A wooden footbridge leading to the beach

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Things to Do on Lido Key

Fun in the sun is the name of the game on the beautiful shores of Lido Key. Longboat Key’s neighboring island may be smaller, but it packs in plenty of activities and events. Whether you want to dine at one of the incredible restaurants in St. Armand’s Circle or enjoy a gorgeous sunset at a tiki bar on the beach, there are so many things to do on Lido Key. If you want a complete look into everything to do in the Sarasota area, you’re in luck. Request a copy of our free Vacation guide, where insider tips and local information provide you with everything you need to plan your perfect beach trip!


8 of the Top Things to Do on Lido Key

1. Revel in the Gorgeous BeachesSun and sand on Lido Beach

There’s plenty of world-class shopping and dining on Lido Key, but make no mistake, the beach is the main attraction here. While Longboat Key has a private beach feel, Lido Beach has its own advantages too. The white sandy stretch bordering the Gulf of Mexico is a stunning place to kick back and relax under the Florida sun. Check out the Lido Beach Pavilion where it makes the beach going a breeze. Just park, grab a bite and a drink, rent a chair and umbrella and let your cares drift away. Or head to the quieter side on South Lido where you will find picnic tables and grills. One of the best parts about Lido Beach is that you’re close to all of the great things to do in and around Lido Key. St. Armand’s Circle is just a 10-minute walk away, so you can go from the sand to the shops and back in no time!


2. Get a Taste of SarasotaColumbia Restaurant in St. Armand's Circle

One of the many fantastic perks of staying on Lido Key is that you are steps away from St. Armand’s Circle. This collection of shops and restaurants has just about everything you could want in a beautiful outdoor shopping experience. There are several fantastic places to sit down and savor a delicious and elegant lunch or dinner. Cafe L’Europe, Tommy Bahama’s, and the Columbia Restaurant are all excellent options for a variety of great fare. If you’re looking for a local favorite that serves up some of the best seafood in the area, stop by the aptly named Crab and Fin. Or satisfy a sweet tooth at Big Olaf’s Creamery towards Longboat Key for a more casual dining experience on the waterfront at The Old Salty Dog.


3. Shop Local

Fifth Avenue South Shopping in St. Armand's CircleIf you love shopping but don’t want to venture into Sarasota, St. Armand’s Circle is a fantastic spot to shop. Spending a day perusing the many shops and restaurants is one of the best things to do near Lido Key! You can choose whether you want to shop within walking distance of your Lido Key Florida Vacation Connection Rental or venture off the island. Head to the heart of downtown Sarasota to explore an array of great shops or stop by the Sarasota Farmers Market and bring back fresh produce to your vacation home.


4. Spend an Evening Watching the Sunset picnic on the beach

You can spend a day shopping around Lido Key, exploring Sarasota’s entertainment scene, and relaxing on the beach, but nothing beats kicking back with your favorite drink and watching the sunset on the Gulf of Mexico. Lido Key Beach is the perfect place to take a deep breath, dig your toes into the sand, and revel in the breathtaking view before you. The Lido Beach Poolside Tiki Bar and Lido Key Beach Tiki Bar are excellent places to spend a relaxing evening with drinks and appetizers while you enjoy this nightly spectacle.


5. Dive Into Sarasota’s Entertainment SceneLion King performance in Sarasota

If you’re looking for some of the best culture in the area, downtown Sarasota’s entertainment scene is one of the best things to do near Lido Key. Directly on Sarasota Bay, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall offers a world of great music, dance, and theater. The visual and performing arts in Sarasota are the centerpieces of our world-class theater. Places like the Florida Studio Theatre and Asolo Repertory Theatre are fantastic options if you want to experience local theatre. You can’t go wrong with a night out watching the Sarasota Ballet, Orchestra, or Opera. Once the winter home of the Ringling Brothers Circus, Sarasota still showcases this unique performing art at the Circus Arts Conservatory.


6. Celebrate at One of The Top Events in the AreaPowerboat racing in Bradenton

There’s always an exciting event happening in the Sarasota area! Seafood and music festivals, baseball spring training, and a holiday boat parade are just a few of the many things to do near Lido Key. One of the top summer events can be enjoyed right from Lido Beach. Watch the Suncoast Offshore Powerboat Races, a spectacle to behold. These boats reach speeds over 100 miles per hour, making for a unique and unbelievable show! If you’re looking for another activity on Lido Key, head to St. Armand’s Circle for the Corvettes On The Circle car show. Fall has its fair share of activities and events as well, including a Medieval Fair and an Oktoberfest in downtown Sarasota! Whatever you choose to do during your trip, you’ll never run out of things to do on Lido Key!


7. Tour SarasotaDiscover Sarasota Tours trolley

No trip to Lido Key is complete without getting out to experience the Florida coast’s diverse marine ecosystems. A kayaking or boating adventure around Sarasota Bay is a must on a beautiful sunny day. If being on the water isn’t quite your thing, you can still get out and explore the area! Food enthusiasts will love taking a Key Culinary Tour highlighting the delicious cuisine in St. Armand’s Circle and downtown Sarasota. Venture off of Lido Key and learn more about the areas vibrant history on a Discover Sarasota Tour through one of their eight tour offerings.


8. Relax in Your Florida Vacation Connection Rental

Now that you know all of the best things to do near Lido Key, you can start planning your dream beach vacation! Our premium selection of Lido Key properties put you steps away from the top-notch shopping and dining in St. Armand’s Circle. Lido Key is the perfect place to stay for those wanting to get a little bit of everything on their beach vacation.

Browse our selection of Lido Key and Longboat Key rentals and start planning your beach trip today! We can’t wait to welcome you to our beautiful coastal paradise!