Top 7 Things Locals Know About Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island – Experiencing the island life like a local is the ultimate way to enjoy your time on Anna Maria Island. There’s a few things all locals know about their beautiful seven mile long barrier island that we’ll gladly share with you. Discover Anna Maria Island’s best of the best!

1 Getting Around the Island

Locals know that Anna Maria Island is a fabulous community for alternative forms of transportation. When visiting Anna Maria Island during the peak season months street traffic can make getting around by car a bit difficult along with creating limited public parking.  Locals love walking or bike riding to their destination because it’s an amazing way to enjoy our gulf breezes and tropical scenery. If you’re going from one end of the island to the other the free trolley is absolutely perfect! If you are visiting the Island consider renting a golf cart or scooter for a super fun way to get around in style.

Anna Maria Island trolley
Anna Maria Island Locals LOVE the free trolley!

2 Island History

All locals know a thing or two about the history of the island. A community rich in Florida culture, Islanders love to reminisce about Anna Maria City Pier, the first bridge connecting the island to the mainland, the first island settlers and the “day trippers” culture that still enlivens this beautiful vacation destination. Visit the Anna Maria Island Historical Society on Pine Avenue to enjoy the Island’s history, or head over the bridge to the Florida Maritime Museum to learn about the historic Fishing Village of Cortez.

Cortez Bridge history
Historic Cortez Bridge connecting Bradenton Beach to the mainland of Cortez Village.

 

3 Fishing and Seafood

Naturally Anna Maria Island has always been a fabulous place for fishing, and fresh seafood. Nestled between the Gulf of Mexico, Tampa Bay and the Intracoastal waterway, Anna Maria Island is perfectly situated for premium fishing. Many local seasonal specialties such as Stone Crab, Mullet, Spiny Lobsters and Sunray Venus Clams can be found at just about any restaurant serving seafood. Visit The Island Real Estate Fishing Report page for local fishing updates and conditions.

Fishing on Anna Maria Island
Locals love fishing on Anna Maria Island.

4 Dining and Restaurants

With no shortage of delectable eateries, Anna Maria Island has just about any type of cuisine you are looking for. Whether it’s dining with a view, fabulous happy hour specials, or the top ten island restaurants, Anna Maria Island has it all!

Rod and Reel Pier
Rod & Reel Pier offers some of Anna Maria Island’s most delicious seafood!

5 Shopping

Anna Maria Island is a unique shopping destination offering only independent and small shops and boutiques. Find fabulous wares from beach accessories, to jewelry, local art, high end finds and souvenirs. When visiting the Island during peak season enjoy fabulous local markets!

Shopping
Find fabulous shopping finds on Anna Maria Island!

6 Beaches

With over seven miles of coastline, Anna Maria Island offers tons of great beach spots. From secluded Bean Point to the bustling Manatee Public Beach access read all about Anna Maria Island beaches here.

beach
Anna Maria Island beaches are gorgeous.

7 Wildlife

Anna Maria Island locals are absolutely crazy about our precious wildlife. With great efforts from organizations such as the Anna Maria Island Shorebird and Turtle Watch, and Wildlife Inc animal rescue, Island animals are held near to the hearts of locals. Many types of wildlife can be found on and around Anna Maria Island including Atlantic Bottle Nose Dolphins, Manatee and Turtles. Visitors often wonder about the possibility of seeing Crocodiles or Alligators, but any local can tell you these kind of critters haven’t been spotted around the island in decades.

Turtles and Wildlife
Baby Loggerhead Turtles nest on Anna Maria Island from May through October.

If you’re looking for the best vacation rental properties on Anna Maria Island visit IslandReal.com to peruse our selection of almost 300 gorgeous homes!

 

Top Tikitastic Anna Maria Island Beach Rentals

What could be more fun than spending a vacation at Anna Maria Island beach rentals with fantastic Tiki huts? Tiki huts are a fun retro style perfect for a tropical destination like the island.

