Our Clearwater Travel Essentials lays out the essential information you need to help you plan your trip to one of the most popular destinations in Florida, USA. No matter how frequently you travel, some questions will always need answers: What’s the weather like? How can I get from Tampa International Airport (TPA) to my hotel? What currency and type of plug do I need?

    We have all these answers plus other basic info about the best time to go, getting there, getting around, and a few useful travel tips. You’ll also learn about the most popular landmarks in Clearwater, such as Pier 60, the Moccasin Lake Nature Park, and Pinellas County Heritage Village. It’s all compiled in this Clearwater Travel Essentials. After going through this short and easy-to-read guide, you’ll be a little more prepared to start your trip to Clearwater.

    1

    When is the best time to travel to Clearwater?

    • Clearwater has a subtropical climate with warm, humid summers and mild winters. Average temperatures range from 62°F in winter to 82°F in summer.
    • The period with the most rain is June–September, with around 14 wet days per month. Expect an average of 6 rainy days per month for the rest of the year.
    • Clearwater is warm year-round. With average temperatures over 80°F, the rainy months of June–September are also the warmest of the year. Summer record highs can reach up to 96°F, but Clearwater rarely experiences such extremely hot days.
    • The peak season is December–April, when you can expect higher hotel rates and more crowds. If you plan to visit Clearwater around this time of the year, it’s best to book well in advance.
    • The best time to visit Clearwater is October–November, in late autumn and just before the peak season kicks in. You’ll find good hotel deals and, despite the increase in the number of visitors, you’ll have great weather conditions and smaller crowds at places of interest.
    2

    Clearwater basics

    • Plug type: A and B
    • Electricity: 120 V
    • Currency: United States Dollar (US$)
    • International dialling code: +1 727
    • Emergency telephone number: 911
    3

    How to get to my hotel in Clearwater?

    Tampa International Airport and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) are the 2 main gateways to Clearwater and Pinellas County.

    You can also get to Tampa by Amtrak train on its Silver Star line. You’ll then have to take a bus or taxi to reach Clearwater.

    If you’re on a budget or want to travel through the States as they did in the post-war era, you can get to St. Petersburg (8 miles southeast of Clearwater) by Greyhound or Amtrak coach.

    Tampa International Airport (TPA) & St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE)

    Tampa International Airport is 17 miles east of Clearwater. The average driving time between Tampa Airport and Clearwater is 30 minutes.

    Free Wi-Fi is available throughout TPA. Ground transport options for getting to Clearwater are as follows:

    • Taxi companies – Yellow Cab and United Cab – as well as limousine and van services, are available at the curbside, outside baggage claim.
    • The Uber and Lyft pick-up areas are at Red baggage claim, Blue baggage claim, or the remote curbside at the Rental Car Centre.
    • Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) operates public buses that serve Clearwater. The bus stop is at the Rental Car Centre. It takes twice as long as a taxi, but it’s the cheapest way to get to Clearwater.
    • Major car rental companies are in the Rental Car Centre, which is connected to the Main Terminal by SkyConnect train.

    St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport is 7 miles southeast of Clearwater. It’s less busy than Tampa Airport and mostly served by low-cost carriers. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the terminal here, too. Below are the ground transport options available at PIE:

    • Taxi and shuttle options are found outside baggage claim.
    • The Uber and Lyft pick-up areas are also outside of baggage claim.
    • Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) operates public buses that serve Clearwater. The bus stop is in front of the terminal. It’s the cheapest way to get to Clearwater.
    • Car rental agencies' desks are right outside baggage claim.

    Tampa Union Station

    Tampa Union Station is served by the Amtrak Silver Star Line that links New York to Miami. The station is located on North Nebraska Avenue in Downtown Tampa, 21 miles east of Clearwater.

    From here, you can get to Clearwater by taxi, rideshare, or bus. The average driving time by car is 30 minutes.

    Greyhound and Amtrak bus stations near Clearwater

    The closest Greyhound and Amtrak bus stations to Clearwater are in St. Petersburg, 12 miles southeast of the city centre. Taxis, rideshares, and PSTA buses are available for you to get to Clearwater.

    4

    How to get around Clearwater?

    Travel tips

    The city of Clearwater covers an area of about 35 square miles. Walking is a good option for short distances within Clearwater, Clearwater Beach, and St. Petersburg city centres. Riding a bicycle is also a fun and popular way for exploring Pinellas County.

