Snuggled between the Choctawhatchee Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, Santa Rosa Beach is the most extensive beach community in South Walton. Promising miles of glittering white beaches, it’s home to stunning swaths of sand that include Ed Walline Regional Beach Access and  Grayton Beach State Park. Deer Lake State Park is among the finest, and is located at 6350 E. County Road 30-A, Santa Rosa FL 32459.


Escape the crowds in a natural wonderland.
Home to a rare coastal dune lake and beloved by nesting sea turtles and shorebirds, at Deer Lake the sand is sugar white, the waters are a vivid emerald green, and the mood is of peaceful solitude. Here, expect to see dunes with sand so white it looks like an artic landscape; kids splashing in the warm, clear waters; and vast reaches of empty shoreline where you can plant your beach umbrella.

See, feel

The stroll down the boardwalk to the beach is about ¼ of a mile, so consider bringing a wagon or cart for your beach gear. It’s a soul-soothing expedition that cuts through rolling dunes, with views of Deer Lake and an endangered shorebird nesting area that’s home to least terns and snowy plovers.
When the beach opens in front of you, it’s a treat for the eyes and for bare toes. Unfolding for half a mile against a pristine backdrop, it’s laden with soft, fine sugar-sand. The water is gin-clear with a blue-green tint, and it’s shallow a long way out, making it ideal for swimming and families.
While the waters are normally calm, winds, tides and offshore systems can occasionally cause rough conditions.

On or near the beach

Activities at Deer Lake include swimming and surf fishing as well as time honored pursuits like hunting for sand dollars, working on your tan, and exploring the shore.
Or hike the park’s two trails, the mile-long Orange Trail, looping through sweet scented pines and deer moss; and the half-mile Blue Trail, rewarding visitors with a scenic overlook of Deer Lake, embellished with Southern magnolias, golden asters, woody goldenrod and scrub oaks.
Deer Lake is beloved by piping plover, little blue heron, reddish egret, white ibis and black skimmers, making it a paradise for birders. 
Fuel the fun with a picnic in a shady pavilion complete with a grill.


Deer Lake State Park is dedicated to making the park welcoming to all visitors, with accessible amenities that include ADA parking; picnic facilities with tables and grills; a boardwalk to the beach; and restrooms.


Facilities at the park include restrooms (at the parking area), and picnic pavilions with grills.


There are no lifeguards; swim at your own risk. Visitors are reminded to pay close attention to the Warning Flag Signs posted at the welcome station and on the beach. These flags indicate the swimming conditions.


Parking, included with the small admission fee, is limited and can fill on holidays and weekends.

Places to Remember