Clearwater lies in the Tampa Bay area on the west coast of Florida. Visitors could be forgiven for assuming that the city's name is a reference to the crystal-clear water which laps onto the stunning white-sand beach Clearwater is famous for. In fact, the name is thought to be a reference to a fresh water spring which once flowed into the city.

Clearwater is the ideal destination for those who want to enjoy a Floridian experience away from the more frenetic pace of the theme parks. Clearwater Beach is the perfect place to relax in the sun and to enjoy body-boarding and a variety of other water sports. Beach lovers will not be disappointed by the vast expanse of white sand and the inviting warm sea. Bathers ought to be warned, however, that the water is home to a thriving stingray population. It is perfectly safe to swim, but take care to shuffle your feet when entering the water to disturb any nearby stingrays: they will not attack swimmers without provocation but, they don't react well to being trodden on!


Whatever your interests, you will be easily entertained in Clearwater. Those who are eager to unwind whilst soaking up the hot Floridian sun will be impressed by Clearwater Beach. Local residents are justifiably proud of the beach's excellent, and well-deserved, reputation and local officials are diligent about preserving it. Consequently, the beach is immaculate: it is cleaned thoroughly every morning and is also well covered by lifeguards. If you would like to break up a day at the beach, take a short walk to one of the many bars or restaurants for lunch, visit the ice cream parlour (try the Mississippi Mud) or play a round of miniature golf. Clearwater Beach is also a great place to try water sports including para-sailing and water-skiing. Body boards can also be purchased cheaply from one of the many nearby beach shops, and provide hours of fun when the wind is strong enough to whip up waves from the usually calm sea.

When you are ready to venture away from the beach, try a day-trip to [ Busch Gardens] in Tampa Bay. Busch Gardens is an African theme park with a good balance of white-knuckle roller coasters and sedate attractions for the more faint-hearted! Busch Gardens also boasts some great water rides; ideal for cooling off if you choose to visit in the hot and humid summer months. Busch Gardens takes approximately 30 minutes to reach by car from Clearwater. If Busch Gardens whets your appetite for the theme parks Florida has become famous for, [ Walt Disney World] and its neighbours on Orlando's International Drive can be reached by car in a little over 2 hours. [ Universal Studios] can also be reached within a couple of hours.

Families with young children will be thrilled with [ Great Explorations], a popular childrens' museum in nearby St. Petersburg. The museum's mission is "to stimulate learning through creativity, play and exploration." Exhibitions include: an interactive market, in which parents and children can use the colourful food pyramids on the walls to 'shop' for foods which would provide a healthy, balanced diet; a fire station which seeks to teach children about fire safety by engaging them with fun activities and a veterinary surgery which seeks to educate children about the importance of responsibly caring for their pets. Children can also create their own cartoons at a computer animation centre. The Childrens' Museum provides a great day out for the whole family.

If your tastes are not satisfied by theme parks or beach activities, a trip to the [ Museum of Fine Arts] might interest you. The museum can be found at 255 Beach Drive in St. Petersburg, and displays everything from the art of antiquity to more contemporary work, including that of Cezanne, Monet and Renoir.


There are few tastes which will not be satisfied in Clearwater. Bargain hunters will find themselves at home at an original flea market, whilst art and antiques lovers will find plenty of independent shops to satisfy their interest. Those more interested in popular high-street chains will find their niche in Clearwater's shopping malls, whilst those with more expensive tastes will be well-served by a number of stylish boutiques. Beach accessories can be purchased at the numerous beach shops which can be found near Clearwater beach.

Nightlife and Eating Out

Restaurants in Clearwater are varied and plentiful. A number serve American favourites such as pizza, pancakes, burgers and fries and most restaurants are more than generous when it comes to portion-size: pizzas are usually immense and a 'side salad' is quite likely to be a meal in itself! International cuisine is readily available in Clearwater: Cuban, Spanish and Greek restaurants can all be easily found. Even those with a taste for Indian food (which is not nearly as popular in the U.S. as in the U.K) will not be disappointed.

Clubbing enthusiasts should find that they are well-catered for. South Gulfview Boulevard is a good place to begin if you are in the mood for dancing, whilst John's Pass has a good reputation as a venue for live music and dancing. Those who are interested in finding out more about the clubbing and dancing scene in Clearwater can refer to the [ official travel site for the St.Petersburg / Clearwater area] for more information about venues.

Tourist Information

  • St. Petersburg/Clearwater Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, 13805 58th Street, Suite 2-200, Clearwater, FL.
  • Telephone: +1 727 464 7200 or +1 877 352 3224
  • Website: []


The [ St. Petersburg/Clearwater International Airport] is the closest airport to Clearwater, although this airport is used more for flights within the U.S. and flights to Canada than for flights to other international destinations. The same applies to [ Tampa International Airport]. Most U.K. commercial airlines fly into [ Orlando Sanford Airport] which is approximately a 2 hour drive from Clearwater.

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