When we made plans to stick around Panama City Beach for a few days after our April presentation of How to Hike the Florida Trail, we got in touch with our colleagues at Visit Panama City Beach to find a place to stay. Noting that our task was to visit and photograph natural areas in their vicinity, they connected us with Pinnacle Port, which sits right on the shores of Lake Powell, one of the coastal dune lakes we planned to visit. They offered to host us for our stay.
Neither of us can stand towering beach condos. We’re both old enough to remember when Florida’s shores weren’t cluttered with them. So as we drove through the little village of homes out front and approached a big concrete oceanfront building, I said “uh oh.”
As it turned out, that building was the first condo to be built along this beach. It’s the oldest and tallest of the structures in this condo complex along Inlet Beach. The buildings closer to Lake Powell are newer and shorter. We were fortunate to be given a unit in the building that adjoins Camp Helen State Park, so we could walk right down the beach and into the park.
As condo dwellers, we pay attention to amenities. This was a three-bedroom unit with way more space that we needed, so we stayed in the oceanfront room and left the rooms at the other end alone. The kitchen was much spiffier than ours, with a digitally programmed stove that kept flashing messages at us. We’d brought some food with us to prepare, but ended up eating dinners out and having most of our other meals here. Our unit was nicely furnished, with the couch set just right to let us look out over the water.
Although the weather didn’t cooperate with our schedule to let John get out on the water and do some photography, the complex has its own dock with rental kayaks and canoes for plying the waters of Lake Powell.
Families were constantly busy with the grills and picnic tables, pool, and shuffleboard courts, even late at night. On our final two nights of our stay, we enjoyed spectacular sunsets from our porch.
They are located at the far west end of Panama City Beach off US 98, just before the bridge over Lake Powell.
We wandered not just along the coast but also a dozen miles or so north for some walks on the Florida Trail and in Pine Log State Forest. Here are some great destinations within an easy drive of Pinnacle Port.
Our thanks to Pinnacle Port for providing a complimentary stay while we researched hiking trails in the area, and to Visit Panama City Beach for making the connection for us.