Things to Do in Dunedin, Florida

categories: USA Travel

Dunedin, Florida

Are you looking for things to do in Dunedin? If so, you’re in the right place! This fun town is everything you could wish for.
Dunedin (pronounced Done-ee-din) is lively and artsy. It’s a haven for dog lovers, nature enthusiasts, foodies, cyclists, shoppers, and beach bums. Dunedin is just a short drive from Tampa.

Culture, history, bagpipes, trees, white sand, dolphins, and ice cream await.

11 Best Things to Do in Dunedin Florida

1. Eat at one of the Waterfront Restaurants

There’s something about eating at a waterfront restaurant that enlivens the senses. Perhaps it’s the combination of sound and sensation: the wash of waves, the smell of the wind, and the pleasure of seeing wheeling seabirds or a surfacing dolphin while eating mouthwatering cuisine.

The Olde Bay Cafe and Bon Appetit are two wonderful waterfront dining options in Dunedin.

Olde Bay Cafe

This relaxed and friendly seaside cafe is a perfect spot to enjoy a meal during a day at the beach. Marina views, fresh gulf seafood, and the chance to spot dolphins make this a prime eatery. The service is quick and friendly, and the food is packed with flavor.

Enjoy everything from fish tacos, crab cakes, and lobster bisque to wraps and peel-and-eat shrimp. Find this dog-friendly eatery near the Dunedin marina.

Bon Appetit Restaurant

If you’re in the mood for high-end dining, sunset views, and outstanding food, look no further than Bon Appetit. This restaurant was voted the best waterfront dining in the Tampa Bay area. It’s the perfect place to relax, enjoy a sea breeze and beautiful views, and listen to live music.

Popular menu choices include the bouillabaisse, lobster roll, streak, duck, and French onion soup.

Pinellas Trail

2. Walk the Pinellas Trail

Nature lovers and fans of outdoor activities should add the Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail to their list of activities. This trail stretches from St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs and winds right through the heart of downtown Dunedin.

Beautiful views, historic buildings, fun shops, and easy access to waterfront parks make this one of the best ways to enjoy Pinellas County
It’s a great place for walking paths, a bike ride, or a place to jog or skate. Don your exercise gear and get ready to explore Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Don’t miss the most scenic part of the trail which stretches from Dunedin to Tarpon Springs. Stop for ice cream and coffee in Dunedin’s charming town center, and make side trips to Weaver Park or Wall Springs County Park.

Most of all, be sure to walk or ride across the Cross Bayou Bridge which spans Boca Ciega Bay. It’s a quarter of a mile long and is vehicle-free. The views are breathtaking.

3. Dunedin History Museum

For many travelers, gaining insight into the history of a place adds extra nuance and richness to their visit. If that sounds like you, head over to the Dunedin History Museum on Main Street for a delightful glimpse into this coastal town’s backstory.

The museum’s permanent exhibits are varied and eclectic, delving into the town’s Scottish heritage, the Orange Belt Railway, citrus fruit, and baseball (Dunedin is the spring training center for the Toronto Blue Jays).

Snap photos in front of the life-size statues out front before or after your visit.

Tip: If museums and music are your jam, don’t miss the Penny Lane Beatles Museum.

Dunedin, Florida murals

4. Check out all of the Murals

Few things add more vibrancy and enjoyment to small towns than exuberant splashes of color. Murals are wonderful photo-ops, cultural attractions, and nods to a location’s rich history.

When you’re ready for a break from Dunedin’s white sand beaches, clean off your camera lens and head to the downtown area for mural hunting.

Over one thousand oranges and whole packs of dogs decorate buildings around town. But there are scads of other more recent murals ranging from nature scenes to lobsters to geometric designs—most are within easy walking distance of each other.

Other places to find murals include in and around the marina, at the Dunedin Art Cave, outside Eddie’s Bar and Grill and the adjacent Art Smart coffee shop, and at the intersection between Louden Avenue and Main Street.

