What better way to get away from the trials of the pandemic, than to charter a boat and then take a week’s vacation with your family, spending time relaxing together, cruising over calm waters and swimming off some of the longest and most beautiful beaches in the world?
Well, The Moorings, the charter powerhouse, has just opened up sail and power charters out of St. Petersburg, Florida, to help you do all that. St. Pete is a great destination in its own right, easily accessible from the Tampa international airport, and home to some great museums, art galleries, cafes, restaurants and beaches.
Chartering is a pleasure there. The sun shines an average of 361 days a year; the waters of the Gulf are ideal for SUPs and kayaks, and the white-sand beaches are gentle, long, and inviting. Cruising involves short passages, some fine marinas, seaside towns, and secluded anchorages. There are uninhabited islands for exploring, and tarpon, grouper and redfish for fishermen.
To help you visualize your charter, The Moorings has put together a seven-day itinerary that takes you from their base at the Vinoy Marina (pictured above) down to Longboat Key, Venice Inlet South, Boca Grande, Captiva and Sanibel, Venice Inlet North, Sarasota Bay, and back to Tampa Bay and St. Pete. All those spots are easy to reach, and offer starting points for a powerboat charter.
The Moorings charter fleet in St. Pete includes a 36 Jeanneau Leader, a 37 Fountaine Pajot, and a 44 Fountaine Pajot. They are all large enough and fast enough for you to explore the Intracoastal Waterway and the Gulf Coast heading south from St. Pete, even down to the Keys if you felt particularly adventuresome.
But you don’t need to go that far. From Tampa Bay, relax on the sand bar and soft white sand beaches of Beer Can Island; tie up at Siesta Key, named the #1 beach in the U.S. by TripAdvisors’ 2020 Travelers’ Choice Awards; go fishing in Boca Grande, “the tarpon capital of the world;” search for sea shells on the 15 miles of unspoiled shoreline on the beaches of Captiva and Sanibel; spend the night at the upscale Longboat Key Club Moorings, and definitely drop the hook on your way back to Tampa Bay for a swim at the secluded Egmont Key, accessible only by boat. Read more: