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Planning a Family Trip to Clearwater Seaside, Florida

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Planning a Family Trip to Clearwater Seaside, Florida 1

Lately voted the No. 1 seaside in the US by TripAdvisor, Clearwater Seaside on Florida’s west coast is as family-friendly because it will get. With sugar-white sand, many low-key eating places, a ton of actions, large playground and nightly exhibits, your loved ones will completely love vacationing right here.

In This Put up

Best Domestic Beach Destinations in Winter
Clearwater, Florida. Picture by John Coletti / Getty Pictures

How to Get to Clearwater Seaside

Two airports, inside 20 miles of the seaside, make it straightforward to attain your vacation spot. The closest and most handy airport is St. Pete-Clearwater Airport (PIE), which is 12 miles from the seaside, so you’ll be able to land and be swimming within the ocean very quickly. Solely two home airways fly into this airport.

The most important presence is with Allegiant Air, which flies nonstop to greater than 50 locations. This low-cost service typically offers discounted fares, though service is often solely a few instances a week and also you’ll almost certainly solely discover one flight a day per metropolis pair. In case you reside close to an airport serviced by Allegiant and you’ve got flexibility, this may be a cheap means to fly into Clearwater. For instance, we priced a round-trip ticket from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, at $130 all-in with taxes for July dates. Or, in case you reside close to Gulfport–Biloxi, Mississippi, you’ll be able to fly Solar Nation Airways.

Tampa Worldwide Airport (TPA) is the opposite airport serving guests to Clearwater. Relying on visitors, it takes 35-50 minutes to get to the seaside after touchdown. The airport serves most main airways, with routes throughout the US, on Southwest, Delta, American, United, Alaska, JetBlue, Spirit and Frontier. That is the proper alternative to fly two-for-one with the Southwest Companion Move or Frontier’s Youngsters Fly Free and Pals Fly Free promotion. You possibly can all the time redeem your companion certificates that comes with the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit score Card from American Categorical. For many who are open to Spirit, the airline will most likely offer you the least costly fare, however be sure to add in the entire further charges when evaluating costs.

Should-Dos for Households

The preferred space of Clearwater Seaside is Pier 60. Though the pier is nice for fishing, the principle attraction for youths occurs proper off the pier. Beginning at round 6pm each night, there are a ton of actions for youths — sometimes two or three road performers starting from escape artists to stilt walkers. There are additionally craft cubicles with distributors promoting jewellery, providing to braid hair and even spray portray artwork on the market. On Friday and Saturday evenings, there’s a sundown cinema — an outside movie show below the celebrities. There may be additionally a tremendous seaside playground proper within the mist of all of it for youths to play morning, midday and night time. These actions are free and open to the general public.

An awesome playground at Pier 60 in Clearwater Beach, Florida (photo courtesy of Jennifer Yellin / Deals We Like)
An superior playground at Pier 60 in Clearwater Seaside, Florida. (Picture courtesy of Jennifer Yellin / Offers We Like)

Most excursions depart from the docks barely north of Pier 60. Since you might be on the water, there’s every thing from sundown boat excursions, dolphin-watching excursions, a thriller speedboat trip and even a pirate cruise. The Thriller Powerboat Tour prices $28 for adults; $19 for youngsters, ages 4–12, and free for youths Three and below. 

Planning a Family Trip to Clearwater Seaside, Florida 2
(Picture courtesy of Jennifer Yellin / Offers We Like)

In case you proceed down the street and over the bridge, about a mile from Pier 60, you’ll discover the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. That is residence to Winter the Dolphin who made an look within the film “Dolphin Tale.” As well as to touring the aquarium, there are numerous totally different animal encounter alternatives that enable you to get shut to the dolphins, sharks, otters and pelicans (some have extra admission charges). Normal admission is $25 for adults; $23 for seniors, ages 60 and older; $20 for youths, ages 3–12, and free for youngsters ages 2 and youthful. The aquarium additionally has a sunset particular admission that prices $13 in case you enter after 4pm.

