Year round Florida sun is a promise St. Pete and Clearwater makes and keeps. The area’s even beaten world records for most consecutive days of sunshine. But fantastic weather is just the start of wonderful in this Florida family holiday hotspot. Take a look.
Catch year round Florida sun on stunning St. Pete and Clearwater beaches
St. Pete and Clearwater sits on Florida’s Gulf Coast. The climate’s tropical. There’s sunshine 361 days a year. And the beaches are incredible.
- Lively Clearwater Beach regularly tops Best Beach in the US lists, and it’s no stranger to World’s Best Beach line ups either. Expect sugar-white sands and clear seas (the hint’s in the name). And look forward to pretty much endless activities. Families love it for swimming and fishing, jet skiing, beach volleyball and biking along the Beach Walk. Keep your eyes peeled and you might even spot dolphins offshore. And don’t miss Pier 60 for sunset entertainment.
- Famous St. Pete Beach, (TripAdvisor’s no.1 US beach) has more beautifully clear seas and shimmering sands. Here water sports and beachside fun rule. Families can try just about anything from parasailing and kiteboarding to paddle boarding, windsurfing, snorkelling and diving.
- New St. Pete Pier – opened July 2020 – adds to the adventure with Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Centre, great family parks and playgrounds, plus a ‘splash pad’ interactive water feature for keeping kids cool on endless sunny days.
- Looking for a quiet beachy day? Head to Belleair Beach for crowd-free sands overlooked by grand Gulf Coast mansions and nothing much but sunshine, sea turtles and nesting birds – perfect for younger kids.
- Barrier islands are a signature on this stretch of Florida coast. Try idyllic Honeymoon Island State Park. It might sound romantic, but couldn’t be more family friendly. Go for four miles of beaches, walking trails, wildlife and kayaking on astonishingly transparent waters.
- When nothing but a good, old fashioned seaside vibe will do, Madeira Beach has you covered. It’s buzzy and colourful, the 100+ shop boardwalk has more than enough to keep kids busy and the atmosphere’s classic Florida waterfront. Great choice for teens.
Why families love characterful and quirky St Pete and Clearwater
Of course there’s more to St. Pete and Clearwater than year round Florida sun. In fact the area’s known for colourful communities that were quirky long before quirky became a thing. There’s always something going on. And if you’re here, consider yourself a local, join in and welcome. St. Pete and Clearwater people are as warm as the weather.
- Check out Tarpon Springs. If you think you’ve been whisked to Greece, don’t worry, it’s perfectly normal. This is the Sponge Capital of the World. The Greek twist comes from sponge harvesters who arrived here in the 19th century. Visit the legendary Sponge Docks that line Dodecanese Avenue. Then go explore Greektown Historic District.
- Cycle from St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs. Dunedin is a great pit stop for antique shops or Honeymoon and Caladesi State Parks. They’re both beachy heavens.
- Downtown St. Petersburg is another must-do. It’s an arty area so make time for the Dali Museum. If you’re here at the weekend join the Second Saturday ArtWalk. Start at the lovely Downtown Waterfront and wander along Central Avenue for fantastic street art, shops and restaurants. Or hop on the Downtown Looper trolley and ride round the area for free.
- Visit quaint John’s Pass Village & Boardwalk on Madeira Beach. Stroll round the shops. Then jump aboard the authentic local Pirate Ship for a family friendly two hour cruise packed with fun, games and buccaneering entertainment.
- Go see Winter, star of Dolphin Tales, at Clearwater Marine Aquarium. No ordinary aquarium, the focus here’s on marine life rescue. Kids can tour the animal hospital, learn about local conservation and meet rescued residents ranging from sea otters to dolphins and sea turtles.
Get out and about with kids on the Gulf Coast
Outdoor adventures come pretty naturally to St. Pete and Clearwater. You’ll find an incredible variety of water sports on many local beaches. Boat tours are an easy and educational way to explore the Gulf Coast. And you can paddle, play, hike and bike all over the area – Coast Bike Share St. Pete even lets families cycle safely round St. Petersburg.
- Follow the trail and tunnel through mangrove forests at Weedon Island Preserve. The trails overlook Tampa Bay and are home to 1000s of species of native plants and wildlife.
- Spectacular Egmont Key State Park is a remote island and wildlife refuge south of St. Pete. It’s where to see a 19th-century lighthouse and Fort Dade (built during the Spanish-American War). And if you want to hike or snorkel or have a picnic, the beach here is peaceful and pretty.
- Stretch your legs for longer on the Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail. This one-time railroad corridor has been repurposed as a green space. It runs for almost 50 miles from St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs. And you can walk, cycle, run or skate as little, or as much, as you like.
- Feel like kayaking? Visit stunning Fort de Soto State Park. It covers five islands and 1,136 acres on the Gulf of Mexico. And the two mile paddling trail here is an unforgettable experience for older kids.