Located on the west coast of the state of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico lies St Petersburg Beach. This beach town is just about 20 minutes from downtown St Pete. The Tampa/St Pete area is becoming increasingly popular over the years. Thousands of people flock to St. Pete Beach every year for vacations from all over the country. The town of St. Petersburg Beach has long been voted as having some of the best beaches in the country. With long stretches of powdery white sand, it’s not hard to see why. Pair that with the fun atmosphere of a bustling city like St. Pete and you have a true Floridian destination. I personally have been to St. Pete Beach many times in my life. These are some of my favorite things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida. Enjoy this St Petersburg Beach things to do guide!
St Petersburg Beach Things to Do
1. Enjoy a Sunny Day at the Beach
With over 30 miles of powdery white sand beaches and warm gulf waters, the best things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida are directly here on the beach. There are lots of different areas of the beach, all with lots to see and do. Florida has some of the most beautiful beaches in the entire country, and St. Pete Beach has been voted one of the best for many years. And I have to agree. The ocean temperature here is typically much warmer than any of the beaches on the east coast. Even in the dead of winter, the water here is not too cold. That’s because the Gulf of Mexico keeps these waters at a reasonable temperature year-round.
If you are looking for St Petersburg beach things to do and activities, then look no further than the main beach area. You can rent beach chairs, have drinks on the beach, and swim. You can very often see lots of wildlife here as well. Dolphins, manatees, and lots of aquatic birds are to be found in plenty. The entire beach town is built right along the coastline similar to places like Ocean City and Myrtle Beach. There are countless shops, restaurants, and bars that line this beautiful beachfront. No matter what you are coming to the beach to do, you’ll be sure to have a wonderful time at St. Petersburg Beach.
2. Visit Fort De Soto Park
Located at the southernmost part of St. Pete Beach is Fort De Soto Park. This nature preserve and park offers some of the best and most pristine areas of the entire St. Pete Beach. Not only is the beach here fantastic, but there is also a fort that dates back to the late 1800s. You can walk through the fort and surrounding areas completely for free. There is a lot to see here. As you stroll along the fort you’ll learn lots about the history of the area.
When you are done exploring the fort, be sure to come to the beach. The beach here is very quiet and serene when compared to some of the party-heavy areas on the northern part of the beach. There is even a dog-friendly area on this beach, which is not very typical for beaches in Florida. You won’t find any bars, restaurants, or beachfront facilities here though so be sure to bring your own stuff. This is the perfect place to come have a picnic with friends. I always spend a lot of time at Fort De Soto Park.
3. Visit Pass-A-Grille Beach
Pass-A-Grille Beach is the southernmost part of the area and is one of my favorite things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida. The beach here is usually less crowded than the resort areas a bit farther north. There are lots of great restaurants and bars that have great views of the beach. This is a great place to come for a fantastic St Pete Beach sunset. The Pass-A-Grille area has some great charm and is half beach, half bay. You’ll see lots of people fishing off of the bayside. While are lots of other places on the beach to visit, this is certainly my favorite. Be sure to add Pass-A-Grille beach on your next St Petersburg things to do list for your next visit.
4. Don CeSar Hotel
The Don CeSar Hotel has long been a landmark of St. Pete Beach and is one of the most noticeable building structures on the beach. This beautiful pink hotel almost looks like a sandcastle poking out of the sand. The hotel has been around since the 1920s and is well known for hosting many celebrities over the years. This Gatsby-era style hotel is very beautiful to visit and is open to the public for observation. You don’t have to be staying at the hotel to come to walk around the lobby area at least. The hotel itself is quite pricey to stay at but it looks like it could be a really great stay. It is easily the nicest hotel on St. Pete Beach just from the looks of it. Be sure to swing by this old hotel for a first-hand look at the infamous pink palace.
5. Visit Downtown St. Pete
One of the best things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida is surprisingly not even at the beach at all. It is visiting the downtown area of St. Petersburg. If you’ve read any of my blog posts about this city before, you’ll already know how in love with this city I am. There is a really fun, young, and alive energy to this city. The waterfront parks are breathtakingly gorgeous. There is an amazing arts scene and LGBT scene.
I have the great privilege of calling St. Pete my home when I am not traveling. The downtown area is about a 20-minute drive from St. Pete Beach. There are even free buses that go back and forth between them. I’m not completely sure about how that is running anymore though due to the ongoing pandemic. If you’re like to see more things to do in St. Pete downtown, check out my full blog post about it here.
6. Explore the St. Pete Pier
Just a short drive from the beaches of St. Petersburg is the brand new St. Pete Pier. St. Pete Pier is one of the newest additions to this beautiful waterfront city. After several years of refurbishments, the Pier recently reopened in 2020 with a new modern feel. There are restaurants, bars, parks, art installations, and even a beach. There are often lots of festivals and special events that happen at the pier as well. During my recent trip in October, they had a “Piertoberfest” which was their version of Oktoberfest. While this particular event wasn’t anything that special, they usually have better events. This is a great place to come and look for manatees and dolphins as well.
You get great views of downtown St. Pete from the pier and it is without a doubt my favorite place in the city. If you happen to be an early riser, the Pier is a great place to come watch the sunrise. The sun illuminates the entire city waterfront and it is absolutely beautiful. Whether you live here or are visiting, there is plenty to do on the Pier. There are so many different areas to the pier and the surrounding areas. I have put together an entire blog post just about St. Pete Pier that you can find here. Although this isn’t on the beach itself, it’s still a great one of the things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida, and the surrounding area.
7. Visit Gulfport
About a 15-minute drive from the beaches is the cute town of Gulfport Florida. This adorable, picturesque town is a must-visit when in the area. There are lots of great shops and restaurants along the Main Street. You can see the entire Main Street pretty quickly so it’s not like an entire day excursion. They have some great food here, especially at my favorite place Golden Dinosaurs. This is a fully vegan deli and they have the most amazing food. There are also great places here to get brunch and sit outside.
On certain days of the week, they even have a cute street market with lots of local vendors. Gulfport has a great old Florida vibe with lots of local charm. Be sure to stroll the streets and look at all the great street artwork and murals. This is not on the beach obviously, but it’s still one of my favorite things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida, and the surrounding area. Be sure to come to Gulfport on your next trip to the area!
So as you can see, there are lots of things to do at St. Pete Beach Florida that don’t involve sitting in a beach chair. But there are also lots of great places to just lounge and enjoy that Florida sunshine. St. Petersburg is known as the sunshine city because it averages having the sunniest days per year than any other area of Florida. If you are planning a visit to the city, I personally recommend visiting in the winter. The winter in Florida is absolutely gorgeous and never too hot or too cold. If you visit during the summer months, be aware that it gets hotter than the surface of the sun. These best times to visit St. Pete are during the fall and winter. But whenever you decide to visit, hopefully, this St Petersburg Beach things to do guide will give you some ideas for your next vacation!
I hope that you enjoyed this St Petersburg Beach things to do guide. My goal is to provide fun and informative content to my readers so please let me know if you enjoyed this. Also, if you enjoyed my content please consider sharing it with your friends. If you’ve never been to St. Petersburg Beach and the surrounding areas you are truly missing out. There is so much to see and do. This part of Florida will always be super special to me. Also, be sure to add me on social media and join my e-mail list to stay up to date on all my travels and travel content. Thank you so much for visiting my website!