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!

 

Top 10 Places to Find Fish Tacos on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island – Fish Tacos have become a very popular cuisine in Florida with Anna Maria Island being no exception. Said to have originated from the Baja region of Mexico, Fish Tacos typically consist of a battered and fried white fish. The fish is then wrapped in a flour tortilla with a variety of traditional and non traditional toppings.

Anna Maria Island Fish Tacos

When searching for the best fish taco on Anna Maria Island there is no shortage of options. We have put together a list of 10 places to find fish or seafood tacos to keep your tummy happy. While perusing our list click on any of the restaurant names to read more about their offerings and location.

1.The Waterfront Restaurant

Located along the bay side of Anna Maria with a gorgeous view, The Waterfront offers Grouper Tacos on their appetizer menu. These tacos offer premium black Gulf Grouper seasoned and seared in a flour tortilla with pico de gallo, jicama slaw and cheddar jack cheese.

Grouper Tacos
The Waterfront Restaurant in Anna Maria offers great Grouper Tacos! Photo Credit: Facebook User Dorothy Coleman 11/13/2013.

 

 

2.Eat Here

Offering two types of Taco’s on the menu, Eat Here has a Shrimp/Lobster combo Taco served with garlic butter, aioli, fruit salsa, and slaw. The second taco changes daily by the chef’s choice with options including the fresh fish catch of the day, steak or pork.

Eat Here Fish Tacos
Eat Here Fish Tacos are delicious@

3.Island Gourmet Grill

Served in a flour tortilla with jack cheese, lettuce and pico de gallo, Island Gourmet Grill offers local caught fish tacos on the Great Beginnings section of the menu.

Island Gourmet Grill
Island Gourmet Grill in Holmes Beach on Marina Drive.

4.Beach House and 5.Sandbar Restaurant

Our number five on the list is actually two restaurants under the same ownership offering delicious fish tacos with gulf waterfront views. Sandbar, located in the city of Anna Maria, offers blackened Grouper Medallions over slaw with corn and flour tortillas, served with rice. The Beach house, in Bradenton Beach, offers fish tacos fried or blackened with slaw, pico de gallo, and a sweet and spicy sauce, served with chips.

Beach House Fish Tacos
Fish Tacos at the Beach House Restaurant in Bradenton Beach.

6.AMI Beach Cafe

Located at one of Anna Maria Island’s most popular beaches, AMI Beach Cafe is directly on Manatee public beach offering all types of concessions, drinks, music and beach atmosphere. AMI Beach Cafe offers both shrimp and fish tacos, and is a great place to catch the sunset.

AMI Beach Cafe
Fish Tacos at AMI Beach Cafe. Photo Credit: Facebook User Heather Wilson 9/21/2013.

7.Bridge Tender Inn

A locals hangout, the Bridge Tender Inn offers a gorgeous view of Sarasota Bay located at the end of Bridge Street. Sit inside or dine outdoors while enjoying their jerked spice Mahi tacos topped with lettuce and chipotle ranch dressing, served with black bean soup.

 

Bridge Tender Inn Fish Tacos
Bridge Tender Inn Fish Tacos look amazing!

8.Island Time Bar and Grill

Located on the corner of Bridge Street with open air seating, Island Time Bar and Grill has a unique scallop taco. It comes lightly blackened with lettuce, tomato, cheese, guacamole, salsa, sour cream and coleslaw.

Fish Tacos
Island Time Grill and Bar Fish Tacos.

 

9.Gulf Drive Cafe

On the direct gulf front of Bradenton Beach, Gulf Drive Cafe offers three Mahi Tacos blackened with cheddar cheese and pico de gallo in a flour tortilla. These are also served with salsa, sour cream and Spanish rice on the side.

 

Gulf Drive Cafe
Gulf Drive Cafe and Tiki Bar on Bradenton Beach.

10.Wicked Cantina

Inspired by Austin style Tex-Mex, Wicked Cantina offers several tacos on the menu. These include beer battered grouper, breaded shrimp and breaded lobster options. Each of these options are topped with slaw, pickled onions, cilantro and chipotle aioli served in a flour tortilla. All tacos come with refried beans and Mexican rice.

