outdoor seating with social distancing and indoor can operate at a 25% capacity.

Retail can operate at 25% of indoor capacity.

Short Term (Vacation) Rental ban has been extended until further notice.

No change for bars, gyms and personal services such as hairdressers.

Governor DeSantis did not mention when Phase II will begin.

Walmart is operating 6:00AM to 11:00PM until further notice.

Most Grocery stores are operating 6:00AM to 9:00PM until further notice.

Florida State Parks: CLOSED.

Florida Department of Health website:

Escambia County, FL: 

(Pensacola Beach, Perdido Key)

Starting May 1, Pensacola Beach and all county beaches will open 30 minutes before sunrise and close 30 minutes after sunset

Areas under piers and pavilions will remain closed

People must maintain groups of 10 or less and maintain social distancing of six feet apart

Dog parks will be reopened and permitted in designated areas

Escambia County:

Santa Rosa County, FL: 

(Gulf Breeze, Navarre Beach)

Navarre Beach and all county beaches and piers will reopen beginning May 1 with limited hours from 2:30-7:30 p.m.

Must maintain social distancing guidelines of six feet apart and groups of no more than 10

Parking for visitors will only be available in the lots for the pier, boat ramp and Navarre Beach Marine Park

Santa Rosa County:

Okaloosa County, FL: 

(Santa Rosa Island, Ft. Walton Beach, Destin)

All Okaloosa County beaches and piers will reopen on May 1 with limited daily hours of 6:30-9 a.m. and 4:30-7 p.m.

Vendors, like chair rentals, are permitted

Must maintain social distancing guidelines of six feet apart and groups of no more than 10

Okaloosa County Commissioners are voting Tuesday, May 5, to consider re-opening Okaloosa County beaches without restrictions, effective Saturday, May 9.

Okaloosa County:

Walton County, FL: 

(Miramar Beach, Sandestin, 30A Area)

Starting May 1, all Walton County beaches and parks will reopen with normal hours

Must maintain social distancing guidelines of six feet apart and groups of no more than 10

Individuals on the beach shall limit their activities to walking, jogging, fishing, swimming, paddleboarding, surfing and boating

All permits for vending on the beach are suspended and no vending on the beach

No beach bonfires

Walton County:

City of Destin, Florida

Destin City council unanimously voted on 4/29/2020 to reopen city beaches from dawn to dusk starting May 1, 2020. Social distancing required. Reopening Destin City Parks facilities will be addressed at the next meeting. Next meeting is on May 4, 2020.

Bay County, FL: 

(Laguna Beach, Panama City Beach, Mexico Beach)

The beaches in Bay County are officially back open as of Friday 4/24/2020 with limitations. Recreational use of county beaches during the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET, according to the ordinance.

The commissioners said beachgoers should still follow all strict social distancing rules while enjoying the sun.

Bay County:

Panama City Beach, FL:

(Panama City Beaches)

The Panama City Beach City Council unanimously voted to open beaches in the city’s jurisdiction starting Friday 4/24/2020.

Mornings:  6:00AM - 9:00AM

Evenings: 5:00PM – 8:00PM

Rules mimic Bay County’s resolution: 

Social distancing required 

Groups no larger than 10 people on the beach

No commercial activity on the beach

Expires May 1,2020 and can be extended by Mayor after meeting with law enforcement.

It was made clear the city is not encouraging visitors. The Florida statewide vacation rental ban is in place until April 30, 2020. This action was taken for the benefit of the residents.

Gulf County, FL: 

(Port St. Joe, Cape San Blas)

Effective Tuesday 4/24/2020, beaches are open daily from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. ET. and 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. ET.

Emergency Commissioners Meeting to be held Thursday 4/30/2020 4:00PM to discuss reopening issues after Governor DeSantis provides state reopening plans. It was noted that the county beach restrictions currently expire on May 1st.

Gulf County:

Franklin County, FL: 

(St. Vincent Island, Apalachicola, St. George Island)

Franklin County Beaches are CLOSED. The Franklin County ban covers all beaches and beach access points, including boardwalks, walkways and parking areas. The closure affects Carrabelle Beach, Alligator Point and St. George Island. 

Franklin County:

Resort amenities (pools, beach access, tennis courts, etc.):

Each individual community HOA is responsible for crafting policy regarding amenities. To determine which amenities are open or closed at any given community, resort or condo development, please view their website or contact them directly.

It is always best to liberally use surface disinfectants while traveling at any time. You can find a list of COVID-19 approved products here:

Federal Coronavirus safety guidelines can be found here:

We try to be accurate and informative, but the situation is fluid. We apologize for any unintentional inaccuracies. Please research via the links above and other resources to determine the best personal plan of action. Be safe and shelter in place if possible.