Which beaches in the Clearwater St Petersburg area are the best beaches?  It depends on what you are looking for in a beach!  In this article we cover the Best Beaches based on what you want in a beach experience.  Some think of going to the beach to relax, while some like to party, others like watersports or want to bring their four-legged friends, a beach can serve many purposes.  The Gulf Coast Florida beaches in Clearwater and St. Petersburg provide beautiful sugar sand, great views and sensational sunsets.  Let's take a look and see which of the following beaches fits your needs.

Best Beaches in the Clearwater St Petersburg Area

Best Public Beach - If you like beaches with large crowds, enjoy meeting new people and the excitement of a beach lined with hotels, restaurants, and sweet places to shop Clearwater Beach is one of the best beaches in the area.  Clearwater Beach is a barrier island just west of the City of Clearwater and offers lots to do without leaving the island.  This beach does get crowded during peak season and is a popular spring break destination so it is a good place to meet people looking to have fun.  Pier 60 is central to activities on Clearwater Beach, the place to watch sunsets, shop and be entertained.  You can enjoy water sports such as parasailing, jet skiing, and take a cruise on a pirate ship.  Ready to toss a line in?  Pier 60 in Clearwater is a fishing pier too! Finding a restaurant or place to pick up a sexy new suit, souvenir, sunscreen, beach towels and more isn't hard, shopping in Clearwater Beach is as easy as taking a stroll down the strip.  All this makes Clearwater Beach one of the the Best Public Beaches!


Best Relaxing Beach - Some people like to go to the beach to lay out and enjoy the natural scenery of a beach without the noise and activity found on many public beaches.  If you prefer beach solitude check out Honeymoon Island a little north of Clearwater in quaint Dunedin, Florida.  Enjoy peace and quiet as dolphins gently glide by.  You might even see a manatee!  Looking to get even more remote?  Hop aboard the ferry and cross over to Caladesi Island to enjoy the pristine natural beauty of this barrier beach.  Honeymoon Island, as part of a park system, has an entrance fee, as does the ferry.  If you have your own boat you can visit the island at will or you can rent a kayak, sailboat, or other watercraft on the Causeway leading to Honeymoon.  There are concession stands with limited fare on both, you can pack a picnic but alcohol is a no-no on both. When you want to take a break from the sun you can choose to walk miles of trails, the northern point of Honeymoon is something you want to experience!  Don't forget your camera and bug spray, some walking shoes and a hat.  Oh, and on Caladesi, do not leave your food unattended, yes, there are racoons! A favorite among locals who dislike the crowds, Honeymoon Island and Caladesi Island are two of the Best Relaxing Beaches in Clearwater / St. Petersburg.

Best Dog Beach - There are times when you want to take "mans best friend" with you to the beach and not all beaches are dog friendly.  The best dog beach in the Clearwater St Pete area is a beach that offers much more than just a dog beach, Fort De Soto Park.  Historic Fort De Soto is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is located on an island off the coast of St Pete Beach.  There are many things this beach is known for like its campground, miles of walking and biking trails, rollerblading, bird watching, canoe trails, grill, and picnic areas, and of course the old historic fort that you can explore.  With all this you may wonder why is it the best dog beach?  Fort DeSoto Dog Park offers two very large fenced-in areas (one for small dogs and one for large dogs) that offer pet-friendly amenities including a washing station so you can wash your pup before heading home after a fun day in the surf.  You will also find a large unfenced beach area where dogs can roam off their leash right on the beach.  This dog park and beach area is well maintained and allows you to enjoy the natural beauty of the beach with your dog.  Ft De Soto Park ranks at the top of many beach categories and it definitely is one of the Best Dog Beaches in the Clearwater St Pete area.  (Pssst....Honeymoon also has a nice Dog beach!)

Best Party Beach - Some people like to hit the beach and party like a rock star.  The best beach for partying in the Clearwater St Petersburg area are the beaches of Treasure Island.  While Clearwater Beach does have some great spots to party like Shephard's Beach Resort and is a spring break destination, Treasure Island offers a lot of great spots to enjoy a cocktail on the beach.  Favorite beaches tend to be those where you can dig your toes in the sand while drinking an adult cocktail, two favorite spots not far from the beaches of Treasure Isle are Caddy's on the Beach and Undertow Beach Bar.  These places get packed with a beach-party crowd who want to have fun in the sun which is why we vote for Treasure Island as one of the Best Party Beaches in Pinellas.

Best Fishing Beach - Nearly 600 miles of coastline along the Gulf beaches in St. Petersburg - Clearwater area and northward guarantee no matter where you are, you can drop a line in the water if you have a fishing license.  The general rule for beach fishing is to stay at least 50 yards away from swimmers, which means you want to head to a remote location, not a popular beach.  You can also fish the many causeways leading to the beaches.  With that said, though this is NOT a "beach" where you can dip your feet in the water, the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Piers are exciting places to fish.  There are two piers, one that starts and the north side and the other on the south side, and they are the world's longest fishing piers!  The piers used to be the bridge that connected Pinellas County to Manatee County until the new Skyway Bridge took its place following a collision destroying the center portion of the span.  Demolition of the center span created these two piers and the rubble from the center was strategically placed along the piers to create artificial reefs attracting some great fish.  Each pier has a Skyway Pier Bait shop where you can get your fishing pass, rent rods, and bait.  This makes it easy to fish even for those who don't fish often because you don't need a license, a pass for the pier is all you need.  All of this makes the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Piers the Best Fishing Beach in the Clearwater St Pete area.

While Pinellas County beaches offer something unique and are enjoyed by many, the beaches listed above are considered "Best Beach" in their respective categories.  Next time you are heading out to the beach in Clearwater and St. Petersburg, think about why you are going, and what it is you want.  Each beach is special in its own right, and waiting for you!  Pack a beach bag, grab your camera and Go!  Enjoy shelling, photography, reading, lazing and the company of friends as the sun slowly sets on a perfect day at the beach.