Young family/not built up/pretty beach?

Mar 10th, 2009, 05:54 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2009
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Young family/not built up/pretty beach?

We would like to take a summer vacation to Florida and would love to find a pretty beach in Florida that is NOT built up with condo after condo. It doesn't have to be desolate (don't think that exists anyway), but would like something that isn't tacky. Drove through Perdido Key once and was shocked at all the condos!

I've read that Anna Maria, Longboat and Siesta Key are great. Any and all recc's are GREATLY appreciated. Rental companies you can recommend or specific hotels? We will have our 7 and 2 1/2 year old boys with us for 10 days to two weeks.

I'm sure in June or July it will rain each day but hopefully not all day. And hoping for no red tide.

Thanks for your help!
dragonflycafe is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 06:12 AM
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Its going to be difficult to find beaches that are not built up with hotels/motels/condos and still find a place to stay on the beach. .. You could always find a motel along US-1, A1A or I-95.... The wet season doesn't normally start until late June, after that you can almost always expect the late afternoon showers..
RedRock is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 06:23 AM
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You want the Cape San Blas area on the Gulf.
See cd's trip recent trip report.
No hotels/ motels at all. Only rentals of low-rise condos or cottages at the state park - and the prettiest beaches I know.
starrs is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 07:02 AM
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Stay away from Marco Island. One giant condo.
kelliebellie is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 07:10 AM
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Sanibel Island might fit the bill.

great shelling as well
notbob is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 07:16 AM
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Amelia Island, Fl. Sanibel is also a great suggestion.
SAnParis2 is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 07:18 AM
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Posts: 4,934 is a great source for rentals. We also use ERA on Amelia Island frequently.
SAnParis2 is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 08:35 AM
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This is a difficult question to answer accurately, but I believe the suggestions about Sanibel are good, and most parts of Anna Maria, Longboat, and Siesta are good but there are still some scattered condos every place you go. Another quiet but nice beach is Pass-a-Grille Beach, at the south tip of St Pete Beach, where several small family motels are located. Any of these would probably make your family happy.
Wayne is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 08:36 AM
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This is great, guys. Also posted a question about California. Not sure if we want to do CA or FL in the summer. I am very appreciative of all the suggestions. Keep 'em coming.
dragonflycafe is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 09:17 AM
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We were in Naples for Fourth of July one year (which is a silly thing to do, but we had to go to see mother-in-law's new condo) and I can tell you that it is hot. Not hot, but humid hot, which is a whole new hot. And I'm from Michigan and lived in Chicago where we can get 99.9% humidity, but Florida adds that intense heat to it.

It was okay on the beach, but anywhere else we ventured was just miserable. California wouldn't have the humidity, but would probably cost a whole lot more. Just something to consider!
kelliebellie is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 09:33 AM
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Anna Maria Island or the small towns along Hwy 30A:
321go is offline  
Mar 10th, 2009, 09:51 AM
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Seaside near Destin would be another choice.
tomms is offline  
Mar 12th, 2009, 12:48 PM
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Starrs is right about Cape San Blas! Very low density and also good shelling. I would also recommend any of the Beaches of South Walton.

I especially like WaterSound Beach in South Walton.

There is no whiter sand and prettier water in the state than between Panama City and Pensacola.
Sunshinesue is offline  
Mar 16th, 2009, 04:56 PM
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You are describing Boca Grande (Gasparilla Island). Like FL was 60 years ago. Even in July (tarpon season) you can still find yourself alone on the beach. No hotels to speak of other than the Gasparilla Inn. You will want to book a condo. There aren't many of them either.

Anecdote: sitting outside the Loose Caboose having ice cream, the school bus from off the island dropped off the grade school kids. No parents there to meet them, they got on their bikes that had been in the bike racks, unlocked, all day. It's a very different place.
DavidRW is offline  

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