Everyone’s Dream Beach
By Victoria Figueiredo
Florida takes a lot of flak for being a weird place to live. We have alligators in our back yards, “Florida Man” neighbors, and the weather is generally unsuitable for most people, even on a good day. While we can’t deny that it takes a special breed of human to be born here, grow up here, and/or choose to live here as adults, we’ll go to the grave defending this state as a national treasure. On that note, we’re here to present a new series of posts celebrating our home state and the places that make it awesome. First stop on our list? Fort DeSoto Park.
You’d be forgiven for not knowing what Fort DeSoto is. As someone from Miami, where beaches mean parties and decidedly capitalistic parking prices, our author wrote off all Tampa Bay beaches (really, beaches in general) as too crowded and noisy to enjoy when she first moved here. Three years later, she’s well aware of the error of her ways. Fort DeSoto is actually a coastal park on the National Register of Historic Places, which means it’s not only well kept, chill, and family-friendly, it has everything you need to enjoy your day spent there. Let’s go down the list of amenities you’ll have access to during your visit, shall we?
There are kayaks to rent, bikes to borrow for a nominal fee, a snack bar to get something frozen and refreshing, brick grills in case you were planning on firing up some hot dogs, a canoe trail, a nature trail, mad picnic areas, a bunch of places to fish, two swimming beaches, a boat ramp, a camping area with an attached modern bathroom and laundry room, seven miles of trails to skate on, bike down, run on (if you’re into that whole exercise thing), a Paw Playground for your dogs to bound around in and taste the fresh air, and last but not least, a ferry to nearby Egmont Key State Park in case you feel like beach-hopping.
Is someone in your family particularly into history? Take them to explore the historic fort and all its cannons. Are you in a relaxing kind of mood? Lay out in the sand and go for a dip when you get too warm. Want to enjoy the scenery but still get your cardio in for the day? Go for a walk and take in those vistas, my dude. Fort DeSoto has it all. The best part? You only have to pay $5 per car to get in. Hold your applause, gather the kiddos, and don’t forget your sunscreen – the ocean is calling.
Is there somewhere in Florida you think we should spotlight? Let us know in the comments!