Tiki Culture in the United States

This theme stems from Americans use of Polynesian culture starting in the 1930’s. While not considered a fine art form by Polynesian styles, the theme loosely stems from cultural mythology and art. However, Americans now associate Hawaiian and Tropical themes with the Tiki style. There has been a resurgence of the style that has directly coincided with the trendy craft cocktail movement.

Tiki Drinks

Fruity tropical drinks are a must for any Tiki party. Typically they include different fruit juices, and are rum based. These drinks are usually tasty, very alcoholic and also use multiple rums or liquors. Serve them in funky totem head shaped mugs for a retro look, or use any pretty tall glass. Little umbrellas, fruit, spices, and herbs all make nice garnishes. Check out great recipes here. Also enjoy kid friendly versions of these drinks – just omit the alcohol. The combinations of fruit juices are fantastic on their own, just add a garnish and enjoy!

Below is a list of our top tikitastic Anna Maria Island beach rentals! These homes offer fun huts and bars perfect for entertaining in tropical island style!

Top Tikitastic Anna Maria Island Beach Rentals

Pelican Landing offers a Tiki by the heated pool! This rental sleeps 8 with 4 bedrooms. Relax and enjoy a tropical island experience!

Anna Maria Island Beach rentals
Pelican Landing AMI 306 55th Street in Holmes Beach.

Casa Calienta has a fully equipped Tiki bar with grill, sink and mini fridge. Additionally this hut is in the screened lanai with the heated pool! Relax with a drink and a swim too! Sleep 6 with 2 bedrooms.

Anna Maria Beach Rentals
Casa Calienta 217 Pine Avenue in Anna Maria.

Starfish also has a backyard Tiki hut, and a swim up Tiki umbrella in the heated pool. This hut is a nice spot no matter the weather. Sleep 6 in this rental with 3 bedrooms.

Anna Maria Island vacation rentals Holmes Beach
Starfish 6802 Marina Drive.

A Sassy Seahorse has a Tiki area in the backyard in addition to heated pool and spa! A shady spot for cool drinks on a hot day. Sleep 6 in this 2 bedroom rental.

Beach rental anna maria island Florida
A Sassy Seahorse 264 Gladiolus in Anna Maria.

Summer Breeze offers a fun covered Tiki bar too! Here you’ll find a swinging chair, Foosball table and flat screen T.V. Sleep 10 at this 4 bedroom rental.

Anna Maria Beach rental
Summer Breeze 313 61st Street in Holmes Beach.

Island Time offers a large pool side Tiki Umbrella. The perfect spot for watching the day drift by with a cold drink. Sleep 8 in this 3 bedroom with heated pool.

Holmes Beach vacation rental
Island Time 309 62nd Street in Holmes Beach.

Coral Reef is an Anna Maria Island beach rental with a great Tiki and laid back feel. Sleeps 10 with 5 bedrooms.

Anna Maria Island Beach Rental
Coral Reef 215 64th Street in Holmes Beach.

Mango Breeze has a Tiki just a short walk to Gulf beaches! Relax by the heated pool with 8 in this 4 bedroom rental!

Anna Maria Island beach rental
Mango Breeze 141 50th Street in Holmes Beach.

Anna Maria Island Tiki Restaurants

While visiting Anna Maria Island beach rentals you’ll also find great local Tiki style restaurants too! On Bridge Street you’ll find The Bridge Tender Inn and Dock Side Bar. Here you’ll enjoy views of Sarasota Bay in addition to great food and drinks. Also in Bradenton Beach, there is Gulf Drive Cafe and Tiki bar. This restaurant offers direct gulf views. Finally, In Holmes Beach you will find an outdoor Tiki atmosphere at The Ugly Grouper.

