If you’re looking for a beach vacation that combines days on the beach with the modern conveniences of the city, then St. Petersburg is the place where you’ll feel most at home. Located in southwestern Florida, St. Petersburg enjoys double shorelines with Tampa Bay on the east side of the city and the Gulf of Mexico along the western edge. In the St. Petersburg area, there are a variety of neighborhoods and small coastal communities, each with their own vibe and activities to attract visitors. Here are the details on the 9 best neighborhoods and communities to look for a vacation rental in St. Petersburg.

1. Historic Old Northeast Neighborhood

brick streets
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Walk along the brick streets when you choose a bungalow in the historic Old Northeast neighborhood for your trip. This neighborhood is home to more than 3,000 historic buildings. Take the family down to North Shore Park for a day of swimming on the white sandy beach or biking around the area. Check the schedule at the Palladium Theater and see if any live performances catch your fancy. You can indulge in a little retail therapy at the area’s quaint shopping area.

2. Grand Central District

grand central district
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Get your creative juices flowing in the Grand Central District with its treasure trove of art galleries that line the main streets, just west of downtown St. Petersburg. Jannus Live, an outdoor music center, offers frequent concerts, or you can stop by the American Stage Theatre Company to catch the latest musical or play. Spend your afternoons exploring the small boutiques, then stop at one of the outdoor cafes when you need a snack or cup of Joe. Get outside and get active at Williams Park on your bike or just strolling along.

3. Historic Kenwood Neighborhood

jordan park
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Choose a charming bungalow as your vacation rental and live in the midst of the local artists and their studios in the Historic Kenwood neighborhood. Many of the local artists work and teach classes out of their studios, so you and your family might schedule an art lesson. In the summer months, stop by Seminole Park in the evenings to check out the live jazz performances and occasional movies shown in the park. Each year, this neighborhood hosts the annual BungalowFest, where you can tour the homes and studios of local artists.

4. Downtown St. Petersburg

dali museum
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

It’s all about culture and museums when you choose a vacation rental in the downtown area of St. Petersburg. Some of the must-see museums in the area include the Salvador Dali Museum, the Florida International Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, and the St. Petersburg Museum of History. With the University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus in the area, this neighborhood offers a young and hip vibe with eclectic shops, restaurants, bars, and even the must-see Haslam’s Bookstore.

5. Historic Roser Park Neighborhood

brasserie
Source: Flickr/Athena Iluz

Find a single-family home built in the Mediterranean or Spanish style when you make the Historic Roser Park neighborhood your vacation destination. In Roser Park, enjoy the shade from the royal palms and oaks as you check out the amazing flower gardens and read the 28 markers that tell the stories of some of the historic homes and buildings in the area. You can bike around the park or get in your morning run in this laid back, family orientated neighborhood.

6. Edgemoor Neighborhood

mangrove bay gulf
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Save some money with a more modest vacation rental in the Edgemoor neighborhood with its primarily residential roots. Take this chance to explore some of the exotic flavors at the local Thai, Cuban, and Austrian restaurants around the neighborhood. At Puryear Park, you and your family can enjoy the only Jai Alai court in America. For the golf lovers in your family, the Mangrove Bay Golf Course offers a par-72 course for them to practice their swing.

7. Bayway Isles Neighborhood

bayway isles
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Actually made up of two small islands, the Bayway Isles neighborhood offers your family the laid back beach vacation that they crave. The neighborhood extends from Pinellas Bayway causeway to Boca Ciega Bay, with amazing views of the water no matter where you stay. Enjoy boating, fishing, snorkeling, kayaking, and canoeing on the bay. Spend a day at the Isla del Rey Yacht Country Club, where you can golf, swim in the pool, or rent a sailboat to spend a day on the bay.

8. Snell Isle Neighborhood

snell isle bridge
Source: Flickr/CityofStPete

Surrounded by Coffee Pot Bayou, Smacks Bayou, and Tampa Bay, the Snell Isle neighborhood centers around the upscale Renaissance Vinoy Golf Club that have a stunning art deco era Mediterranean design. Schedule a tee time or just take the family to tour the facilities. Walk along the Coffee Pot Bayou and keep a look out for the manatee that has a habitat in these waters. You and your family can bike around the streets, kayak on the bay, and fish for dinner to grill at your vacation rental.

9. Tierra Verde

tierra verde
Source: Flickr/Reinhard Link

Southwest of St. Petersburg is a series of barrier islands that make up the community of Tierra Verde. While staying in the community, be sure to spend a day at the Fort De Soto Fishing Pier and take your camera to capture the moment your kids catch their first fish. Take your dog to the Fort De Soto Dog Beach along the Gulf of Mexico where he can play in the surf with your kids.