It’s estimated that over 14 million people visited Clearwater Beach in 2021, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a fantastic beach! Travelers often turn away from the more popular beaches in favor of those that are secret or hidden. However, if you skip Clearwater Beach, then you are missing out.
Clearwater Beach is 2.5 miles of sugary white sand beach with the calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico rippling along the shore. Families can enjoy sand castle building, swimming, and lounging. Couples can enjoy a romantic stroll and watch one of Florida’s spectacular sunsets.
Clearwater Beach amenities include water sports, beach umbrellas, and chair rentals. Public restrooms, showers, lifeguards, volleyball, fishing, and food concessions are available near Pier 60. Beach wheelchairs can be checkout from the lifeguard station.
In addition, there are several fantastic beaches around Clearwater. From popular party beaches to remote islands. Sparkling sand to wild untouched areas. Explore some of the best beaches near Clearwater for an unforgettable Florida vacation!
1) Sand Key Park
When you are ready for a quiet, low-key day at the beach, head south across the Clearwater Pass and visit the park at Sand Key.
Sand Key Park is 95 acres of sand, salt marsh, and a marked nature trail that is less developed than neighboring Clearwater Beach. Cabanas, chairs, and beach umbrellas are available for rent, and two beach wheelchairs are offered at the lifeguard station. Amenities include changing rooms, public bathrooms, food concessions, and outdoor showers. From May through October, loggerhead turtles come to nest and lay their eggs on the beach.
2) North Redington Beach
Redington Shores and North Redington Beach are quiet beach towns just north of Madeira Beach. These long, wide stretches of sparkling white sand are often overlooked by tourists and offer a quiet respite from the crowd.
Redington Shores provides the best public facilities for visitors in the Redington beach area. The beach here is 400 feet wide and offers public restrooms and outdoor showers. There are 170 parking spaces available in the lot at 182nd for a fee. Swimming is possible on both sides of the rocky breakwater.
Public access trails to North Beach are not well marked, and parking is only available on the street. There are plenty of excellent restaurants and cafes in the area. Loads of condos in the area would make a great home base for your Florida vacation.
3) Treasure Island
Treasure Island is home to two of the best beaches near Clearwater, Madeira Beach, and Sunset Beach.
Madeira Beach, also called Mad Beach by the locals, is 2.5 miles of sun, fun, and sand on the Gulf of Mexico. You’ll find the usual souvenir shops, candy stores, bars, restaurants, arcades, and miniature golf at John’s Pass Village on the southern end of the beach. Dolphin tours and deep-sea fishing charters can be booked at John’s Pass Village, and the boats leave from the marina.
Sunset Beach is a lesser visited beach at the southern point of Treasure Island, next to a residential community by the same name. A picturesque boardwalk runs along the beach and crosses the dunes. Public amenities include a lovely beach pavilion with restrooms and showers.
4) St Pete Beach
St Pete Beach is approximately 20 miles south of Clearwater or three miles south of Treasure Island. In 2021 Trip Advisor named St Pete Beach the number one beach in America.
You’ll find four miles of beautiful white sand beach surrounded by hotels, resorts, restaurants, cafes, and bars. The historic Don Cesar hotel is a top attraction on St. Pete Beach. Public restrooms and parking are available at the St. Pete Beach country park.
5) Caladesi Island
Accessible only by boat, Caladesi Island State Park is wild and untouched and gives visitors a glimpse of vintage Florida. You can get to Caladesi Island by private boat, renting a boat nearby, or taking the Caladesi Island Ferry.
The island is home to three miles of nature trails for hiking and another three miles of mangroves for paddling. Visitors can swim or go fishing in designated areas. Restrooms, showers, and picnic tables are available at the park pavilion.
6) Pass-A-Grille Beach
Pass-a-Grille Beach is a quirky, laid-back town at the southern end of St Pete Beach. Fishing piers line the water and art galleries, restaurants, and ice cream shops are all within a short walk. Cabana, chair, and umbrella rentals are available on the beach.
Buy your bait at The Merry Pier and fish for Spanish mackerel, snook, and redfish from the seawall. Take a shuttle boat to Shell Key to sift through thousands of shells on the beach. Explore the water with a paddleboard rental from the self-serve station.
7) Honeymoon Island State Park
Honeymoon Island is north of Clearwater and one of the few islands on Florida’s west coast that can be reached by car via the Dunedin Causeway. The state park on Honeymoon Island has public restrooms, showers, and a cafe. The on-site concessionaire offers rentals of beach chairs, umbrellas, bikes, and kayaks.
At the northern tip of the island, Honeymoon Beach has two covered pavilions with picnic tables, barbecue grills, and restrooms.
8) Indian Rocks Beach
Indian Rocks Beach has some of the best public access for any beaches near Clearwater. Parking is free for visitors and residents at 18 public beach access sites. Visitors need to avoid the resident-only parking by looking for the signs.
The beach here is quiet and great for families. Rentals are available for kayaks, boats, and paddleboards. Hike the long boardwalk through the nine-acre Indian Rocks Nature Preserve in search of wildlife in the wetlands and forest. You don’t need to be a guest of the Holiday Inn Harborside to enjoy the Splash Harbor water park there. The water park offers a lazy river, splash zone, waterslides, and Blue Lagoon Pool.
9) Fort De Soto Park
Florida’s beaches are not open to dogs unless you are at the dog beach at Fort de Soto Park.
Fort de Soto Park consists of five connected islands with sandy beaches, a historic fort, and seven miles of paved trails for walking and bike riding. Canoe and kayak rentals are available to explore the tidal waters and mangroves.
At Paw Playground, areas are designated for big or small dogs to play on the beach without a leash. Hoses are available to wash the sand off their paws.
Explore The Best Beaches Near Clearwater, FL By Boat
With a boat rental from Treasure Isle Boats, you can be captain for a day. Rent a plush and comfortable pontoon boat so you and your friends can explore the Intracoastal Waterways between St. Pete Beach and Clearwater Beach, Florida.
Enjoy your day on the water, looking for wildlife in the Boca Ciega Bay Aquatic Preserve and heading to Shell Key to search for shells. Bring a picnic and enjoy lunch on board. Spending a day on the water is an unforgettable experience and the highlight of your vacation in the Clearwater area.