In Pinellas County you’ll find your own little slice of paradise with the best St Petersburg, FL white sand beaches with crystal clear water!
If you find yourself in the Tampa Bay or St Petersburg area, you’re in luck because we have some of the most beautiful beaches in all of Florida. Located on the Gulf of Mexico, these white sand beaches are great for swimming or catching sunset.
Depending on what time of year you’re heading to St Pete, you’ll either find the water calm and peaceful or gorgeously tempestuous.
When the weather is nice the water is clear and still, and you’ll likely be able to see straight to the bottom. You’ll also notice the fish swimming by!
However, during the rainy season when we get a lot of storms, you’ll find the water a lot choppier. It’s still beautiful though. And unless it’s unsafe to swim, it’s a lot of fun to play in the waves or try surfing.
The 2 things I love most about the beautiful St Petersburg, FL beaches: 1) they’re all white sand beaches, and 2) they all offer a stunning view of sunset.
Things to Keep in Mind About St Pete Beaches:
- Expect to pay for parking, which you can frequently do through the Park Mobile app. Then if you’re able to find free parking, it’ll be a bonus.
- If it’s important to you to have access to bathrooms and beach showers, check each beach’s website to make sure these amenities are offered.
- Some beaches have concessions stands where you can buy food and beverages. Additionally, some beaches have nearby restaurants.
- Be sure to clean up after yourself and not leave any trash on the beach.
- Don’t climb on the sand dunes; they’re important for the environment and they’re protected by law.
- The best time to look for seashells is early in the morning or at low tide.
The Best St Petersburg, FL Beaches
Redington Shores Beach Access
Sand dunes at Redington Beach.
Redington Shores Beach is a hidden local gem. It’s a less touristy beach that’s typically quieter and not as crowded than a lot of other beaches. It’s also very family-friendly.
Palm trees at Redington Beach.
Address: 18200 Gulf Blvd, Redington Shores, FL 33708
Redington Long Pier
This 1200-foot wooden fishing pier was build in 1962. It fell into disrepair, but remained a historic landmark for quite a while. The Redington Long Pier was demolished in 2020, which you can read about on Catalyst.
For some reason, I always get an epic sunset at Madeira Beach. The center of “Mad Beach” is John’s Pass Fishing Village and Boardwalk. There you’ll find shops, restaurants, boating, fishing, and a 1,100 foot boardwalk. The beach itself is not usually too crowded.
Insider Tip: In the fall, the Seafood Festival at John’s Pass is a great place to enjoy local seafood. It’s a celebration of food, music, and arts and crafts.
Address: 300 Municipal Drive, Madeira Beach, FL 33708
Treasure Island Beach
A little bit on the rowdier side, Treasure Island Beach is known for its beach bars and nightlife, but is a bit quieter on weekdays.
Insider Tip: Referred to as the “World’s Longest Waterfront Bar,” Gators Café & Saloon is a fun place to check out on Treasure Island.
Address: 10400 Gulf Boulevard, Treasure Island, FL 33706
Close up of rocks at Upham Beach.
Blind Pass rock jetty at Upham Beach.
Birds perched on Blind Pass rock jetty at Upham Beach.
Upham Beach is one of my favorite beaches in the area. Not only is it a beautiful white sand beach, but if you walk north a little way on the beach you’ll come to Blind Pass, a rock jetty.
It’s common to see birds perched on the jetty, and it’s not uncommon to see dolphins swimming in the area.
Blind Pass at Upham Beach at twilight.
Address: 6850 Beach Plaza, St Pete Beach, FL 33706
St Pete Beach
St Pete Beach on a stormy day.
Beautiful St Pete Beach was originally made up of Pass-A-Grille Beach, Don CeSar Place, Belle Vista Beach, and St Petersburg Beach. They merged into the City of St Petersburg Beach, and later the city shortened the name to St Pete Beach.
Along this stretch, the wide white sand beaches with clear water are breathtaking.
St Pete Beach at sunset.
View of Don CeSar Hotel from the beach.
Pina Colada and Mimi Vice Drinks at Don CeSar Hotel. The Mimi Vice drink is half Pina Colada and half Strawberry Daiquiri.
Insider Tip: The outdoor bar at Don CeSar is a great place to order drinks and enjoy sunset, and parking is free there for the first 2 hours.
Address: 4700 Gulf Boulevard, St Pete Beach, FL 33706
Pass-a-Grille Beach is located on the southernmost end of St Pete beach. It’s a charming area with an outdoor art market, boutiques, restaurants, and fishing piers, in addition to white sand beaches.
Address: 1000 Pass-a-Grille Way, Pass-a-Grille, FL 33706
Fort De Soto Park
Fort De Soto Park
Palm trees and foliage at Fort De Soto Park.
More foliage at Fort De Soto Park.
One of the really cool things about Fort De Soto Park is that it’s so much more than just a beach. It’s also a great place for hiking, biking, boating, fishing, picnicking, and nature-watching (especially bird watching). There is also a place for camping, and there is an area designated for dogs too!
Additionally, Fort De Soto Park has two piers and an abandoned fort that dates back to the Civil War Era.
You can read more about Fort De Soto Park on Wikipedia.
Landscape at Fort De Soto Park.
Part of the old fort in the water at Fort De Soto Park.
Insider Tip: Fort De Soto Park has two beaches for swimming, North Beach and East Beach.
Address: 3500 Pinellas Bayway S, St. Petersburg, FL 33715
Sunset on the Bay at Vinoy Park.
This isn’t technically a beach, but if you’re in St Petersburg, Florida it needs to be mentioned. Vinoy Park is located in Downtown St Petersburg on Tampa Bay, not on the Gulf of Mexico.
But you’ll still catch beautiful sunsets in DTSP in general, and Vinoy Park in particular. The sky and water will turn soft cotton candy-shades of pink and blue and it’s absolutely breathtaking.
Bird and boat watching at Vinoy Park.
Head to a nearby rooftop restaurant or bar to take in the best views of sunset over Tampa Bay.
Insider Tip: One of my favorite places to relax and enjoy the view of the Bay, especially at sunset, is The Canopy, a rooftop lounge with libations and light bites.
Rooftop view from The Canopy.
Address: 701 Bayshore Drive NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Is Drinking Allowed on St Petersburg, FL Beaches?
Here is an article listing the St Petersburg, FL beaches that allow drinking in Pinellas County.
Also, note that while drinking might be allowed on a particular beach, glass bottles may be prohibited.
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