St Pete Beach Travel Guide

Discover the gorgeous and laid-back St. Pete Beach voted TripAdvisor's No. 4 Beach in the U.S. in 2016, based on millions of reviews from travelers around the world: when you visit this magical expanse of sand, you’ll understand why.  Our St Pete Beach Travel Guide will give you everything you need to plan a wonderful beach side vacation here.

St. Pete Beach’s shores include the longest undeveloped stretch of public beach in the county at Pass-a-Grille Beach. Live it up with a variety of water sports, from parasailing and stand-up paddle boarding to windsurfing and kite boarding.  White-sand Florida beaches with crystal-clear water, a foodie and arts scene praised by Travel & Leisure, and glittering nightlife options that range from craft beer bars to New York-style dance clubs—in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area, the options are endless for whatever kind of vacation you’re yearning for, be it rejuvenating or exhilarating.  Visit the best beaches in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area here.

St. Pete Beach Weather (Best Time to Go)

The best time to visit St. Petersburg is from March to May, when the weather is comfortably hot and a plethora of outdoor events make the city come alive. You'll find more affordable room rates from June to November, but the threat of hurricanes is imminent and the weather can often be scorching. The temperature cools down significantly for the winter months. The Sunshine City is great to visit year-round but it's particularly pleasant in the springtime when the temperatures range from the lower 60s to the mid-80s. Sporting events bring huge crowds, so hotel rates may be high. But the increase in outdoor festivities and the blooming purple jacaranda trees make the visit worth it.  June to November is hurricane season and average temperatures in St. Petersburg during these months range from the mid-60s to the high 80s. July and August are the hottest months and rainfall is most frequent in the month of August. Though the heat and threat of hurricanes may dissuade you, there are a few upsides to a trip at this time: bargain rates and plenty of events and festivals. It is a little chillier in the winter months with average temperatures fluctuating between the mid-50s and mid-70s. The sun shines nonetheless and manatee sightings are frequent.

St. Pete Beach Attractions

Fort de Soto Park, St. Pete Beach, Florida, St. Pete Beach Travel Guide, St. Pete Beaches, things to do in St Pete, best restaurants in St PeteFort De Soto Park

You can call it a beach, but Fort De Soto Park is much more than a beach. This much-praised county park – part of the boating community of Tierra Verde – covers five islands and 1,136 acres on the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay, and offers activities and amenities to entertain you for a day or more (campsites and abundant hotels nearby enable extended stays).  With so many possibilities, set an agenda that’s full or freewheeling: Rent a canoe, kayak or bike to explore the park’s trails; fish from a pier; visit the historic fort; or simply lounge on the beach named “Best Beach for Families” by USA Today in 2014.

Egmont Key State Park and National Wildlife Refuge, St. Pete Beach, Florida, St. Pete Beach Travel Guide, St. Pete Beaches, things to do in St Pete, best restaurants in St PeteEgmont Key State Park & National Wildlife Refuge

Although this park is primarily a wildlife refuge, it is a place to relax and collect shells along secluded, prestine beaches.  Accessible only by private boat, Egmont Key has a unique natural and cultural history, including a lighthouse that has stood since 1858.  You can tour the historic sites and trails, enjoy swimming, fishing, wildlife viewing, and picnicking.



Sunken Gardens, St. Pete Beach, Florida, St. Pete Beach Travel Guide, St. Pete Beaches, things to do in St Pete, best restaurants in St PeteSunken Gardens

Sunken Gardens is a botanical paradise in the midst of a bustling city. As St. Petersburg's oldest living museum, this 100-year-old garden is home to some of the oldest tropical plants in the region.  Unwind as you stroll through meandering paths, lush with exotic plants from around the world. Explore cascading waterfalls, beautiful demonstration gardens, more than 50,000 tropical plants, and flowers.

