Anna Maria Island has easily become my favorite beach town. As soon as I stepped foot on the white powdery sand beaches and looked out onto the long stretch of turquoise water, I was immediately hooked. Despite having grown up in Tampa Bay, I’m still in awe of the breathtaking beach views each and every visit.
The locals call it AMI and have done a great job of maintaining the island’s charm as it’s grown into such a popular tourist destination. No chain restaurants. No high rises. Even most of the large new builds stay true to the “feel” of the island. However, nothing could ever replace the old beach cottages found throughout the island.
Planning for a vacation has always been one of my favorite things to do in life. Except for the part that involved packing. It wasn’t until recently that I realized the minimalist packing approach is the way to go.
Downtown Dunedin is about a 45-minute car ride from downtown St. Pete. In the past, my whereabouts in this town have consisted of one type of place: breweries (which they have plenty of and all are amazing). So despite having made the day trip to Dunedin numerous times, I had never spent the day exploring Main St. or the surrounding shops.
Knowing it’s a beach town, I half expected tourist-y stores full of cheesy souvenirs. But what I found was quite the opposite; the shops are just as charming as the town itself.
The Saturday Morning Market has become sort of an institution in St. Pete. Thousands of people come out every Saturday to visit their favorite vendors who set up shop at the weekly market. It’s become one of the largest outdoor markets in the country that operates year round (in the summer months, the market moves a few blocks away to the more shaded area of Williams Park).
If you live in St. Pete or the surrounding area and have social media you must have heard about Shine On, the week long St. Pete Mural Festival that took over our city a couple weeks ago. We had some seriously talented artists from all over the world come and put their creative touch on what were originally blank walls. All of the St. Pete murals look amazing but of course you are bound to have a few favorites so I wanted to share a few of mine with you!