    For longer distances, depending on your budget and taste, you can get around by taxi, rideshare, public bus, trolley, ferry, or rental car.

    Taking a taxi in Clearwater

    From United Taxi (+1 727-777-7777) to Clearwater Taxi & Airport Transportation (+1 727-678-9200), N.Y. Cab & Limo Co. (+1 727-543-4111) and many more, taxis are easy to find in Clearwater. You can also easily find taxi lines in front of hotels and main attractions. It’s easy to hail one on the street, too.

    Convenient yet rather expensive, getting around Clearwater by taxicab is not your best option if you’re on a budget, although a taxi ride may be your only option to get back to your hotel late at night. Note that tipping for taxis in the States is usually between 15% and 20% of the fare. Most taxi drivers accept credit cards, though sometimes reluctantly.

    Uber and Lyft are the 2 main ride-sharing apps used in Clearwater. Their rates are slightly cheaper than standard taxicabs.

    Travelling by public transport in Clearwater

    Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) is the main public transport company operating in Clearwater and Pinellas County. The system covers an area of over 200 square miles, and it even serves Tampa International Airport. Free Wi-Fi and bike racks are available onboard PSTA buses.

    PSTA also runs 4 trolley lines in Pinellas County: Central Avenue Trolley, Downtown Looper, Jolley Trolley, and Suncoast Beach Trolley. Central Avenue Trolley and Downtown Looper operate in St. Petersburg, while Jolley Trolley and Suncoast Beach Trolley operate in Clearwater Beach.

    A wide range of ticketing options is available, from 1-way tickets to multiple-day passes (GO Cards). You can buy single tickets on the bus with the exact amount in cash, while GO Cards are available online and at specific locations.

    Renting a car in Clearwater

    Renting and driving a car is not the best idea for getting around Clearwater as traffic can get very congested and parking is hard to find. Public transport is convenient enough to get to landmarks, attractions, and beaches, and almost everything is within walking distance.

    Clearwater Ferry

    Clearwater Ferry has 2 water taxi routes that offer an unusual and breezy way of getting around. Note that reservations are mandatory as there’s no room guaranteed for walk-on passengers.

    Clearwater Route departs from Downtown Clearwater, stops at Clearwater Beach Marina, and ends in North Beach. Dunedin Route departs from Downtown Clearwater and stops at the Clearwater Beach Marina, North Beach, CMA/Island Estates, and Dunedin.

    Cycling around Clearwater

    Hiring a bicycle is a cool way of getting around Clearwater. Many cycling trails for all levels are spread throughout Pinellas County. PSTA has bike racks that allow you to easily reach cycling trails too far from your hotel. Cycling route maps are available online.

    You can hire a road, electric, or mountain bike at rental companies like Kafe Racer (+1 727-466-1245), Fun Ride Rentals (+1 855-538-6743), and Clearwater Beach Scooter and Bike Rentals (+1 727-466-9543), just to name a few.

    5

    What are the main annual events in Clearwater?

    Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival

    • April
    • A 17-day Clearwater Beach celebration with sand sculpture contests as its main attraction, alongside live music performances, a kid’s play zone, and more.
    • Where: Clearwater Beach

    Clearwater Celebrates America

    • 4 July
    • Clearwater celebrates Independence Day in a park downtown with food and drink stalls, music, and family-friendly activities. The fireworks start around 9 pm.
    • Where: Coachman Park

    Clearwater Jazz Holiday

    • October
    • Founded in 1980, this annual celebration offers cool cats a great occasion to enjoy their favourite music. Dizzy Gillespie, UB40, and Sheryl Crow are just a few of the famed artists who have performed at the festival.
    • Where: Coachman Park
    6

    What are the main landmarks in Clearwater?

    Pier 60

    A highly popular fishing jetty in Clearwater Beach that’s not only a splendid place to cast your line but also as a stage for street performers at night.

    Pinellas County Heritage Village

    Home to 2 museums, a native plants trail, and a gift shop. Learn about Pinellas County’s local history and watch demonstrations such as sugar cane juice extraction, metal forging, smoking food, and more.

    Moccasin Lake Nature Park

    A 51-acre green oasis in the middle of Clearwater, ideal for a relaxing stroll surrounded by nature. You can explore the reserve via trails and boardwalks that meander through a dense oak forest.

    Anclote Key Lighthouse

    This historic landmark is an emaciated metal pyramidal tower 14 miles north of Clearwater, built in 1887 towards the southern tip of the nature preserve state park of the same name.

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