Anna Maria Island Fall Tourist Guide

The Anna Maria Island fall tourist guide is a great resources for visitors and locals alike! After a hot summer, fall welcomes cooler weather and fun activities! Along with these great activities, also check out suggested Fall family beach rentals.

Anna Maria Island Fall Tourist Guide

Here are our top eight things to do, and know during Fall on Anna Maria Island. Furthermore, find out why this is a fantastic time of year to plan an Anna Maria Island beach vacation!

Anna Maria Island Fall Tourist Guide
Fall is a lovely time of year for an Anna Maria Island Vacation! Enjoy the Anna Maria Island Fall Tourist Guide, and plan your stay today!

Morning Beach Walk

Fall is an amazing time for a quiet walk on the beach with the sunrise. This is also a great time to catch up on some beach combing. Early morning temperatures are beautiful in Autumn. However, you will find that fall doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t be hot by mid day. For this reason, it’s nice to get up early while there is a crisp morning breeze off the gulf. Grab a cup of coffee, slip on your flip flops, and enjoy the peace of the beach at day break!

Beach Markets

Mid Fall, usually in November, is when all the beach markets begin their season. With the produce growing season underway, and weather that’s a tad less hot, markets are a great fall attraction. The Coquina Beach Market and Bridge Street Market are the two most popular on Anna Maria Island. However, here is a list of local markets to visit off island as well.

Wildlife Viewing, fall migration and local parks

As early as late summer you will notice an increase in local wildlife. For the expert wildlife viewers, it’s no secret that fall is the height of migration in Florida. This is when both the human and feathered snow birds make their early descent to Anna Maria Island.

Fall is an amazing time of year to get out to our local parks and preserves. Again, the weather is starting to cool, so enjoying the outdoors is more bearable than the summer months. During your visit check this list of parks and preserves on or around the island. These great locations give you the opportunity to get up close with Florida wildlife!

Go Swimming!

That’s right, you can still go for a swim in the Autumn months! Gulf of Mexico temperatures hang around 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit between September and December. This is not to say we don’t occasionally get below the 70’s, but these water temperatures are still swimable. Especially if you are visiting from the north, you will find Gulf temperatures very nice. On the other hand, locals tend to stop swimming a bit earlier. Really personal preference plays a big part in Fall island swimming.

Stone Crabs and Fishing

Stone Crab season starts mid October for the Florida gulf coast. While one of the countries oldest fishing villages lies just inland from Anna Maria Island; this is an anticipated time of year. Cortez fishing village is a great place to find fresh off the boat seafood. You’ll find Stone Crab so fresh it goes from the boat, to the boiling pot to your mouth! Going on in early November, check out the Cortez Stone Crab Festival too!

Anytime of year is great for Florida fishing, and Fall isn’t too bad either! Florida boasts the title “Fishing Capital of the World” because of great year round weather and angling. Fishing charters are just as popular in the fall as any time of year on the island!

Fall Festivals

This is the time of year when festival season starts for Islanders. There are several annual events that happen as the weather starts to change. You’ll find the Fall Festival, The Trail O Treats, Arts Hop and Bay Fest all going on throughout Autumn.

Find Fall colors with a sunset

While the trees and leaves may not turn to the striking hues of ocher, umber and rust orange, the sunsets surly do! Experience the turning of the season with one of the sunsets the Florida west coast is know for. Gather your family and friends to enjoy the peace of a sunset. This is one of the best times of day for beach photography too!

Anna Maria Island Fall Tourist Guide Beach Rentals

Autumn is a lovely time of year to gather the family at a beach rental! What Anna Maria Island Fall tourist guide would be complete without suggested accommodations? Island Real Estate has the island’s largest selection of homes to choose from, so plan your vacation today!

Anna Maria Island beach rentals

Casa Sierra 205 B is an excellent beach rental just a short walk from the gulf. This condo style home sleeps up to 6 guests with 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Fall family beach trips were never so relaxed!

Anna Maria Island beach rentals
Casa Sierra 205 B 36th Street in Holmes Beach. 2 Bedroom.

