Oct 1, 2023 - Things to Do

Things to do and eat in Dunedin, Florida

Sunset at the Dunedin Marina.

Sunset at Dunedin Marina. Photo: Courtesy of the City of Dunedin

Outside, it's hot and muggy. People smile and nod as they bike down the sidewalk, past boutiques hawking Celtic jewelry and tropical apparel.

  • Welcome to Dunedin, Florida, tucked in the northern half of Pinellas County between Clearwater and Palm Harbor.

The big picture: This coastal town of about 36,000 residents has a charming downtown replete with bookstores, microbreweries, and paved biking trails.

Why it matters: Being a tourist in your backyard is fun. The Tampa Bay area has eight counties and well over 20 municipalities. Odds are, you haven't experienced all the region can offer.

  • So, we decided to turn the spotlight away from larger cities, like Tampa and St. Petersburg, and venture into the smaller towns that seldom get the recognition they deserve. Dunedin felt like a natural place to start.

I drove to Dunedin from my home in North Tampa on Thursday. It was mid-afternoon, and I got there in under an hour.

Zoom in: The museum is housed in a red-brick building that previously was a railroad depot. It holds over 2,000 artifacts, an archive of the defunct Dunedin Times and a small gift shop.

  • Visitors get to read about how a hog problem riled up residents enough to form a town and enforce a so-called "hog law" to remove the swine.
  • They can also see old typewriters and telegraph equipment. Admission is $7 for adults, $5 for children and seniors.

Next, I made my way to Back in the Day Books. The pink storefront had new releases in the window. Folk music played in the background as I walked down the aisles.

  • I spent most of my visit flipping through books I found in the Florida section and mulling whether to buy a "Great Gatsby" T-shirt.
  • There are library card totes and bookish mugs, too. I left the shirt behind and went with a leatherbound anthology of the late Florida resident Ernest Hemingway's news articles ($40).
Back in the Day Books.
Back in the Day Books. Photo: Yacob Reyes/Axios

I finished the afternoon at Lane's Lemonade. I almost ordered the apple pie in a cup before settling on a more practical choice: a beef hot dog wrapped in pretzel bread and a cup of orangeade ($10).

If you go: Here's a roundup of spots in Dunedin where you can have fun and eat well:

What to do

โœˆ๏ธ Hop into a life-size airplane simulator at Sim Center Arcade.

๐Ÿ“š Peruse the aisles at Back in the Day Books.

๐Ÿ€ Buy an authentic kilt at Celtic Shop of Dunedin.

๐Ÿšด Ride along the Pinellas Trail.

๐Ÿบ View the work of over 75 artists at Clay and Paper Gallery of Art.

๐ŸŒ… Watch the sunset at Dunedin Marina.

What to eat and drink

โ˜• Grab a cappuccino at Sandpiper cafe.

๐Ÿณ Order hash browns and an omelet at Country Boy Restaurant.

๐ŸŒฎ Scarf down fish tacos at Casa Tina.

๐Ÿบ Sip a Celtic Gold Ale at Dunedin Brewery.

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