Wicked Cantina Fish Tacos
Fish Tacos at Wicked Cantina.

While visiting Anna Maria Island try these locations and see for yourself who has the best fish taco in town!

 

Anna Maria Island Vacation Rentals

If you are looking for the perfect Anna Maria Island vacation rental Island Real Estate has almost 300 properties to choose from!

Bradenton Beach Vacation Rental
Bradenton Beach Club 224 is a 2 bedroom condo updated late 2015. Click on the image to learn more about this great rental!

Top Annual Events Anna Maria Island

Catch the top annual events Anna Maria Island style! No matter what time of year you vacation on Anna Maria Island there is always an event to discover. The Island is home to over a dozen annual events happening throughout the year. From food to the arts, and even classic car shows; Anna Maria Island loves a celebration. Anna Maria Island events often put an emphasis on a family friendly atmosphere. They cater to all age groups with activities for both young and old within the same event.

Annual Events Anna Maria Island

Below we have compiled a list of the top annually running events on Anna Maria Island. Don’t miss these during your stay! They have been conveniently organized by the season in which they occur. Starting with Winter and ending with Fall.

Winter

Anna Maria Island winter events
Winter Events on Anna Maria Island offer family fun!

This is a fun time of year as cool weather drives locals and visitors off the beaches into warmer activities. Unless you have a wet suit to keep you warm, or have a home with a heated pool, many folks don’t care for swimming. Even in the mild Florida winter weather. Winter events on Anna Maria Island provide a great opportunity for unique holiday shopping. Also enjoy entertainment across the island’s three cities.

There are five holiday related events found on the island in the month of December. These include the Privateers Christmas Parade, Winter Fest, The lighting of Bridge Street and the Lighted Boat Parade. Click on the link here to read about these holiday happenings. Pine Avenue in the city of Anna Maria also offers a holiday walk. Typically happening in mid December the Pine Avenue Holiday walk offers carolers and shopping along with refreshments provided by Pine Avenue businesses.

One of the areas most popular events happening in the middle of winter is the Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival.  This event actually takes place off island in the old Cortez Fishing Village located just over the Cortez Bridge. This event has been running for over 30 years drawing a crowd of 10,000. The Cortez Fishing Festival happens in February, usually the second weekend of the month. A celebration of the commercial fishing industry in Cortez, this event raises funds to preserve local mangrove wetlands to ensure and protect a healthy fish and wildlife population.

Spring

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Spring on Anna Maria Island brings us gorgeous weather. There are many days of clear skies, perfectly crisp breezes and warm sunshine. There are four annual Spring events you can’t miss if you are visiting at this wonderful time of year.

A fun annual event for 18 years and counting, the Beach Bistro St. Patricks Day Parade usually features dancers, cyclists, bag pipers, live animals and a rowdy bunch of green clad island folks ready for a party. Hosted by the Beach Bistro, this event always offers fun and laughs for all ages.

A celebration of local arts and artists, Spring Fest has been hosted by the Anna Maria Island Art League for 28 years. In addition to arts and crafts, Spring Fest offers live music and fabulous food vendors. This event takes place in the Holmes Beach city field located at 5901 Marina Drive. This event usually takes place the first weekend in March or April.

The Annual Sandbar Easter Egg Hunt is always a crowd pleaser for the entire family. Kids search for Eggs on the beach, then everyone joins in on the Easter parade down Pine Avenue for kid games, face painting and refreshments provided by the Sandbar.

Food and Wine on Pine is a fabulous foodie event offering selections from the area’s best restaurants along with great wine selections. Enjoy live music while you taste your way through this fun event.

Summer

Summer fun on Anna Maria Island
Hot Summer days end with gorgeous sunsets on Anna Maria Island.

Summer is a favorite time of year on Anna Maria Island. The summer island life consists of hot days, rainy afternoons and relaxing beach goers. Find crowded beaches lined with turtle nests, baby shorebirds begging for fish, and happily sunbathing patrons. Temperatures of the Gulf of Mexico are warm. Perfect for relaxing on a floaty with a cold drink in hand. While the beach is really the main attraction during summer months, the island also offers a few fun events.

