568 miles - You'll find that the area around Tampa has it all.  The state's warm climate has always attracted settlers from afar; head south toward the intriguing Koreshan State Historic site - once grounds of a new religion, Koreshanity - and see for yourself.  As you glide along the coast, turn off route toward Barefoot Beach in Bonita Springs, a peaceful stretch of land perfect for soaking up the sun.  Tracing the edge of the Everglades, you'll head northeast, passing small barbecue spots, cafes, and diners along the way, perfect for a midday feast.  Those in need of a dose of nature will be happy to find themselves rounding Lake Okeechobee.  Later, veer off at Mosaic Peace River Park in Fort Meade before heading back toward Tampa.


Points Of Interest

  • The Dali Museum (1 Dali Blvd, St. Petersburg, FL)
  • John & Mable Ringling Museum Of Art (5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota, FL)
  • Sarasota National Cemetery (9810 State Rd 72, Sarasota, FL)
  • Barefoot Beach Preserve County Park (505 Barefoot Beach Blvd, Bonita Springs, FL)
  • Ybor City (www.yborcityonline.com)
  • Manatee Viewing Center (6990 Dickman Rd, Apollo Beach, FL)
  • Tampa Bay Sailing Tours (518 N Tampa St #300, Tampa, FL)

Lunch Stops

  • Uncle Andy's Old Fashioned Ice Cream Parlor (3400 Gulf Ave, St. Pete Beach, FL)
  • Log Cabin BBQ (480 W Hickpochee Ave, LaBelle, FL)
  • Nutmeg's Cafe (515 SW Park St, Okeechobee, FL)
  • Palm Diner (2710 Kenilworth Blvd, Sebring, FL)
  • Maxwell Groves (607 E Circle St, Avon Park, FL)

AuthorJames Gerdes