Looking for even more art? Visit the Dunedin Fine Art Center.

Honeymoon Island State Park

5. Honeymoon Island State Park

Beauty and barrier islands are a dreamy combination. So what better way to enjoy the great outdoors than by visiting Honeymoon Island State Park? It’s a short drive from Dunedin and offers everything from hiking, shelling, swimming, and sunbathing to a playground for kids and a dog park for your furry friend.

Take a three-mile trail through virgin slash pine forest (keeping an eye out for gopher tortoises), kayak the shoreline with views of the Gulf of Mexico, and relax on the beautiful beaches. Take food along to eat at one of the picnic tables or buy a tasty repast at the snack shop.

Honeymoon Island is one of the best places to visit on day trips from Dunedin. It may even become one of your new favorite things to enjoy in the area. Don’t miss the nature center for insight into the ecology, and North Beach, with its palm trees and sunsets. To get to Honeymoon Island, take Bayshore Boulevard and the Dunedin Causeway.

John R. Lawrence Pioneer Park

6. Visit the City Parks

Did you know that Dunedin has won the “Tree City USA” award for 34 years and counting? The city’s shady parks offer miles of nature trails, fun things to do, and plenty of tranquility.
Here are a few of the top parks to visit:

Hammock Park

This 90-acre park is a birder’s paradise and the perfect spot to immerse yourself in nature. Tromp along the five miles of nature trails, clamber to the top of the observation platform to commune with the trees, or take a breather in the butterfly garden. Kayak launch spots, a disc golf course, and a tree-house-themed playground round out the fun.

Edgewater Park

Take shelter from the sun at Edgewater Park, along the Dunedin Marina. Spread out on the lawn, claim one of the picnic shelters, or set your kids loose on the two playgrounds. This is also a prime park for catching the sunset.

Highlander Park

This 70-acre park is famed for one of its annual events: the Dunedin Highland Games. But even if you aren’t around in April for the Kilted Trail Run or the Pipe Band March, it’s a perfect spot for recreation. The park has tennis courts, playgrounds, splash pads, sand volleyball courts, and little league baseball fields. Anglers, kayakers, and picnickers will also love Josiah Cephus Weaver Park.

If you’re looking for special events, there’s almost always something going on at the John R. Lawrence Pioneer Park including Celtic festivals, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, Art Days in the park, markets, and more.

Greek culture Dunedin

7. Immerse yourself in Greek Culture in Tarpon Springs

Greek restaurants, sponge divers, and a hopping boardwalk await in Tarpon Springs.

If that sounds like a good time, strap into your car or board the Jolley Trolley (free public transportation) and travel the relatively short distance to this epicenter of Greek culture.

Some of the best things to do in Tarpon Springs include:

  • Visiting the docks to see boats coming in with their harvest of fresh sponges
  • Shop for sponges, clothes, jewelry, soap, and Greek-themed souvenirs
  • Eat Greek food at Hella’s Restaurant
  • Pick up tasty treats at a bakery
  • Take your young kids to cool off at the Splash Park
Tarpon Springs

Tarpon Springs

8. Browse Local Shops

What would a vacation be without treasure hunting? Whether you’re in the market for fresh produce, unique pieces of art, home décor, clothing, souvenirs, or Beatles memorabilia, hoist your sails and make way for the heart of Dunedin.

While you’re busy finding deals, don’t miss other top things to do downtown, such as eating tasty food or desserts and taking photos of the murals.

The Dunedin Downtown Market is an excellent place to pick up artisan cheese, honey, bread, soaps, candles, plants, and delicious cuisine with live music and fun vibes on the side. The market is held on Saturday mornings year-round in the John R. Lawrence Pioneer Park (barring certain holidays.)