A Mermaid Crossing is a lovely family gathering place for up to 6 guests with 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. This spacious home offers a heated pool and decor with a designer look. Less than a block to the beach!

Beach rental Anna Maria Island
A Mermaid Crossing 120 50th Street in Holmes Beach. 3 Bedroom.

Beachy Blue is just down the street from gulf beaches, and offers lovely accommodations. Enjoy the heated pool and spa with great coastal decor! Sleep up to 8 guests with 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms.

Anna Maria Island vacation rentals Holmes Beach
Beachy Blue 129 52nd Street in Holmes Beach. 4 Bedroom.

My Sisters Beach House sleeps up to 10 guests with 5 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms. This fun house offers a gorgeous heated pool and spa along with canal views and a short walk to Tampa Bay beaches! You’re family will love the game room and outdoor balconies too!

Anna Maria vacation beach rentals
My Sisters Beach House 520 Bay view Place in Anna Maria. 5 Bedroom.

Waterfront Retreat is a unique canal front home made for entertaining large groups! This 6 bedroom house offers accommodations for 14 guests with 3 full bath and 2 half baths. Enjoy the heated pool, canal views and fantastic bar area!

Anna Maria beach rentals
Waterfront Retreat 5132 Loquat in Anna Maria. 6 Bedroom.

National Guacamole Day Anna Maria Island

September 16th 2016 is National Guacamole Day. Everyone loves guacamole and Anna Maria Island is no exception.

National Guacamole Day

Guacamole is the perfect blend of creamy and tangy. Sometimes it has tomatoes, and sometimes it has a hint of spice. It’s great on tacos, chips, toast and serves as an amazing topping on just about anything. Some even use it in Ice Cream too!

Guacamole Facts

  • Guacamole dates back to the 1500’s when Aztecs made it.
  • “Guac” is a common short name for guacamole.
  • Use Florida, California or Hass avocados to make a good guacamole.
  • Different types of Avocados have a different flavor and texture.
  • Restaurants always charge for extra “Guac”.
  • Everyone loves guacamole because it’s amazing!

Places to Celebrate National Guacamole Day on Anna Maria Island

There are several restaurants on Anna Maria Island that serve guacamole. Below we have three suggestions for enjoying a heaping serving of the tasty green stuff.

Poppo’s Taqueria is a local small restaurant chain. The first store also opened on the city of Anna Maria’s Pine Avenue. This Tex-Mex style restaurant offers scratch made flour tortillas, hormone free meat, and organic veggies. Poppo’s guacamole is out of this world amazing. Poppo’s makes all their food right in front of you, and you get to choose all your toppings too! Their menu includes tacos, burritos, quesadillas and meals in bowls. Poppo’s staff prepares everything on site including their guac, sauces, and slow roasted meats, just to name a few. You’ll love the food in addition to their local craft beers, high fructose free soda, and Kombucha probiotic drink.

Tortilla Bay Southwest Grill is also a great option for a guacamole fix. Located in Holmes Beach, Tortilla Bay is quick and inexpensive lunch or dinner. They offer many Tex-Mex favorites along with salads. Not only do they have a fantastic guac, but the queso dip is a must! Tortilla Bay has a kids menu along with a beer and wine menu.

Wicked Cantina is located in Bradenton Beach, and specializes in Austin style Tex-Mex. In addition to their traditional Tex-Mex they also offer great burgers and seafood options. Wicked Cantina has a full service bar with craft cocktails. Try the Margarita! Often times they offer live music in their outdoor seating area. When you visit, be sure to try the guacamole bites. For this appetizer they roll guacamole in tortilla chips, deep fry, and serve with a side or ranch dip. Delicious!

National Guacamole Day
A big batch of Guacamole made fresh daily in the kitchen at Poppo’s Taqueria.

