Big city life with small town appeal makes Bay County a wonderful place to visit, but an even better place to live! There is plenty to do on and off the beach for all tastes and lifestyles.
With 27 miles of white sandy beaches to explore or go snorkeling, fishing, boating and diving, you are sure to get your feet wet. Adventurers can hunt for treasure aboard a pirate cruise, encounter dolphins on one of the beach's sightseeing boats or explore beautiful Shell Island. Eco-tourists can hike the trails of St. Andrews State Park or rent a kayak and paddle along any of our beautiful bays or crisp cold creeks and springs. Thrill seekers hold on tight to ride the world's largest speedboat, jet ski along the coast or take a plunge at the 6-acre Shipwreck Island Water Park.
Beyond the beach, Bay County enriches the lives of visitors and residents with a strong cultural presence through many organizations. Art and exhibits, as well as theatrical productions, are brought to the community through the Visual Arts Center of NWFL, Bay Arts Alliance/The Marina Civic Center, The Martin Theater, Kaleidoscope Theater, The Science & Discovery Center of NWFL and Bay County Library. Bay County also enjoys many events such as concerts, air shows, triathlons, festivals, motorcycle rallies and more throughout the year. Click here to visit the community calendar of events for schedules.
Those looking to relax can enjoy a round of golf or take a sunset stroll along the many marinas. Families can see tropical animals and beautiful botanical gardens at Zoo World or catch a sea lion show or swim with the dolphins at Gulf World. If shopping is on your agenda, visit one of many boutiques in the historic downtown district of St. Andrews and Panama City or check out the shopping plazas in town and on the beach.
Anglers from all parts of the world visit Bay County to fish and take part in our tournaments. Whether you are in pursuit of the "big one" or just dinner, it can be found in the warm Gulf waters, St. Andrews Bay or freshwater Deer Point Lake. Fish from our newly rebuilt piers or charter a boat to take you deep sea fishing.
After a day in the sun, a taste of local flavor may be just what you're craving. Bay County has many award-winning restaurants that boast the "seafood you're eating today was asleep in the Gulf last night." From downtown cafes and eateries to Gulf-front fine dining, the possibilities are endless. Enjoy a delicious meal at some of the best restaurants on the Gulf Coast.
Our growing community lures people in with the beauty of the area, business and educational opportunities, cultural activities and southern charm. A seemingly leisurely lifestyle rests on the surface of a booming economy that provides an excellent quality of life to our citizens.
Whether a native or visitor, every day can be a vacation in Bay County!
Click here to view the Panama City Beach Tourism Development Council's website for more great information about Bay County.