Host of funky events like GeckoFest and home to unique places like The Blueberry Patch and LocalShops1 Pop-Up Shop, Gulfport is a small artsy town with lots to offer.

The summer heat is now in full force and there aren’t all that many markets that brave the daytime sun, but year-round you can count on Gulfport to host their Tuesday treat. Slow down your weekday grind as you step back in time visiting this Old Florida feeling downtown full of bright color and beauty. Here’s my short list of eats, drinks & fun in the area for when you #hitthemarket there!

1.  Stellas

This local fave has won its fair share of awards for its infamous fare. Serving breakfast all day long and close to the water along Beach Drive, this is a great way to kick off your day. They proudly brew Kahwa coffee, but if it’s a little hair of the dog you require, they have that too. Flights are the fancy; choose from a bloody mary flight or mimosa flight to get your morning started with a zing.

2. Gulfport Tuesday Fresh Market

Happening in Gulfport’s Waterfront District along Boca Ciega Bay, this fresh market has local grown produce in addition to plenty of artisan/maker goods setup in a picturesque scene from 9AM-2PM every Tuesday. Gulfport is quaint and charming in a Florida Keys-esque way. First Fridays and third Saturdays Gulfport also hosts Art Walks, in case you can’t make it out mid-day to market due to the ol’ 9-5.

3. Pia’s Trattoria

Being half Italian, this spot is a Gulfport goldmine for my taste buds. Located right on the main drag, Pia’s serves up some of the best desserts that are baked fresh daily! If you’re a bit hungrier post-market crawl, they also have phenomenal pasta dishes, paninis and salads (in case you’re not into carb-loading midday during bikini season).  Their outdoor eclectic patio is the perfect summer hangout with an “Old Italy” atmosphere.

4. Kayak Nature Adventures

Summertime in South Florida is ideal for being out on the water! At Kayak Nature Adventures you can rent either a kayak or SUP, whatever floats your boat, to paddle through gorgeous Clam Bayou Nature Preserve. They offer 90-minute guided tours – a great option if it’s your first time in the area and just getting your sea legs or for the seasoned vet they offer up to 4 hour rentals. PS: they are pet-friendly!

5. O’Maddy’s

The ideal beach bar to kick back at for afternoon brews, O’Maddy’s is a hangout you have to stop at. One word: karaoke. A Market Mafia kryptonite of sorts…

6. Island Grille & Raw Bar

Just a short drive away in Tierra Verde is yet another must munch place, Island Grille & Raw Bar. Their gorgeous patio has quite the sunset setup and starting at 5PM most nights they have live music. The menu is nothing short of a-maz-ing! Anddd Tuesday just so happens to be their $.75 oyster day; fried, raw or steamed-ALL day long! Make sure you visit Judy at the tiki bar for her signature Golden Margarita.

Bottoms up,

K

#marketmafiatampabay #keepgulfportweird #lovewhereyoulive

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