Overview of things to do in St. Pete and Clearwater

Things to do

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Things to Do

America’s No. 1 Beach. Winter the Dolphin. Water sports aplenty. The biggest Pride fest in the state. There’s never a dull moment in St. Pete/Clearwater – though there’s plenty of relaxation on tap if that’s what you’re looking for. Natural spaces beckon, acclaimed museums enlighten and attractions offer hours of fun up and down the coast. And there’s always a time and a place for a little R&R. Your adventures start here.


This place may be so laid-back that flip-flops are the default footwear here, but St. Pete/Clearwater sure has a lot going on. Miles of white-sand beaches promise days of sun-soaked fun. Mind-blowing museums and galleries immerse you in art and culture. Boating, golf and pro sports invite you to partake in the action. Nightlife, events and open-air fests are cause for year-round revelry. Not sure where to start? We get it. Here’s a lowdown of all there is to do in St. Pete/Clearwater. Check out bucket-list beaches, the exciting craft beer scene or our signature events, and let your itinerary grow from there.

1

Arts

A view of the unique architecture of the Dali Museum at sunset.

The Dali Museum in St. Pete's Waterfront Museum District welcomes more than 400,000 visitors each year and houses the largest collection of Salvador Dali's artwork outside of Spain.

This is a place that embraces creativity – and the scene here is anything but stuffy. Whatever your taste, there’s always cool art to check out. Explore the largest collection of Dalí works outside Spain at the Salvador Dalí Museum. Stroll among vibrant murals adorning buildings in hip, walkable neighborhoods. Tour the studios of internationally renowned artists and sculptors. Check out live theater at a waterfront park. It’s all here and waiting for you. See how arts and culture bloom in St. Pete/Clearwater.

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2

Attractions

A group of friends seating in the grass field near the St. Pete Pier watching the sunset behind the buildings

With tons of green space and things to do, the St. Pete Pier is a wonderful spot to spend a day.

You won’t want to miss out on all the fun and interesting stuff here. Waterfront activity hubs like the St. Pete Pier, John’s Pass Village and Pier 60 offer seemingly endless things to do, from shopping and dining to jet-ski rentals and sunset festivities. Dreamy green spaces like Florida Botanical Gardens and Boca Ciega Millennium Park invite your footsteps (and curiosity). Be sure to bring the little explorers in your crew to Clearwater Marine Aquarium, home of Winter the Dolphin, and Great Explorations Children’s Museum (next to Sunken Gardens, another must-see spot).

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3

Beaches

Aerial view of yellow cabanas in Clearwater Beach.

Every stretch of beach in St. Pete/Clearwater is a unique treasure of its own. 

We know: our beaches are irresistibly gorgeous. Unparalleled, even. In fact, they’re probably what brought you here. We’ve got so much sparkling shoreline that a day at the beach isn’t a one-size-fits-all affair.  St. Pete Beach – Trip Advisor’s No. 1 Beach in America in 2021 – promises hours of sun-soaked fun for the whole family. Clearwater Beach exudes a lively, spirited vibe. Tranquil Redington Shores has plenty of space for you to roam. Unspoiled nature abounds Fort DeSoto Park – and Fido will love frolicking in the surf.

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4

Boating & Water Sports

Two boats near the rocks off Sand Key. Three manatees can be seen swimming between the boats.

Boaters often spot manatees swimming in the waters off St. Pete/Clearwater.

With all of that blissful shoreline comes a bounty of nautical activity. Wherever you are in St. Pete/Clearwater, you’re never far from a marina where tour companies and charter boats can whisk you out onto the Gulf for an action-packed day of fishing, a fascinating dolphin-watching tour or a blissful sunset cruise. Or, rent a jet ski, kayak or paddleboard and explore the gentle surf on your own. For a high-flying adventure packed with unforgettable views, opt for a parasailing excursion. It’s all here. 

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5

Events & Festivals

Clearwater Jazz Festival overview of crowd and bridge at Coachman Park during sunset

Clearwater Jazz Holiday at Coachman Park draws national acts over a magical weekend.

