30 Things to do in Clearwater with Kids
If you’re looking for the best things to do in Clearwater with kids, you’re in the right place! Clearwater Beach is one of our favorite beaches in Florida, and we think you’ll love it too!
The Gulf Coast of Florida is one of the best places to take a family vacation. However, if you are looking for the best sparkling water hitting the soft sandy shoreline, I recommend you choose to visit Clearwater.
This popular vacation destination will have you enjoying every minute of your time away from home. You can spend your days at the beach, visiting local attractions, and watching the sunset over the water.
Of course, there are many other things to do in Clearwater with kids. So, before you finalize your vacation plans, consider adding these kid-friendly things to do in Clearwater, Florida, to your itinerary.
Car Rentals near Tampa Florida
If you are flying into TPA, PIE, or even MCO, you’ll need a rental car! I recommend renting a car from Discount USA Car Rental.
Discount USA Car Rental offers the best rates available with nothing due upfront. Reserve and pay upon picking up the car. Discount USA partners with the major car rental companies (Hertz, etc.) but has the lowest rates.
The best places to stay in Clearwater
There are also plenty of vacation rentals available on VRBO!
30 Things to Do in Clearwater with Kids
Here are 30 of the best things to do in Clearwater, FL, with kids. You might also want to check out 50 free things to do in Tampa with kids.
Walk Along Pier 60
Pier 60 is a 1,080-foot pier that must be at the top of your list of things to do in Clearwater, FL, with kids. If you happen to have fishing poles with you or want to rent them from the shop on the pier, you can do a little fishing during your vacation.
Little ones will love the playground and sandbox on the pier while you get a little downtime watching them. Numerous festivals are held near this pier throughout the year too. So, you may want to plan your vacation in Clearwater around one of those.
Spend the Day at Clearwater Beach
Okay, so you cannot visit Clearwater for vacation and not spend at least one day at the beach! This two-and-a-half-mile-long beach is perfect for swimming, building sandcastles, and long walks in the sand.
By the way, do you see that cool, pink building? It’s the Hyatt Regency Clearwater! The perfect family-friendly hotel on Clearwater Beach. It even has full kitchens! A full review is coming soon, but for now, here is a link to my favorite hotel in Clearwater.
We think that Clearwater beach is #1 on our list of The 20 best beaches in Tampa.
Visit the Dolphins and Other Marine Life at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium
One of the favorite things to do in Clearwater with kids is to visit the dolphins at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. The current resident dolphins include Hope, Nicholas, PJ, Hemingway, Apollo, Rudolph, and Rex.
If your kids were a fan of Winter, you can still visit the Dolphin Tale Set. Just make sure you leave time in your day to see all the other rescued animals. I recommend buying tickets through Project Expedition! They are my favorite place to purchase tours for all things to do in Florida with kids.
Take an Encounters with Dolphins Tour
The Encounters with Dolphins tour boat is 40 feet long, so there is plenty of room to enjoy a little time out on the water watching dolphins. Most tours are just over three hours, perfect for spotting numerous dolphins, manatees, and pelicans.
During your tour, you may have the option to stop at Compass Island. You can do a little snorkeling or walk along the sand collecting seashells during this stop.
Experience Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise
What kid doesn’t love acting like a pirate every now and then?? This two-hour-long pirate cruise will have your entire family searching for treasure between water gun games. Listening to the stories about legendary pirates will take this cruising adventure to the next level.
Hike Through Moccasin Lake Nature Park
The Moccasin Lake Nature Park contains 51 acres of land. It is filled with ponds, creeks, and nature trails. Hiking along those trails is a popular activity because you can see tons of native wildlife.
If you plan your vacation in Clearwater right, your kids will be able to participate in one of the many different educational camps at the park.
SimCenter Tampa Bay
Okay, so a visit to SimCenter Tampa Bay will have you making the short drive from Clearwater to Tampa. But if you have older kids, the drive will be worth it! This indoor attraction will have everyone in your family participating in different simulation experiences.
Imagine being in a fighter jet simulator and flying high above the skyscrapers in New York City or above the great depths of the Grand Canyon. The virtual tour of the solar system is also a lot of fun, so try to squeeze that into your day.
