We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Which Tampa hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
Derby, United...
posts: 43
reviews: 3
Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Hi

Will be visiting the area for 5 nights at the end of September and unsure where to stay, both in terms of location and hotel. Budget is circa £100 / $150 per night.

Looking for somewhere with restaurants / bars within walking distance from the hotel in an evening but also a good base to head off from and explore during the day.

Will have a car for part of the stay but also quite happy to just use public transport to get around as well. Is the public transport system any good?

Any help, ideas or suggestions greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Tampa FL
posts: 1,351
reviews: 1
1. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Unless you have a compelling reason to stay in Tampa (a particular event, on business, proximity to friends/relatives, etc) I would suggest the Pinellas County beaches. (Clearwater, St. Pete Beach, Treasure Island, etc). You can still make a day trip to Tampa for Busch Gardens, or a visit to Ybor City and/or the Florida Aquarium. It is no more than a 1 hour drive from the beaches to Tampa.

Joe

Tampa FL

Tampa, Florida
posts: 6,258
2. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Clearwater Beach is probably your best bet .... Note that Clearwater and Clearwater Beach are two distinct places. Clearwater Beach is the barrier island off the mainland of Clearwater. Read that forum for ideas on where to stay.

You should be able to get a place there within your budget as the Winter visitors would not have started to come in and the Summer holidays are over.

Clearwater, Florida
Destination Expert
for Clearwater
posts: 7,795
reviews: 23
3. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

If wanting to be on a beach, check out the Clearwater, or St. Pete Beach forums. On Clearwater Beach, the Travelodge, or Magnusson Hotel are a couple of the more affordable ones. Walk to a good variety of restaurants, shops, beach bars, marina, pier, activities, etc. Very walkable beach area.

http://www.thetropicsboattours.com/

http://www.littletoot.us/

http://www.calypsoqueen.com/

http://www.seewinter.com/

http://www.sunsetsatpier60.com/

http://www.palmpavilion.com/

http://www.johnspass.com/

http://www.frenchysonline.com/

http://www.cooters.com/

http://www.crabbybills.com/BW.html

http://www.crabbybills.com/Clrwtr.html

http://jimmysfishhouse.net/

http://www.starlitecruises.com/

Tampa, Florida
posts: 6,258
4. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Public transport between the places in your topic is scant to non-existant. On Clearwater Beach itself there is a bus service that runs the among the populated places.

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,760
reviews: 59
5. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

It would be helpful to know what type of activities you enjoy. With your criteria of restaurants and bars within walking distance I think Clearwater Beach would be the best option, if you want to be near the beach.

St Petersburg, as opposed to St Pete Beach, offers a vibrant downtown area with lots of restaurants and bars. There are also museums in the area. If you are not interested in the beach downtown St Petersburg would be a good option.

The other option for a city experience would be the Ybor City area of Tampa.

Most visitors to the Tampa Bay area come for the beaches, so that's why many recommendations will be to stay on the beach.

UK
Destination Expert
for Florida
posts: 35,992
reviews: 22
6. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

St Pete Beach, Treasure Island, Madeira beach might all suit.

As for budget, Sept is low season, so you could find beachfront then. I had good luck finding beachfront around $120 incl taxes on hotwire at a busier time of year.

Derby, United...
posts: 43
reviews: 3
7. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

Many thanks for the all the advice & comments, sounds like the beach front locations should prove a good base.

I note the comment about public transport being virtually non-existent and was hoping to use this to get to a Buccaneers game. If there are no buses would the advice be to drive and park near the stadium (in which case can you recommend where to park?) or is it feasible to catch a taxi, particularly if staying in Clearwater Beach or St Pete Beach?

UK
Destination Expert
for Florida
posts: 35,992
reviews: 22
8. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

From st Pete, it is easy to get to a Rays game, but not the buccs. You would drive and park there.

There is some public transport, but it all depends on which town you choose.

Tampa, Florida
posts: 6,258
9. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

For the Bucs games there's a large grassy lot on the stadium grounds that is used for parking. Many go early and have what is called a tailgate party - with bar-b-que grills going. I don't know how much they charge for parking but usually the lot is full for a game.

Tampa, Florida
Destination Expert
for Tampa
posts: 1,697
reviews: 47
10. Re: Tampa vs Clearwater vs St Petersburg

I am a Bucs season ticket holder. You can park in the Bucs lots or you can park in someone's yard in one of he houses off of Himes Avenue near the stadium for about $10, depending on how close you are.