The Clearwater Marine Aquarium. (Photo courtesy of Visit St. Pete/Clearwater)
The Clearwater Marine Aquarium (Picture courtesy of Go to St. Pete/Clearwater)

In case you stroll the wrong way (south) from the Pier, you’ll be able to hire a Surrey bike to cruise the boardwalk. This was a enjoyable pastime for my youngsters, particularly since they acquired to trip up entrance and fake to drive. In fact, the adults did all of the peddling, however all of us had a blast for an hour. Firms additionally hire coupes, gliders, scooters and common bikes. There are a few totally different rental locations on the seaside, however the Enjoyable Journey Leases was conveniently situated proper on the Hyatt Regency. Surrey bike leases begin at $29 per hour.

Planning a Family Trip to Clearwater Seaside, Florida 3
(Picture courtesy of Jennifer Yellin / Offers We Like)

Subsequent to the Hyatt Regency was the Movement Rider. Whereas my household didn’t take part on this browsing exercise, the seaside retailer subsequent door has glass home windows wanting into the simulator the place you’ll be able to have a seat and watch others strive to surf the waves. One 30-minute session is $30.

The Flow Rider Surfing Simulator. (Photo courtesy of Visit Clearwater Beach / Facebook)
The Movement Rider browsing simulator. (Picture courtesy of Go to Clearwater Seaside / Fb)

Finest Factors Resorts in Clearwater for Households

Clearwater Seaside has many chain resorts the place you’ll be able to redeem your factors for a free-night keep.

Wyndham Grand Clearwater Seaside

This new-ish property is one in all Wyndham’s nicest resorts and probably the most effective chain properties in Clearwater Seaside. The Wyndham Grand Clearwater Seaside is situated throughout the road from the seaside and in a perfect location close to eating places, actions and Pier 60. There may be a vigorous out of doors pool with a whirlpool on the bottom stage. There may be additionally a full spa and a number of eating choices.

Wyndham Grand Clearwater (Photo courtesy of hotel)
Wyndham Grand Clearwater (Picture courtesy of resort)

Sadly, this was one of many 200 properties that was hit with Wyndham’s latest class adjustments. This property now prices 30,000 Wyndham Rewards factors for an award night time. When utilizing your factors, you’ll be able to e book a room with one king mattress or two queen beds. Or, you’ll be able to redeem simply 6,000 Wyndham Rewards factors to scale back the paid fee for its Deluxe King Bunk room, which books you into a room with one king mattress, plus twin bunk beds.

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Hyatt Regency Clearwater Seaside Resort and Spa

The Hyatt Regency Clearwater Seaside Resort and Spa is the best choice for giant households searching for a spacious resort room. Most of its rooms begin at a whopping 600 sq. ft (with a full kitchen) or you’ll be able to go all-in and e book one of many two-bedroom suites starting from 1,200 to 1,600 sq. ft. The huge rooms, excellent location, on-site youngsters membership for ages 3–12, and the standing recognition make this is a perfect resort when touring with a household.

Related to the Wyndham Grand Resort, this resort can be throughout from the seaside, however I didn’t discover this to be a difficulty. My major gripe with this property is that every thing appeared to be on totally different ranges so we discovered ourselves taking the elevator up and down very often. The seaside was on the bottom flooring; the eating places on the second flooring; the pool deck (with a child pool) was on the eighth flooring and the recent tub was on the 16th flooring. We finally acquired used to it, but it surely was undoubtedly complicated at first.

(Photo courtesy of Hyatt Regency Clearwater)
(Picture courtesy of Hyatt Regency Clearwater)

One of the best factor about this property is that it treats Globalist friends like royalty. Whereas you need to use one in all your Globalist Suite Upgrades to improve to a one-bedroom suite, don’t be stunned in case you’re supplied a complimentary improve to a two-bedroom suite upon check-in. Even with a lower-level standing, or no standing in any respect, this property affords extra one- and two-bedroom suites than normal rooms, so you could have a shot of an improve, particularly if you’re touring throughout an off-peak time.

These with Globalist standing may even obtain complimentary breakfast on the SHOR restaurant for up to two adults and two youngsters, which provides you with entry to the total buffet or the common menu. Sadly, this property doesn’t have a membership lounge for these with Explorist standing wanting to redeem a Membership Lounge Certificates.