Sunshine and good vibes make St. Pete/Clearwater the perfect setting for exciting events all year long. Every June, St. Pete hosts the biggest Pride festival in Florida. Gulfport lets its freak flag fly with GeckoFest over Labor Day Weekend. In October, the Clearwater Jazz Holiday brings internationally acclaimed musicians to waterfront Coachman Park. November brings world-renowned sand sculptors to Treasure Island for Sanding Ovations. Throughout the year, there are tons of athletic events, like St. Anthony’s Triathlon. Plus, find tons of recurring farmers markets throughout the area. 

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6

Family Travel

A girl watching Winter the dolphin at Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

See Winter and Hope, the famous rescued dolphins who starred in the Dolphin Tale movies, and meet Clearwater Marine Aquarium's other rescued residents.

It may start with flying kites, building sandcastles and dipping little toes in gentle Gulf waters – but St. Pete/Clearwater is packed with memory-making family fun. Get them hooked on ocean conservation at Clearwater Marine Aquarium (home of Winter the Dolphin). Inspire their creativity at Great Explorations Children’s Museum. And at the St. Pete Pier, they’ll learn about sea creatures at a marine discovery center before having a blast on the splash pad. And they’ll have a swashbuckling good time on the pirate-themed cruises that sail out of Clearwater and John’s Pass.

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7

LGBTQ+ Travel

A group of people seating in front of the LGBTQ+ Welcome Center in St. Petersburg

The LGBTQ+ Welcome Center in St. Pete's Grand Central District is an excellent source of info for LGBTQ+ travelers.

St. Pete/Clearwater isn’t just welcoming; we embrace the LGBTQ community as part of our historic and cultural DNA, from thriving gayborhoods like the Grand Central District and Gulfport to the biggest Pride festival in Florida, which happens every June. Head to Clearwater to can have a drink at Pro Shop Pub, the oldest gay bar in Florida. Support tons of small LGBTQ-owned businesses on Central Avenue in St. Pete. Stay at a B&B that caters to the community. There’s even an LGBTQ Welcome Center where you can find tailored traveler info and other resources.

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8

Museums

A glass artist shows off a work in progress at the hot shop at Morean Arts Center.

A glass artist shows off a work in progress at the hot shop at the Morean Art Center, across the street from the Chihuly Collection. Demonstrations are offered Wednesday through Sunday.

From the mind-melting masterpieces at the Salvador Dalí Museum in St. Pete to charming old mansions exploring Florida life in the Victorian Era, the museums of St. Pete/Clearwater are here to pique your interest. Spend a day wandering downtown St. Pete’s renowned museums, from the Dalí to the Museum of Fine Arts to the Dale Chihuly Collection. Head to Tarpon Springs to step back in time with stately homes full of antiquities and a former railroad depot. Heck, there’s even a Beatles museum in Dunedin. Be sure to pack your curiosity!

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9

Outdoor Adventures

A lady going through the mangrove trees in a transparent kayak near Shell Key Preserve.

Take a relaxing paddle through a coastal mangrove tunnel like this one near Shell Key Preserve. See beneath the surface in a see-through kayak.

Natural spaces are a big part of the landscape in St. Pete/Clearwater, where you’re never far from a pristine place perfect for wandering. Find trails – some on land, some on the water – that wind through serene preserves where you can spot manatees, great blue herons, osprey, alligators and other wildlife. Go for a morning hike at Brooker Creek Preserve. Paddleboard along the mangrove trails at Weedon Island Preserve. Kayak to Shell Key, where you’ll truly feel like a castaway – the fact that you still have a cell signal aside.

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10

Pet-Friendly

Three dogs posing with beers in front of The Dog Bar in St. Pete.

There's plenty of room for four-legged family members to play at Dog Bar in St. Pete's Grand Central District.

Here in St. Pete/Clearwater, four-legged family are treated like royalty. Most restaurants and bars featuring outdoor seating allow dogs – some even offer menus specially crafted for your fur baby. And Fido won’t want to miss out on Dog Bar in St. Pete’s Grand Central District, which is basically a large, fenced-in dog park with a bar for humans (up-to-date vaccination info required). There are dog beaches at Honeymoon Island State Park and Fort DeSoto Park, and dog parks are sprinkled throughout the area’s neighborhoods.

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