On a recent trip to St. Petersburg I was amazed at how truly beautiful the city is and how very much there is to do and see there.
The city its self has a great skyline with dramatic new buildings rising up from it and the old standards like the Pier, which is an eye catching inverted pyramid. I say it’s an old standard because the Pier has been a fixture of the downtown area, in its current form since 1973 and in some form since 1889. Local festivals are still held there and for a long time community were dances too. You can fish, shop, dine there’s even a small patch of beach to have fun on and an aquarium but the best part is; it’s in the middle of downtown so it’s fun and convenient.
Tampa Bay itself is also an integral part of life in St. Petersburg. Not only is it a beautiful body of water but it to impacts life in St. Petersburg on a daily basis. Fishing in the bay adds to the local economy and you have to cross the Bay at some point if you want to get around in St. Petersburg but there is also a lot of fun to be had on the Bay. Sail boaters in particular like it because it is very big yet protected which makes it a great place for the many regattas and races that are held there annually.
Also, spanning the Bay is one of the modern wonders in America, if not the world – The Sunshine Skyway Bridge. As we were going over the bridge I was impressed by its size, at over five miles long it is the longest cable-stayed main span suspension bridge in America. Any day of the week there are people all over the old bridge, right beside the new one, fishing or taking pictures or simply standing staring over the side at whatever is passing by be it a boat, pod of dolphin or a sting ray. It’s too inviting not to stop and have a look around which is exactly what we did. We spent an hour just watching people, taking pictures and looking for sealife.
If you’re a sports fan St. Petersburg is a great place too. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays baseball team have had there home stadium, Tropicana Field, in St. Petersburg since 1998. Tropicana Field has also served as the host stadium for the St. Petersburg Bowl, an NCAA-sanctioned college football bowl game since December 2008. The St. Pete Times Forum is a sports and entertainment center that hosts over 150 events including concerts, ice shows and the circus. The Forum is also the home to the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Tampa Bay Storm, an Arena Football League. It hosts numerous NCAA events such as the Men’s Basketball Quarterfinals and the Women’s Final Four. In 2012 the Forum is slated to host the Frozen Four, which is the NCAA Men’s Division I Hockey Finals.
For all you ‘cultural folk’ there are things like the Salvador Dali Museum. The Dali Museum has over 200,000 visitors annually from around the world maybe because houses the largest collection of Dalí’s work in the world. Along with the ever changing exhibits they have two film series, lectures and concerts. The Dali Museum maintains a strong partnership with the community of St. Petersburg as well as museums and educational institutions around the world. The museum continues to preserve and protect its collective works, while making them open and accessible for the enjoyment and education of all people, enhancing the public’s appreciation of Salvador Dali and his many great works. It’s a great place to spend an afternoon and maybe even introduce the kids to a great artist. Speaking of the kids St. Petersburg has a great children’s museum called Great Explorations, as well as a Museum of Fine Arts, a History Museum, and a Holocaust Museum. Nearby Fort De Soto is also a great place for the kids to take a look back in time and spend a day. For some leisure time there are many beaches around and islands nearby to explore.
As I said before there is a lot to do and see in St. Petersburg, I was delighted and amazed. So as you’re planning your trip be sure to do your homework and plot enough time to thoroughly enjoy the area.
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