#125 of 182 Destin Restaurants

Gilligan’s Seafood

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Gilligan’s on the Harbor — Tasty Seafood Delights Served Up with a View of Destin Harbor
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

After spending the day exploring the beachfront, you will love grabbing a seat on the covered patio at Gilligan’s on the Harbor. While at this iconic eatery, you will not only enjoy spectacular views of the Destin Harbor but also get to have a taste of all the amazing seafood found there. Upon taking that first bite, you will discover their commitment to making every dish using fresh, local ingredients, and time-honored recipes.

- The FloridaPanhandle.com Local Expert Team

At Gilligan’s on the Harbor, you can always count on enjoying a quintessential beachfront dining experience. Upon stepping through their doors, you are greeted by cheery décor that perfectly sets the stage for your meal. From the surfboard on the wall to the hardwood plank floors, everything is designed to put you in the mood for fish and chips.

Although they will happily seat guests in their cozy indoor dining area, the covered outdoor patio is where it’s at. If you can grab a seat outside, definitely do so to take in the breathtaking views of the Destin Harbor. Although the picnic benches could be a little more comfortable, a little discomfort is well worth having the chance to look upon the beautiful waterway framed by palm trees.

Their well-equipped menu leaves little to be desired as well. From start to finish, you will find all your favorite seafood entrees plus tasty sides galore. They also have non-alcoholic beverages and craft beer, wine, and other alcoholic fare, including their popular drink of the day.

The menu items guests love most include:

Famous Gumbo
Although they keep the actual recipe close to their chest, the Famous Gumbo features all the ingredients you might expect in this traditional dish. Onions and celery in a dark roux kick off the flavors and create the perfect backdrop for the locally-sourced shrimp and fish. You can order this dish by the cup or bowl, depending on just how hungry you are.

Fried Oyster Po Boy
When nothing will do but exquisite fried shellfish in a light and flaky bun, order up the Fried Oyster Po Boy to satisfy your cravings. They build this sandwich on a footlong roll with sauce, tomato, and shredded lettuce to start. Then, they add several breaded oysters fried to a rich golden brown. After that, they cover the rest of the plate in fries.  

Crab Cakes
When you order the Crab Cake dinner, prepare for the flavor experience of a lifetime. They load up each cake with lump meat crab surrounded by seasoned breadcrumbs, then fry it until lightly browned and crispy around the edges. The crab cakes come with a ton of hush puppies and two sides of your choosing. Their options include freshly-made coleslaw, mac and cheese, and jambalaya.  

Fish Tacos
Although seemingly mundane, their Fish Tacos land on the specialty menu, and for good reason. They make their tacos to order using locally-caught fish prepared on the grill or blackened to your liking. Then, pile it high on flour tortillas before covering the whole thing in crunchy corn salsa and creamy tartar sauce. Tortilla chips arrive alongside but be sure to ask for an extra cup of salsa for dipping.

In addition to all these amazing entrees, you can get all you can eat fish and popcorn shrimp any time of the week. They serve up these awesome fried seafood treats with fries and hushpuppies good enough to write home about. With their large portions, you will likely have a hard time eating more than one basket, though it is definitely worth a try.

Insider Tips:
– As you enjoy local attractions around this restaurant, like parasailing, the establishments may provide a coupon for 10% off your meal at Gilligan’s.
– The restaurant gets quite busy during holiday weekends, so expect service to slow down if you visit then.
– Visit from 11 am to 5 pm each day to take advantage of happy hour and save money on draft beer and raw oysters.
– If you arrive by boat, you can have the onsite attendants help tie up your watercraft before heading inside for a bite to eat.