Oh, Florida, I love you so much. Let’s face it, between the palm trees and ocean views, you have an automatic recipe for a relaxing vacation. St. Petersburg, Florida aka “Sunshine City” boasts an average of 361 days of sunshine per year and sits right on the gulf coast. We spent a week enjoying the beautiful weather, lively downtown, excellent food and gorgeous views of St. Petersburg, Florida and the surrounding area.
We opted to drive to Florida, because we enjoy each others company and we love listening to podcasts on long trips. The soundtrack for this trip was S-Town on the way down and In The Dark on the way home. I can’t recommend In The Dark enough.
We stayed at the The Hampton Inn near downtown. They had a pretty pool, a stocked gym and a great breakfast buffet.
The Dali Museum is recommended on every St. Petersburg travel website, and by the locals. The architectural design of the building is swoon worthy. Once inside there is a full cafe, and gorgeous suspended spiral staircase, a gift shop and art work (of course). The Frida Kahlo exhibit was open while I was there, in addition to the permanent Salvador Dali exhibit. The audio tours are great because you learn about the life of the artists as well as fun facts about almost every work of art on display.
I’m obsessed with downtown St. Petersburg. It’s right out of a movie, with its bright colors, friendly people and gorgeous scenery. The town is incredibly dog friendly, especially since every restaurant on the main strip offers outdoor seating. However, we did not book a dog friendly hotel, so now we have to go back so we can take the pups! There are life size dolphin statues throughout the city that are all painted completely different, I loved spotting them while we were out and about.
I love food so much. I love really great food, food so great that I have to force myself to stop eating. In St. Petersburg, that meal was the Salmon Flatbread from Fresco’s (first pic)! I also have a huge sweet tooth, so we stopped by the Cassis Bakery every single night for a new dessert. Calories don’t count on vacation. I’m linking my favorite restaurants below the pictures.
Not far from St. Petersburg is the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Clearwater, Florida. If you’ve seen the movie Dolphin Tale about the dolphin with a prosthetic tail, it was based on the life of Winter who lives at this aquarium. Clearwater is a a rescue center that’s motto is “Rescue, Rehabilitation and Release”. We were able to see turtles, dolphins, otters and stingrays that had been rescued and some were injured too badly to be returned into the wild. They have a ton of interactive exhibits, however you need to book these in advance since they fill up quickly (which we learned first hand). We were able to feed stingrays and not to brag, but I’m totally a natural. My favorite part was watching Rufus the Pelican run over to cuddle with his trainer, it was precious!
Ruffle High Neck Romper is from Target and under $30!
We can’t wait to go back (and bring BOTH pups!)! Until then, we’ll be looking for our next adventure. Don’t forget to ‘like’ this post and hit the subscribe button!