While technically falling in the Spring, Memorial Day Weekend is the start of summer fun and warm Florida weather. A bustling weekend full of people swimming, tanning and spending a long weekend with family, Memorial Day is a great time to simply enjoy being a beach bum. There are no big events, However, Memorial Day does serve as a great time to trolley hop around Anna Maria Island. You’ll enjoy exploring different beaches, fabulous shopping, and amazing restaurants.

There’s nothing more fun than a small town patriotic parade, and Anna Maria Island’s 4th of July Parade is the perfect example. Starting on the southern end of the Island at Coquina Beach the parade makes it’s way up the island throwing candy, beads and trinkets for the kids spreading 4th of July cheer along the way.

Every year there are two public fireworks displays put on by Chiles Restaurant Group at the Beach House and Sandbar restaurants. Most years the Beach House fireworks show happens July 3rd with the Sandbars display following on the 4th. Occasionally the fireworks display has been canceled at the Beach House out of respect to the island’s precious nesting shorebirds that enjoy the strip of coast in very close proximity to the restaurant.

Fall

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Fall on Anna Maria Island brings us a slight respite from hot days transitioning into warm days allowing the swimming season to continue up until December in most years. This time of year brings the island several great family fun events!

Fall is packed with Annual events!

Bay Fest is the largest running event on Anna Maria Island. This event takes place on Pine Avenue. At Bay Fest you’ll enjoy food, music, vendors and a car show.

The Anna Maria Island Fall Festival happens in the Holmes Beach city field at 5901 Marina Drive in Holmes Beach. Taking place just before Halloween, this event kicks off with a Halloween Parade starting at Anna Maria Island elementary and ending at the city field.

Trick or Treating house to house is not a popular tradition among island neighborhoods. Therefore, the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce hosts a three city wide Trail of Treats sponsored by local businesses. The Trail of Treats starts with a kids costume contest at the Chamber of Commerce located at 5313 Gulf Drive. After the contest kids and parents are welcome to stroll around the Holmes Beach town center collecting candy from businesses from 4-6pm. After cruising through Holmes Beach, head up to Pine Avenue or down to Bridge Street for additional trick or treating from 5-8pm. Typically this event happens on or just before Halloween depending if the Holiday falls on a weekend.

Anna Maria Islanders greatly anticipate Stone Crab Season. Starting in mid October, Floridians and Island locals begin harvesting Stone Crabs by the bucket load. The Cortez Stone Crab Festival, happening in early November, is a fabulous way to enjoy this locally sourced seafood.

Wrapping up autumn events the annual Arts Hop is a great way to experience local arts, crafts, music and food. This island wide celebration of arts and culture is organized by the Cultural Connections of Anna Maria Island. This three day event includes art walks, theater performances and a beach front chorus and orchestra performance called “Symphony on the Sand”.

Enjoy Annual Events Anna Maria Island Style!

Real Estate on Anna Maria Island

A Florida beach house is a dream! Let one of our agents find your next paradise Anna Maria Island property.

North Beach Village Anna Maria Island vacation rental

 

Anna Maria Island Sustainable Seafood – The Sunray Venus Clam.

Anna Maria Island – All over coastal Florida the Sunray Venus Clam is gaining recognition as a sustainable, and delicious new addition to the state aquaculture market, and Anna Maria Island has hopped on this new trend.

The Sunray Venus Clam has a softer shell than most farmed clams making it a little pricier on the current market. These Clams have a sweet briny conch like taste, and a large tender meaty foot. When frozen fresh Sunray Venus Clams have an almost 100% open rate; much higher than most species. Sunray Venus Clams grow from South Carolina to Florida and get to be about 3 inches long. They have a beautiful shell that turns a pink salmon color when cooked.

Recently Bruce Barber a Professor of Marine Science at Eckerd College has started research on Sunray Venus Clams around Anna Maria Island’s bay side. In July Barber received an $82,000 grant from Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer service’s Division of Aquaculture to specifically study the eating and reproductive habits of Sunray Venus Clams. During the year long project, Barber will be studying a natural population of the clams just south of the Anna Maria City Pier to gain information to better inform shell fish fisheries like locals run Bay Shellfish company.

