Nicknamed the “Sunset Capital of Florida”, St. Pete Beach continues to be a world-class destination for beach vacations and outdoor activities year round. Located a short drive from Tampa International Airport and other sites along the Gulf of Mexico, St. Pete Beach is a beautiful destination for family vacations, romantic getaways and leisurely retreats. This area attracts visitors year round with its wealth of museums, entertainment hotspots and natural attractions. Spend your days exploring the historic fishing village, make a trip down the Pinellas County coastline, and visit some of the local shops and eateries to make the most of your experience.
St. Pete Beach, otherwise known as St. Petersburg, is actually a city in Pinellas County and has a population of just over 245,000 people as of 2010. It is the fourth largest city in the state of Florida and is within a short drive of the Tampa Bay area. It’s located on a peninsula between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, and is connected to the mainland by causeways and bridges. This sunny city boasts sunshine 360 days out of the year and has grown to become one of Florida’s most coveted retirement destinations and a buzzing tourist hotspot.
The city of St. Pete was founded in 1892 and originally had a population of just 300 residents. It was named after Saint Petersburg, Russia and you’ll find many of the historic homes, hotels and early business buildings are still in existence today. It served as a major shipping channel for several years, and attracted businessmen interested in setting up fishing companies and other trading posts on the west coast of Florida. This area became a boomtown in the 1940s and 50s, and served primarily as a retirement destination through the 1970s.
Today, St. Pete Beach is home to numerous cultural attractions and sites that tell the story of the area and take visitors back to the early days of St. Petersburg and the Tampa Bay area. It’s become a popular vacation destination for families because it’s home to some kid-friendly museums, galleries and recreational sites. The downtown area is home to a modern shopping complex that features a movie theater, restaurants, retail shops and a buzzing nightlife scene.
You truly get the best of both worlds when visiting St. Pete Beach, as you can explore some of the historic sites and museums, and also enjoy some modern-day restaurants, shopping and entertainment. Whether you plan on staying at a deluxe hotel on the waterfront, a quaint bed and breakfast further inland, or are renting a vacation home along the beach, you’ll be treated to plenty of things to do and enjoy in St. Pete Beach, Florida any time of year.
St. Pete Beach Weather and Best Time to Visit
The average year round temperature in St. Pete Beach is 73 degrees and the area is blessed with nearly 365 days of sunshine – 360 days per year, to be exact. Peak season runs from the late spring to late fall months, but many travelers also flock to the coast during winter season to escape from colder weather in other parts of the country. Temperatures can drop to the upper 50s or low 60s during the middle of winter, so you may be limited to indoor attractions when visiting during the colder months. Still, St. Pete can be a great place to enjoy the holidays and also enjoy some outdoor activities year round.
Experience St. Pete Beach
You’ll find about 2.5 miles of pristine white sandy beaches around St. Pete Beach and it’s become the perfect place to enjoy the sunset and relax along the coast. Recreation and sports activities abound in St. Pete, and the area caters to fishing enthusiasts, boaters, watersport enthusiast and trail trekkers. If you’re looking for some great seafood, you’ll find a wealth of opportunities to enjoy a gourmet meal and local favorites at some of the oceanfront restaurants and dining destinations along the coast. Beach resorts are a popular choice for those who are visiting the area for the first time, and you’ll also find a number of retro-style motels and bed and breakfasts throughout the area. Don’t miss the opportunity to take a cruise ship tour around the region, swim with the dolphins or just walk through the historic downtown district to make the most of your experience.
If you’re traveling to the area with kids, make sure to visit one of the waterparks or take a sightseeing trolley tour to visit some of the local sites and attractions. Spend your days shelling on the beach, catch a baseball game, or visit some of the historic landmarks and sites to learn more about the area. From the Salvador Dali Museum to the dining cruises and yachts, you’ll find a wealth of things to do and enjoy around St. Pete on any given day.
Fort DeSoto Beach is located on the southern tip of St. Pete and is one of the most popular destinations for visitors year round. It’s named after an historic fort and is located on a 900acre county park. You’ll find miles of nature trails, fitness trails, canoeing areas, boat launches and a pier to make the most of your experience. This is the perfect place to enjoy the sunset and take in the panoramic views of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
If you’re staying close to the downtown area, you’ll still be able to enjoy some beach activities when visiting the beaches around 2nd Avenue NE and Tampa Bay at the pier. This is an idyllic destination for watersport activities, jet skiing, beachside picnics, and sunbathing. You’ll find a palm arboretum here, as well as a handful of resorts and hotels overlooking the water. If you’re looking for a more private escape, make a trip to Egmont Key, a state preserve that’s located of the coast of St. Petersburg. This is the perfect destination to head off on a boat tour and explore the wildlife refuge.
Located between the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay, St. Pete Beach is an attractive resort destination for families, couples and singles alike. Head here to enjoy some breathtaking views of the Gulf, explore world-class museums and visit The Pier entertainment and shopping complex to make the most of your experience.