Friday, March 13, 2009

Things to do....

Intercoastal St. Joseph Sound, where we walk the dogs.

For those out there that have never been to our neck of the woods, I thought it would be nice to share some of the attractions that living on the sun coast offers.

If you like theme parks we have many to choose from. In Tampa, about a 30 minute drive from our house, there is Busch Gardens and the water park Adventure Island. Busch Gardens offers fun passes where you pay a little each month and you get to go to the park for two years. The nifty thing about the fun pass is that they also work at Sea World in Orlando. Two parks for the price of one works for me. A short drive from Busch Gardens is the Museum of Science and Industry or MOSI. MOSI also has an IMAX theatre and the spawn really enjoyed going there when they were younger. The final attraction in Tampa is the Lowry Park Zoo, with all that there is so see in do in Tampa alone, you really need to plan 3 or 4 days to fit it all in.

Us on Tower of Terror a few years ago, Nappy is in the green shirt in the middle!

About 90 minutes from Clearwater is Orlando which really needs no explanation. We try to make it there once or twice a year and the kids usually get free passes from school functions which really makes it economical. In addition to Sea World and the Disney Parks, there are several water parks and the two Universal parks. We haven't been to Universal Studios in a while and are waiting for the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter to open next year. The older spawn really like Downtown Disney but I think it is a bit pricey.

Chewie, Barbie and Rockin' Rob at Weedon Island Preserve, before they flipped the canoe.

Just south of us, in St. Petersburg, is the Salvador Dali Museum. The museum is jam-packed with the most wonderful art and they are always changing the themes around, so everytime you go, you get a new experience. I would highly recommend taking one of their guided tours as they give you so much background information on not only Dali himself, but his paintings as well.

Clearwater Beach at sunset

Also in St. Pete is the Sunken Gardens. Tobey and I were there in December and for a flower lover like me, it was beautifully awesome. We have also been to the Florida International Museum where they have a permanent collection dedicated to John F. Kennedy. And don't forget the camping at Fort Desoto.

Mr. Hotstuff Tobey at the Sunken Gardens

Just about 20 minutes to the north of us is Tarpon Springs and the 'world famous' sponge docks. It is a great place to waste the afternoon away in exploring. There are boat rides you can take where you can watch the divers cultivate sponges. Most of all, there is a lot of touristy shops and restaurants in the area and I would recommend you going there at least once while in the area. They even serve smelt which I haven't heard of since we had the smelt runs while living in Duluth.

I am saving the best for last....Clearwater. What is there to do? The beaches. Clearwater has several beaches that are usually crawling with tourists but we like to hit the non-touristy areas like Sand Key beach or Honeymoon Island. Dinner cruises, pirate ship cruises, parasailing, waverunners, fishing boat rentals, restuarants and the Pier all dot the landscape of Clearwater Beach. If there is one restaurant you must try it is Frenchy's Rockaway Grill (where Tobey and I had our first official date) and skip Crabby Bills, unless you want to be wearing your crab legs home.

Fort Desoto Campground

Clearwater also offers most of the things any big city would offer. We have Ruth Eckerd Hall and Coachman Park for all of our concerts, there are plenty of mini-golf and regular golf ranges to play on. The area has several large malls for all your shopping needs and just a few miles away we have a 20-plex movie theatre. If you are into bowling, and we are, we have two alleys just up the road from us and everyone enjoys their cosmic bowling nights.

With all there is to do, no one could ever say they are bored living in Clearwater. I hope you enjoy all the links above!



i'm quite upset that you couldn't find a more flattering photo of me.......

The Rob

You shouldn't complain - at least you were above the water line!

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