St Petersburg?

Oct 16th, 2008, 01:50 PM
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St Petersburg?

I'm hoping that someone can tell me what the town is like, e.g. whether it's a pleasant place to take long walks, to bike, are there gardens, etc? (I.e. outside things, not museums, etc)
What's a very good comfortable place to stay, one that would be good and quiet? Good linens and bathrooms, etc.
Thank you.
poss is offline  
Oct 16th, 2008, 01:54 PM
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Wrong forum - although a lot of Canadians probably spend time there - go to the US Forum.
SallyCanuck is offline  
Oct 16th, 2008, 01:55 PM
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I swear this was on the Canadian board when I opened it...oh oh, better stop drinking.
SallyCanuck is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 04:46 AM
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Definitely never on the Canadian board.
It interests me that there're no responses from St Pete in FL. Unusual to post on Fodor's site and not get response.
poss is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 05:14 AM
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Have only driven around and then poked around "downtown" and by the Dali museum -- otherwise visited a friend in a residential area to the north.

St. Pete sprawls. Walking mostly happens on the beaches or in the several blocks that form downtown.

The most notable hotel is the Don Cesar - a venerable beach resort -- but there are others, some among the chains, strewn along the beachfront up toward Tampa. Be careful when you look at hotels that you don't end up in one on the bay side or along I 275. A good mapping function while you surf places like Fodors, tripadvisor, expedia or travelocity will be helpful.
cfc is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 05:24 AM
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I would stay in St Pete Beach. We drove into St Petersburg a few times (Dali Museum is wonderful) but our time is always spent in St Pete, Terre Verdi (sp?) etc.
cd is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 05:29 AM
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I too prefer to stay on St Pete Beach. I drive into St Petersburg to the pier sometimes. You can take a pleasant boat ride into the intercoastal waterways and maybe see manatee (and NEAT houses).
simpsonc510 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 05:38 AM
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Great to get replies finally-- thanks!

We live in Naples for the winter months, so not really interested in beach for this little visit. Just thought it might be pleasant to stop off in the town on our snowbird trip down; don't know St Pete at all.
So: Is it just the pier that's pleasant to stroll? Not a strolling town at all? Did the ICW thing once in the Miami area-- enjoyed it. I think we'd more enjoy "leg-stretching" things for this trip though, i.e., walking, biking. St Pete may not be the best idea. I wonder about Tampa-- don't know it at all either. (We often stop in St Augustine-- always pleasant.)

Thanks again, and please keep ideas coming.
poss is offline  
Oct 17th, 2008, 06:06 AM
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The pier has an aquarium and some restaurants. Not much else, but it does have some great views if the day is nice. The Columbia is on the 4th floor and is pretty nice, though if you've been to St Augustine before, you might have been there before. Along the water (1st street I believe) there is some shopping though mostly art gallerys and such. Also there is an outdoor shopping center (can't remember the name right now) with a movie theather and nice restaurants. I remember seeing a lot of bikers especially around the water so it should be pretty bike friendly. Check out events in the area around the time you are going, such as the Jazz festival, taste of St. Pete, shakespeare in the park, etc. You might want to check out the Vinoy hotel. It is in a good locations and has a good reputation.
steph3495 is offline  
Oct 18th, 2008, 04:42 AM
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Thanks for the good reply, steph. I checked Vinoy-- completely booked for the night we'd be there. There's a Hampton Inn that gets ok reports on Trip Advisor; I guess we could stay there. I'd like to find a restaurant that has a more peaceful ambience than Columbia, something more quiet and relaxed. (In our late 70's, we're getting to be old foggies.)
poss is offline  
Oct 19th, 2008, 09:05 AM
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Hi Poss, I love walking around downtown St. Petersburg. Go on a Saturday morning - you can visit the farmer's market, then walk out on the Pier and through Straub Park, North Shore Park, etc. There are always bikers, joggers and pedestrians about on weekend mornings. Plenty of inexpensive places for breakfast or lunch along Central Ave and 1st Ave North.

For gardens, there is Sunken Gardens on 4th St. I found it very lovely but pricey. Instead I would recommend the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo. It's free and makes for a great walk. Sawgrass Lake Park and Weedon Island (both in St. Pete) are also great parks for a hike.

I have a few images of St. Pete on my web site - I can't really recommend hotels as I'm a resident. There are several hotels downtown, and at least one B&B, but I have not stayed at any of them.

Enjoy your visit to St. Petersburg!
sbrav is offline  
Oct 19th, 2008, 09:16 AM
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There are a cluster of things to see in the immediate downtown part of St. Pete which could make a pleasing day trip. The Salvador Dali Museum is a must. There's a little Museum of Fine Arts that often has decent temporary exhibits as well as an OK little permanent collection. The Pier is pleasant, with some shopping and restaurants, including a branch of the Columbia. At the foot of The Pier is a tiny historical museum that can make an interesting pop-in. The Vinoy is kind of a tourist attraction in and of itself, the only '20s golden era hotel in the downtown area. And just north of downtown is Sunken Gardens, which is an attractive botanical preserve.

Once you get outside this area, St. Pete is mostly homes and shopping malls, and of marginal interest to tourists (the beaches along the Gulf of Mexico are excellent, though). Also, don't stray much south of this downtown area, as things get dicey in a hurry.
bachslunch is offline  
Oct 19th, 2008, 01:29 PM
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I know you said the the beach area is not your first choice but check out the Don CeSar Resort located on St Pete Beach. The sunsets from there are wonderful and I think it has everything you are looking for. it is not a long drive into St Petersburg.
cd is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2008, 03:31 PM
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sbrav: thanks very much. Those details are very helpful indeed.
bachslunch: thanks for replying, but as I said, I'm not interested in museums on this trip (and I don't care for Dali), and I'm not interested in Columbia (enjoy quieter-type restaurants) Thanks for warning about straying-- I appreciate that.
cd: we live on the beach in Naples (plenty of sunsets, etc)-- so not much interested in staying on St Pete beach.
If weather is good the day we snowbirds are coming through the St Pete area, we'll stop there-- sounds pleasant. I thank you all for suggestions. Fodors is a valuable site..
poss is offline  
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