Sarasota Florida Beaches is a great beach travel destination with some of the best beaches of Florida! Sun, sand and water are three things Sarasota Florida beaches have an abundance of, but not all Sarasota beaches are the same. Six islands line Sarasota’s extensive coastline, each revealing its own personality, recreational options and natural beauty. Sarasota Beaches are among the most beautiful in all of Florida and the United States. Siesta Key Beach is rated #3 in a national poll of the Top 10 beaches of the USA. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Siesta Key Beach
Siesta Beach is known as one of the most beautiful beaches anywhere in the world because it has the whitest and finest sand in the world. Siesta Beach is ranked #1 with the 2016 Traveler’s Choice by Trip Advisor, and of course is the top pick of vacationers listed as one of the best beaches of Florida. Unlike most other beaches where the sand is made up of mostly coral, Siesta Key beach’s sand is 99% quartz. Even on the hottest days, the sand is so reflective that it feels cool under foot. It’s estimated that the sand on Siesta Beach is millions of years old, and started in the Appalachians and flowed down the rivers and was eventually deposited on the shores of Siesta Key. The water here is shallow near the shore with year-round lifeguards, which makes this beach one of the safest beaches in the Sarasota area. There is a LOT of parking for this beach, but they fill up quickly, so get there early. If you are staying on Siesta Key, then there are lots of access points and you can walk to the beach without the worry of parking. Services include restrooms, picnic tables, volleyball, tennis courts, concession stands, lounge & umbrella rentals, playground equipment, and outdoor showers to wash off the sand. Every Sunday night, the Siesta Key Drum Circle attracts musicians, dancers, beachgoers and certainly its share of regulars. Folks gather with drums, maracas and tambourines to fill the evening air with enchanting sounds. Dance along or bring a blanket and drift away to the music. With the sand beneath your feet and the sun setting over the water, you can afford to go (it’s free, of course) and you can’t afford to miss it. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Whitney Beach is approximately a quarter mile long located on Longboat Key. This pristine beach extends southward behind several condominium residences with public parking nearby. There are plenty of vacation rentals here with luxury high-rise condominiums, tennis & golf resorts, vacation rental condos, to apartment efficiencies and single-family homes. The island has no billboards, neon signs or shopping malls. There are up-scale shops and Zagat Rated restaurants located on this island of paradise. If staying on the island, leave the car behind and hop a Trolley running north and South on Gulf Drive to more beach and shopping districts with stops at Mote Marine Lab, St. Armands Circle and downtown Sarasota. Daily service runs from 6am to 11pm every 30 minutes. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
North Lido Beach
North Lido Beach is located on Lido Key, one quarter mile northwest of St. Armands Circle, off of John Ringling Blvd. There is a very small parking area at the north end of the beach. The beach is easy to get to and very private. There are no lifeguards on duty at this beach and the currents are very swift. Not the best beach for small children. The beach is maintained in a natural state and features a dune system that is home to many nesting shore birds. There are no amenities at this beach. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Lido Beach, like North Lido Beach, is located on Lido Key. Lido Beach is very popular and attracts visitors from all over the world. There are a number of hotels, motels and private condos for rent on Lido Key. While the beach isn’t as large as nearby Siesta Key Beach, many like Lido Beach more for being more relaxed and less crowded. Lido Beach is within the city limits of the City of Sarasota while Siesta Beach is in unincorporated Sarasota County. You can reserve sections of the beach for large private parties and weddings. Services at this beach include restrooms, concessions, a gift shop, a meeting room, playground, beach umbrella and chair rentals, plenty of parking, a heated swimming pool, and outdoor showers. The Seabreeze Concession or Lido Beach Restaurant serves very good food. All food is cooked to order, including hot and cold sandwiches, burgers, dogs, fries, beer, and wine. There is also the Lido Beach Casino located here. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
North Jetty Beach Park
North Jetty Beach Park is located at the southern end of Casey Key. Services include free parking, lifeguards, concessions, bait shop, volleyball courts, a playground, picnic tables, showers and restrooms. Fishermen cast their lines from the rocks, wave to passing boaters and watch dolphins cavort in the channel. Families, after a leisurely picnic in the Shade of Australian pines, head over the dunes to pitch colorful umbrellas on the sandy beach. And, bring that surf board for this is one of the better surfing spots along the Gulf Coast. The vacation rentals on Casey Key vary from “old Florida” apartment efficiencies to rental condominiums. The atmosphere is extremely casual with several good restaurants across the bridge. Famous for having a great shopping district, Historic Venice Florida is just south of the island. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Nokomis Beach features 20 unspoiled acres of sea grapes and Australian pines. Services include a boat ramp, fishing sites, a children’s playground, free parking, lifeguards, restrooms, picnic tables with grills and showers. Walkovers to the beach are bridged by boardwalks traversing the dunes. Spectators can observe breathtaking sunsets from gazebos and benches strategically placed along the walkway. A concession stand and bait shop can be found at nearby North Jetty Park. There is Ample Free Parking, but be forewarned, …weekends are crowded so, arrive early. The vacation rentals on Casey Key vary from “old Florida” apartment efficiencies to rental condominiums. The atmosphere is extremely casual, with dining and shopping immediately across the bridge or in Sarasota or Historic Venice. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Brohard Beach & Paw Park
