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View Poll Results: Central Florida's East coast, or West coast?
East coast 5 10.87%
West coast 41 89.13%
Voters: 46. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 09-04-2015, 10:24   #16
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

i think the best thing about the west coast is the accessibility of the gulf .. the inlets are easy to do even at night. the winds are steady much of the time and good for sailing. st. pete is a big city but is amazing with a huge boating presence. gulfport gets good reviews and puts you closer to the clear gulf waters. palmetto or bradenton might be an easier commute from orlando. it is insane this time of the year with snow birds and spring breakers
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Old 09-04-2015, 10:26   #17
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

I would go for the St Pete Municipal Marina. Affordable & right downtown. Lots of restaurants within walking distance & tons of stuff to do. You're very close to Egmont Key with great beaches. Actually there are great beaches all over this area. Marinas to the north at Clearwater Beach, Dunedin or Tarpon Springs are less than a day trip. Beaches in this area are consistently ranked in the top 5 in the country every year. Several barrier islands to the north great for anchoring. You can cruise farther north & get a taste of old Florida & see the Manatees in Homosassa or Crystal River. Or you can head south to Anna Maria Island, Bradenton, Sarasota, Boca Grande, Fort Meyers & of course the Keys & the Dry Tortugas. Plus Orlando is a straight shot on I4.
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Old 09-04-2015, 13:51   #18
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

I hate to say it but I think cruising in FL generally speaking isint much! Boring comes to mind. Inlet to inlet cruising and then thenwhen you get in the inlet you mostly find houses. The West coast has way to much shallow water and on a scale of 1-10, 1 being best the West Coast would get a 7.5 and the East Coast a 6.5. The Bahama's about 4.5. I live here but for good cruising the Cheasapeake and North, (Leaving out New York), is hands down more interesting.
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Old 09-04-2015, 14:26   #19
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

We live aboard in Sanford and have enjoyed it tremendously. It is an hour to very remote portions of the St. Johns river. It is obviously a long haul to Ocean. I work in Maitland so I just can't tolerate the commute from the West Coast. We'll probably go over to the East Coast in New Smerna Beach or Titusville sometime and base out of there for a while. It is is always difficult to choose between two good choices.

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Old 09-04-2015, 14:35   #20
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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Originally Posted by lesterbutch View Post
I hate to say it but I think cruising in FL generally speaking isint much! Boring comes to mind. Inlet to inlet cruising and then thenwhen you get in the inlet you mostly find houses. The West coast has way to much shallow water and on a scale of 1-10, 1 being best the West Coast would get a 7.5 and the East Coast a 6.5. The Bahama's about 4.5. I live here but for good cruising the Cheasapeake and North, (Leaving out New York), is hands down more interesting.
Yeah, walking on a white sandy beach in a t-shirt & shorts in the middle of January really sucks.
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Old 09-04-2015, 14:49   #21
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

I presently live aboard at the St. Pete Municipal marina. I have cruised the west coast from Tarpon Springs to the keys but never cruised the east coast. I love it here! As mentioned before there are lots of inlets to the ICW, Tampa Bay and Charlotte Harbor. I'm also a yacht broker and I've sold several boats to sailors who live on the east coast and buy a boat here and commute rather than have a boat on the east coast. Their reason; no place to go except the Atlantic and then it is too far to get in or out.

Also, we have dock parties! The reason I mention that, besides they are fun, is because one of the topics for new arrivals or returns is usually, where have you sailed and or lived aboard? The response is almost always they came back to St. Pete because it is the best place they have been. Walk downtown for all your needs, except West Marine is no longer downtown.

Comparatively inexpensive, friendly people, great sailing, and the St. Pete municipal is well protected.
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Old 09-04-2015, 15:37   #22
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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We live aboard in Sanford and have enjoyed it tremendously. ............
We will be heading your way next month. We went in 2012 and enjoyed it so much we're coming back. The St. Johns River is a beautiful cruise.
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Old 09-04-2015, 16:52   #23
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

I live in Daytona area. Ponce inlet is easy access to the ocean in daylight. Port Canaveral is also easy day or night from my favorite marina, Harbor Town on Merritt Island. It has a pool and a low key restaurant. There are many other eateries and pubs nearby at the port.


Now as to the commute...
Plan on two and one half hours or more commute time from St. Pete. I used to live there and loved it, but no way would I do the West Coast / Orlando trip twice a day.


The area I described above has a major highway running to the South Orlando/ Airport area (The Beach Line), connecting to the 417 beltway and the 408 East West. One and one half hours to downtown. There is also a "back road" hwy from New Smyrna to the 417 at Sanford. Downtown is an hour away if you can avoid I-4 traffic.
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Old 09-04-2015, 17:10   #24
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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Thank you rassabossa for your response. I am currently living in Thornton Park, next to Lake Eola. As you have lived in Winter Park, you undoubtedly know the area. Please allow me to clarify just a little. First and foremost, I would like to be located where the best cruising areas are, given my constraints. Secondly, I would like to be located where there is a social scene...good restaurants, museums, etc. Also, as this is my first posting here, I inadvertantly included a poll. I didn't mean for it to be a popularity issue, but can genuinely use some insight.
You're welcome but I think the others here have been more helpful. Once again, it comes down to you in choice. Are you young and want to party, then probably St. Pete is best. Are you old or a misanthrope like me then I'd say hiding out on the St. Johns is pretty nice. Your choice needs to take into account what your personal social needs are.
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Old 09-04-2015, 17:14   #25
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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I live in Daytona area. Ponce inlet is easy access to the ocean in daylight. Port Canaveral is also easy day or night from my favorite marina, Harbor Town on Merritt Island. It has a pool and a low key restaurant. There are many other eateries and pubs nearby at the port.


