San Pedro: ‘Best Beach’ in US-A A +A
Check and Balance
Sunday, October 20, 2013
ST. PETE BEACH, Florida -- The west coast of Florida along the Gulf of Mexico particularly the beach of Clearwater, an adjacent city of St. Petersburg, had been recently voted “Best Town Beach in the US 2013” for its clean coastline, powdery sand, and azure sea reminding me of the coastal areas all over the Caribbean which I visited in the 80s.
The coastline of Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Treasure Island, Madeira Beach, Redington Shores, Indian Shores, Indian Rocks, Belleair Beach and the relatively unheard keys up to the Caladesi Island State Park – will beat our very own Boracay hands down. No offense but commercialization had already affected the natural beauty of Boracay.
Two days before I left St. Petersburg where my father-in-law and other relatives reside, we visited the much-talked about coastline that trounced other beach areas around the continental US. The moment I stepped into the powdery sand that seemed to cover my feet on each step, it did not take long for me to think that this area is unarguably one of the best beach towns I visited. To name a few, I visited the coastal areas of the Bahamas, Cozumel in Mexico, the US Virgin Islands, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico but Florida’s west coastline will not be left behind. It is not the “Best Beach Town in US 2013” for nothing.
From a distance, you could actually see marine life in the coastline attracting a flock of seagulls. Residents, visitors, marine life and birds actually congregate here which make it more appealing for first time visitors.
It was my second time to visit the Sunshine State, the first time when I worked for a cruise ship that docks in Miami, Florida and go out for a one-week cruise in the East and West Caribbean. Oh, I remember how they sell ‘marijuana’ joints in the tourism areas of Jamaica, home to reggae icon Bob Marley.
The St. Pete Beach and the other beach areas are nestled on Long Key offering accommodations ranging from world-renowned resorts to quaint bed and breakfasts. The Upham Beach on the northern tip of St. Pete Beach is known for surfing area. The St. Pete Beach was originally made up of four areas namely: Pass-A-Grille Beach, Don CeSar Place, Belle Vista Beach and St. Petersburg Beach. The four communities merged into the City of St. Petersburg Beach in 1957.
TripAdvisor voted the St. Pete Beach and the Clearwater Beach as number one beach in the US and number 5 in the world in 2012, based on the reviews of visitors. The pink-colored Don CeSar Beach Resort which is like a gem that sits atop a canvass of powdery sand offers world-class amenities.
The Long Key coastline had been frequently visited but it did not degenerate into the trappings of too much commercialism. On my way back home aboard an Asiana flight in Los Angeles, one Latino passenger asked me about Boracay and Palawan. He said he will visit one of the two tourism attractions. I told him to visit both places.
Here we are, passengers from El Salvador raring to go to the Philippines just to see Boracay and Palawan. He told me that their beach sand in El Salvador is mostly black because of it is volcanic in feature. Well, as they say it’s more fun in the Philippines. I can only agree. Nothing in the world can replaced “Poracay” in Porac, Pampanga – have ‘sisig’ and San Miguel beer – unarguably with the best quarry sand in the world.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on October 21, 2013.