The Tampa/Clearwater area is an ideal family vacation destination. It is located far enough south to offer warm winter weather, but also far enough north to avoid the unbearable summer heat and humidity. Clearwater is truly a year round destination. The abundance of large Clearwater vacation rentals available makes it easy and affordable to take the whole family.
Clearwater Beach is the island located at the far west end of Tampa Bay, facing the ocean. It features the best beaches in the area, by far. The proximity to both St Petersburg and Tampa ensures there is no shortage of attractions a short drive away. Clearwater itself has plenty to keep families entertained as well, with a bunch of fun beach bars and restaurants and a variety of watersports activities available. While there are several great hotels on the beach in Clearwater, booking multiple hotel rooms to take the whole family can be extremely expensive. Renting a Clearwater vacation rental with multiple bedrooms is usually cheaper and makes for a far more enjoyable family experience. Here’s our list of the best rentals in the area for families.
5. 32 Steps to the Beach, a 3BR Clearwater Beach House Rental
Starting off our list is an affordable Clearwater vacation rental house that sleeps 6. This house isn’t directly on the beach, but just across a quiet street from it. Like the name says, it is just over 30 steps to the sand. Not being technically “beachfront” means there is a significant cost savings on the nightly rental price, making this house a great value pick. It is located on the quiet north end of Clearwater Beach, but still walking distance to a variety of restaurants and shops. A quick 10 minute walk will get you to the famous Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill (https://frenchysonline.com/frenchys-rockaway/) on the beach. The popular and unique Crab Fries are a must-try!
This Clearwater Beach house rental is extremely well reviewed on VRBO, and the the owners, Ryan and Amy, are rated as Premier Hosts. This means that they have qualified for the highest status as hosts on the VRBO platform. This is a great indicator of the overall quality of a rental property. That doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of great vacation rentals out there that aren’t Premier Hosts to be fair. This is one of the most affordable 3 bedroom Clearwater rentals available, and gets high marks from us for value and location. Average Review Score: 4.9/5.0 (150+ Reviews) More Info, Rates, and Availability: Amy and Ryan’s 3BR North Clearwater Beach House Rental
4. 2BR Newly Renovated Clearwater Beach Condo Rental
This is one of the rare Clearwater vacation rentals that has over 200 reviews and maintains a flawless 5.0/5.0 review score. To accomplish this feat it takes a dedicated owner who truly cares about their guest’s experiences. The owner of this condo, Heather, does just that and it shows. Much like our last property, this condo isn’t directly beachfront. It sits about 50 steps back down a quiet side street to the beach access.
This condo complex has 28 units on the property, which is about average size on Clearwater Beach. The location here is more near the heart of the action on Clearwater than the quiet north end. Depending on your group this could be a positive or negative. The good part about it is you are walking distance to just about any of the major attractions and restaurants in the area. The downside can be traffic and the beach tends to be busier in this area. We also have to mention that although the condo is rated to sleep 6 people, it comes in at just under 1000 sqft which can make it a bit cramped with 6. That being said, this unit is a fantastic value and has just about the best reviews in the area. Average Review Score: 5.0/5.0 (200+ Reviews) More Info, Rates, and Availability: Heather’s Newly Renovated 2BR Clearwater Beach Condo Rental
3. 2BR Waterfront Condo at Harbourside Resort with Waterpark
For our third pick we are moving just south of Clearwater Beach to Indian Rocks Beach. The two areas are connected by a small bridge and are close enough to each other we felt it was worth including in our Clearwater list. Harbourside Resort is a large condo complex on the beach that has its own awesome waterpark. This condo rental overlooks both the beach and the waterpark, with two large balconies. This 2 bedroom condo is rated to sleep 8, but with 1 king bed, 2 queens and a sofa bed, 6 or 7 people would probably be more realistic.
This rental comes with 4 complimentary passes to the Splash Harbour Waterpark daily. If more passes are needed they can be purchased at a 50% discount through the host (Kay). The waterpark isn’t a typical resort style setup with a small slide and a pool. This is a full fledged waterpark with regular slides, tube slides, body slides, a huge lazy river, and much more. Here’s their website for more info on the waterpark: https://www.splashharbourwaterpark.com/ If having access to both the beach and a great waterpark is something your group would enjoy, this is a fantastic Indian Rocks Beach vacation rental. Oh and by the way, it has a perfect review score. Average Review Score: 5.0/5.0 (140+ Reviews) More Info, Rates, and Availability: Harbourside Resort and Waterpark 2BR Condo Rental at VRBO.com
2. 2BR Colony Surf North Clearwater Beachfront Condo Rental
Our #2 pick is also located in the north section of Clearwater Beach. This beautiful 2BR beachfront condo is located in the small and private Colony Surf condo complex. There are only 7 units in this condo complex, which is one of the smallest in Clearwater. This is a huge plus if you are looking for a more private family getaway. One thing to note here is the pin on the map for this condo’s listing page is not accurate. It is shown as being located far off the beach, but in reality it is directly on the beach.
In fact, this is one of the closest (if not the closest) Clearwater condo rental to the ocean available. The beach view from this unit is as good as it gets. The condo was recently completely renovated and looks brand new. It is rated to sleep 6, with a king master bedroom and a kids room with 3 beds. The kids room has a standard double bed and a twin over twin bunk bed. This bedroom arrangement probably won’t work for everyone, but if the kids are the right age it can be a great setup. This condo gets nearly perfect reviews, and the owners (Robin and George) are Premier Rated hosts as well. If the sleeping arrangements fit your family, this is one of our very favorite Clearwater vacation rentals. Average Review Score: 4.9/5.0 (130+ Reviews) More Info, Rates, and Availability: Robin and George’s 2BR Beachfront Clearwater Condo Rental
1. Sea Pearl, a 6BR Indian Shores Beach House Rental with Oceanfront Pool
And finally we come to our top pick, called Sea Pearl. This massive 6 bedroom house sits directly on the beach, and is rated to sleep a staggering 14 people comfortably. With over 4000 sqft of living area spread over 3 floors this is the perfect rental for large groups. There are panoramic ocean views from each of the 3 floors. It’s no surprise that this is the most expensive Clearwater vacation rental on our list. But what may surprise you is that it is one of the most affordable on a $/per bedroom basis. These large rentals really shine from a value perspective when you compare rental cost per bedroom.
The oceanfront pool and hot tub setup on this property is one of the best in the area. The large pool deck overlooks both the pool and the ocean. There are a huge amount of extras included in this rental that set it apart as far as amenities go. All the beach equipment you could want or need is included, as well as kayaks and paddleboards. There simply isn’t a better rental available in the area for large groups. The reviews are flawless as well. If you have a group large enough to utilize this space, you can’t go wrong booking a stay at the Sea Pearl. Average Review Score: 5.0/5.0 (100+ Reviews) More Info, Rates, and Availability: Sea Pearl, a 6BR Beachfront Indian Shores Beach House Rental on VRBO.com