On the recommendation of a friend, during my yearlong adventure 11 years ago, I visited Watercolor and Seaside in the Florida panhandle. On my shortened journey this year (due to some challenges with VANgo and changing my travel priorities to horses), I made Seaside my last stop in Florida upon my return home from Texas.
Last time I visited the area, I hiked with the dogs in Grayton Beach State Park, strolled the beach, and enjoyed lunch at the Shrimp Shack. This time, since I learned that a histamine intolerance is causing my migraines and eating seafood is out of the question, I made my tour about The Truman Show, a movie which came out in 1998.
In the movie, Truman Burbank lives on Seahaven Island, but the movie was filmed in Seaside on Florida’s coast. The town’s new urbanism design, dreamed up by Robert Davis, looks like a movie set, and many places may be recognized in The Truman Show.
As a result, I wandered from place to place including Modica Market, the Coleman Tower, the Truman House, and the ever-moving, world famous post office. I also added on the purple wall and the chapel since these places are iconic Seaside destinations.
Modica Market is a specialty grocery store operated by the Modica’s who retired to Seaside from Alabama after spending more than fifty years in the grocery store business. The store has been open since 1989 and attracts both locals and tourists with it breakfast and lunch menu along with many wines, craft beers, and specialty foods.
The Truman Show includes both the market and the Modicas in the movie and Jim Carey visits to store to see his friend.
It is hard to miss Coleman Tower. It is located between the city center and the beach where public beach access is available. During the holidays, Seaside strings the tower with white lights. It pops up in The Truman Show many times.
The Truman House
The Truman House is not too far from town. In fact, I parked on the scenic highway 30a near the real address of 31 Natchez Street and then walked to the rest of sites near town center. The home number in the Truman Show is 36.
The Post Office
The Seaside post office is one of the most photographed in the world. I snapped a photo of it 11 years ago when it was located between the food trucks. It has since moved onto the U plaza near Modica Market. Stop in and mail a postcard from “Seahaven”.
Other Iconic Destinations
Other iconic sites in Seaside include the purple wall and the chapel.
The giant purple mural on 30a was painted by renowned street artist, Andrew Pisacane, also known as Gaia. The mural pays tribute to Vincent Scully, a historian and art and architecture educator.
The Chapel at Seaside is located at the head of Ruskin Square (also in the movie). Opened in 2001, its 68-foot bell tower marks the highest point in Seaside. The White Chapel with steep roof has already earned the Historical American Buildings Survey Heritage Designation, despite its young age. It is now part of the permanent collection of the Library of Congress.
The Shrimp Shack
Just for grins, I snapped a photo of The Shrimp Shack to compare the eleven year difference in time. The Shrimp Shack has been upgraded and Seaside has definitely grown. It was a quick, enjoyable stop! ETB