After visiting Venice for a couple of days, VANgo, Annie and I inched a little further north to Dunedin. Dunedin is located on the west coast just north of Tampa. It is best known for its beaches and pine forest of Honeymoon Island.
Honeymoon Island was the first stop for me and Annie. Honeymoon Island got its name in 1939 when the owner of the island together with LIFE magazine held a contest for newly married couples. The winners earned a two-week stay on the island in thatched bungalows for their honeymoon. Thus the name.
Today, Honeymoon Island is part of the Florida State Park system. It includes a few miles of trails, a beach with nice facilities, and the ferry terminal for Caladesi Island State Park which may only be reached by boat.
Annie and I took the Osprey and Pelican Cove Trails except for where they were closed. It likely amounted to a two-mile walk on sandy paths through the forest with occasional views of the aqua bay. I hoped we’d see some osprey like we did on Pine Island near Fort Meyers, but no such luck.
Upon doing some review for this article, I might have missed any “no pets signs”, as the AllTrails app says they are not allowed on the trails, so double check before you go with a dog, as that may have been a big mistake by me. Dogs are allowed in the park, but only designated areas.
After our walk, I stopped by the outdoor beach shower and cleaned off. Though cold showers aren’t my favorite, it helped to cool off on this warm day.
For most of the afternoon, we parked off the causeway which provided a lovely breeze and nice lunchtime view.
Before the day was over, Annie needed to burn some more energy, so we visited Hammock Park. Hammock Park includes a butterfly garden, trails, a boardwalk, picnic areas, a playground, a disc golf course, and restrooms.
Annie and I connected most all the trails in the park together and walked them twice which probably made up a couple of miles. Along the second loop, we stumbled upon an area which is an off-leash dog park for a few hours each day. We arrived just in time for her rough house! Hammock Park was a perfect stop for us before we took a brief tour through downtown and then checked out TD Stadium.
TD Stadium was built in 1990 and holds 8,500 fans. It is the spring training home to the Toronto Blue Jays which attracts many visitors from Canada. I had hoped to catch a game while in Dunedin, but it turns out baseball was on hold due to another lockout! While they finally came to an agreement, spring training as well as the season was delayed.
Dunedin was nice and our short stay likely didn’t do it justice. It was just a bit too hot in VANgo, so after a stay in a nearby Walmart parking area, I headed back to Ocala to visit my horse show friends once more. While Walmart was a little brighter and noisier than my recent nights at Cracker Barrel, it didn’t have sprinklers that sprayed VANgo at 5am which sent Annie into a tizzy! ETB