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Last month we planned our Holiday Budget Destination For Spring Break to Clearwater Beach in Tempa, Florida.
Actaully this was so good that we planned and went to the second spring break in Florida too. And I’m writing this post after coming back from Orlando, Florida.
This is not the first time I went to Florida. Been there couple of times before, when my kids were small.
All those Disneyland rides were favorite of my son and daughter. In fact, Disneyland princess parade still makes some of good and favorite experiences.
But this time it was only 2 of us me and my husband going to Clearwater beach Tempa, Florida.
So all the expenses and plans are for 2 adults.
How to plan
So right now I’m going to tell you all how tos for the ‘Holiday Budget Destination For Spring Break’ to Clearwater Beach in Tempa, Florida.
So let’s talk about how to plan to go to this destination.
We booked our vacation with Expedia.com for the weekend.
Total travel and lodging expenses for 3 days are a little over $1200.00
Departing in Friday afternoon from JFK, New York and Arriving at Tempa international in evening.
It’s almost 2 and half hour flight from JFK internationl, NY
And our destination was Clearwater Beach, Tempa Florida staying at Hyatt Regency.
and coming back on Monday evening, so it was 3 nights stay.
What to Pack
We both had our small carry on suitcases.
Mine was a little bigger and heavier so I had to check in with a fee of around $35.
We only packed minimal stuff.
I packed 3 day outfits and 2 extra ones. For instance, I carried mainly pants and tops and 2 dresses in case I needed them. But for traveling I carried and wore my big heavy snow Jacket. Because when we left from JFK, the temperature was still in 20s and all the huge plies of snow.
I always carry my exercise gears and sneaker on every travel, wherever I go.
Oh, actually I ended up with more items and clothes as we were shopping there too!
Our room had a nice big view of the beach & vast water on left and big & small boats on the other side.
Early morning when we woke up, we were on the balcony overlooking the beach with sun rising. And all quiet atmosphere and empty roads. And slowly and slowly one human walking on the beach and in next ten minutes many and then crowded in 1 hour. And then, all the cars and suvs running on the roads again.
Where to eat
We landed in Tempa International around 5pm and were in our hotel, Hyatt Regency, around 6pm.
Undeniably, We had a nice room on the 11 floor of the hotel, with very beautiful view outside.
It’s around 25-35 minutes ride from the airport.
Immediately after checking in, we walked around inside the hotel to see the restaurants, shops, gym and spa etc.
After a while, we ordered room service with standard fish and vegetables meals and a champagne.
And next morning, after our breakfast, we headed for a walk on the beach.
As I forgot my beach sandals and glasses to pack, I bought from the shop in the lobby of the hotel.
This little neat and tidy, shop had every thing of need, even though it’s a small corner, towards the back door of the lobby, going towards the beach.
The weather was perfect around 70 degrees as opposed to New York’s snowstorms that were showing up too much after the Valentine’s day.
As a consequence, we had a nice 3-4 miles walk on the beach. Surprisingly, the beach was packed. I think because of the weekend and little let down of the lockdown routines everyone was out and enjoying, just like us after a long time quarantined inside.
After a long walk we wanted to eat our lunch and close to our hotel, there was a restaurant ‘BADFINS’ a place with best food. I loved the outdoor tables. We enjoyed coconut shrimps, fish and chips and variety of beers. Everything was very refreshing with a piece of lime on beer glass.
And for dinner later, we had pizza from the hotel’s famous pizza shop. Everywhere we preferred out-door dining with a nice view of coconut and palm trees, and lot of parrots flocking there on all of the trees.
Next day after our dolphin hunt trip, we again enjoyed coconut shrimps, fish tacos and beer at BADFINS restaurant. I couldn’t have enough of the coconut shrimps. Indeed, the sauce to dip the shrimps was very tasty. In fact, my mouth is watering as I’m writing this!
I’m not a big fan of tacos but those fish tacos were really delicious and refreshing with the sauce.
