Sarasota is home to some of the most outstanding beaches in the world. Spending time at these beaches is a top priority for our visitors; as a matter of fact, for all there is to do in Sarasota, the beach is the number one destination. There are many beaches to explore!
If you want to stroll along a beach that has more grassy dunes than beachfront buildings, Lido Beach is highly recommended. With more than 3,000 feet of pristine white sand and year-long lifeguards keeping watch, this is a perfect family beach. There is plenty of free parking with quick access to the sand; you'll also enjoy picnic tables along with the only public beachfront swimming pool in Sarasota (daily fee required). Umbrella and beach chair rentals are available, as are restrooms and showers. The dining of St. Armand's is less than a mile away, and ice cream after the beach is a common pastime.
Longboat Key Beach
Although access to the public beaches along Longboat Key is limited, staying on Longboat Key affords the bonus of 10 miles of uncrowded, endless beach stretching as far as you can see. Longboat Key beach draws visitors from all over the world to play, swim and worship the sun; this well planned community is more private and protected than most of our beach areas. Stroll down to the very south end of Longboat Key to New Pass for truly unrivaled beauty.
Siesta Key Beach
Awarded America's Best Beach in 2011, as well as Best Family Beach and a long list of other accolades, you cannot visit Sarasota without stepping foot on Siesta Key. Lifeguards are on duty year-round, and the newly renovated pavilion offers shaded picnic tables, barbecue grills, a new playground, concessions, restrooms, showers and more. The parking lot has been re-designed to ease previous parking shortages. Siesta has been recognized as having the whitest and finest sand in the world; comprised of 99% quartz from the Appalachian Mountains. This expansive, sweeping beach is not to be missed.
Anna Maria Island Beaches
Anna Maria Island beaches include Bradenton, Coquina and Holmes Beach and are located just north of Longboat Key in Manatee County. The beaches extend north and feature shaded parking, playground swings and slides; in addition to barbecue grills for family gatherings.