Hurricane Hermine Anna Maria Island

Hurricane Hermine blew across Anna Maria Island leaving tons of rain, but minimal damage. The first hurricane to make landfall in Florida in over 10 years, Hermine was a category one storm.

Prior to storm landfall

The day prior to Hermine making landfall seven inches of rain fell on Anna Maria Island. The mixture of the high tide and rain created flooding in the streets. Some vehicles struggled to make it through however most made it to their destination safely. All the rain made for one soggy island.

Hurricane Hermine Landfall

There was continued rainfall the day the storm passed to the north of Anna Maria Island. Some neighborhoods experienced black outs, however this was not the case across the island. Manatee County Schools closed along with many of the local businesses.

Anna Maria Island experienced minimal damage. Flooding was worst on north island. A few ground level homes did take on water.

Hurricane Hermine
Hurricane Hermine dumped a lot of sand on the beaches of Anna Maria Island. You can see the bottom of the beach bench is buried in several inches.

 

Hurricane Hermine
Exploring the beach during the storm! An Island Real Estate staff member found a lost crab trap buoy among other debris. There were still shore birds scurrying about, and just a few washed out sea turtle eggs. 
Hurricane Hermine
This is what the beaches looked like as the storm passed to the north. Tides were very high.

After the storm

After the storm cleared the beaches looked great! The Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch reported minimal loss of turtle nests. Overall, Hermine left the island unscathed with no permanent damages.

Hurricane Hermine
This picture is from one week after Hurricane Hermine passed the island. Gulf of Mexico waters were a little murky from all the fresh rain water, but still beautiful. Rain water also cools down the gulf temperatures. In the hot late summer it is very refreshing hopping into cool water!

Anna Maria Island Labor Day Activities

Relax with a beach break and Anna Maria Island Labor Day activities. A quiet island holiday, Labor Day is a time to enjoy beaches, family and friends, and an extra long weekend.

September is off the off season on Anna Maria Island. Generally speaking, Islanders love this time of year. Visitors to the island will not find many events happening, but will enjoy fewer crowds. End of summer things to do are the focus of Labor day. Grilling food, enjoying cold drinks and relaxing on the beach with friends are among popular things to do.

Anna Maria Island Labor Day Activities on the beach

Everyone loves a Labor Day beach break! Additionally,  beach games are a fun way to relax during the holiday. Frisbee, corn hole, tag football and volleyball are good old beach game standbys.

Many people also enjoy beach combing during labor day. Anna Maria Island has lots of pretty shells to collect. When searching for shells remember to never take living shells.

Labor Day Eats

Labor day is a fantastic time to enjoy grilled foods and tasty drinks. A Labor day gathering of family and friends just isn’t complete without firing up the grill! Open fires, grilling and alcohol are not allowed on the beaches of Anna Maria Island. However, the large public beach accesses offer designated grilling areas. Additionally, many Anna Maria Island vacation rentals do offer propane or charcoal grills.

Anna Maria Island Labor day activities
Labor Day is a great time to visit Anna Maria Island

Labor Day Business Openings

Many of the restaurants and shops are open Labor day weekend on Anna Maria Island. When you visit you are sure to find open businesses. The free trolley also runs on Labor day, so you can get around the island easily.

Labor Day Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island

Island Real Estate offers Anna Maria Island’s largest selection of beach house rentals. Finding the perfect Labor day rental is easy when you rent through Island Real Estate!

Beach House Rentals Holmes Beach
North Beach Village 72 would make for a lovely Labor Day Anna Maria Island beach house rental. Located in Holmes Beach this rental accommodates up to 6 guests! Click on the image above to reserve your stay today!

Summer’s End Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island

It’s not too late to enjoy end of summer beach house rentals Anna Maria Island style! Pumpkin spice latte is back on the Starbucks menu, kids are in school again, and Fall is less than a month away. Now is the time to plan that last minute summer getaway!

