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It’s hard not to be lured in by the natural beauty of Caladesi Island in Dunedin. It’s one of the few remaining large undeveloped barrier islands on Florida’s Gulf Coast and a must-see destination for nature enthusiasts. You’ll be enchanted by its idyllic landscapes that include a sugar-white beach with an uncrowded shoreline, which makes you feel like you’ve truly found a slice of paradise.
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You’ll feel time slip away as you spend an afternoon enjoying the simple pleasures of sunbathing, swimming in its crystal clear waters and combing the beach for colorful seashell treasures. It’s here that you can simply marvel at your surroundings without the presence of hotels, where you can watch dolphins frolicking in the waters and gopher tortoises burrowing in the sand.
While we’ve got plenty of beautiful beaches in the Sunshine State, Caladesi Island consistently ranks as one of the best. Come and spend your time soaking up the salty breeze and listening to the gentle surf that rolls along the tranquil shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico.
If you’re up for a little adventure, you can also embark on a kayaking excursion through the mangroves and bay, as canoes and kayaks are available to rent. Saltwater anglers can cast a line from their boats or surf fish, while those who prefer to keep their feet on land can spot unique birdlife soaring above as you traverse the three-mile scenic hiking trail that winds through the island’s interior.
When you need a break from outdoor adventures, pick up food and drinks from the snack bar and enjoy a light lunch at one of the picnic tables or shaded pavilions or visit the on-site gift shop for a souvenir. If you’re visiting with the kids, there’s also a children’s playground with swings, slides and climbing bars next to the picnic area.
Caladesi Island is only accessible by boat or ferry. The ferry departs every day from Honeymoon State Park, which is just 10 miles from the bustling Clearwater Beach area.
Caladesi Island State Park:
Address: Offshore Island, Dunedin, FL 34698
Phone Number: (727) 469-5918