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The Best Kept Secret in Tampa Bay

Updated on August 5, 2009

I have a secret. This secret has been around for 465 years when Hernando de Soto. searching for the fountain of Youth discovered it. The small, sleepy town of Safety Harbor, Florida is the best-kept secret in Tampa Bay. The first appearance of daylight in the morning, when Safety Harbor awakens to a red sky, turning orange and then yellow, I think to myself, "This is why I came to Florida!"

Morning walks along Bayshore Drive and Philippe Park, feeling the warm, tropical breeze and hearing the palm leaves rubbing against each other let you know that you are in Florida. Gulls splash in Old Tampa Bay, as they fish for breakfast.

Safety Harbor attracts visitors worldwide, not only for its beauty, but for its natural historic, Espiritu Sancto Springs. The Springs were named by the Spanish explorer, Hernando de Sota.

Twenty-two acres of Florida coastline houses the famous Safety Harbor Resort and Spa, one of the world's finest spa and honeymoon destinations for health conscious visitors to the area. I have eaten in the cafe and dining room and enjoyed some of the most delicious food in the region, including their famous "crab cakes."

Safety Harbor has a number of shops on Main Street that include art galleries, antique shops, gift and book stores, Weddings have been performed at the John Wilson Gazebo and Philippe Park. Other wedding vendors include Chantilly Cakes, The Stuffed Mushroom catering, hair and nail salons, as well as Day Spas.

Safety Harbor is resplendent with history. The Safety Harbor Museum contains historical exhibits from prehistoric time to the Roaring 20's. A French surgeon in Napoleon's navy named Count Odet Philippe, is credited with introducing citrus growing to Florida.


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    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Maven, if you ever get out here on the 4th of July, you will love the fireworks in Safety Harbor. I've never been to San Francisco but was in Watsonville, about 50 miles south for my company, West Marine, before I retired. Got to see Monterey Bay, Fisherman's Wharf and ate some great food while I was there.

    • maven101 profile image

      maven101 8 years ago from Northern Arizona

      Concise and informative...Thank you for this Hub...Being from San Francisco, and living in Arizona, we really miss the ocean...Safety Harbor sounds a great spot to visit if we ever get out that way....Thank you...Larry

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      Thank you for the comment. Madeira Beach is beautiful as well. If you've never been to the Safety Harbor fireworks on the 4th of July, plan to go next year. They are right next to the spa. Excellent!

    • hd1912 profile image

      hd1912 8 years ago from Madeira Beach , Fl

      Hi i live in Madeira Beach. I love Safety Harbor as well. The resort and spa is to die for!

    • judydianne profile image

      judydianne 8 years ago from Palm Harbor, FL

      It's a beautiful place to live and there's always something going on like wine tasting, jazz bands or holiday festivities!

    • Rob Dee profile image

      Rob Dee 8 years ago from Florida

      i used to love living in Safety Harbor....such a quaint little town in the midst of the most densly populated county in Florida!