As nearly all locals know, St. Pete is a great place to explore by bicycle, and there are many fun day trips from which to choose. No matter what your skill level or preferred distance, there are many destinations right outside the center of downtown to consider. One such bicycling excursion is one that takes you into St. Pete’s “southside.” As one of downtown St. Pete’s hidden gems, it’s definitely worth the trip with several incredible sights and unique stops. The following are just a few of options you have when checking out South St. Pete by bike.
• USF St Pete Campus – The St. Pete campus of the University of South Florida opened its doors in 1965. Though now under the umbrella of the larger university in Tampa, it was a fully independent university for many years. But as a destination for those who want to explore St. Pete by bike, it also offers a very picturesque and scenic route as you travel into the Southside of downtown. With its own marina and sprawling greenspaces, you’ll appreciate why locals want to keep this secret to themselves.
• Old Southeast Market – This little market has been around for more than a quarter of a century in Old Southeast St. Pete. Specializing in Pacific Island Fusion, the market offers some incredibly delicious Poke Bowls. But it also has much, much more. It offers an amazing selection of craft beer as well as deli sandwiches, gourmet foodstuffs, and salads. Plus, it’s a great place to pick up some local tees. That includes one boasting St. Pete’s “thrill hill,” which you will experience on the way there by bike.
• Lassing Park – This 12.5 acre waterfront park is
South St Pete is absolutely gorgeous and a site for paddle-boarders, kite-surfers, and pups playing in the water. The land was donated by Judge Robert B. Lassing in 1924, and the city of St. Pete dedicated the park to his namesake in 1942. It lies in the heart of the Old Southeast neighborhood and offers some incredible views of the downtown skyline. And it’s extremely bike-friendly for those choosing to explore St. Pete by bike.
• Driftwood – Though not officially a historic neighborhood, Driftwood has plenty of historic homes and beautiful landscapes. Located just south of 22nd Ave South, Driftwood boasts majestic oaks with low-hanging Spanish moss. And there are nearly 20 original homes within the neighborhood dating back to the 1930s. This is one St. Pete neighborhood that even many locals have yet to discover but one that’s great to explore by bike.
• Chattaway’s – This is truly a unique and special place in the heart of St. Pete’s Southside. Established in 1951, this family owned and operated restaurant has been serving up award-winning burgers for decades. And being originally from England, owner Jillian Frers also offers formal afternoon tea for parties booking in advance. Be sure to check out the pink bathtubs that serve as planters all around the restaurant and garden. And bring cash if you plan on dining since Chattaway’s is old school in terms of payment (ATM is available).
Plan a Day to Explore South St. Pete by Bike
Biking to the southside of St. Pete is both easy and safe. This is especially true if you are leaving from the downtown area of St. Pete. Bike lanes are abundant after leaving the Pinellas Bike Trail, allowing you to easily bicycle into Old Southeast. And from there, quiet neighborhood streets offer a cozy and serene ride along the south bay. If you should need a bicycle and equipment, St. Pete Bike Rentals has plenty at affordable rates. We’ll even deliver and pick up for free in the downtown area for rentals longer than 24 hours. In any case, it is worth your time to explore South St Pete by bike. It’s a great day of biking and an opportunity to learn that much more about this great city.