This property is now a Class 6 resort inside the World of Hyatt program and thus requires 25,000 World of Hyatt factors a night time. There are various instances the place you’ll discover moderately priced paid charges or promotional affords, so that you may discover that redeeming your factors provides you with a decrease worth than TPG’s valuation. In case you journey throughout peak dates, the World of Hyatt Credit score Card can get you two award nights with the present up to 50,000-point welcome bonus supply (whenever you spend $6,000 complete within the first six months after opening the cardboard). You may also switch Chase Final Rewards factors to Hyatt at a 1:1 ratio.

Sheraton Sand Key

The Sheraton Sand Secret is in a barely totally different location than the entire different properties listed above. It’s in a quieter a part of Clearwater Seaside, away from the outlets and actions. It’s situated by itself personal seaside, subsequent to Sand Key Park. On this extra resort setting, you’ll discover seaside volleyball, seaside tennis and different seaside video games. There may be a giant pool deck with a heated pool, a kiddie pool and a scorching tub. There may be additionally a youngsters’s playground on-site, as nicely (or you’ll be able to head to Sand Key Park for an excellent bigger playground). Regardless of its extra distant location, there’s a free trolley to the “main” Clearwater Seaside space.

Sand Key Park. (Photo courtesty of Drdisque / Wikipedia)
Sand Key Park (Picture courtesy of Drdisque / Wikipedia)

This property prices 35,000 Marriott factors a night time for a free-night keep. The room can truly match up to 5 friends with two queen beds and a roll away. With the Marriott Bonvoy program, your fifth night time is free whenever you use factors. For a five-night keep, you might be actually simply 28,000 factors a night time. That is additionally the proper alternative to use a free-night certificates from any of the Marriott credit cards which might be capped at 35,000 factors per night time.

The Sheraton Sand Key. (Photo courtesy of Marriott International)
The Sheraton Sand Key (Picture courtesy of Marriott Worldwide)

Hilton Clearwater Seaside Resort & Spa

The Hilton Clearwater Seaside Resort & Spa might need the most effective areas in Clearwater Seaside as a result of it’s proper on the seaside with Pier 60 simply a stone’s throw away.

This property costs a each day $25 resort price (waived in case you use factors), however you’ll get a lot of worth for your loved ones together with complimentary entry to nonmotorized water sports activities from 9–10am, bike leases, seaside photograph shoots, morning yoga and beach-side actions.

Factors vary from 44,000 to 60,000 Hilton Honors factors a night time for a room with two double beds. When utilizing your Hilton factors, these with standing obtain a fifth-night free. Happily, incomes any form of Hilton standing is sort of straightforward since the entire Hilton credit cards include elite standing.

Vacation Inn & Suites Clearwater Seaside

The Vacation Inn & Suites Clearwater Seaside is a waterfront resort — though you’ll have to stroll up the road to truly play on the sand and soar within the water. As with most different properties on the seaside, the Vacation Inn has a heated out of doors pool and a heated youngsters’ pool. There may be additionally an outside restaurant on the waterfront with nightly reside leisure. 

The Holiday Inn & Suites Clearwater Beach (Photo courtesy of IHG)
The Vacation Inn & Suites Clearwater Seaside (Picture courtesy of IHG)

This property prices 35,000 IHG Rewards Membership factors per night time. You probably have the IHG Rewards Membership Premier Credit score Card, you’ll obtain your fourth night time free when redeeming factors. It will convey your nightly fee down to simply 26,250 IHG factors per night time. With many alternatives to buy IHG factors with a bonus, this implies you should buy the required variety of factors for simply $131 a night time when there’s a 100% bonus alternative. And, since you need to use free-night certificates that comes with the credit card at this specific property (capped at 40,000 factors a night time), you may as well tack on an additional night time free of charge.

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High quality Lodge Clearwater Seaside Resort

The High quality Lodge Clearwater Seaside Resort is on essentially the most southern a part of the island, so you might be barely faraway from the principle seaside strip and Pier 60 — however you might be by no means really distant from something in Clearwater Seaside. Happily, this property has entry to a personal seaside and a heated out of doors pool.