Summer Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island in September

September is a fantastic time of year to visit Anna Maria Island. This is the off season, so the beaches are far less busy. During a September visit you’ll also notice there are fewer cars on the streets. The entire Island has a different vibe in the late summer. People are a little calmer as locals enjoy the respite from busy high season.

End of Summer beach Scene

Anna Maria Island beaches are as beautiful as ever in the late summer. The weather is hot and rainy during September in Florida, however, beaches are still very nice. Lots of rain may make the water a tad less blue than the normal, but it also cools the water temperature down. Gulf beaches are bathtub like in July and August, so a little rain makes them more refreshing.

End of Summer Island Activities

When you visit the island at the end of summer you may notice a few of the island’s restaurants are closed. This is when operators make improvements, and also have a little summer vacation before seasons starts again. However, there are still plenty of places to dine that are open year round. Closures are typically no more than a week long, or even just a few days.

Summer is also an excellent time to visit activities off island. With less congested roads, getting on and off the island is much easier in late summer. This is a fantastic time to drive down to Sarasota, or head into Bradenton to try new activities. You will find museums, shopping and sightseeing in both Sarasota and Bradenton.

Summer’s End Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island have lowest rates.

The end of summer is one of the most affordable times to visit Anna Maria Island. September is when many beach houses lower their rates. These lower rates continue through to mid December when visitors from the north start to come down again. These lower rates don’t always include Labor Day weekend as this is the last busy weekend of the season. Rates for beach house rentals typically fluctuate to coincide with demand or popular seasons.

Direct Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island

September is also the perfect time of year to reserve a direct beach front rental!

Hidden Cove is a fantastic direct gulf Front beach rental Anna Maria Island style. This is a great example of the type of rentals available in September.

Beach house rentals Anna Maria Island
Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island style! Click on the image to learn more about this great condo!

Hidden Cove unit 1 offers accommodations for up to four guests with two bedrooms and two and half bathrooms. During your stay, enjoy direct gulf views from the master bedroom and main living space. You will love spending time on the open balcony watching sunsets, and relaxing. The quiet Hidden Cove complex also offers a community pool, and is located near free trolley stops, shopping and dining.

Beach House Rentals Anna Maria Island Florida
Click on the image to reserve Hidden Cove unit 1 for your next Beach house rental Anna Maria Island Holmes Beach.

Island Real Estate has the largest selection of Anna Maria Island beach rentals you’ll find in the area! When searching for a summer’s end beach rental be sure to check out the Sunshine Specials page for great deals.

Enjoy an Anna Maria Island paradise vacation and reserve the perfect beach rental today at IslandReal.com!

 

Why Morning Walks are the Best on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island – As someone who is typically not a morning person, I can say I don’t go for morning walks all that often. However, if I was waking up by the beach every morning I’d be up by the crack of dawn! Why you might ask? Here’s five reasons why morning walks on the beach are the best.

5 reasons morning walks are the best

1. Sunrise

If you’ve ever seen a Florida sunrise, you know how beautiful they are. But can you imagine what it looks like by the beach? While Anna Maria is known for it’s sunsets, it’s sunrises are equally as beautiful. A few good places to watch the sunrise would be Bean Point, the boat ramp at Coquina Beach, or the pier at Bridge Street.

sunrise on morning walk
Enjoy a beautiful sunrise on Anna Maria!

2. Look for shells

One of the best features of Anna Maria Island are the gorgeous seashells that can be found on the shoreline. While you can find them at all times of the day, the morning is when you can find the newest and prettiest shells. This is because they haven’t had the chance to be stepped on or picked up by other people. You might even be able to find full shells from hermit crabs!

shells on your morning walk
Find shells on your morning walk!

3. Watch Coquinas burrow

Even though I have been a Floridian all my life, I still love watching coquinas burrow into the sand. These cool little creatures look just like any other shell, except they’re alive! Because there’s less people around in the morning, it’s easier to spot them digging through the sand, just look by the shoreline! However, we do ask for you to be gentle with them and return them to the ocean as they do need water to survive!

coquinas on your morning walk
Find Coquinas!

