With the Alabama border just some miles down the road, it’s easy to explain Pensacola’s vibe – a city that jumbles Florida brashness with laid-back Southern syrup. This is by far Panhandle’s most interesting city with a thrumming military culture, a Spanish-style downtown, lively beaches. Although urban-chic trends (craft cocktails, and locavores food) are taking root, many visitors still come to Pensacola primarily for a blue-collar and all-American vacation experience: bars serving cheap fried seafood and other local foods as well as white-sand beaches. Here are the top must-see attractions in Pensacola, Florida.
National Naval Aviation Museum
Your trip to Pensacola isn’t complete with visiting the enormous collection of military artifacts and aircraft muscle. Children and adults alike will be intrigued by the array of planes on display. There are also high technology items like an IMAX theater and flight simulators. You can watch the death-defying air show by the Blue Angels showing most Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Historic Pensacola Village
The rich colonial history of Pensacola spans over 450 years. This attractive and fascinating village is an enclave of historic homes that have been turned into museums. It is the ideal starting point for visitors to familiarize themselves with this city. Admission is valid for a week and includes entrance to each enclave and a guided tour.
Voices of Pensacola
Part interpretive center, part archive of oral history, the Voices of Pensacola is a museum that highlights through audio recordings and videos, the various cultural groups that have contributed to Pensacola.
Pensacola Museum of Art
Situated in the old jail of the city, this lovely museum features a growing and impressive collection of major twentieth and twenty-first-century artists, spanning folk art, pop art, realism, and cubism.
Pensacola Children’s Museum
Learn more about over 450 years of local history while also having fun in this compact museum that occupies 2 floors of the legendary Arbona building. The first level is perfect for younger children up to 9 years old while the second floor has a bit more to offer older children. Your children will definitely love it here.
Bay Bluff Park
This scenic 32-acre park is off the Pensacola Bluffs Highway and features wooden boardwalks that lead visitors along the steep bluffs’ side, as well as through clutches of Florida rosemary, pines, and live oaks to the beach down below. The drawback of the Bay Bluff Park is the persistent litter that is now an eyesore.