The Quality Hotel Clearwater Beach Resort. (Photo courtesy of Quality Hotel Clearwater Beach Resort)
The High quality Lodge Clearwater Seaside Resort (Picture courtesy of High quality Lodge Clearwater Seaside Resort)

Though the High quality Lodge will not be as luxurious as a number of the different properties talked about, if you’re simply searching for a respectable place for your loved ones to sleep, this resort is perhaps the proper place. Costs are considerably inexpensive and the factors fee begins at 12,000 Alternative Privileges factors a night time. Since Alternative permits you to e book any rooms out there on the identical variety of factors, you’ll be able to e book a room with two king beds, plus a couch mattress. The primary problem with redeeming Alternative Privileges factors for a free-night keep is that you could solely e book 100 days out. For households who like to plan prematurely, this could undoubtedly be problematic.

Planning Suggestions

Finest Time of Yr to Go to

The best possible instances to go to Clearwater Seaside, and actually many different Florida seaside locations are in late October – early December or in the course of the spring. Climate is extra assured with sunshine and sunbathing climate, however you’ll not be confronted with the recent and muggy temperatures. The time between late October and early December will enable you to snag the very best off-peak resort costs if paying with money (other than lengthy weekend holidays and Thanksgiving week). Be ready for bigger spring break crowds in March and April, as that is a fashionable time for a lot of households to head south to sunny seaside locations.

(Photo by Rachelle Vance Photography / Getty Images)
(Picture by Rachelle Vance Images / Getty Pictures)

The whole lot at Your Fingertips

Clearwater Seaside has every thing you want for a household trip. There are grocery shops, a number of drug shops and even seaside provide shops. This implies you don’t have to over-pack and, in case you run out of one thing, you’ll be able to go to the shop and simply purchase it. I hate packing a ton of diapers that can take up a suitcase house, so on my latest journey to Clearwater, I packed simply a day’s value after which bought a package deal at CVS. This additionally turns out to be useful if you do not need to verify baggage since you are carrying sunscreen or different liquid objects. Simply depart them at residence and purchase what you want whenever you arrive.

Automobile Not (Essentially) Required

Clearwater Seaside is a strolling group. This implies a automobile will not be a necessity, until you need to depart the seaside space for different actions, corresponding to visiting Busch Gardens. Automobile leases in Florida are comparatively cheap (use the positioning AutoSlash to discover good offers). Though the price of a rental automobile won’t be costly, each day parking at your resort can undoubtedly add up. For instance, normal each day parking on the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Seaside & Resort prices an additional $25 per day (until you might be a Globalist on an award keep).

In case you determine to forgo a automobile rental, you’ll be able to all the time take a taxi/Uber to and from the airport. The estimated Uber trip is $40. As soon as on the seaside, there are numerous transportation choices, corresponding to Florida Free Rides, which runs on suggestions; the Clearwater Jolley Trolley prices $2.25 per trip (youngsters 5 and below are free), or Uber.

Loads of Low Key Eating places

Going to a restaurant with my two youngsters could be a hit-or-miss expertise. We keep away from white tablecloth eating places with our 2-year-old for apparent causes. Happily, Clearwater Seaside was the proper place for us to dine out. There are a many low-key eating places the place you’ll be able to sit exterior and your youngsters can run round on the grass and play a recreation of corn gap.

Planning a Family Trip to Clearwater Seaside, Florida 4
Frenchy’s Restaurant throughout the road from the seaside. (photograph courtesy of Jennifer Yellin / Offers We Like)

There are additionally loads of order-at-the-counter locations, the place you’ll be able to order a pizza and picnic on the seaside. This not solely helped relieve the stress of eating out with my youngsters but in addition helped our wallets with cheap meals. Simply one thing to know when planning out your days forward of time. Tip: Order the grouper at Frenchy’s.

Backside Line

Clearwater Seaside was absolutely the excellent trip for my household. We beloved our four-night keep and simply might have tacked on one other further day or two. We’re undoubtedly a seaside household, however we beloved that there have been greater than sufficient daytime actions and nightly leisure to guarantee we by no means acquired bored.

Preserve planning your Florida journey:

Jennifer Yellin is a Boston-based journey blogger who covers household journey offers for TPG and blogs at Offers We Like. Comply with her household’s adventures on Twitter and Instagram.

Featured photograph by Picture Supply / Getty Pictures.

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