4. Watch the scampering birds

If you’ve seen Finding Dory, you know that little short film called ‘Piper’. Well, those birds are actually real and we have them right at our beaches! These little birds called sandpipers are known for scampering around and finding clams on the shore to eat. You can especially see them in the morning when they have more room to run around! Here’s a snippet of the short film if you didn’t get the chance to see it:

5. Help clean the beaches

As a good civilian, it is everyone’s duty to help keep our beaches clean so we can continue enjoying them. By waking up early, not only do you have the chance to do everything listed above, but you can help out our environment at the same time. A great way to do this would be to bring a bag with you on your walk so you can pick up litter. Even just cleaning up behind yourself helps a lot more than you may think!

pick up litter on morning walks
Help out our beaches by picking up litter on your walk!

Out of Town Activities for All Ages

Anna Maria- Even though Anna Maria has extremely fun activities, it’s nice to find enjoyable things to do out of town. With so much surrounding the island you’ll have no problem finding something the whole family will enjoy. Here is a list of some of my favorite things to do off the island.

Out of Town Activities

Sarasota

Sarasota is located about 40 minutes south of Anna Maria Island. If you’re looking for a fun mind game, visit Escape Countdown located off of Tamiami Trail. Here you get to pick a themed room such as Jail Break or Mad Hatter and find clues to escape it. The challenge, however, is the 60 minute time limit. You may have up to three clues for free and each added clue takes off two minutes of your time. It’s a lot of fun to do with family and friends and you can have a group of up to eight people. You can reserve a time online or just walk in. Sarasota Lanes is the perfect place to go for anyone who loves bowling, or visit Stardust for a pleasant afternoon rollerskating.

escape countdown is out of town
Break out of jail at Escape Countdown!

Ellenton

Ellenton is about 30 minutes away and is home to Ellenton Premium Outlets and Ellenton Ice and Sports Complex. The Premium Outlets offers shops such as Aeropostale, Michael Kors, and Vans. With around 120 different shops, there’s definitely something for everyone. After shopping outside all day, cool off at the ice rink and enjoy one of their two hour long public skates. Wristbands are only $15 and includes rental skates.

Tampa

If you love golfing, Top Golf is the perfect place for you! Located about an hour away from the island, Top Golf is one of the coolest places to go play golf. Imagine dart boards all over the ground, but instead of throwing darts you’re trying to hit the bulls-eye with a golf ball. Also in Tampa is the Adventure Island Water Park. Here you can find tons of cool water slides, a lazy river, and fun pools to play in.

Overall there’s so much to do on and around the island you’re sure to never get bored. Make sure to check these places out at have fun on your vacation!

Best 4 seafood restaurants around Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria- If you’re looking for exceptional seafood, you’re at the right place! With water surrounding almost all of Anna Maria, it’s no doubt our restaurants have access to the best seafood. All within 20 minutes of the island, here are four restaurants that you’re sure to love!

Seafood Restaurants

1. The Ugly Grouper Bar & Grill

Located on the island, The Ugly Grouper is right across the street from our Marina Drive office. They serve delicious food such as grouper sandwiches and mahi fish tacos along with meals for people who don’t care as much for seafood.  Also, all of their fish is fresh off the coast of Anna Maria, so you’re sure to get fresh fish. The Ugly Grouper has a history here on Anna Maria Island, as it was previously The Barefoot Tiki Bar and even before that a gas station! Take a look at the menu here.

The Ugly Grouper seafood restauraunt
Stop in for a bite at the Ugly Grouper! Photo courtesy of www.bradenton.com

2. Derek’s

Found on Manatee Avenue, Derek’s is prided on its ever-changing menu and good food. They serve wild pink shrimp pasta, blackened salmon and much more. Whether you want to have a causal luncheon or a fancy dinner, Derek’s is the perfect place to go. They do accept reservations and are open from 5am-10pm Monday-Saturday.

