Recently, we detailed the beautiful Clam Bayou Nature Preserve in our lovely Gulfport. This week, we’re venturing over to St. Petersburg’s Sawgrass Lake Park, one of the Florida Gulf Coast’s largest maple swamps, featuring more than 400 acres of hardwoods, canals, lakes, and plentiful wildlife. Stroll along the mile of wooden boardwalk or the half-mile dirt trail in the warm Florida sunshine.
Things to See at Sawgrass Lake Park
The park will be of particular interest to bird-watchers. The Great Florida Birding Trail and the Audubon Society both recognize Sawgrass Lake Park as one of Florida’s premier birding spots, featuring herons, egrets, ibis, and storks. The birds are particularly plentiful during spring and fall.
Not a birder? Well, stop by the canals and spend a few minutes gazing at the aquatic life, such as the alligators, turtles, and river otters. On land, expect to find armadillos, raccoons, and more!
Best of all, the park is located right in St. Petersburg, making it a convenient stop on your tour of the city. For more information, contact the Sawgrass Lake Park at (727) 217-7256.
Things to Do After Visiting the Park
After you’ve had your fill of wildlife and natural beauty (if that’s possible!), head to the Morean Arts Center for some finely-crafted artistic beauty. The gallery, located just a 15-minute car ride away, exhibits works from local, national, and international artists across a wide variety of forms and media including drawing, photography, painting, pottery and jewelry making. Past exhibitions have included works by Jasper Johns, Duncan McClellan, Allison Massari, and more.
If that sounds appealing, you may also wish to check out the Morean’s other locations:
- The Chihuly Collection: The Chihuly Collection is a stunning collection by famed artist Dale Chihuly. The work is housed in a beautiful 10,000-square-foot gallery, and the artwork and gallery were designed to integrate and create a jaw-dropping visitor experience.
- The Morean Arts Center Glass Studio and Hot Shop: The Morean’s Glass Studio and Hot Shop gives visitors a behind-the-scenes look at glassblowing, as resident glass artists craft exquisite works of art. Everything crafted in the glass studio is sold inside the Hot Shop Store. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can create your own work through the Personal Glass Experience. Or, if you’re there with a loved one, you and your date can experience a Hot Date at the Hot Shop. For more information on the Hot Date, call (727) 822-7872.
- The Morean Center for Clay: The Center for Clay offers classes and workshops to budding potters. They also have a number of artists in residence and routinely display beautiful examples of finely-crafted clay creations.
Enjoy a Relaxing Evening at Historic Peninsula Inn
And after a full day of natural and artistic beauty, head back to the Historic Peninsula Inn for a delicious dinner at our restaurant Isabelle’s. Isabelle’s specializes in Contemporary Classic Southern cuisine, and has won numerous awards, like “Best of the Beaches” and “Best of the Road” from Rand McNally. Come see why everyone’s raving about it.
Whatever your reason for heading this way, you’ll need a great accommodation to complement your Old Florida experience. Join us at the Historic Peninsula Inn; it’s the perfect resting spot between adventures in our charming town! We look forward to hearing from you.