John's Pass Village and Boardwalk, St. Pete Beach, Florida, St. Pete Beach Travel Guide, St. Pete Beaches, things to do in St Pete, best restaurants in St PeteJohn's Pass Village and Boardwalk

Located on the waterfront at Johns Pass, this quaint turn-of-the-century fishing village is Pinellas County’s #1 tourist attraction. Over one hundred merchants inhabit the Village with unique retail shopping, a variety of restaurants, the local fishing fleet, dolphin watching and shelling tours, boat rentals, parasailing and jet skiing. Plenty of parking: There is metered on-street parking located conveniently throughout the Village, as well as a new state-of-the-art multi-level parking garage adjacent to Bubba Gumps and Hubbards Marina. The beach is a short stroll away.

Things to Do

Coastal Kayak Charters

Provides Boat Tours, Kayak Tours, Kayaking Adventures, Sunset Tours, Shell Key excursions, Eco Tours of the St Pete Beach, St Petersburg, Tampa, Clearwater and Treasure Island area.  Coastal Kayak Charters offers boat based kayak trips and guided kayak tours around beautiful St Pete.  Their goal is to provide fun, safe and informative outdoor experiences with a conservation minded approach.  The started from their own love of kayaking and the marine environment and are happy to be able to share this with others.  They love what they do and do what they love!  Join them for a trip to one of their favorite local spots.  Telephone:  727-207-6342  Web:   Coastal Kayak Charters.

Suncoast  Watersports

Parasail, take a variety of cruises, go paddle boarding, rent a kayak or go on a guided kayak tour, go snorkeling or enjoy the St Pete Beach waterslide with Suncoast Watersports.  Since 1978, Suncoast Watersports has provided St. Pete Beach locals and visitors with an abundance of water fun and recreation, and an emphasis on parasailing. Their goal is to be a conduit for memories that last forever, and they do so by ensuring the safety and enjoyment of all of their guests.  Telephone:  727-367-7144  Web:  Suncoast Watersports.

Island Ferry

Check out the Island Ferry for dolphins, sunsets, shells and snorkeling!  Island Ferry's Dolphin Tour takes you to see dolphins and visit Shell Key at the same time!   Imagine seeing the perfect sunset over the Gulf right from St Pete Beach. Their sunset cruise takes a leisurely boat ride through the residential canals, where you get to see the homes and the mansions.  Or take a private tour take to both Egmont Key and Shell Key for the best in snorkeling, swimming, shelling, and dolphins! Get guided walking tour of the fascinating 150 year old ruins on Egmont Key, go snorkeling at Egmont's sunken ruins, and then  to Shell Key for more snorkeling. Telephone:  727-742-2277  Web: Island Ferry

Swim With the Fishes

Swimmers, ages 8 years old and up, have the exclusive privilege to experience what it’s like to snorkel in the 33,500-gallon tank built by their friends from Animal Planet’s hit show Tanked. Their program is led by their expert partners from Secrets of the Sea. Their mission is to enhance the public’s understanding of the value and fragility of the marine environment through research, education and personal experiences.   Telephone: 727-329-1433  Web:  Swim With the Fishes.

Pass-A-Grille Beach

Welcome to Pass-A-Grille, the southernmost end of St. Pete Beach. Historic Pass-A-Grille is a quaint, laid back beach town where you can park your car and walk to the beach, boutiques, ice cream shop, outdoor art market, restaurants, tennis courts and fishing piers. In Pass-A-Grille you separate yourself from daily stresses because you are in paradise.  Telephone:  727-403-6136  Web:  Pass-A-Grille.

Best St. Pete Beach Restaurants

Snapper's Sea Grill  $11 – 30

Under the direction of proprietor Daniel Casey, the casual elegance of Snapper’s offers exceptional seafood, in-house aged steaks and delectable “in house” made desserts in a big city bistro atmosphere on St. Pete Beach. Long-regarded as the “Gem of St. Pete Beach Restaurants,” Snapper’s features generous portions of fresh-caught seafood straight from the Gulf, exquisite desserts, and the finest, top-quality service you can find. Savor a restaurant experience like no other at Snapper’s!  A gluten free menu is available.  Telephone: 727-367-3550  Web:  Snapper's Sea Grill.

