My favorite activity is taking a long bicycle ride to Tampa Bay. Although the ride from my house to the downtown St.Petersburg waterfront is less than ten miles and takes less than half an hour, it seems a long ride though more experienced riders would disagree.
One of the nicest things about the city of St. Petersburg is the chain of several connected parks along the Tampa Bay waterfront stretching about five miles, from about 8Th Avenue South to 30Th Avenue North. All along the chain of parks from south to north are several city landmarks, starting with the University of South Florida St.Petersburg campus, which houses the Institute of Marine Science, the United States Coast Guard station, and Albert Whitted airport, the oldest in the Tampa bay area. Continuing north along Bayshore drive is Pioneer Park, the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, which has been around for about a century, Progress Energy Stadium and Park, Demens Landing Park, and South Shore Park, all surrounded by docks full of sailboats.
This brings us to 2ND Avenue North which extends into the bay to the Pier, which was built in the 1920s and is probably the best known symbol of the city as shown in many postcards. The Pier is needing structural repairs and it’s future is in doubt.
At the corner of 2ND Avenue North is the Museum of History and the Museum of Fine Arts. Along Bayshore drive is the Vinoy Basin with many sailboats at anchor. Upon reaching 5Th Avenue North is the historic Vinoy Hotel and the adjacent upscale Vinoy Suites condominium, reaching the east end of 5Th Avenue where the Vinoy Basin meets Tampa Bay. From the end of 5Th Avenue Vinoy Park extends north along the shore to 9Th Avenue North, site of the municipal swimming pool and a botanical garden. From there a short beach extends north to about 12Th Avenue north. Continuing north from the beach, North Shore Park extends north with a sidewalk along the beach and shore popular with walkers, joggers, and pet strollers.
North Shore Drive follows the park up to about 18Th Avenue North, where it curves and becomes Coffee Pot Boulevard, where North Shore Park also ends. The sidewalk follows Coffee Pot Boulevard past beautiful well kept mansions until 30Th Avenue North. The end of the chain.