Known for being one of the safest cities in Florida, Niceville is home to a wide range of different attractions. With walking trails, city parks, dog-friendly restaurants and three veterinary clinics, this is a city that is even more fun to explore when you have a dog by your side.
One of the best walks to be had in Niceville is at the Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park, which is home to magnificent old-growth pine trees dating back more than 300 years. There are a few different trails that you and Fido can take here, including the Rocky Bayou Trail, which showcases the park' various habitats, and the Red Cedar Trail, which will take the two of you through an upland forest dominated by cedar.
For another scenic walk, the 45 mile Eglin East segment of the Florida Trail runs through Niceville, passing through beautiful ravines and old-growth forests. Dogs are welcome on this trail, but do need to be kept on a lead, and you will need to bring doggie bags and some drinking water for Fido too.
While dogs love to walk, they love to eat too, so stop by at one of Niceville's dog-friendly restaurants for a meal with your pooch. Hurricane Grill and Wings specializes in over 30 different flavors of wings, while Whataburger has some delicious signature burgers. Authentic Thai food is also available at Thai 101 Cuisine, with several dog-friendly tables underneath the restaurant's front pergola.
With so many exciting walks to be had, as well as delicious food from a wide choice of pet-friendly restaurants, every dog ends up having a pawtastic time in Niceville.
There is so much for dogs to see and do in the Arrowhead Ct/ White Oak Cir neighborhood, beginning with the Niceville Dog Park. This fenced-in dog park stretches out for four acres, with plenty of trees to provide shade. There are picnic tables scattered throughout the park, as well as watering stations for when Fido gets thirsty. If it is too hot to visit the park during the day, lights are turned on in the evenings so that your pooch can have a run around once the temperatures have dropped. Just nearby to the Niceville Dog Park is the Twin Oaks Park, a large city park that boasts sports facilities, restrooms, shaded areas and more, although you will need to keep Fido on a lead here.
Niceville's City Center is home to a couple of different parks, each one with different sights, sounds and smells to keep your pooch entertained. Lions Park features pawsome waterfront views, along with numerous picnic shelters from where you and Fido can sit back and enjoy your surroundings. Meigs Park is slightly smaller, but still has sports facilities and a playground. If you would like to treat Fido to a meal afterwards, the dog-friendly Dockside Oyster Bar and Café offers waterfront views alongside fresh Cajun cuisine, while Tucker Duke's serves up Southern-style specials with regional craft beers. For a place to spend the night, the Quality Inn Niceville welcomes two pets per guest room for a small additional fee.
Just 12 miles from Niceville is the small town of Cinco Bayou, where you will find a truly pawtastic dog park. Central Bark is a completely fenced-in dog park with separate areas for small and large dogs, as well as play and agility equipment in both sections for dogs who want some extra exercise. With a water spigot and dog bowls available, Fido can drink to his heart's content, while doggie bags are freely available for you to use. After all of that running around, spend some time relaxing at Clemenza's, a dog-friendly restaurant that serves up delicious pizzas and a great selection of wines, before heading to Bippy's by the Beach for a mouthwatering array of frozen yogurts.
Just a half hour drive from Niceville lies the Route 98/ Gulf Shore Dr neighborhood of Destin, which is the place to go if you have a dog who loves the water. Destin Pontoon Boat Rentals allows smaller dogs to accompany owners on boat cruises, while Destin Vacation Boat Rentals accepts pets of any size on their fishing, pontoon, power and sail boats that are available for you to rent. You and your pooch will likely be hungry after all of that excitement, and there are quite a few dog-friendly restaurants nearby to choose from. If you are in the mood for Italian, check out La Famiglia or Landshark's Pizza, while delicious seafood can be found at Jackakudas Seafood and Sushi.
Destin's Emerald Coast Pky/ Old Highway 98 neighborhood is about a 25 minute drive from Niceville, and is home to the Henderson Beach State Park. There is more than 6000 feet of shoreline to explore here, with sugar-white sand made up of pure Appalachian quartz, meaning that it will feel cool on your dog's paws even on hot days. In addition to walking along the beach, the park also has a nature trail that stretches out for about three quarters of a mile through maritime forest and coastal scrub. After all of that outdoor fun, treat Fido to a visit to The Doggy Bag, a full-service doggie bakery with a tail-wagging range of natural, home made dog goodies.