Derek's seafood
Photo Courtesy of www.dereks-bradenton.com

3. Mar Vista

Mar Vista resides in Longboat Key and is casual place to get great seafood. Some of their best dishes are a Grouper sandwich and Scallops Mar Vista. Another cool aspect of Mar Vista is its history on Longboat Key. It was one of the first structures built by Rufus Jordan in 1912 and has withstood hurricanes and erosion. Still in the original building, Mar Vista is an extremely interesting place to visit that has tasty food!

Mar Vista seafood
Enjoy yummy food along with a historic atmosphere at Mar Vista! Photo from www.tripadvisor.com

4. Starfish Company Market

If you’re wanting to cook your own or buy already cooked seafood Starfish Company is the perfect place to go. Located off Cortez, they sell locally caught seafood such as fish, scallops, and shrimp. Starfish Co. was started in the 1920’s and sits on one of the few remaining working waterfronts. With an absolutely gorgeous view, Starfish Co. is a must visit when vacationing here on Anna Maria.

Seafood at Starfish Company
Come visit Starfish Company for delicious food and a great view!

Anna Maria Island Water Taxi and Alternative Transportation

Anna Maria Island – When visiting Anna Maria Island there are many forms of alternative transportation available. Find stress free car free ways to get around in style, and feel like a local! Take advantage of the free trolley, Ride AMI shuttle service, water taxi, and Beach Monkeys electric shuttles. All of these options are inexpensive, and are a convenient mode of transport.

Anna Maria Island Free Trolley

The free trolley is a great way to explore with air conditioned service, and it runs approximately every 20 minutes. Free trolley service is available from 6am to 10:30pm daily. The trolley is part of the Manatee County Area Transit, and circulates from Anna Maria city Pier to Coquina beach.

Alternative Transportation
There are trolley stops all along Anna Maria Island, so you can get to just about any island destination with ease.

Ride AMI Water Taxi and Shuttle

Ride AMI offers a multi-modal transit solution connecting Anna Maria Island, Cortez Fishing Village and Downtown Bradenton. Adventures Away of Bradenton developed Ride AMI, so they can offer both small group shuttle service and water taxis. Water Taxi service can be hailed online, by phone or even in person. Prices for adult water taxi service start as low as $5 per an adult and $3 per child.

Additionally, Ride AMI offers airport shuttle services to six different airports, and they have a large inventory of rentals. Outdoor equipment, beach gear, scooters, boats, jet skis and golf cart rentals are available for keeping you entertained.

Ride AMI is offering shuttle service along Bridge Street and Cortez Beach with a suggested $2/person gratuity. Ride AMI has plans to expand their shuttle service along all of Anna Maria Island.

Additional Shuttle Service

In addition to Ride AMI there are several other options for shuttle service on Anna Maria Island. Here is a list of Airport shuttle services to airports, and special events. This list includes limousine services, so you can have a special ride for a luxury experience.

Island Monkeys Electric Shuttle and Bus

Island Monkeys shuttle service has been operating on Anna Maria Island for several years. Services include an eight person golf cart shuttle and two 15 passenger buses. Island Monkeys except gratuity only, and operate from 6am until 10:30pm. contact Island Monkeys at 941-565-6542 to schedule a ride.

Anna Maria Island vacation rentals

Island Real Estate has the island’s largest selection of vacation rentals to choose from! Visit IslandReal.com or call 877-778-6066 to plan your Anna Maria Island, Florida vacation today!

Anna Maria Island vacation rental
North Beach Village is a great Anna Maria Island vacation rental centrally located on the island, and Accommodates up to 6 guests. This town house is just a short stroll to gulf beaches, and is near trolley stops. Click on the image above to reserve your stay today!