Now as to the commute...
Plan on two and one half hours or more commute time from St. Pete. I used to live there and loved it, but no way would I do the West Coast / Orlando trip twice a day.


The area I described above has a major highway running to the South Orlando/ Airport area (The Beach Line), connecting to the 417 beltway and the 408 East West. One and one half hours to downtown. There is also a "back road" hwy from New Smyrna to the 417 at Sanford. Downtown is an hour away if you can avoid I-4 traffic.
I have to agree, that would be one hell of a commute. I've done it in 2 hours but sure would not want to make a habit of driving it twice a day and anything south of St Pete would be an even longer drive. That being said, I'd still rather live in St Pete. Maybe you could go to Orlando & stay for a couple of days & then come back.
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Old 09-04-2015, 17:48   #26
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

West coast has a better history with Hurricanes? That's my impression, but I don't have any data, is it true?


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Old 09-04-2015, 18:19   #27
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

Having lived on both coasts, I think that you probably are practically limited to Tampa Bay on the West coast for commuting purposes. Commuting from St. Pete to Orlando would be a nightmare. Just the traffic at each end would be a killer, but you already live in Orlando so maybe traffic doesn't bother you that much. I would consider the east side of Tampa Bay perhaps Apollo Beach or the Little Manatee river area. It would probably cut an hour off of a commute from St. Pete. Tampa Bay definitely offers more sailing and cruising grounds than the Indian River which is where you are practically limited by Commute time on the east coast. In most of the Indian river you are confined to the ditch, that is the ICW Channel, by shallow water. While you have to be a bit careful around the edges and know where you can and can't go, Tampa bay has much more deep water. In the Indian River, the only place it's safe to get out of the channel is a small area near Titusville and perhaps 10 miles south and 15 miles north of Melbourne. Even then it's a maximum of 2 miles wide east-west. To get out in the Ocean requires going through one of the few inlets that can handle a sail boat. They are narrow and with the exception of Port Canaveral can be very rough on an east wind and outgoing tide. Tampa Bay on the other hand has a nice wide mouth with little tide to drive currents. Once you get outside, where do you go? The only option for someone still working is the next inlet or back to the same inlet. In Tampa bay there a lot of places you can get to in a day without even going out in the Gulf. In the Indian River you can go up the ditch and down the ditch. The trade off is a much easier commute.

I'm not sure what the comment about "more regular people" was all about, but east central Florida is not anything like Miami/Ft. Lauderdale / Palm Beach. If Big City people are "regular people" you are going to find a lot more of them on the central west coast than on the central east coast. I've lived in both places and the central east coast is a lot more laid back than the central west coast.
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Old 09-04-2015, 18:37   #28
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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West coast has a better history with Hurricanes? That's my impression, but I don't have any data, is it true?


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If by better you mean "more" you are correct. The gulf gets hit by a lot more hurricanes than the Atlantic side. That being said, Central Florida doesn't get direct hits from many hurricanes. For reasons I can't explain they tend to hit further south on both coasts or on the west coast go into the panhandle. On the Central East Coast a direct hit is almost unheard of. The exception being 2004 when 2 hurricanes hit Ft. Pierce directly. Other than that I can only recall one other direct hit since 1968. Most of the TS/Hurricanes I experienced there crossed the peninsula from SW Florida and were re-curving hurricanes coming out of the Gulf or Yucatan area. By the time they got to the east coast most of the punch was gone. Also the East coast is much less susceptible to storm surge. The barrier Islands are much more substantial and the inlets are very narrow. Not much water can get through them. The gulf side inlets are wide and relatively shallow allowing storm surge to penetrate and the barrier islands are little more than sand bars with houses on them.
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Old 09-04-2015, 19:24   #29
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

I would recommend the west coast hands down over the east coast. The west coast has much more interesting water ways to cruise from st petersburg all the way to the keys, you have large bays, mangrove forests, better beaches, friendlier people, generally tamer sea conditions, more interesting places to explore all the way up and down. A more "beachy" scene. The east coast is pretty uniform the entirety of the coast with less protection, fewer ports except for the hustle of ft liquourdale or Miami. St. Petersburg probably has one of the nicest waterfront downtowns in the US and is a big hub for sailing. The downtown has a very cool vibe with activity year round. Since I 4 was recently expanded it is real easy drive to Orlando, you just have to know the hours to avoid the work traffic of Tampa and Orlando.
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Old 09-04-2015, 20:00   #30
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Re: To live aboard Florida's East or West coast???

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Thank you everyone for you responses. Since they have all been East coast based, does anyone have input regarding the West coast?
Isn't this like asking whether or not you'd like to live in New York or LA?

C'mon, it's YOUR choice.

Who knows, among us, what YOU like.

Bahamas or Gulf?

Current sailing on the Stream or the thin Gulf?

The Lights of Miami or Naples?

Daytona or Charlotte?

Punta Gorda or Ft. Launderdale?

Nebraska or Wyoming?

Your boat, your choice.

I would recommend Mexico, it's safe. Right?
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