Updated: Jan 23, 2021
This summer, Sailing Kuma Too kept busy with multiple full-day sails with families vacationing and locals looking for more than their average beach day. Let's take a look from a guest’s point of view what a day is like on board Kuma Too.
At 9am, we make our way down the Dunedin docks to see a catamaran that looks too big for the slip! The mast towers over other boats, the restaurant and hotel that surround the marina. Our excitement builds, and we pose for a picture before boarding. Joe and Mandy offer a greeting as we approach, and we all introduce ourselves as we board. We’re immediately offered drinks, and a fruit tray is set out to start the morning. Joe makes us laugh, as he runs through a thorough safety briefing. With drinks in hand, we get comfortable as the engines turn over.
The mainsail is hoisted as we pull out of the marina. It's impressive to watch the giant sail take shape. We learn about the area and see some dolphins, as we make way under the Dunedin Causeway drawbridge. It's our first time on this side of a drawbridge! Once Kuma Too clears the drawbridge, the headsail comes out, and the motors turn off. All we hear is the background island music and the wind through the rigging. It’s a clear day, so we sunbathe on the trampolines.
After about two hours of sailing and snacking, we arrive to Anclote Key. The captains drop the kayaks and offer us noodles if we want to swim off the boat. The other option we’re given is to take a dinghy ride to shore for beach time or a nature walk. We choose the nature walk, so the six of us take the 5-minute dinghy ride to shore. During the ride, we learn Anclote Key is home to many bird species and has a lighthouse from 1887. Before we’re dropped onshore, we see a tree full of Roseate Spoonbills! They’re beautiful pink birds with a very distinctive beak.
We climb out of the dinghy with a small cooler that has been filled with drinks and approach the path leading to the lighthouse. It is lined with informative plaques and takes us over a lush landscape. We spend an hour touring the inland of the island then another hour swimming off the beach before we head back to Kuma.
As we disembark back on Kuma Too, there is a lunch spread of homemade guacamole with chips and salsa, a vegetable tray with hummus, and homemade sandwich wraps. We dig in, and the motors crank on. The captains explain we have good wind and calm seas, so we’re going sailing in the Gulf of Mexico.
We spend the next two hours sailing along Caladesi State Park and Clearwater Beach then down to Sandkey and Indian Rocks Beaches. Joe and Mandy keep our thirst quenched and our tummies full as the food and adult beverages continue to pour out. As we make our way into Clearwater Pass, we can hear the music bumping from Sheppard’s beach bar. We all laugh, as our island music takes over when we approach the bridge. We’re told to watch the mast as we cruise under Sandkey Bridge and Clearwater Causeway – Kuma Too’s mast is 71-feet and the bridge has a clearance of 74-feet. You can’t help but pray the measurements are all correct. Once in the Intracoastal Waterway, we gaze at luxury homes and wave at passing boats. As we near the Dunedin City Limits, shrimp cocktail is offered. It’s a succulent treat to start the evening.
Sails are dropped and boat is prepared for the dock before Joe slides effortlessly into the slip. We sign the ship’s sail log, are thanked for choosing Sailing Kuma Too, and offered waters to take with us.
*Weather determines which island and beaches we visit as well as which route we sail, so no sail is ever exactly the same. I used TripAdvisor, Facebook, Google, and Yelp reviews to bring in a guest’s point of view in addition to our own perspective of the service we provide.
To learn about charters on board Kuma Too, visit www.SailingKumaToo.com
Until next week, Happy Sailing!
*Update: As of November 2019, Sailing Kuma Too operates exclusively in the Virgin Islands and no longer in Florida.
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