Tarpon Springs to Clearwater to Redington Shores, FL

Tarpon Springs is known for its once very large sponge industry back in the early 1900s when divers where brought over from Greece to harvest sponges in Florida. We remember Tarpon Springs for it’s amazing Greek food. No surprise the food is so good after learning that Tarpon Springs has the highest percentage of Greek Americans of any city in the US today.

Sponges are sold everywhere in Tarpon Springs.
Costas was such a fantastic Greek place we had dinner twice here.

Hellas Greek Bakery - should have eaten here every day.We ended up spending 3 days at Turtle Cove Marina in Tarpon Springs. First day was a blur. We were still groggy from our overnight crossing but after a nap managed to rally for dinner at a great seafood place within walking distance with Mike & Mary (Forever Friday) and John & Gina (Alysana).

A tired Kent after our Gulf crossing.

Second day we played. We got on the rusting bikes and headed out on the Pinellas Trail to Clearwater for lunch. This is a multi use trail that is 38 miles long and goes from Tarpon Springs south to St. Petersburg. It is a pretty well traveled trail and a great way to see the towns without having to deal with car traffic.

Ride on!

Covered 18 mi and saw a bunch of cool smaller towns along the way.

Return trip to Tarpon Springs via the Jolly Trolley.

Third day was dedicated to the boat. Heather was in charge of giving the exterior of the boat some attention. Not a glamorous task and it was long overdue. Kent finished installing the water maker. It took multiple trips to Home Depot, Lowes, Ace Hardware and West Marine as any home or boat project often does. Fortunately this is the first time we have been close to these types of stores so he rode his bike all over looking for the parts needed. It is now 100% installed and turning salt water into drinking water for us.

From Tarpon Springs we took the boat down to Clearwater (~ 22 statue miles) where we anchored out for 2 nights. Clearwater is filled with tourists on vacation and all the beach themed chain restaurants and bars you might expect. We sought out the smaller/quieter spots and had some fantastic conversations with the locals. The beach here however was spectacular, a white sand shoreline for as far as you can see.

Heartbeat at anchor in Clearwater (find the red hull). The condos in this pic look small, they are actually ginormous.

First conch fritters of the trip!

Clearwater beach at sunset.

It was another short trip (~ 15 statute miles) as we left Clearwater for Redington Shores. We anchored in the small cove and were surrounded by brightly painted houses and very few high rises, a nice change from Clearwater. We took the dingy into the nearby restaurant (Seabreeze) and enjoyed lunch and a free beer (arrive by boat there and it gets you a free beer!). We walked the neighborhood and enjoyed dinner onboard with Mike & Mary (Forever Friday). Redington Shores was a great little find and is more our style than Clearwater.

Lunch with a view.
Heartbeat and Forever Friday at anchor in Redington Shores.

Apparently The Oregonian delivers to Redington Shores?!

We are still chasing the warm weather. We are running our heaters at night/early morning but not complaining too much as we are happy to be able to be on this journey.