We will be staying with freinds at the end of April in Longboat Key. Will there be things to do, or is it just a place to sit on the beach?
Thanks for your help!
Many things to do there but YES, mostly will be relaxing on the beach! :-)
There are some museums too, just one to mention is the big ringling museum. (he was the one who built St. Armand Circle and the bridge from Downtown Sarasota with his elefants way back in the 20th century...)
Mote Aquarium would be another choice. Not like seaworld but nicely done and well worse a visit.
VERY nice restaurants around... On the beach and at the bay.
I´m not an expert for Longboat but a poster here knows sooo much and I am sure he will answer later on! Chbr (I really have to learn that name!!!)
Between the piles of snow and single-digit temperatures plus $178 round trip flights on Continental and $99/nt January Special rate at Silver Sands condo, my husband and I were inspired to end January with five days on Longboat Key. I predicted that we 60-somethings might be content with walks on the beach and driving around in a convertible...and most of the time that was exactly what we wanted to do. Here's a copy of trip report on what we did (when we chose not to do the nothing-at-all stuff like walking the beach, reading on the beach and watching the sun sink into the Gulf...all of which, of course, is the very best of all!)
It had been four years since we last visited Sarasota. Some of the great TA suggestions I'd gathered, like cbchrc's to visit Selby, Ringling Museum and Ca d'Zan, we'd done before. Actually I was intrigued by the Ringling's special exhibition of 100 kimono created in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Japan, but once exposed to Sarasota's glorious January sunshine, I was loathe to devote an hour or more to any such indoor pursuit.
Our condo at Silver Sands on Longboat was a short drive to COQUINA BEACH, located on the south end of Anna Maria Island. Other 60-somethings like us were walking the beach or the trail next to it. A boat launch, bayside, is across the street from the beach as well as Coquina BayWalk at Leffis Key where footpaths and boardwalks lead visitors around restored tidal lagoons and mangrove shoreline. As we watched a fisherman out on a sandbar, a dolphin came near to do some fishing of his own. Such a relaxing, low-key setting...really magical to this Midwesterner. The scene at St. ARMAND'S CIRCLE is anything but serene, and we'd spent time there on both previous Sarasota vacations. Still that was enjoyable, too, for a while, and my husband bought some sandals.
After breakfast at Harry's we rented bikes and explored JOAN DURANTE PARK (another of cbchrc's tips) before heading to Sarasota's BAYFRONT PARK and MARINA. 26-foot-tall statues “Unconditional Surrender,” an over-sized depiction of a sailor embracing a nurse at the end of World War II and first time I've ever watched anyone hand feed a half-dozen pelicans! We walked (further than my husband had predicted) to the rather deserted TOWLES COURT ARTS DISTRICT for a bit of browsing its galleries following lunch. That evening we went with relatives to hear Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis at the VAN WEZEL -- a memorable concert in an attractive venue.
MYAKKA STATE PARK was on my husband's list, and he was pleased to catch sight of a bald eagle and osprey plus various herons, egrets and cranes. We ventured up into the treetop canopy walk and took the narrated excursion on Gator Gal, one of the world's largest airboats.
Floridianer and PatPicks did a wonderful job in introducing you to some options. Don't forget also the Mote Aquarium just off the south end of Longboat. Perhaps take a kayak trip out of the Mote. Or perhaps rent a small boat for a few hours (Cannon's Marina) and explore the Bay. Definitely go downtown once or twice. How about a sunset sail? Maybe a Segway trip around Sarasota's historic district. Certainly some time at Selby Botanical Gardens. Get a sense of "olde Florida" at Spanish Point. I don't think you'll be bored!
I would like to thank all of you for some great ideas. I am not a person who sits on a beach for fun.
Now, all I have to do is convince everyone else to get up and have fun.
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