1 Year Journey – Florida – Tampa / Clearwater Beach

We came to Tampa to have some repairs made at Lazy Days RV, including swapping out our Atwood water heater with a Truma AquaGo!  What a huge RV place this is!  Nothing else like it.  Unfortunately, it seems to be on par with most service centers in terms of custoner service and quality of work. 


They have a neat rec room and a restaurant in the shape of an RV!

Live music, too!
While here, we drove through Tampa to Clearwater Beach.  Tons of people, but the water sure was clear!

It felt like island hopping to get there:

The sand was soooo white!

The Clearwater Beach version:

And then Tripp said, “Hey!”…and added this!  ðŸ™‚



We took a stroll down the boardwalk toward a Ron Jon Surf Shop, but decided it was too far to walk since we were tired from the beach. 

We also watched the new Captain Underpants movie, which the kids had been waiting to see.  It was pretty funny, and now the kids are creating their own comic books!

I took the kids to a model train show, and bought a few N scale train cars for the new set up we are building.  Too bad we got to the show as they were starting to tear it down for the weekend.

These little guys are all over, no matter where we are in Florida it seems!  I bet we saw 200 of them at one campsite we were at!

We kayaked in Tampa Bay!  We have a really great time!  This makes two oceans that we kayaked in. We had to wade out about 50 feet until the water was deep enough. 

Weed first spend some time just watching the fish jump out of the water. We think they are Mullet fish, which are known to do that. We also saw a few dolphins and we think a manatee!

Off we go!



The water was so clear!  We also saw a few pelicans fly by.



Fun evening!!

One day we went to see the Manatee Viewing Center near Tampa Bay, but it was closed this time of year. We’ll have to check it out when we come back next winter, when we are also planning to kayak the Weeki Wachee river about 40 minutes away, where there are manatees swimming in crystal clear teal colored water!  The pictures look so amazing!


That evening we ate at a really neat seafood place called Circles, which sits right on Tampa Bay in a town called Apollo Beach, not far from the Manatee viewing area.  We had a neat view of some palm trees and sailboats!

Awesome food and really good live music!!  The Atlantic Cod and Mahi Mahi were really tasty!

It’s strange to think we are closer to Cuba and even Jamaica than we are to Arkansas!  

We thought about driving down to the Florida Keys this weekend, but Saturday is the only good day without rain.  Since it takes around six hours to get there, we would only have half the day to see it all with good weather.  We think we will save this for next Winter.  It stinks, because we have this whole weekend coming up and it’s supposed to be thunderstorms for the next seven days!  We’ll have to find something to do indoors.

We ended up taking the kids to Disney Quest at Disney Springs.  Avin really liked it, so we were disappointed to find out that it’s going to be closed down this July.


We found a great hibachi restaurant in Brandon called Kobe Japanese Steakhouse. The kids really liked watching the show!

Tripp really liked the Japanese onion soup!


Much less fun was finding the source of ants that started coming into our RV when all of the rain began (and man, it has been raining a lot!).

Typical forecast:

Typical radar:

I launched a counter assault and sprayed a perimeter around our RV, including our tires, jacks, air conditioners, and connection hookup lines, as well as spraying all of the little crevices where they were entering.  I also had to break away small branch from a tree that was touching our roof, because they were coming in from the tree as well.  I have read that Central Florida is horrible for ants trying to get in, due to the sandy soil and all of the rain.  Another reason we are looking forward to heading west!

We also had a leak when all of the rain started. That was no fun at all, either! I ended up buying a borescope from Home Depot so that I could trace the leak to some sealant that had separated from the RV between the front and the roof. Glad to have that solved!

Another mystery solved was a rotten egg smell coming from the washing machine area. We bought a piece of flexible tubing and used it to trace the source of the smell to the overflow pipe behind the washer. We suspected that’s where it was coming from, but we couldnt get our noses back there.  Apparently, the p-trap wasn’t working properly to keep odors from creeping up from the gray tank. We fixed this by attaching a reducer pipe fitting to eliminate the space between the washing machine hose and the drain pipe so there is no room for air to escape.  Works great so far!

On Thursday, we geared up for the Cars 3 movie. Carla reserved some reclining seats in a neat theater in Tampa!  While I worked in the car, Carla drove us to Disney’s Art of Animation hotel so the kids could check out the Disney Cars on my lunch break!

The big moment!!

Awesome theater!!!  So packed! 🙂

2 thoughts on “1 Year Journey – Florida – Tampa / Clearwater Beach

  1. Neat place to kayak. Glad the weather cooperated. Lucky boys….they’re sure getting to enjoy life. See you all soon.

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