There is no shortage of things to do in Destin, Florida, but if it were up to my kids, the amusement park known as The Track would make the short list of favorites. Bumper boats, go-karts, miniature golf — what’s not to love if you’re a kid?
The activities available at The Track are largely geared toward school-age children, with the exception of an area known as Kids Kountry. Three and four-year-olds can enjoy the small rides in this area, including a carousel, ferris wheel and the classic train.
The older set, if they meet height requirements, can enjoy riding solo in the bumper cars, go-karts and bumper boats. If they are not yet tall enough, an adult should be prepared to ride with them. Such was our luck on a recent visit when the attendant found my daughter to be one inch too short for the bumper boats. So I rode along with her, trying to maneuver our boat around the large pool while dodging squirts of water from the other boats. Yes, you will get wet on the bumper boats! Be prepared. For a reason I still don’t understand, I quickly became the target of a ten-ish-year-old boy who was trigger happy each time his boat came near ours. He didn’t just spray me with water, he squirted me right in the face over and over and over again (Parents, tell your kids not to aim relentlessly at the adults who are just riding along to the delight of their children. Tell them to have a field day with other kids who are game, but show some mercy to the grown-ups. It’s just good manners).
Each ride, as well as the miniature golf, requires points for admission and the points are purchased inside the arcade building. On our recent visit, we took advantage of an offer that The Track’s website says is available now through Labor Day: Receive double the points when you purchase between 9 a.m. and noon. These points are valid through 4 p.m. One employee told me this is the best deal, but a sign at the cash register also advertised discounts for locals, military and seniors so it’s worth inquiring about those offers at other times of day if you qualify.
Don’t forget to save some money for the arcade — you know, where your children will burn through their tokens in a matter of minutes, collect tickets and redeem them for all sorts of candy and worthless junk they don’t need. It makes them happy so count your losses, play skee ball, and have your wine chilled and ready for when you get home.
There are cold soft drinks and Icees available for sale in the arcade, which are heavenly after you’ve spent some time in the sun. It’s a good idea to bring sunscreen if you visit The Track during the day, too.
In all, our family of five spent about $30 for rides and arcade time during the 2-for-1 points hours. You can do as much or as little as you like when you visit so costs will vary.
Although I have not been there, The Track also has a location in Gulf Shores, Alabama, according to their website. Wherever you visit, have fun and check this off your list of kid-friendly vacation stops.