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Twin-Centre Trips: Why a St. Pete and Clearwater Holiday Is a Nature Lover’s Paradise 

  • By Christopher da Costa
  • Published 17 February 2023
  • Revised 10 July 2023
Twin-Centre Trips: Why a St. Pete and Clearwater Holiday Is a Nature Lover’s Paradise 
  • By Christopher da Costa
  • Published 17 February 2023
  • Revised 10 July 2023
Twin-Centre Trips: Why a St. Pete and Clearwater Holiday Is a Nature Lover’s Paradise 
  • By Christopher da Costa
  • Published 17 February 2023
  • Revised 10 July 2023

What could be better than a trip to paradise? Well, how about two trips to paradise on one holiday? Discover a getaway where bucket lists are rewritten, on a St. Pete/Clearwater escape. 

Located on Florida’s stunning Gulf Coast, these sister cities can be found along 35 miles of uninterrupted shoreline filled with bottlenose dolphins, beautiful restaurants, booming street art and award-winning beaches. Or in other words, nature lovers will find all the holiday worth having here, and here are a few more reasons why…

USA’s Best Beaches

In recent years, the USA’s Number One Beach has been an accolade simply swapped between St. Pete/Clearwater, so you’re in for supreme sands at whichever beach you visit. There are, however, different atmospheres on offer…

St. Pete Beach provides a laid-back, artsy vibe, and lies just a 10-minute drive from downtown St. Petersburg – famously known as the Sunshine City with an average of 361 days of sunshine per year. And when the calm blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico lap against powder-white sands, it’s simply the ideal spot for pure beach bliss. 

Then there’s Clearwater Beach, located 30 minutes drive north. These white sands move to a festival atmosphere provided by music and pier performers – including nightly sunset celebrations at Pier 60. 

That’s why a twin-centre option leaves you with the best of both worlds. Whether you’re looking to laze the day away, get out on the water, or grab a cocktail from the abundance of beach bars, there’s a beach day for everyone. 

Adventure Awaits 

While being lounge-bound for the day is an option, others may prefer to get the adrenaline going with one of the many water sports on offer at St. Pete/Clearwater.

Whatever sport you choose, you can move at your pace – from top gear excitement on a jet ski to leisurely exploring mysterious mangrove tunnels by kayak. For paddleboarding or snorkelling, the glass-like waters of the Gulf of Mexico are ideal and can be found in the destination’s best nature reserves, islands & parks - such as the untouched haven of Caladesi Island or Fort de Soto Park, where can even spot manatees.

Plus, at just 90 minutes from Orlando, you may want to combine sugar-white shorelines with rollercoaster skylines. To help get you to Walt Disney World Resort and co., we also offer competitive rates on car hire.   

Wondrous Wildlife 

A St. Pete/Clearwater holiday is a haven for all wildlife enthusiasts, yet especially for dolphin experiences. You can take a dolphin-watching cruise from several St. Pete locations, where you’ll likely see pods of beautiful bottlenose dolphins. 

Then head over to Clearwater Marine Aquarium to learn more about the local wildlife and the vital animal welfare provided by the aquarium. These efforts included treating Florida’s most famous dolphin, Winter, who learnt to swim with a prosthetic tail and became the star of the Dolphin Tale film series. 

Beyond dolphins, your underwater exploration in St. Pete/Clearwater could uncover the likes of puffer fish, stingrays, and sea turtles. Outside of the sea, keen bird watchers will want to head to Brooker Creek Preserve, where species such as osprey, bald eagles, and owls call home. 

Stunning Sunsets 

Sunsets don’t come much more magical than at St. Pete/Clearwater, where you can watch the sky become awash with colour from several standout vantage points. Matter of fact, St. Pete Beach holds the title of the Sunset Capital of Florida...

At The Hurricane Seafood Restaurant, you can take to the rooftop deck to watch the sunset as you sip on a refreshing cocktail. Or how about watching the sun sinking while fabulous live music plays in the background at the Palm Pavilion Beachside Bar and Grill? Even better, why not set sail during this magical moment? With Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise, you can admire this natural phenomenon while you channel your inner Jack Sparrow.

Although this coastline provides many opportunities to end the day in style, one that shouldn’t be missed is the Pier 60 Sunset Celebration. The famed ritual on Clearwater Beach has everything you could want, from live music to street performers and craft makers, and even dazzling fire eaters. And best of all, it won’t cost you a penny. This free family-friendly event is the perfect way to watch the sun descend into the Gulf.

Amazing Green Spaces 

In July 2020, the highly anticipated St. Pete Pier opened what is set to be a lively St. Pete Pier District. Visitors can expect plenty of open green lawn space, observation decks, interactive exhibits about the local marine life, artwork and installations from local artists, a vendor and artisan marketplace, a fishing deck, and a variety of restaurants and bars, surrounded by 360-degree views. USA Today recently named the pier as the #2 Best New Attraction in the US.

You will also be spoilt for choice at the many parks and lakes to be found at St. Pete/Clearwater. Visit Fort De Soto Park. Located in southern St. Pete, you can choose from several trails where you can explore coastal habitats and learn about the flora and fauna of the Gulf Coast. Another St. Pete favourite is Boyd Hill Nature Reserve. Once a zoo, it now serves as three miles of trails through natural habitats on the shores of Lake Maggiore.

When you’ve worked up enough of a sweat hiking, there's also plenty of parks with a more relaxed feel. Moccasin Lake Nature Park is a must-see, featuring boardwalks across ponds and creeks, an array of wildlife, and even educational camps and classes for kids. But be sure to also check out the beauty of Cliff Stephens Park. This Creekside green space offers a variety of activities, including cycling, and fishing, and is even home to a disc golf course. And when lunchtime calls, there are many stunning picnic spots to take advantage of.

Ready to find your happy place? Get in touch with our Travel Specialists for a personalised holiday package.

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