Happy holidays! What’s better than sharing a little Christmas spirit on the water? At Treasure Bay Resort & Marina, we’re holiday ready. One of our favorite things to do is enjoy the many boat parades in the area.
We put together a roundup of the best holiday boat parades in the Tampa Bay area so you can experience it for yourself!
The key to success is finding the best vantage point to watch. Here are a few tips:
- Drawbridges often close to traffic for hours for the boats. If you need to cross a bridge, you’ll want to plan ahead.
- Parks, restaurants and bars with outdoor seating are wonderful spots to view the parades. Make reservations early.
- Arrive early. Most of the boat parades start at dusk.
Now it’s time to explore the many lighted boat parade options around Treasure Island!
Treasure Island Holiday Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 4 at 6 p.m.
400 Treasure Island Causeway
The fantastic Treasure Island Boat Parade is widely considered one of the best in the area. It begins just south of the Treasure Island Bridge in the Intracoastal Waterway. This year’s route travels from The Club at Treasure Island past the Treasure Island Causeway Bridge and concludes at John’s Pass.
A few free viewing areas include Treasure Island Golf Course, the Treasure Island Causeway Bridge and John’s Pass.
St. Pete Beach Boat Parade
Friday, Dec. 3 at 6- 8 p.m.
Colonel Michael J. Horan Park
St. Pete Beach
The City of St. Pete Beach’s lighted holiday boat parade begins by Sea Hags and travels south to the Bayway Bridge. The parade will pass by Horan Park where there will be a viewing party that is free and open to the public. Yacht Rock will be performing live.
Sunday, Dec. 5 at 6 p.m.
Seminole Recreation Division
9100 113th Street North
Join a Holiday Sail-a-Bration Waterless Boat Parade and Toy Drive for Seminole Fire Rescue. This event helps the fire department fill a boat with toys for those in need. Then enjoy the festive, lighted boats and floats on 113th street.
The parade begins at Seminole Recreation Center and heads south on 113th street, finishing at Seminole City Center.
Festival of Lights Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m.
503 150th Avenue
The 55th Annual Festival of Lights Boat Parade begins near the Rec Center and meanders south to John’s Pass. The parade kicks off after a tree lighting ceremony at R.O.C. Park.
The Merry Beach Holiday Market takes place from 2-8 p.m. at 200 Rex Place. It features more than 50 vendors and live entertainment. Get there early, and you’ll have a great spot to view the parade.
Annual Lighted Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 11 from 6 -10 p.m.
Clearwater Yacht Club
830 Bayway Blvd
The Yacht Club Boat Parade is one of the largest and most popular boat events in Clearwater.
It begins in the Mandalay Channel at 6 p.m. Boats travel along Island Estates to Memorial Causeway Bridge, then to Coachman Park and finish at Clearwater Yacht Club.
Apollo Beach Lighted Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 11 at 4 p.m.
580 Bahia Beach Boulevard
You can be a part of the Apollo Beach Lighted Boat Parade. Enjoy dinner on Latitudes Tours boat as they explore the canals of Apollo Beach. You can delight in the wonderful holiday light displays on both land and water.
Bay Crest Park Holiday Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 11 from 6:45-7:45 p.m.
Bay Crest Park
Town N Country
This year is the 22nd anniversary of this great local parade. Enjoy festive boats and decorated docks. The parade starts in Old Bay Crest and ends in New Bay Crest.
Riverwalk Lighted Boat Parade
Saturday, Dec. 16 at 6 p.m.
The parade begins at the southern tip of Davis Islands, travels through the Convention Center basin, up to the Heights and finally to Sparkman Wharf.
The Holiday Spectacular will take place along the Riverwalk. It features a 35-foot-tall lighted Christmas tree, a lighted gingerbread display and a lighted toy train display all afloat in the harbor. Plus, explore a forest of lighted pine trees at the Riverwalk Manor Dock.
Holiday Paddle Adventure
Friday and Saturdays from Dec. 3 – Friday, Dec. 24
5 and 5:30 p.m. trips
Demens Landing Park, Bayshore Boulevard
Calling all kayakers! Launch from Demens Landing Park in St Pete on a decorated kayak! Travel around The Dali Museum, Albert Whitted Airport, St. Pete Pier and North Straub Park, which are all decorated.
All levels are welcome. The event is family friendly. Tickets are $40 per kayak, $80 for tandem.
These sure sound like fun, don’t they? Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and we’ll see you next year at Treasure Bay Resort & Marina!