Walk Along the Clearwater Beach Walk
At the end of a long day, or when you need a break in the middle of the day, the Clearwater Beach Walk is the perfect destination. This half-mile waterfront promenade offers stunning views of the water. The boutiques along the path are excellent for grabbing a souvenir or two to take home with you.
Catch a Baseball Game at Spectrum Field
One of the most kid-friendly things to do in Clearwater is watching a baseball game. During the spring, the Philadelphia Phillies train at Spectrum Field. The summer months bring the home games of the Clearwater Threshers.
Enjoy a Picnic Lunch at Cliff Stephens Park
The Cliff Stephens Park contains 44 acres, filled with paved trails for walking, biking, and inline skating. You may prefer to grab a picnic table, though, and enjoy a picnic lunch during a bit of downtime.
If you find a table near the frisbee golf course, the kids can play while you get in a bit of adult conversation.
Relax at Sand Key Park
Sand Key Park is a 95-acre beach, which is perfect for relaxing. If you are looking for one of the top things to do in Clearwater with kids, including relaxing, this is it! You can spend the day on the sand and in the water.
Or you can head over to a beach cabana to spend time out of the sun. Before you leave this beach, I recommend walking along the shoreline. You never know when you will see a sea turtle laying their eggs.
Play Video Games at Laser Ops Arcade
During family vacations, kids sometimes end up going through video game withdrawal. To prevent this from happening to your kids in Clearwater, you may want to visit Laser Ops Arcade one day. They have more than 70 video games.
So, everyone can choose to play classic arcade games or one of the newer virtual reality games. Just an FYI… this is one of the best things to do in Clearwater, FL, with kids on those rainy days.
Play a Round of Mini Golf
Everyone loves playing mini-golf, and Clearwater has a top-rated course for your family to try. Head over to Congo River Golf to see if anyone can get a hole in one amongst the waterfalls and mysterious caves.
Get a Few Water Thrills at Adventure Island
A quick car ride will have your family enjoying the fun at the 30 acres Adventure Island. This water park has ten waterslides, a massive wave pool, and thrilling rides. Add in the family-friendly play areas, and you will have a full day of fun waiting for you!
Visit the Animals at the Tampa Zoo
The Clearwater Marine Aquarium is not the only place you can see animals while on a family vacation in Clearwater. More than 1,300 animals live at the Tampa Zoo. You can see them all by walking along the paths. Or you can ride in the open-air safari tram to see them all from a different vantage point.
Go Back in Time and Visit with Dinosaurs
While there are multiple things to do in Clearwater, FL, with kids, there may be an activity or two worth leaving the Tampa area to see. Visiting Dinosaur World is one of those activities.
There are 200 life-sized dinosaurs at this theme playground. When your family is not visiting the dinosaurs, you may find yourself digging for fossils or excavating gems or dinosaur bones.
Plant City is only about a 30-minute drive from Tampa and has been one of my youngest son’s favorite places to visit for years!
Walk Along the Memorial Causeway Green Trail
The Memorial Causeway Green Trail is three and a half miles long. As you walk along this trail, you will find yourself near the water most of the time. This is one of the best things to do in Clearwater, FL, with kids if you are looking to take pictures of amazing views.
If you do not feel like walking along this trail, you can easily do it while rollerblading or riding a bike.
Ride the Clearwater Jolley Trolley
One of the best ways to see part of Clearwater without driving is to take the Jolley Trolley. Climb on board the vintage-style trolley and enjoy the views.
Your family can see Clearwater Beach, Sand Key, Dunedin, Palm Harbor, Tarpon Springs, and Downtown Clearwater from your seats. This trolley runs seven days a week, so you won’t have an excuse to miss one of the most extraordinary kid-friendly things to do in Clearwater.
Interact with the Exhibits at the Great Explorations Children’s Museum
Another rainy day activity is visiting the Great Explorations Children’s Museum. This is one of the better things to do in Clearwater for younger kids. The hands-on exhibits will get your kids thinking. Their creative side can even come out while creating a piece of artwork.
Escape the Escape Room Clearwater Beach
Escape rooms have become popular in recent years, and this is one of the best activities during a vacation in Clearwater Beach. The Escape Room in Clearwater offers a couple of different family-friendly options.
