FridayFoto: Guest Bench

Standard

I came across this bench while taking a stroll on the southernmost tip of Pass-A-Grille Beach in Saint Petersburg. There was this interesting diary with a pen in a metal box attached to the bench. The journal is for anyone wishing to write in it and share their thoughts and feelings from such a beautiful viewpoint. I found this to be a very original and inspiring idea!

Follow your Dreams, They will always lead the Way!!

IMG_0135

What have you come across during a beach stroll? Would love to hear from you 🙂

Happy Travels ~ Ruthie

7 Things About Florida I Love

Comments 12 Standard

Florida has a lot to offer for those who come and visit the Sunshine State. Much of Florida is located on a peninsula between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.  With a total of 663 miles of beaches and tropical weather most of the year, it’s no wonder people come and visit this Caribbean style and tropical destination.

Though our climate and weather is tropical, we still get some cool breeze. Our Summer and Fall Seasons run from May thru October and it’s considered to be hot and long. Winter and Spring is our dry season. During this time, Floridians look forward to turning off their air conditioning in their homes and opening up their windows. From around November thru March/April you can enjoy cooler air and breezes. Hurricane season is from June 1st through November 30th.  There is nothing remarkable about this time of year.  It’ a very stressful time for those living in the state and we have learned to be ready for when one hits. “Because we are surrounded by water and we border the Atlantic Ocean, we also have a low pressure system and hurricanes tend to form in 80 degree temperature waters”.

Our beaches are the most popular destination for visitors, Spring Breakers, and those wanting to plan their Florida destination wedding of their dreams!!! With the majority of the state surrounded by water, you’ll never have a problem finding a beach. Florida has some of the most beautiful beaches in the US. With tropical weather, beautiful sunsets and sandy beaches its no wonder that visitors are wanting to visit the Sunshine State. Clearwater Beach, St. Pete Beach, Miami Beach, Siesta Key, Daytona Beach, Fort De Soto Park Beach, Anna Maria Island, New Smyrna Beach, Melbourne Beach, and Longboat Key are some of the most popular beaches.

St. Pete Beach - St. Pete, FL

St. Pete Beach – St. Pete, FL (Photo Credit: Ruthie via Instagram @Ruthie’s Routes)

Fort De Soto Park Beach - Fort De Soto, FL

Fort De Soto Park Beach – Fort De Soto, FL (Photo Credit: Ruthie via Instagram @Ruthie’s Routes)

Coquina Beach - Bradenton, FL

Coquina Beach – Coquina Beach, FL (Photo Credit: Ruthie via Instagram @Ruthie’s Routes)

Some of the most famous theme parks in Florida are located in Orlando, FL. Disney World, Epcot Center, Magic Kingdom, SeaWorld, Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, Discovery Cove, Disney Hollywood Studios, Disney Animal Kingdom, and LegoLand are among the biggest tour attractions. In the Tampa Bay area, Busch Gardens and Adventure Island are the biggest theme park attractions in the area. With millions of visitors visiting the parks each year it’s no surprise that Florida is growing in the tourism industry. Luckily for me, I have the luxury to visit the parks at least once a year with the convenience of an hour drive, it’s one of my favorite places to visit and getaway!!

SAMSUNG

International Flower Garden – Epcot Center – Orlando, FL (Photo Credit: Ruthie @Ruthie’s Routes)

SAMSUNG

SAMSUNG

Mickey Mouse & Mini at Epcot Center – Orlando, FL (Photo Credit: Ruthie @Ruthie’s Routes)

Florida is home to many types of wildlife including the famous alligator, dolphins, whales, manatees, Florida panther, Eastern Cottontail Rabbit, Wildboar, Leatherback Sea Turtles, Bald Eagle, Osprey and Seagulls to name a few. Here are a few shots of some of the wildlife around St. Pete, FL that I took with my new Canon PowerShot SX500 IS (review to come in a later post).

IMG_0022

Pelican – Photo Credit: Ruthie – Canon PowerShot SX500 IS

IMG_0054

Heron – Photo Credit: Ruthie – Canon PowerShort SX500 IS

IMG_0067

Blue Jay – Photo Credit: Ruthie  – Canon PowerShot SX500 IS

IMG_0008

Osprey – Photo Credit: Ruthie – Canon PowerShot SX500 IS

Tourism in Florida is growing every year. With many outdoor activities, beaches, parks and things to do it’s no wonder that more and more people are moving and visiting the Sunshine State of Florida. Between July and September, 22.9 million visitors came and the numbers keep rising. I’m super excited to be living in a State that is growing in the tourism industry.

Some of the best universities are located in Florida. Here is our top 10 Universities in no particular order. 1. University of Florida located in Gainesville, 2. Florida State University in Tallahassee, 3. University of South Florida in Tampa, 4. University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida 5. International University in Miami, 6. University of Central Florida in Orlando, 7. Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, 8. Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, 9. Emery- Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach and 10. Florida Institute of Technology located in Melbourne, Florida.  So whether you are looking to study nursing, engineering or aeronautics, Florida has the right university for you.

If you are an avid outdoors person and love the beach and water like I do, then you have come to the right place.  With many water sports activities, Florida has something to offer for everyone. Some of the water activities that you can enjoy are paddling, surfing, boating, fishing, snorkeling, jet skiing and diving. There are more water sports to do around Florida, but these are the most popular ones.

Have you visited Florida lately? What did you enjoy the best? Share your thoughts here!!

Happy Travels ~ Ruthie

Island’s End Resort on Pass-A-Grille Beach, FL

Comments 2 Standard

I took a drive yesterday and went to Pass-A-Grille Beach to visit the Island’s End Resort.  The resort sits at the very tip of St. Pete Beach where the Gulf of Mexico and Intercostal waters meet. It’s consider to be Tampa Bay’s best-kept secret and I will share with you why.  When I arrived, there were guests eating breakfast and checking out, so I was not able to take photos of the cottages, but I did take lots of photos of the grounds.

The resort itself has ranked #4 of 7 in St. Pete Beach Bed & Breakfast and Inns.  You are truly surrounded by everything shops, restaurants and best of all the beach! From the resort you can watch dolphins playing, fishing boats and all the sunset and sunrise you ever want to see!!

Islands End Sign

The front of the property

Entrance 1

Walkway to the resort

As soon as you walk through this pathway you are greeted with the tranquility, the sea air and the sound of the seagulls.

Before you enter the walkway to the resort, on the ground you will see another pathway in the form of seashells. Throughout the resort, you will notice the small details that went into the décor of the outside of this resort. It was one of the things that I loved the most about it!!

Shell Pathway

Shell pathway

The resort has a few fountains on property, this was one of them!

Entrance Fountain

Main fountain

Dolphin Fountain

Dolphin fountain

If you’re someone like me who loves the sunsets, then spending time on this hammock would be an ideal treat! It even comes with instructions on how to properly sit on a hammock.

Hammock

Hammock

Hammock Instructions

Instructions on how to sit on a hammock

Little House

Miniature dog house

Aligator

Make believe alligator on the ground

Gazebo 2

View of the gazebo looking in to the resort

Gazebo

View of the Gulf of Mexico from inside the resort

Mexican Waterfountain

Mexican Style Waterfalls

Tree Leaf

Fruit tree

Flamingo

Flamingos

Tree People

I love this little guys. They remind me of the Travelocity Gnome 🙂

View from the back

 View from the resort looking out

View from the property

View of the Gulf of Mexico from the resort

If you’re ever in St. Pete Beach, don’t forget to stay at Island’s End Resort. You won’t regret the hospitality nor the view!! For more information, check out their website at http://www.islandsend.com/

Happy Travels ~ Ruthie