You're familiar with concierge services available at resorts, and probably even used them a time or two when you needed a recommendation on where to eat or what to see.
Now imagine taking that concept and the experience you had, and applying it to a county.
That's right, an entire county.
Gulf County, Florida
(Wewahitchka - aka WeWa, Port St. Joe, Indian Pass and Cape San Blas), located in Florida's Panhandle, is successfully showing visitors that concierge
services aren't limited to only resorts.
Launched a year ago, the county's concierge service
is the go-to for the "inside scoop." According to Jennifer Adams, executive director of the Gulf County Tourist Development Council (TDC), the area experts provide insight on what the area is like, where to stay and most importantly, what adventures to have on and off the 244 miles of shoreline.
"We know that vacation time is precious and doing something different, trying a new destination takes a leap of faith."
Adams says you can wait until you come into Gulf County to set up a free session with a concierge, or schedule one when you're planning your trip and still getting to know the area.
If you're a first-time visitor, you'll quickly discover that nearly all of the activities in Gulf County take place on the water.
And this is a good thing.
This isn't like any other beach destination. You come here, as the TDC's new tagline reads, to “live unpacked," which encourages everyone to break out of their comfort zones and seize a new experience, no matter how big or small, every day.
So why not ...
-- Go sightseeing, shelling or fishing, or a combination with the father- son duo of Break-A-Way Charters
--- Discover why Gulf County is known as the “champion of sunsets” aboard a sunset cruise with Seahorse Water Safaris
-- Learn about the ecosystem of St. Joseph Bay on a guided kayak tour with Happy Ours
-- Kayak the impressive-looking Dead Lakes in Wewa with Off the Map Expeditions
-- Take a quick shuttle across to explore the barrier island, St. Vincent Island
. This rugged, undeveloped island is home to various animals, and you never know when you might spot a bald eagle or deer, or a red wolf. The trails led to the beach and lake.
On land ...
-- Attend a turtle walk with St. Joseph Peninsula Turtle Patrol
-- Rent a bike and explore the trails
-- Go horseback riding
on the beach. Cape San Blas is one of three places in the Florida where you can do this.
-- Go hiking on one of the three trails in St. Joseph Peninsula State Park
. You never know what you might see.
-- View Port St Joe Marina from the top of Cape San Blas Lighthouse
. The lighthouse was relocated to Port St. Joe on July 15, 2014, and erected on July 24 of the same year near the Welcome Center. The historic lighthouse was moved from Cape San Blas to protect it from beach erosion.
And that's just a start of what awaits you in Gulf County. For more ideas or inspiration, check out the over 20 of adventure guides
and their tales of adventure.
Plan a getaway now by logging onto visitgulf.com
, exploring the site and utilizing the concierge service to get the most out of a stay in Gulf County.
photos: personal collection; (top) Enjoying the view of St. Joseph Bay from a dock off a rental with Pristine Properties, (middle) fishing with Break-A-Way Charters, (bottom) horseback riding on the beach with Broke-a-Toe.