Three Things 30A Locals KnowPosted on 07/13/17
If you live or vacation in South Walton, you’re familiar with the 30A way of life. No doubt, you’ve driven behind countless cars with a sky-blue 30A decal on their rear windshield.
And why not? 30A is one of the most beautiful, unique places in the United States, if not the world. Here, you’ll find distinct beach towns like Seaside, the quintessential coastal community that defined new urbanism and redefined Americana. Then there’s Grayton Beach, home to the oldest homestead on 30A, and Alys Beach, a bold new statement in Bermudan architecture.
In each of these beach towns, though, there are some quirks locals know and tourists learn. Things like:
- Golf Carts Are A Way of Life
Bikes on the bike path, golf carts on the road. It’s pretty simple, but you’d be surprised how many times the two are confused. Golf carts are only operable on roads with a speed limit below 35 miles per hour. On county roads—those with a green street sign—drivers must adhere to Florida law. That means the golf cart driver needs to be 16, and the cart itself must have functional headlights, taillights, turn signals, brakes, a rear view mirror, seat belt, and registered tag. On private roads—those with a blue street sign—drivers must follow the local community’s regulations regarding golf carts.
- There Are Lots of Bike Gangs
Ok, we’re not talking Sons of Anarchy. More like pedal pushers in pastels. Bicycles and 30A go together like peanut butter and jelly. In fact, from March through August, bicycles take over the stretch of highway from Santa Rosa Beach to Inlet Beach. The reason being people have an easier time getting around by bike than by car. Simply hop on the bike path, pedal wherever you need to go—everything is nearby—and leave your bike amidst the hundreds of others when you get there. Somehow (it’s a mystery for the powers at be) everyone’s always able to find their bike in the pile.
- This Isn’t Tourist-Trap Food
30A is home to chefs who could easily work in renowned kitchens in Florence, Paris, or New York. However, they choose to bring their culinary skills to paradise, resulting in the most creative and delicious Gulf-to-table dishes. Chefs like Jim Shirley of Great Southern and The Bay, Kevin Korman of Roselie, and Jim Richard of Stinky’s Fish Camp have made 30A a gastronomical destination for gourmands worldwide.