You probably know about the Tampa Bay area, but if you go just a tad north of there into Pasco County – known as Florida’s Sports Coast – you’ll find a host of amazing things to do that the entire family will enjoy.
Whether you are taking a day trip into the area or spending the entire weekend, here are three things to do that we know you’ll love.
I know this is going to sound a bit extreme, but I honestly think Treehoppers Zip Line Ropes Course in Dade City alone is worth the trip to the Sport’s Coast. This was by far the best and most exciting aerial/ziplining adventure we’ve ever experienced.
Let’s start with the layout…there are nine different courses covering six levels. The lowest level is for kids under 6yo – a Little Lemur’s Course…and the most extreme is a double black diamond!
We started our adventure on the two Easy Courses which together were 18 elements and 5 zip lines! The boys also did really well on the Moderate courses with even more elements, including a trapeze! Lest you think that “Moderate” is just moderate…beware! It was not easy…but so much fun!
Cooper and I both did one of the Challenging courses – the next level – and WOW! The elements were more difficult and higher off the ground… I’ll admit to being a little nervous on a few elements. But that’s the fun, right?!?
If I had any stamina left, I would have also tried the black diamond (but not the double black!) These are not your average ropes courses…they are really high and really intense…which is what makes them so amazing!
Every course, regardless of which level you select, begins at the same place allowing the staff to keep an eye on who is beginning each course. The course difficulty levels are also aligned with ages.
For example…the 8yo could so the Easy Course himself…and the Moderate Course when he was with me. But he wasn’t able to take on the Challenging Course (and with good reason.)
The 12yo could do those three levels by himself, but would have required me to go with him on the Black Diamond. Thank goodness that even he was challenged enough with the Challenging Course alone!
The staff here are all fantastic – so helpful to all of us, regardless of age or ability. The facility also came in 5-stars. We loved that the trails under many of the elements allowed us to grab fun pictures of the boys on the course.
You have 3 hours to climb as much as you wish, and we used every moment of that three hours…but that included a small lunch break, too. It’s easy with their picnic tables.
We noshed on wraps and sandwiches from Perks Cafe – and they were delicious. While they do offer these lunch options, Perks Cafe specializes in artisan chocolates and European-style specialty coffees and pastries so be sure to save room for dessert, too! You can even pre-order your lunch and have it delivered to the ropes course!
eCarve The Ride
This one ranks up there as one of our more unique adventures. eCarve The Ride rents and sells electric scooters in New Port Richey. Let me tell you just how different this is than renting from one of those scooter apps like Bird or Lyft.
First and foremost, the scooter-share companies require that you be at least 18 years old, so our young kids wouldn’t be able to ride. (Well, there was this one time in our neighborhood…ahem) eCarve The Ride offers a smaller kids’ scooter and if your child is tall enough and handles the test ride they’re good to go. Around 5yo or 6yo is probably appropriate but it depends on the kid I am sure. They do give you a quick start up lesson, and helmets are included with the rental.
Major difference number two: You don’t rent these scooters by the minute to get from point A to point B. You rent hourly, and most people use them to explore the beautiful city of New Port Richey. This was my first time in NPR and I was really impressed by the quaint, attractive, Old Florida downtown area. The Pithlachascotee River runs right through it, to include Sims Park, a green space, playground and fountain with a ton of visual appeal.
We had a blast tooling around the downtown area, through the park, along the river. The boys had never done anything like this, and they were having the time of their lives. They felt grown up and empowered, which for us is reason alone to do this.
We spent a lot of time circling the park, but also took some back roads, and visited a couple of shops on Main Street. We were out for a full two hours which went by in a flash! The scooters can go about 30 miles on a single charge. Check with them for other cool places to ride like the Starkey Park Bike Trail and James E. Grey Preserve.
The also rent and sell OneWheels. Have you seen these things? Check out our video which includes scenes from our ride, and our 12-year-old trying out a OneWheel.
The Widow Fletcher’s Tavern
We visited as the sun was setting, and the skies rewarded us greatly. The first picture in the post of the glorious orange skies over the canal was shot from the balcony of Widow Fletcher’s. We could see the sunset from our table inside, and savored every second.
The restaurant is New Port Richey’s only waterfront restaurant, with 43 floating boat slips making it very convenient for boaters to dine with ease.
The enormous building includes the main dining room (where we enjoyed dinner) as well as The Widow’s Den – an outdoor bar…and The Widow’s Tavern – which reminds me of a typical sports bar, with TVs and such.
Now – let’s talk about what’s most important – the food. Every morsel was delicious!
We started with Sesame-Rubbed Tuna, which was fresh and seared well…but the “magic sauce” was a perfectly-paired mango habanero drizzle that was not too sweet and not too spicy…but just right.
On the manager’s recommendations we went with the Blackened Chicken Alfredo (hubs ate every bite!) and the Blackened Grouper Reuben. This sandwich is unexpected and sensational. The perfectly cooked grouper was packed between crispy rye with kraut, melted Swiss and homemade thousand-island dressing…and when I took that first bite, I knew I was in love.
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Disclosure: May thanks to Florida’s Sports Coast and Visit Florida for hosting me and my family. Opinions here are all my own.
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