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Dec 22 Florida Trip - ideas near Tampa & Melbourne

Dec 22 Florida Trip - ideas near Tampa & Melbourne

Jun 19th, 2009, 05:52 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2008
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Dec 22 Florida Trip - ideas near Tampa & Melbourne

We are visiting family that lives in Tampa and Melbourne the week of Dec. 22, but we always take three or so days for ourselves before hooking up with family. We've done the Clearwater Beaches in the past and loved it. We'd like to try Sanibel, Sarasota, Siesta Key or something recommended by Florida experts.

What does anyone suggest for the best place to be during our 3 day family time. My husband and I have a 15 and 16 year old. We all love the beach, we like non-chain restaurants with patios, things to do in walking distance, biking, kayaking, etc.

I realize weather is always a gamble. We've heard Sanibel has crazy traffic - will that be true in December?

Any other secret gems of locations we haven't thought of? We would appreciate travel advice as we value this time for ourselves. Thank you!
andicat is offline  
Jun 19th, 2009, 07:22 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 113
Take a fishing boat out of Tarpon Springs or a pontoon boat out of Homossassa (you can see manatees). These are best done in winter anyway.
AttyWSW is offline  
Jun 19th, 2009, 08:03 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,885
Sarasota - for all the reasons you mentioned....

Siesta Key, patio restaurants, great biking, beautiful beaches, great shopping, St.Armands Circle, great art galleries,

Sarasota has all that and more and it's only 1 hour drive from Tampa.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Jun 20th, 2009, 05:46 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 4,408
Yes, I'd agree that Sarasota meets your requirements.

If you need any Melbourne info, just post. There are a number of posters here who live in the area.
321go is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2009, 04:16 AM
  #5  
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Thanks for the help!
andicat is offline  
Aug 11th, 2009, 03:41 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
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Check out Ft. Desoto...great kayaking area and right on the Gulf.

Oh, and get smoked mullet at Ted Peters in St. Pete...they only take cash, but is real good.
80datsun210 is offline  
Aug 11th, 2009, 05:20 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,718
Melbourne is a 30 minute drive from Kennedy Space Center. If you have not done the tour, it is an excellent day.

Across the intercoastal is Indiatlantic, Mebourne Beach and Indian Harbor. Many local restaurants fit your description.

Sebastian Inlet State Park has an extensive waterfront bike trail.

Hoping a local will comment on local kayaking.
stumpworks73 is offline  
Aug 17th, 2009, 11:45 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 129
Sanibel is beautiful, just there last week. It was very quite, but it is off peak, no traffic, no crowds. Food is amazing, went to Island Cow, Cheeburger Cheeburger (no "s" in the name) also Sanibel Grille. It is very pedistrian friendly. Lots of places to rent bikes, there is the Ding Darling wildlife park, nice shopping, very small townish.
MollyinFL is offline  
Aug 17th, 2009, 03:30 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
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You've gotten good suggestions on West Coast beaches thus far -- seconding Sarasota, Ft. DeSoto, and Tarpon Springs.

Will second eating at Ted Peters Smoked Fish, which is very good. St. Petersburg Beach and Pass-a-grille Beach (both well south of Clearwater but still on the Pinellas County peninsula) are excellent. At the latter, liked the Hurricane Seafood Restaurant, which is near the latter and has a deck.
bachslunch is offline  

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