Bongos Beach Bar & Grill  $11 – 30

This is a fun and causal beach side bar that is open to the public with daily food specials and discount drinks.  Their popular menu consists of mouth-watering selections and dishes.  If you’re searching for tempting light bites such as coconut crusted shrimp, crab cakes, mango glazed scallops or some outstanding buffalo wings, then look no further.  Their dining tables allow you to enjoy your dinner and cocktails while putting your toes in the sand or on one of their multi-level deck areas.  You can also enjoy their famous fish tacos, specialty sandwiches, flat breads, wraps, seasonal salads and signature pasta dishes. As the evening air cools, enjoy lounging by their romantic fireside on their deep cushioned sofas and chairs. Their fire pit will keep you cozy and warm while enjoying live music every night from some of the top bands in the area.   Telephone: 727-360-1811  Web:  Bongos Beach Bar & Grill.

Sea Turtle Restaurant  $Under 10

This is a gathering place for friends and family, offering time-honored American favorites, hand made with fresh ingredients.  They have a large menu to choose from, a children's menu and a beer & wine bar with a fun wine list.  The menu offers seafood, steaks, burgers and sandwiches, with many vegetarian dishes also available.  Telephone:  727-367-1727 Web:  Sea Turtle Restaurant.

1200° Chophouse  $31 – 60

For decades, St. Pete Beach faithful asked for a “great steak place on the Beach”. Chef/owner Dan Casey, Chicago native, answers by birthing his original Chophouse concept delighting Gulf coast residents and visitors nightly (indoor & outdoor year-round). The result: upscale comfortable ambiance with mouth-watering complete dinners that exceed the highest expectations priced very reasonably.  Enjoy what the Tampa region is buzzing about tonight!  Telephone: 727-367-1300  Web:  1200° Chophouse.

Shells Seafood  $11 – 30

The history of Shells began in 1985 when a Swiss Gourmet Chef, saw the need for a seafood restaurant that focused primarily on quality, service, and value instead of a fancy atmosphere and high prices.  Their detailed attention to top quality product, attentive service, and competitive pricing led to the restaurant being voted runner up for the 1989 Small Business of the Year Award and winning the vote for the #1 seafood restaurant in Tampa 15 years in a row.  30 years later their mission is still to serve only the finest quality ingredients prepared by experts in a fun, casual atmosphere. You've discovered the best place for seafood in the neighborhood.  Telephone:  727-826-0729  Web:  Shells Seafood.

St. Pete Beach Night Life

The City of St. Pete Beach is located just southwest of Tampa and south of Clearwater Beach. It incorporates the towns of Pass-a-Grille, Belle Vista and St. Pete Beach. It is classic old Florida with visitors ranging from snowbirds to spring breakers. From Treasure Island to the north to Pass-A-Grille at the southernmost tip, St. Pete Beach has more beach bars than any other single location in Florida. Many are right on the beach and many are connected with a hotel or motel.  Here are the top 3 beach bars:

Ricks Reef

Rick’s Reef, in St. Pete Beach, is a casual dining restaurant serving fresh food made in-house, with a fabulous Florida beach feel. There is plenty of covered dining, indoor and outdoor bar seating and the laid-back atmosphere that locals and tourists alike enjoy. Rick’s Reef is family friendly, and the covered outdoor areas are dog-friendly as well.  If you are vacationing on St. Pete Beach, and looking for a fun, relaxed spot to enjoy Fresh Seafood, Chicken, Pork and Beef dishes, along with great Salads and Specialty Items like Smoked Fish Spread, Lobster Mac & Cheese and smoked in-house Salmon, Pork, and Ribs, then Rick’s Reef, right on Gulf Boulevard, is your answer.  My personal favorite is the blackened grouper sandwich, Lobster Mac & Cheese and their specialty margarita.  Telephone:  727-826-0752  Web:  Ricks Reef.

