Lucky pups in Tampa know where they can kick up the sand- at the Picnic Island Park! Located on a peninsula off of Tampa that juts into Old Tampa Bay, this park is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to spend some time at the beach. Along with a long stretch of public beaches, there's also a fenced in dog beach just for our furvorite furry pals to enjoy!
You can find the dog beach early in your adventure, as its the first stretch of beach along Picnic Island Boulevard near the boat launch. Look for the first parking area, and once inside, you'll see the fencing for the dog beach, a pier for fishing and the boat launch area. Fully fenced in on three sides, the dog beach offers access to the waters of the bay on the fourth.
While this beach offers plenty of room to frolic in the sand, be aware that near the shoreline are sharp rocks and sometimes even oyster shells. The water also can have high levels of algae, and seaweed has been known to litter the beach causing quite a smell. While the sharp rocks and shells can't be avoided, the seaweed does tend to accumulate throughout the season, and is at its worst during the later summer months. While your dog can play without a leash here, do be watchful for any hazards before they head for the water.
In addition to the beach itself, you'll also find picnic tables and grills for a pawtastic outdoor meal, and access to drinking water. There's also hoses to wash the beach off your adventure pup for the ride home. Keep an eye out for furrific wildlife, such as several kinds of birds, horseshoe and hermit crabs, and sand dollars. Palm trees scattered about provide some shade.
The park also features a playground, disc golf course and sand volleyball courts. For those looking for more traditional exercise, visit the provided workout area, or take a hike on one of the developed trails. You can also use the public boat launch, or canoe and kayak launch, to get your watercraft into Old Tampa Bay, or stroll down the pier for some fishing.
Keep your dog leashed whenever exploring outside the off-leash area, and when entering and exiting the area. Always have clean-up bags on hand to promptly pick up any messes and keep the beach clean.
For a truly pawrific day in the sun, bring your pup to the Picnic Island Park Dog Beach!