Grayton Beach, FL

Main, Visit

I’m sitting here wondering how people blog so frequently about their travels, their home cooked meals, their life and still actually find pleasure in those things. I had plans to do an entire post on the best crab cakes in the world, which are served at the famous Red Bar. Actually, I haven’t tried every crab cake in the world but I would argue they’re the best in the South!  I had plans to post about the eerily quaint Seaside community. I had plans to take you on a bike ride through Grayton Beach State Park to see the sand dunes, blue herons and alligators. However, it felt like a lot of work and not enough vacationing! I’m hoping the reason I wasn’t able to compile several posts about our trip is a sign of a great vacation, (or I’m a little unorganized). Maybe both?

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So here is just one post (that didn’t take away from what was an awesome week!). All of the pictures were taken at arguably my favorite place on earth (besides Bay St. LouisGrayton Beach, Florida. A place I’ve been fortunate to vacation for more than 20 years thanks to my step-mother and father. It has been named one of the best beaches in the world before and rightly so. The crowds are relatively small compared to other Florida beach towns. The water is clear blue. The sand is white and feels like sugar on your feet. Grayton is an old town that has kept its’ charm thanks to protection from Grayton Beach State Park. You’ll find bungalow style homes, just a few restaurants, live oak trees and people roaming around in their swimsuits.

Perhaps its’ most unique quality is that it’s the home of Western Lake, one of the few coastal dune lakes worldwide which flows in and out of the ocean. It’s difficult to explain but when you are at the beach in Grayton, watching the waves, behind you is a beautiful peaceful lake usually filled with kids looking for fish, swimming, canoeing etc. If you’re lucky you’ll sometimes get to see the lake when it has joined the ocean and turned crystal clear. Mother Nature is an incredible thing and Grayton Beach is filled with natural beauty. Here are some photos.

My brother Jay made low country risotto one night. I was assisting him in and out, scribbling notes but mostly chatting, drinking and getting quality time with our family. So I have no idea how the deliciousness ended up from pot to plate. I ended up with just this one not-so-good photo but a lingering addictive taste of silky corn, nutty risotto and spicy crab in my mouth.  He is so creative in the kitchen. Who would have thought low country boil leftovers could be transformed into risotto? He used vegetable and seafood scraps to make a fish stock that perfumed the entire house. Chris caught crabs off the dock in the back yard that accompanied the risotto perfectly.


I just had to include this picture because it makes me laugh. This is Grace “waving.” She proudly waves very seriously now, often with two hands and not just at people, but animals, cars, plants and in this case, a kite.

First dip in Western Lake, or the “little lake” as we call it.

Crab cake and grouper dinner at the Red Bar (great food, weird lighting.) While the price of the crab cakes go up, the taste and quality seem to be just as good if not better. Look at that generous portion of pure lump crab on my plate!

I hope Grace grows up loving this place as much as I do. Her first trip was a success thanks to our family who fed, cared and entertained her while we were there. Until next year Grayton!


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