Bongos Beach Bar & Grille

Bongos Beach Bar & Grille is a fun and causal beach side bar that is open to the public with daily food specials and discount drinks.  Join them for happy hour and watch the beautiful sunset while sipping on cool cocktails and fantastic frozen drinks. If you enjoy watching sports, Bongos is the place for you. They play all the sports games you want to see. Their menu consists of mouth-watering selections and dishes.  If you’re searching for tempting light bites such as coconut crusted shrimp, crab cakes, mango glazed scallops or some outstanding buffalo wings, then look no further.  Telephone:  1-800-448-0901  Web:  Bongos Beach Bar & Grille.

Level 11 Rooftop

Level 11 Rooftop is an Artisan Bistro Bar located Rooftop at the Grand Plaza Beachfront Resort with awe-inspiring views of the Beach, Gulf of Mexico, and surrounding area.  It is located in the Grand Plaza Hotel on St Pete Beach.  Telephone:  727-360-1811  Web:  Level 11 Rooftop

Frenchy's Rockaway Grill

Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill offers open-air beachfront dining right on the Gulf of Mexico. The stellar sunset views are a perfect pairing to their large selection of fresh seafood, sandwiches, their famous She Crab soup and other Floribbean style dishes.  Rockaway also features live music daily from the best local artists and two large bars serving up the beach’s best rum runners and other refreshing beverages.  Every day of the week is fun and energetic at Rockaway!  Telephone:  727-446-4844  Web:  Frenchy's Rockaway Grill.

Sandbar Bills Bar & Grille

Sandbar Bills, a local favorite, offers tasty eats everyone will enjoy. Located directly on the beach, locals and tourists flood in to eat a delicious meal while enjoying the beautiful white sandy beaches and sunsets that can only be found on St. Pete Beach. Although Sandbar Bills is famous for its cheeseburger and rum runner, they offer a variety of food and drink items. Everyone is bound to find something they love!  Sandbar Bills has been a staple of St. Pete Beach since 1990 with its come-as-you-are vibe. Flip-Flops are encouraged at this easy-going Bar and Grille. Telephone:  727-360-5596 Web:  Sandbar Bills Bar & Grille.

Top St. Pete Hotels

Plaza Beach Hotel – Beachfront Resort

This property is 1 minute walk from the beach. Centrally located in St. Pete Beach, Florida, this family-owned hotel faces the Gulf of Mexico and offers guests warm sun and white, sandy beaches within walking distance of entertainment, shopping, and sightseeing opportunities.  Free WiFi, a fully equipped kitchen, and a 32-inch cable TV are included in all spacious rooms at the Plaza Beach Hotel. A private balcony is featured in select rooms.  Plaza Beach features a daily complimentary social hour with beer and wine. Guests can also enjoy the on-site heated outdoor swimming pool, and play a game of shuffleboard or mini-golf. Room service from Chick-Fil-A can be arranged.

Guy Harvey Outpost – A TradeWinds Beach Resort

This 5-acre beachfront St. Pete Beach, Florida resort is 30 minutes' drive from the Tampa International Airport. There are 2 outdoor pools, including an adults-only pool, a hot tub, and an on-site restaurant with a 33,500-gallon aquarium where guests can snorkel with the fish.  The Guy's Great Touch Tank Experience, a fitness center, and surf simulation ride are available to all guests. A spa and tennis court are available at the Tradewinds Island Grand as well. An activity program for children is offered.  The SandBox beach lounge offers live entertainment, drink specials, VIP Cabanas, and nightly campfire s'mores. RumFish Grill serves lunch and dinner with nightly entertainment. It also features an indoor and outdoor bar as well as a 33,500-gallon aquarium.

Sabal Palms

Located in St. Pete Beach in the region of Florida, 2.1 miles from Dolphin Landings Charter Boat Center, Sabal Palms Inn features a year-round outdoor pool and views of the pool. Free WiFi is provided and free private parking is available on site.  The inn also provides free use of bicycles. Boca Ciega Bay Aquatic Preserve is 2.7 miles from Sabal Palms Inn, and St Pete Beach Theatre is 3.6 miles away. The nearest airport is St Petersburg-Clearwater Airport, 16 miles from Sabal Palms Inn.

