Back in October we spent the weekend at the Barefoot Beach Hotel for my birthday with 20-month old Luke in tow. The hotel, which was actually more of a condo rental, was in the perfect spot, walking distance to John’s Pass and directly on the beach. Our room had a small kitchen that separated the living area from the bed, which was perfect for being able to watch TV at night while Luke slept in the other room. Aside from enjoying the beautiful beach there, here are some of the fun things we did:
Dinner at the Conch Republic – This restaurant had a really fun atmosphere with lots to keep Luke distracted while we enjoyed some crab legs. We try to only go to restaurants that are loud to drown out the sound of Luke’s squeals, so this place was perfect!
Donuts from Mad Beach Mini Donuts – Tucked away at the end of the John’s Pass boardwalk, this little shop offer tasty donuts and drinks. The donuts were super fresh and got Luke’s stamp of approval.
Dolphin Quest Tour Boat Ride – This was the highlight of our weekend. It was about a 2-hour ride out of John’s Pass and we saw tons of dolphins while also learning about the Boca Ciega Bay. Luke really loved watching for the dolphins and started mimicking the “puff” sound they make when coming up for air.
Dinner at Friendly Fisherman Restaurant – After our boat ride we enjoyed a really fresh grouper dinner at Friendly’s, which is also on the John’s Pass boardwalk. We lucked out with a table at the window, so we had a nice view out to the water where we could watch boats coming and going through the Pass.
Breakfast at Lisa’s Cafe – Across the street from our hotel was a quaint little spot where we had a delicious breakfast al fresco before heading home. It was a little tight walking in with the stroller and was pretty quiet, so it might not be the most kid-friendly restaurant option. But there were only a few other guests when we were there, so it worked fine.
There was a huge seafood festival going on at John’s Pass the weekend we were there, which we walked through several times, but didn’t have a chance to really peruse since Luke’s not a big fan of sitting in his stroller for long periods (see exhibit A).
What are your favorite things to do at our Gulf Coast beaches?