Dunedin Pier

9. Stroll the Pier and Spot Wildlife

Listen to the sound of wooden planks thudding under your feet as you stroll onto the Dunedin Pier. Park yourself on a bench at the end, soak in views of the sandy beaches and Tampa Bay, and see if you can spot dolphins playing in the waves. Breathe in the beauty of the west coast of Florida with water lapping at the pilings below, seabirds hovering and diving, and anglers dropping lines in to tempt fish.
Sunsets here are magical. Head over for nature’s spectacular evening display and (if you’re lucky) a Piper On the Pier performance. Listen to live bagpipe and drummer music here most Friday and Saturday nights.

This could become your favorite place in Dunedin.

Strachans Dessert

10. Get Dessert at one of the Ice Cream Shops

Sand, sunshine, and lip-smacking treats go together like ketchup and French fries. Cool off and indulge your sweet tooth at the same time with a delicious stop at one of Dunedin’s ice cream and dessert shops.

Here are a couple of winning places to get you started.

Strachans Dessert

Homemade waffle cones, sundaes, shakes, and ice cream cups–get there here! And if you aren’t in the mood for frozen treats, don’t worry, you can also buy homemade fudge, carrot cake, or peanut butter pie at Strachans Dessert. Their ice cream offerings range from creamy favorites to more unusual flavors like Blue Jay and Cookie Monster.

Sunset Smoothies

Luscious smoothies and delicious frozen treats make Sunset Smoothies another spot to cool off after so much fun in the sun. Slurp down a smoothie or protein shake, or go all out with a scoop of Bonita Beach Bum, Mint Chocolate Chip, or Pineapple Dole Whip.

boat Dunedin, Florida

11. Take a Private Boat Tour

Sparkling water, ocean breezes, dolphin sightings, and delicious sunshine are four great reasons to take a private boat tour during your time in Dunedin.

Whether you’re on vacation or dropping in for a weekend, getting out on the water is always a good idea. Join your captain-guide for a scenic tour of the state parks, Clearwater Beach, and Hurricane Pass. Search out wild dolphins, or catch the sunset from the water.
You can explore the waves on a mono-hull boat, a sailing boat, or a historic cruiser.

Bon Apptetit restaurant in Dunedin

Bon Apptetit restaurant in Dunedin

Bonus Activities

Caladesi Island

Far-flung places have a special allure, don’t they? If you’re looking for that extra spice that comes with ferry rides to unspoiled isles, you’ll love Caladesi Island State Park.

The most common way to get there is via the Honeymoon Island ferry. But if you’d rather arrive earlier or forgo the ferry’s four-hour-visit time constraint, you can opt to go by kayak or private boat instead.

Gorgeous beaches, nature trails, shelling, fishing, swimming, and dolphin spotting round out the activity menu.

Grab a Drink at the Breweries

The craft beer scene in Dunedin is top-notch, and for good reason. The oldest microbrewery in Florida is located here, and in the years since, a slew of other breweries have cropped up.

Dunedin’s breweries complement their hand-crafted beers with food trucks, book clubs, live music, board games, pinball, and even a woodworking shop.

Dunedin Brewery

If you’re looking for Florida’s oldest microbrewery, this is it. Enjoy craft beers made fourteen barrels at a time, a tasty scratch kitchen, and live music.

7venth Sun Brewing

This bright, spacious brewery offers everything from Belgian-style to oak-aged sour beer. Play board games and pinball, grab a meal from a food truck, and venture into the production facility for a behind-the-scenes tour.

Cueni Brewing Co.

Great beers, weekly specials, and a Books & Brews book club make Cueni (pronounced Q-knee) another great spot to sip and savor a microbrew.

Woodwright Brewing Co.

European-style beers, an outdoor beer garden, live music, yoga classes, bingo, and a woodworking shop make Woodwrights Brewing a great addition to your itinerary.

Things to Do in Dunedin, Florida #florida #dunedin #beach #travel #vacation #trip #holiday

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Wayne Kask

by Wayne Kask

Wayne is a Travel Blogger and creator of Discover West Central Florida.  He loves to write about the best attractions, restaurants, beaches, and resorts in the Tampa area"

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