Honeymoon Island State Park is the oasis that awaits you at the end of the Dunedin Causeway. This beautiful beach park was once home to over 50 bungalows and a premier spot for honeymooners back in the 1930’s.
Now visitors come to this location to enjoy the beach and outdoor recreation. Whether you crave a romantic beach day or you want to bond while doing your favorite outdoor excursions, Honeymoon Island is a favorite among local couples.
Rent a kayak from the south beach park concession or bring your own. There are inlets to explore around the island and mangrove waterways just across the channel. You might see dolphins chasing their prey into the intercostal waterway or manatees taking shelter among the mangroves. Single kayaks can be rented for $15 per hour and double kayaks are $30 per hour.
You can bring your pet along on your date to the South Beach pet beach on the island. North Beach provides great shallows to cool off in the crystal clear waters of the gulf. Chair and umbrella rentals are available if you don’t have your own.
Honeymoon Island is also an excellent location to collect shells due to its proximity to where the Gulf of Mexico meets the intercostal waterway.
The nature trails on Honeymoon Island State Park offer 2.5 miles of nature to explore. The Osprey Trail meanders through the heart of the island to the most northern point. This is a great way to get lost with your love observing wildlife like gopher tortoises, armadillos, osprey, egrets, and blue herons.
If you’d rather use wheels instead of exploring by foot you can rent bicycles, tandem bikes or multi passenger beach surreys. Prices range from $10 an hour to $45 an hour depending on the rental type.
Private Romantic Beachside Dinners
A romantic dinner on the beach is how you put the “honeymoon” back in Honeymoon Island. The Romantic Honeymoon Island concessionaire offers a luxurious option to have your very own private tent on the beach, a special menu, and your own personal server just for you and your date.
This is such an incredible way to celebrate an anniversary, pop the big question, or celebrate a very special occasion. For $150 per person you get a private tent, personal server, four-course meal with a bottle of champagne and strawberries, table linens and chairs, and tropical centerpiece.
Openings are limited so this is a date you must plan in advance. Visit the website or give them a call to reserve your private romantic dinner. 727-260-5503; romantichoneymoonisland.com/honeymoon-island-specials.
The North Beach of Honeymoon Island provides the perfect location to enjoy stunning Florida beach sunsets. You can watch from the shore or sit in one of several wooden swings and benches along the beach. The benches are great if you just want to come to enjoy the sunset and not have to bring your own chair and beach gear. The entrance fee is reduced to $4 per vehicle if you come an hour before sunset.
A visit to Honeymoon Island also grants you access to another state park, Caladesi Island. This barrier island is only accessible by private boat or ferry service from inside Honeymoon Island State Park.
The ferry runs every day (weather permitting) from 10am to sunset every half hour during peak season and every hour during the off season winter months. Adult roundtrip fare is $14. Check the website for coupons and deals before planning your visit.
Caladesi is worth the visit to experience this pristine beach with turquoise waters. It’s less crowded and less rocky than the beaches of Honeymoon Island.
There is a concession stand on Caladesi with food and supplies and you can also rent chairs and umbrella if you don’t want the hassle of packing your beach gear. This is actually a very practical option since there’s about a 5 minute walk from the ferry docks to the beach. caladesiferry.org
The park is open from 8am to sundown every day. Entrance Fees: $8 per vehicle. Limit 2-8 people per vehicle; $4 Single Occupant Vehicle; $4 per vehicle: sunset fee, starting one hour prior to sunset. Find out more information on the Honeymoon Island State Park website.
About the Author
Lauren Gay is a local travel blogger, photographer, and foodie with a passion for adventure, all things water, and glamping. Find her online on her blog Misadventures of an Outdoorsy Diva and Outdoorsy Diva on Instagram.
FEATURE IMAGE CREDIT: Florida State Parks