Therefore, you can easily choose the room you think your family will love escaping from the most.
Visit Hogan’s Beach Shop
Do you have anyone who loves wrestling in your family? If you said yes, a visit to Hogan’s Beach Shop is a must while on vacation in Clearwater. This shop carries all types of Clearwater Beach souvenirs.
It also carries a huge line of Hulk Hogan souvenirs and other wrestling memorabilia. One of the best parts of visiting this shop is you never know when Hulk Hogan may be there since he is the owner and lives in Clearwater.
Swim with Manatees
Over at Crystal River, you will have the chance to swim right next to the manatees in the water. If you don’t want to get wet, or you have kids that aren’t strong swimmers, you can always choose to do a little kayaking or ride in a pontoon boat instead.
During our last visit, we rented both a single kayak and double kayak from Paddles Outdoor Rentals. They were fantastic and I would highly recommend them! They also have great prices. We saw over 100 manatees during our tour and it was a fun adventure for all of us.
Ride a Jet Ski
Heading out onto the water on a jet ski is a wonderful way to spend a few hours in Clearwater. If you really want to turn this into an adventure though, I recommend booking the 60-minute guide jet ski ride with Clearwater Jet Ski Rentals.
During your tour, you will be taken out to see some of the untouched islands near Clearwater. You will also see tons of marine life including dolphins.
Feel like getting out of the cities? Head north a bit and check out 16 things to do in Crystal River with kids.
Take a Boat Ride Out to Shell Key Preserve
Shell Key Preserve is an area that includes the uninhabited barrier island of the same name. You can rent your own boat to take out to the island or you can ride on the Shell Key Shuttle.
This secluded spot is perfect for when you are looking for a little downtime. There are no facilities on Shell Key, so you will want to keep that in mind when planning this little adventure.
Ride the FlowRider at Surf Style
Surfing is a common activity in Florida, but your family may not be ready for the waves coming in from the Gulf of Mexico. To get a little practice in, I recommend heading over to the FlowRider at Surf Style. This indoor wave ride will have your family ready to catch the real waves in no time at all.
Go Snorkeling at Indian Rocks Beach
Indian Rocks Beach is a short 8 mile drive to the south of Clearwater Beach. Snorkeling at this beach is one of the best things to do near Clearwater with kids.
It is best to head over to this beach later in the afternoon, so you can stay for the spectacular sunset later in the evening. After an afternoon of snorkeling, you can dine at one of the nearby restaurants and then watch the sun set over the water.
You can check out some of my favorites on my Amazon storefront or in the links below.
Attend a Festival
There are so many festivals held in Clearwater, Florida each year. One of the best ways to experience the local life in this area is to attend one of them.
A couple of the most popular festivals in Clearwater include the Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival, Clearwater Beach Chalk Art Festival, and the Safety Harbor Seafood Festival.
Check Out the History of Sponges in Tarpon Springs
Sponges have been harvested from the waters around Tarpon Springs for years now. You can learn all about the history of the harvesting of the sponges, as well as how the sponges are prepared to be sold.
Once you have learned all you want to about the sponges, you can visit the Sponge Exchange and the Anclote Key Lighthouse.
Watch a Hockey Game at the Amalie Arena
Taking a vacation in Clearwater during the winter means the chance to watch a hockey game at the Amalie Arena. The Tampa Bay Lightning call this arena home and watching them play is one of the best things to do in Clearwater with kids.
Feed and Kiss an Alligator
A short drive to Johns Pass will allow you to visit the Alligator and Wildlife Discovery Center. During your visit you will have an opportunity to feed the alligators. You can get up close to many of the animals at this center. Your favorite activity though may be kissing one of the alligators.
Things to do in Clearwater with Kids
These are my favorite 30 things to do in Clearwater with kids. You may not have time to add all 30 of these things to your list of kid-friendly things to do in Clearwater during your vacation. However, even if some of them make your list, you will be well on your way to enjoying this beautiful area.
About Florida Travel With Kids
Florida Travel with Kids was started by a family who loves to travel the state of Florida with kids! This site will help you explore the fun state of Florida and all of the kid-friendly activities you’ll find here.
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