Beach House Suites by the Don CeSar

This property is 1 minute walk from the beach. Located on the shores of the Gulf of Mexico, this Saint Pete Beach hotel features an outdoor heated pool and hot tub. Free WiFi is available throughout the pet-friendly property.  Guests of the Saint Pete Beach House Suites can enjoy a game of shuffleboard or a friendly table tennis match. Access to the Don CeSar Resort amenities including the fitness centre, spa, and restaurants is provided.

TradeWinds Island Grand

TradeWinds Island Grand is located on 20 acres, directly on a Gulf of Mexico beach in Saint Pete Beach. The hotel offers 5 outdoor swimming pools, 4 full-service restaurants, and a spa.  TradeWinds Island Grand features 2 hot tubs and 2 tennis courts. Guests can enjoy paddleboats, beach volleyball, a water slide, and beach cabanas. The KONK Activities Center and 24-hour babysitting services are also available. Guests can also enjoy JetLev Flight Center, flying above the Gulf up to 30 feet in the air with a Jet Pack.


  1. Tony

    Hi, Leahrae,

    I like very much how sunset looks like while being watched from this fantastic place – St Pete beach! I will have to see it in person!

    The other thing that attracts me is the atmosphere – it seems like a place with its face that you cannot confuse with an average one!

    Last, but not least – it seems like you will need a year to visit all interesting places and attractions there:) There is something for each taste.

    What is your favorite spot on St Pete?

    Thank you!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Well, I have more than one favorite spot. I love Fort de Soto and Egmont Key, St Pete Beach, and John’s Pass is a blast! You are right, it has atmosphere. I think that is what I love about it so much! Thanks for reading!

  2. Gigi

    This is so inviting! Our family’s looking for a domestic trip this summer and this might just be the place. I love the beach. Our family usually go to Asia for it. But hailing from the East Coast, Mexico is a good alternative. And now I see this St. Pete’s. Your travel guide is awesome! I saved your site for other beach destination. You are the Master!!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Gigi 🙂 I absolutely love St Pete, the beaches, the atmosphere, the people, the food….it has everything! Please let me know if you need any other information, and thanks for visiting my St Pete Beach Travel Guide.

  3. Colleen

    Wow! There are so many things to do and explore at St Pete’s Beach! I am especially interested in all of the rich history of the area! Do you happen to know if you need to make a reservation to swim in the huge fish tank? That seems so surreal. Also, if you had to pick the best spot to go snorkeling, which one would it be? Thank you for this excellent write-up!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, you should make a reservations for sure as it is popular. My favorite for snorkeling is to go to Egmont Key. You get to find TONS of unique shells and sand dollars as well. Plus you also get to head to the fort ruins. We love this trip! My son and I take it with Adventure Cruises.

  4. Ron Kennedy

    As I viewed your site, I was getting more excited and wanted to start packing. I want to get into traveling more. Love the info on St. Pete. Nice colorful photos. Wouldn’t mind having me a drink at ‘The Drunken Clam.’right Overall nicely done.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Ron! I am glad you enjoyed reading.

  5. Efi Azulay

    Hi Leahrae,
    First, I love your site, and I have already shared it on my facebook page.
    Second, you gave me so many ideas for what to do during the day and also during the night 🙂
    I definitely am going to try the island ferry and I’m going to swim with the fishes.
    I will tell you how it was.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Efi! I am glad I could help you with your trip. Make sure to go to Rick’s Reef! The best place hands down for food, drinks and atmosphere. Thank you for visiting the St Pete Beach Travel Guide!

  6. Kiev

    Thanks, Leahrae. This guide is really great! It’s very detailed, I can get information from how-to-go, things-to-do, where-to-eat up to accommodation, with all the product and services details provided in your linked posts. Look at that blue and green colors of the sea, that makes me want to jump into it right-away, it looks so crystal-clear and clean. I’ll plan a trip there one day…

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Kiev and when you do, make sure to come back to my site! I am always adding additional information. Thanks for visiting the St Pete Travel Guide!

