St. Petersburg is a city bathed in sunshine almost every day. When you want to find some shade, one of the best places is oceanfront Pioneer Park. Here, you’ll find 1.8 acres (0.7 hectares) of neatly landscaped shrubbery and flower beds. It’s a nice spot to come and relax with a coffee or picnic and people-watch.
Pioneer Park’s landscape and pathways were refurbished in 2011 to make it a pristine space for everyone to enjoy. Paths weave in and out of immaculately kept gardens. Oak trees, sable palms and crape myrtles give the park its welcome shady spots. Relax under a tree, sit down on a bench or stroll past the green lawns.
The park’s centerpiece is a grand stone memorial, which is a tribute to St. Pete’s pioneers. As part of the park’s renovation, the space around the white obelisk was paved with a brick plaza. The red bricks date back to the early 20th century, adding to the historic character of the place. The bricks were once part of the old St. Petersburg street network.
The Bayshore Drive side of the park faces out onto the St. Petersburg Yacht Club Marina. This is an idyllic spot to sit back and watch boats move in and out of their moorings. While on this side of the park, seek out the old stone birdbath and watch pigeons splash around and take a drink to cool off.
If you come here in the late afternoon, end your stroll with dinner on Beach Street where there are some excellent tapas and seafood restaurants.
Pioneer Park is located between Central Avenue and Beach Drive in central St. Petersburg. It’s a popular spot with locals in the early morning during the week and during the day on the weekends. Come here during working hours if you are looking for some peace and quiet. The space is not fenced and is accessible at any time.