Brohard Beach & Paw Park provides special amenities exclusively for your furry best friends. Brohard Beach and Paw Park is one of the most popular beaches and parks in the area. Your canine buddy will appreciate the doggie drinking fountains and dog-only showers. On one section of the beach, dogs can run free or chase tennis balls or Frisbees; there’s even a spot reserved for your pet to go swimming. Brohard Beach and Paw Park sits on 89 waterfront acres on the majestic Gulf of Mexico, immediately south of the Venice Fishing Pier. You’ll also find plenty of delights there for yourself and your fellow humans: a bait shop, a snack bar, and complete picnic facilities. Brohard Beach is immensely popular with sharks’ tooth collectors and shell collectors, and it’s the ultimate location for viewing spectacular sunsets on the Gulf. It is a family-friendly beach and park, and it’s completely handicapped-accessible. For the safety and comfort of pets and people alike, Brohard Beach & Paw Park is smoke free, and no glass bottles or containers are allowed. The beach and park are open daily from sunrise to sunset. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Venice Municipal Beach
Directly across from Venice’s shopping district, this large public beach which provides free parking, a dining pavilion, concessions, lifeguards, restrooms, picnic tables and beach wheelchairs. Scuba divers can explore the reef a quarter mile from shore while beach dwellers can sift the sand for Prehistoric sharks’ teeth. This is a popular beach with limited parking, so arrive early. The vacation rentals in Venice vary from apartment efficiencies, hotels and motel rooms to rental condominiums. The atmosphere is casual with plenty of good restaurants and excellent shopping. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Coquina Beach is the longest stretch of beach located on Anna Maria. Services include free parking, lifeguards, concessions, picnic tables, a playground, restrooms and showers. Remnants of old piers jutting out into the water make it awkward for running, but a choice spot for surfers. It’s also the place where you’ll mostly find younger groups of people gathering around a boom box, sunbathing, or playing frisbee on the sand. A boat launch is across the street as well as Coquina BayWalk at Leffis Key where footpaths and boardwalks lead visitors around tidal lagoons and mangrove shoreline. Dolphins are often sighted not far from fishermen doing some fishing of their own. There is plenty of sunshine and breathtaking sunsets! Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Caspersen Beach is the southern most of the beaches in this area. It is preferred by those looking for more shade and the variety of rock outcrops along the beach. The rough rock outcrops that intrude here and there on the fine sand of the beach are tough on the feet, but they break the waves that wash onto the beach. This attracts fish and the fish attract Florida’s wonderful fishing birds, including herons, Great Blue Herons, and diving pelicans. The breaking of the waves also gathers sharks’ teeth into concentrations making them easier to find. Services include restrooms, outdoor showers, raised walkways, and several parking lots, including one very close to the beach reserved for handicapped access. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
At the southern end of Siesta Key is Turtle Beach. This is a great beach for families. The sand is a bit coarser and the beach drops off more dramatically, but that means the snorkeling and shelling is better. Services include restrooms, a building for meetings, boat ramps, large group picnic shelters, small picnic shelters, horseshoe courts, volleyball, playground equipment, and dune walkovers. It may not be as popular as Siesta Beach, but if you can’t find a parking space at Siesta Beach, Turtle Beach has plenty of free parking. Boaters can enjoy parking their trailers and launching boats into the lagoon for a day on the water. The vacation rentals in this area of Siesta Key are numerous and varied. From luxurious resorts, rental condominiums & villas to apartment efficiencies and motel rooms, most offer private beaches or beach access within a short distance of Turtle Beach. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.
Palmer Point Beach
Palmer Point Beach begins at the southern tip of Siesta Key and continues onto the north end of Casey Key. The beach is a popular spot for boaters and people who walk there from Turtle Beach seeking some privacy.There are no lifeguards and no facilities. The beach is a favorite spot for kayakers and fishing. There is no parking and it is only accessible by walking north from Casey Key or south from Turtle Beach at the end of Blind Pass Road. Visit our Sarasota Florida Travel Guide to plan your next beach vacation to Sarasota Florida beaches.