And then in evening we had a long walk and dinner at a very busy place. Most of the restaurants around the hotel were quite busy in the evening. We stopped at one close to our hotel that had lot of people sitting at the bar, inside and outdoor tables.
Actually, we had to wait 10 minutes for our table. I ordered salmon and veges and a mojitos. And my husband ordered a fish sandwich with a frozen raspberry drink.
There was a nice bonfire outdoors. It was not that cold but it felt cozy to look at the fire. May be it was artificial or electrical. And when we finished my husband was shivering because of his frozen raspberry drink.
What to do on this Holiday budget destination for spring break
There is almost like a half a mile of boardwalk and to go at the end to get the whole view of the sea and city behind. But to go at the end you’ve to pay a fee of $1 each. This boardwalk is nice place to get photos and picture with a big dolphin, as you can see mine obviously!
Then we had a 3-4 mile long beach walk as water was still cold and it didn’t felt safe to go inside the water. And the masks were still required. Furthermore, I was carrying my slippers in my hands the whole time to enjoy the cool sand and waves.
But the weather was perfect to walk. And the whole time you can hear the band and drums playing. This is the first time ever I heard drums playing on the beach. It was a school band, either playing for a charity or fund-raising. But it made the open energy of the beach very celebratory and joyous.
Mega Bite- Dolphin hunt trip
The clearwater beach offers many activities for kids and adults, besides the beach itself.
Next day, we chose to go on a dolphin watching trips.
We missed reserving our tickets on a big boat that offered more than 2 hour trip of the sea.
But we reserved our dolphin watching trip on a smaller boat that lasted for an hour. We had a nice view of dolphins jumping and swimming in front of us. As they were trailing behind that big ship which we missed going on. But from our small boat on the side of that passing big ship we enjoyed dolphins dancing,. it was very exhilarating and fun.
Here, the Mega Bite trip cost was $46 for 2 of us, including photos.
Before boarding this small boat, the crew took our photos and as we finished the trip and got off the boat, they gave us or photos. And we exited leaving some tips behind. Actually those photos were pretty good and a good memory.
Even though we had many photos on our cell phone cameras but those printed photos and dolphins jumping alongside our boat made the trip very special and memorable and fun!
We were back from the dolphins watching trip, in time to have lunch around 3pm that day.
Where to shop
Our flight back to home was in the afternoon. Therefore, we spent the earlier part of the day shopping in the neighborhood. It’s a nice shopping area with lot plaza, supermarket and different shops around. A few feet away there is a nice big shop ‘Surf Style’ where you can shop almost everything, eg supermarket, clothing and shoes etc. just like walmart. But clothings and dresses were quite nice. I bought many items and few dresses.
Right next door there were small rental zippy cars. I saw lot of girls driving around the city. But it’s not needed as everything is at a walking distance next to the hotel. And moreover, beach is right in front of you, only 2-3 minutes walk away.
We had our flight in the afternoon from Tempa international airport. And came back to JFK around 7pm and our home is 10-15 min away from the airport.
As you land at JFK, immediately be prepared to fill out the form for COVID &health check, as the united states military is handing out the form. And collecting them back with all the info required from the passengers who are deplaning after a trip.
In conclusion, It’s a very nice destination for adults and even with kids. So Clearwater beach, Tempa Florida makes a good and safe destination even in these pandemic times. Food is excellent and lot of activities to do. Everything is at a walking distance, if staying at Hyatt Regency. Hotel had nice spa. I barely had any time to go to the gym or spa as I planned for. May be next time!
When we arrived and had a ride to our hotel, I asked the taxi driver which one is the best hotel to stay around here. He pointed to and told Grand Hyatt is the best one. It is right next to the airport.
But staying at Hyatt Regency was worth it because it was near the beach and near the hub of everything shopping, food and all the activities etc.
So, I hope I gave you a clear picture of Clearwater Water Beach Tempa, Florida as your next ‘Holiday Budget Destination For Spring Break’ vacation.
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