In 2008, I spent Spring Break camping in Florida and I loved it so much that I returned back the next year during summer. I drove down to Florida with my boyfriend at the time all the way from Ohio. If you love beautiful beaches you have to visit the Clearwater Beach area.
This is the website I used at the time: www.visitstpeteclearwater.com and it’s still my favorite website for this area. One place that’s not highlighted on the map is Fort de Soto park which should definitely be on your list.
We stayed at the Madeira Beach KOA and rented a wooden lodge cabin. The campsite has a really great selection of all sorts of beautiful cabin lodges to choose from. There’s a nice swimming pool open all year round as well as a hot tub. We rented bikes and cycled the Pinellas Trail which can be reached directly from the campground. We kayaked the Long Bayou by the campground. They organize fun outdoor movie nights as well as other social events which ae a lot of fun. Since we had the car with us, we got to explore all the beaches in the area, the historic little towns as well as Tampa and St. Petersburg.
The wildlife and nature is so cool in this area and so very interesting. It’s one of my favorite things and highlgihts from this trip.
Florida in June is quiet humid. In fact it’s so humid that when I took the camera lens cover off, the glass would immedietly fog up. It’s quiet hot too. Because of the humidity, there were lots of mosquitos around, so you need a mosquito repellent candle and repellent itself as well.
If you love Art, then a visit to The Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg is a must.
The Beautiful Don CeSar Hotel aka The Pink Palace, on St. Pete Beach
Hotel Website: Loews Don CeSar Hotel
If you are looking for a beach wedding destination, this is the place for you. St. Pete Beach is one of my favorite beaches on the Gulf of Mexico side of Florida and it always makes the top 10 beaches of America list, usually placing 1st or 2nd.
Another two great wedding locations in the area are the Honeymoon Island, which is a deserted little island with fantastic white sand and turquoise waters and Fort de Soto park, also located on an island with incredible white sand beaches.
This cute little squirrel stole our can of mixed nuts and managed to get inside and enjoy our treats
Lizard in front of our cabin
One of the trees behind our cabin
One of the wooden lodge cabins on the campsite
The Long Bayou from the campsite. You can also fish here.
One of the bigger lodges on the campground
St. Petersburg Aquarium
Floating Greek wedding chapel in St. Petersburg
One of St. Petersburg’s many marinas
A typical beautiful house at Pass-A-Grille. The photos bellow are also from Pass-A-Grille. I loved this area. I remember thinking at the time, this is where I want to retire to. This area is also perfect for artistic people who just want to create crafts and enjoy beautiful beaches while living a laid back lifestyle.
Beautiful beach house at Pass-A-Grille
The historic Hurricane Restaurant (former hotel)
There are so many stingrays in this area. They are in all of surrounding bodies of water here.
Stunning beach of Pass-A-Grille
This little fun area is called John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk and it is located on the Madeira Beach stretch.
The Hut Bar and Grill at St. John’s Pass
MOSI of Tampa: Museum of Science & Industry
This place has a cool IMAX Dome theatre.
Madeira Beach KOA site
Our cabin with a front porch swing
I absolutely love the Sunshine State and really want to explore more of this beautiful state in the future, with Miami and Florida Keys on my bucket list for sure.