Five for Friday: Five Spots to Visit in Pensacola, FL

So Matty and I are actually in Pensacola right now! He has family there, so we get back to our college stomping grounds (and his hometown) quite regularly.
I adore Pensacola. If they had a great job market there, I would be inclined to plant our roots back on the Gulf Coast! But alas, our careers have us firmly rooted here in Atlanta. At least we get to go back often.

In honor of our trip, here are my (and Matt’s) top Five Spots to Visit in Pensacola. We hit each of these up almost every time we’re home.

Number 5: McGuire’s Irish Pub

This place is one-of-a-kind. From the dark, old time pub feel to the millions of dollar bills stapled to the walls, McGuire’s is truly an experience.

When you’re there make sure you: kiss the moose, order some senate bean soup (it’ll cost ya $.18), sign a dollar and staple it to the wall, try some of the beer brewed on site, order an Irish Wake, and take a trip to the bathroom (let me know how that trip pans out for you).




Number 4: Seville Quarter

Now in college I hated this place. It tends to be overrun with young sailors (as does a lot of Pcola) and a girl can only take so much. But I’ve developed a new appreciated for Seville Quarter! It is truly unique! Nine bars with one cover. There’s really something for everyone from sports bar to dance club to dueling pianos.

When you’re there make sure you: Have a drink or two in Rosie O’Grady’s and enjoy the dueling piano show, go upstairs in Phineas Phogg’s (to observe the sailors in action on the dance floor below), sit out in the beautiful courtyard and take in a southern night.





Number 3: Palafox Street/Downtown Pensacola

This area was pretty desolate when we lived there, but it’s not anymore. There are some really great bars and restaurants lining the streets of downtown Pcola!

When you’re there make sure you: have a drink or five at 5 1/2 Bar (The bartender there is top notch. Just try to stump him! Fresh ingredients=delish craft cocktails), check out a show at the Saenger, enjoy nearly any beer you could want at World of Beer, catch a Wahoo’s game at Bayfront Stadium located right on Pensacola Bay (if you can get tickets).

Pensacola -Palafox-Historic-District -Empire-Building_01



Number 2: Peg Leg Pete’s

Even though this is a beach business, I had to carve it out by itself. I LOVE Peg Leg’s. There is no better place in the entire world to get oysters. This spot gets visited without fail EVERY time we go to Pcola.

When you’re there make sure you: eat some oysters….lots of them! I like mine raw with some horseradish and cocktail, but there really is no wrong choice here.




Number 1: Pensacola Beach, Boardwalk, and Bars

There’s no bigger reason to come to Pensacola than the beach. The perfect blue waters and sugar white sand can’t be beat. And once you’re done enjoying the beach, there is still plenty to do especially if you like to drink!

When you’re there make sure you: Have a Diesel Fuel at Flounder’s, get a slurp drink at Bamboo Willies, visit the Sandshaker to have a Bushwhacker (they invented it), and when you’re done with all of this, finish the night at The Break to see how the locals do it.




Honorable Mentions:

University of West FloridaThis is my and Matt’s alma mater and therefore it will always have a special place in my heart. Plus I think it’s a cool campus. It’s on a wild life refuge.

Scenic Highway- This is a cool drive with some neat stopping points along the way.

Pensacola Bay Brewery This place is fairly new, but they have some solid craft beers and a cool bar right on site! I like the Lil’ Napoleon (IPA) and the Blackbeard (Stout).


So there you have it, our favorite Pensacola spots. What are yours!


Stay positive & love your life!




Listening to: The sounds of the ocean.

Eating: Some Peg Leg’s Oysters

Drinking: Numerous cocktails as mentioned above.

Random fact: I miss having the beach a quick drive away!



14 thoughts on “Five for Friday: Five Spots to Visit in Pensacola, FL

  1. Love, love, love McGuire’s! Another must visit is The Coffee Cup. They have the best coffee (in my opinion) and you have to try the tomato gravy over biscuits! But get there early, because they tend to have a wait.

  2. No one from PCola eats at McGuires! This is basically a patronization of our city

    • I know plenty of people that eat there who are from Pcola. Lived there for 8 years and enjoy stoping in when I’m in town. It’s a list of MY fave places and places I think are great to visit. Feel free to create your own “authentic” list if you are offended.

  3. Yeah, you really should go to the coffee cup. The restaurant scene has grown. Much better places than McGuire’s to eat, but you’re right. It’s a pensacola landmark.

    Agree with most of the rest, especially downtown and peg legs. Only disagreement is the pcola beach bars part. Other than sandshaker those places (flounders / bamboo willies) are touristy and overpriced for the quality. But then again most beach establishments are touristy.

    Your list though. Good job 🙂

    • Thanks for reading. We usually end up at The Break after a beach day. But this trip doesn’t seem to be destined for much beaching. 😦 Boo rain!

      Happy to see this place growing. I loved living here and it’s cool to come back and visit my old faves while getting to make some new favorites. Downtown is really turning into a gem.

  4. Pensacola is my old college town too. Now I make the journey back every spring with my boys. We agree that Peg Leg Petes is amazing, The downtown makes for a nice stop as well. We also like to get away from the crowds and spend some time at Big Lagoon State Park.

  5. Great list. You hit all of the places most locals would tell their friends/family who are visiting to go to! I was born and raised here in Pcola, moved to Orlando for 8 years (2001-2009) and am now loving what our little beach town has become! The downtown scene has gotten a TON better and continues to get better!

    The beach hasn’t changed too much over the years, but I damn sure would have Paradise Bar & Grill on my list! Great drinks at a normal price and the food’s pretty good too! Perfect spot for live music and a great sunset……plus you can dock your boat!

    A few of my other favs you should check out when you come back (if you haven’t already):
    –Jerry’s Drive-in
    –Al Fresco (brand new)
    –The Fish House/Atlas Oyster Bar (great waterfront view)

    Oh and I completely disagree with “nobody who lives in Pensacola eats at McGuires.” That is ridiculous. Everyone is entitled to their opinion though!

    Pensacola FL App (iPhone/Android)

    • Thanks for the comment Eric. I love Fish House/Atlas. We went there last trip. Jerry’s for sure. I think Scenic is such a fun/cool drive.
      Will have to check out Paradise if this weather behaves tomorrow!

  6. New Yorker Deli….my Favorite !! Have a great sandwich, a lovely salad and say Hi to my friend Daniel. the cutest waiter around!

  7. I want the Pensacola Beach sign for my back yard.

  8. Pingback: Quick Stepp: music, memories, food, fitness and randomness. | My 4th of July: Rain, drinking, rain, drinking, and some more rain.

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