      1. Kiev

        WIll do, Leahrae. Cheers~

  7. michael busby

    great job on the website, just the brightness makes me know your true to your page an word. keep up the great work, everyone needs a paradise to go to an now they know how. keep that look up high an you will be a motivation to everyone. an on some of the bars I dropped down highlight the great ones.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Michael, you can tell that I love beaches…like paradise for me. Thank you for visiting the best beaches of St Petersburg and Clearwater.

  8. Erika

    Wow, that was awesome. I wish every place I wanted to visit had a detailed post like that! I am from Jersey and looking to head south sometime next year for vacation and heard a lot about this beach. I’m so glad I found your page! What do you think is the best time of year to go…like when are the least amount of people there? And which airport is closer? Thanks for researching all those places and writing from experience. This was great!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Ok, I went last October and it was great. The beaches were not crowded and the weather was still very nice. You will find less people in September and October and in April and May. Of course, don’t go during spring break. Thanks for visiting the St Pete Beach Travel Guide Erika!

  9. Antti

    Very well written article and it also makes people interested about this place. After reading it I would definitely like to go there one day although its in the other part of the world from where I live. The second thing I really liked is that you have very detailed guide about different activities that people could do there while visiting.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Antti. It really is a wonderful location. One of the top four beaches in the U.S., but that is for a variety of reasons..not just to lay on the beach and soak up the sun. Because of their night life, restaurants, atmosphere, and activities. Thank you so much for visiting my St Pete Travel Guide!

  10. Anthony

    Hi, thank you for your sharing!
    It seems that St Pete Beach is both attractive and beautiful! I like water activities like snorkeling very much. I also like clean water without much rubbish. So, I am very interested in visiting there, although I have never been to the US before. Maybe next time I will visit there!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, you should Anthony! Rated one of the best beaches in the U.S. Thank you so much for reading!

  11. Mohammad Makki

    Thanks for the very comprehensive guide! I’m going to Florida soon, and beaches like these are just what I think of when I envision the trip! St.Pete looks like a real attraction. It has some of everything. I especially like the diversions! I actually prefer those to the beach itself, and they look mighty fun, the swimming in particular. Thanks for the helpful guide!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are very welcome Mohammad. Have a fun trip to Florida and let me know if you need any other information. Thank you for visiting the St Pete Travel Guide!

  12. Neil

    I’ve been to a beach in Miami and also one in the Keyes and they were both amazing, although very hot. And living in the UK, we don’t cope will with heat too well. LOL.

    However, looking at St Pete Beach, I really wanna be there right now 🙂 From your guide, there is a great deal of things to do there. I’m a huge fan of water sports and love snorkling too. Nightlife is usually a must for me, so St Pete sounds perfect for my next vacation to the USA.


    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      It really does have everything. I love St Pete Beach. I don’t like to just lay around and bake. I like water activities and I like nightlife. Thanks for vising the St Pete Beach Travel Guide!

  13. Yaser

    One of my favorite hangouts: Beaches:D
    Thank you for the detailed article, love water sports and it seems like there are tons of water activities on this beach!
    When I visit Florida I will definitely visit St. Petes beach.



    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, Yaser there is tons of water activities. You can find any activity you want really. I have not seen water skiing rentals, but I am sure they are out there too. I think my family has done pretty much everything. Gives us something to do along with just playing on the beach. Thank you for reading the St Pete Beach Travel Guide.

  14. Dejan

    Hello there,
    That beach looks absolutely amazing! I would love to go there one day, however, it’s quite a far way from here. Perhaps in a year or two when I finish my university. Would definitely be fun!
    Thanks for bringing this to my attention. Are there any interesting sites for scuba diving there ?


    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are welcome Dejan. Yes, there are several companies that take divers out, as there are diving sights all around there. Thanks for visiting Beach Travel Destinations!

  15. simon watson

    great, a very detailed summary of st Petes beach. I loved the way that you gave me the reader lot of options to click and play around with, good stuff! In fact, not only does the beach itself look stunning but there would appear to be a lot going on around it, right I’m off to pack – sold!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      This is definitely my favorite go-to beach. I love the atmosphere, the beauty, all the things to do. There are so many choices and thank you for reading my St Pete Beach Travel Guide!


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