Beach Lovers Destinations: Madeira Beach, FL

Madeira Beach is a small waterfront community on the Gulf of Mexico located between Clearwater and St. Pete Beach. The calm and warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico make this a wonderful vacation spot, and there are nearby attractions to keep you busy when you aren’t catching rays and playing in the ocean. Locally known as Mad Beach, it is only two miles long and conveniently located close to Tampa Airport and a short drive to Orlando. This low-key getaway attracts beach lovers to its clean, white-sandy shores and calm emerald-turquoise waters, and is a must-visit if you love fresh seafood. Keep reading for things you must do when visiting Mad Beach.

Visit John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk

The main attraction in Mad Beach is the world-famous John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk. This is a great spot to spend a few hours after enjoying the sun and sand all day, with over 100 shops, restaurants and bars. When we think beach, we think live music, tiki bars and great seafood – John’s Pass has it all. Grab a bite to eat and listen to live music at Scully’s Seafood Restaurant or any of the numerous other seaside restaurants in the area. If you’re looking to do some shopping, John’s Pass has plenty to offer with specialty gift shops with trinkets, clothing, jewelry, antiques, plus much more. This is also where you’ll find water and fishing activities ranging from tours to rentals.

Get out on the water for the day and go fishing

Also known as the “Grouper Capital of the World,” you won’t have any trouble finding delectable seafood here. Rent a boat from Hubbard’s Marina and cruise Boca Ciega Bay, check out the amazing waterfront real estate before taking it gulf-side and catching your own fresh fish to cook for dinner. If you want to fish with the big dogs and have someone else to drive the boat, you can take a deep-sea fishing charter. Or if you want you want to spend some time on the water but not necessarily go fishing, you can take a dolphin-watching cruise. Renting jet-skis or parasailing are also options. Either way, be sure to check out the sandbar right off the boardwalk. There are plenty of things to do here to get you out on the water for the day.

Relax on the beautiful beach

They call it the “Sunshine State” for a reason! Be sure to pack your sunscreen because the sun is always out here. Rent chairs and an umbrella and sit back and relax. While you get bronzed, watch the fishing boats come and go or go walk the beach and hunt for seashells. If you’re lucky you can catch a pod of dolphins playing right off the coast. Situated just south of Clearwater – one of America’s finest beaches – Mad Beach offers the beauty and fun without the crowds.

Watch the sunset

This area is known for its spectacular sunsets. There is nothing quite like a Florida sunset and if you’ve never experienced the beauty on the west coast of Florida, you’re missing out. Take a romantic walk down the beach or pick your favorite spot to sit. Each sunset is different – pastel-colored and delicate, sometimes with an explosion of color, or simple golden hues. Either way, after your first sunset, you will have your alarm set for the rest of your trip so you won’t miss this magic hour. You’ll have enough Instagram content to last for weeks to come. Who can look at that photo and not wish they were there?

Some like action-filled vacations, but if you’re looking for a more laid-back vibe with great activity options, plan Madeira Beach for your next vacation. It has something for everyone and is centrally located to all of the major attractions in this area. Its pristine beaches make it a wonderful location to kick back, relax, and re-energize which is why it made our Top 5 Destinations for 2018.