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Clearwater Escape approximately $377 (approximately £250) for 2 nights in the hotel, parking and the boat trip on Little Toot in Clearwater (including taxes)

Clearwater Escape

Seeking a moment of calm after the Zumba Convention, Clearwater was a fabulous choice.  Still bustling with plenty of local shops and restaurants and dozens of options for trips out on the water (my nephews would love the pirate ship), Clearwater has one of the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen.


Pier 60, of which I had a great view from my hotel, livens up whenever there is a clear evening and you can walk down to the very end for just 50 cents (which I was happy to pay for a 24 hour office halfway down).


After driving from Orlando it was great to know there is a trolley that travels all the way down to St Pete's Beach, and there are even local taxis that are free (they work for tips) so there's no need to step back into your car unless you really want to.


After an early night courtesy of an evening storm and my magical morning (see The Healing) I was ready to jump back in the car and head up to Honeymoon Island and the ferry to Caladesi Island which has the most spectacular beach.  (Each place I came to seemed to top the last!)  I didn't know at the time that you can actually walk from Clearwater straight up to Caladesi at low tide (it's around 4 miles).  And, I am thankful now that I didn't know as I would have done it, and then been "deserted" at Caladesi as after only about an hour there I had to get back into my air conditioned car in order to feel human again.  It is also possible to get stranded by the tides so do double check details before you head out.  The Caladesi Ferry will give you a decent amount of time on the island but make sure you check your return so, once again, you don't get stranded (there are rattlesnakes in the brush!)  Oh and gopher tortoises too (super cute and faster than any tortoise I've ever seen!)


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