Clearwater Beach info please!

Oct 1st, 2000, 04:30 PM
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Clearwater Beach info please!

We are flying into Tampa International on Nov 12 and we are hoping to spend a week at Clearwater Beach. The rates for Best Western Sea Wake Inn are very reasonable but we are wondering about the quality of the hotel's beach and its location. We are not renting a car so we would like to be within walking distance of good restaurants, tiki bars,etc. Does anyone have any advice about this hotel and/or transportation from TPA to Clearwater Beach? Also, we are interested in the dolphin and deep sea fishing charters if anyone has advice...Thanks!!
Oct 2nd, 2000, 06:27 AM
Brian in Atlanta
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If you are a true "beach person" like me, this is not a good location for you. While there is a beach in front of the hotel, it's actually on an inlet, not on the main beach (meaning you're looking out at land rather than the open Gulf of Mexico). Map the address on mapquest or Yahoo and you'll see what I mean.

Perhaps you have other reasons for not renting a car, but Clearwater is pretty big and cars should be cheap (esp. at a weekly rate) and there shouldn't be any parking charges. We stayed a bit more central than the Best Western and while we could walk to a few places, the car was nice to have. Sorry I can't remember the name of the place we stayed.
Oct 2nd, 2000, 09:52 AM
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Look for the beach strand at Clearwater where my bowling-ball headed Uncle Bernard is often holding court. Now 62, he is becoming rotund of frame. He is very loud and the life of the beach. He loves to read the NY Post and feed the sea gulls, oblivious to the risk that sea gulls present other inhabitants of the beach. His beach is the best beach.
Oct 2nd, 2000, 10:22 AM
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You'd be smart to rent a car if you are into the beach. The area has some great beaches like Ft. DeSoto park, about 30 minutes away from Clearwater and Pass a Grille, about 15-20 minutes away. You could even plan a short day trip souoth to Venice or Sarasota where teh beaches are even more spectacular.
Oct 2nd, 2000, 11:11 AM
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Along with everyone else, I agree that you really need a car. The beach area is too stretched out for a simple walk. There's a group of hotels directly on Clearwater Beach...Adam's Mark, the Hilton and a Holiday Inn (I think). But in my opinion a nicer place to stay is Radisson Sand Key, though you'll definitely want a car if you stay there.
Oct 2nd, 2000, 11:33 AM
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As Brian said, if you are a beach person, you are going to be pretty disappointed in that location. The Best Western is located on Clearwater Pass, not the Gulf of Mexico...and as that's one of the few places tidal water can enter or exit Clearwater Harbor, there almost always will be a current and the water won't be particularly clear. Your view from their beach will be looking out at Sand Key straight ahead, a huge bridge immediately to your left, and the Gulf down the channel to the right.

Furthermore, if you are going to be without a car, it's removed from the center of activity, the majority of the dining, and the area you'll go for the cruises you are interested in (the harbor practically across from Pier 60). Clearwater Beach is so spread out that if you can swing the car I think you'll be glad you did. Then too, it's a 30-45 minute (depending on time of day) drive from the airport to Clearwater Beach, so other transportation you could arrange to get you from airport to beach is going to be costly.

Oct 11th, 2000, 09:19 AM
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You should listen to the advice about steering clear of the Clearwater area, if you want to hit the beach and won't have a rental car. Suggest you look at a map of the beaches line the Gulf in Pinellas County, specifically look from Clearwater south to St. Pete Beach. All of these beaches are in fact barrier islands, and as you move south away from Clearwater, the beaches get better - for example, they are wider, and closer to shops, restaurants, etc. Thus, it's easier to things without having to rent a car. Treasure Island and St. Pete are nice, and offer motels and hotels at various price levels. There are an array of various priced restaurants. Thus, the beaches to the south of Clearwater are probably what you have in mind when you think about hitting the beach on a daily basis. Again, look at a map, and look south of Clearwater Beach.

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