In Florida all submerged coastal land is state owned. Currently only 2,250 of 280,000 acres of this submerged land are leased for aquaculture. With such a great deal of available space there is a lot of potential for growing Sunray Venus Clams that could be a great boon to the Florida shell fish market.

Anna Maria Island restaurateur and partner at Bay Shellfish company Ed Chiles is on the forefront of supplying the Island with this delicious bivalves. Currently the Sunray Venus Clams can be found at all three of Chiles restaurants The Sandbar, Beach House and Mar Vista Dockside.  Chiles believes Tampa Bay waters to the north of Anna Maria Island are the perfect area to grow Sunray Venus Clams because of water temperature, quality and nutrient content.

Next time you visit Anna Maria Island be sure to support local aquaculture and try out Sunray Venus Clams.

Sunray Venus Clam
Sunray Venus Clam photo Credit: http://pureflorida.blogspot.com/2011/03/st-josephs-peninsula-state-park.html

Resources:

Tampa Bay Times, “Sunray Venus clams could be Florida’s next big aquaculture crop“, online edition August 22, 2015.

Solo Travel Girl, “Florida Aquaculture: Learning About Sunray Venus Clams in Charlotte Harbor

ChefsResources.com, Venus Sunray Clams

 

 

Restaurants open for Christmas and New Year 2014

Anna Maria Island – While the holidays may bring everybody together, it doesn’t mean you want to cook for everybody, so Here is our list of Restaurants open Christmas on and around Anna Maria Island. The list shows openings for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day.

Restaurants open Christmas and New Years

Restaurants Open Christmas and New Year 2014christmas new years key

Choose causal or a more fine dining atmosphere while visiting Anna Maria Island during the holidays. Some of the restaurants open can be found on Anna Maria Island, and some are in Longboat Key, Bradenton and St. Armands Circle near Sarasota. From the graph above you’ll notice most places are closed on Christmas Day, so you’ll want to make reservations ahead of time.

Enjoy the holidays on Anna Maria Island!

Anna Maria Island Thanksgiving 2014 Restaurants Open

Anna Maria Island – Visiting during Anna Maria Island Thanksgiving 2014, but don’t feel like cooking a big meal? Here is the list of restaurants that will be open so you can take it easy.

Anna Maria Island Thanksgiving 2014 Restaurants

The list below is mostly Anna Maria Island restaurants, but Longboat Key, Bradenton, Sarasota and Saint Armands Circle as well. You’ll find a great selection of places to dine with both fine dining and casual options.

Anna Maria Island Thanksgiving 2014
Thanksgiving 2014 Restaurants, what’s open

It’s a good idea to make reservations at the restaurant of your choice to ensure you have a place to gather.

Have a happy holiday, and enjoy a tropical Thanksgiving on Anna Maria Island!

Anna Maria Island – Top Ten Happy Hours!

Going out for a night for Anna Maria Island Happy Hour? Drinks always taste better when you’re getting a good deal on them. This blog will help you find the local night spots with the best deals around.

Island Time Bar & Grill: Island Time Bar & Grill is located at the beginning of Bridge Street directly next to the traffic circle and right across the street from the beach. The location makes for a perfect place to hang out after spending the day in the sun. Happy hour is Monday thru Saturday from 11:30am – 5:00pm with $1.87 Bud light bottles and $2.50 well drinks with live music playing during every happy hour. Call Island Time Bar & Grill for more details (941) 782-1122. For more information visit their page.

Island Time Grill

Island Time in Bradenton Beach on Historic Bridge Street.

Island Gourmet Grill: Island Gourmet Grill’s happy hour is Monday through Saturday from 11:30-6:00. Happy hour specials include $5 cocktails, sangria, martinis, wines and $2.00 beers. Island Gourmet Grill can be reached at (941)778-0333. For more information visit their page.

Hurricane Hanks: Hurricane Hanks offers great food, great atmosphere and great prices! Happy hour is everyday from 11:30am to 7:00pm  with reduced pricing for Miller Light and Bud Light at $1.50 and well drinks for $4.25. Call Hurricane Hanks for more information at (941)778-5788. For more information visit their page.

The Waterfront Restaurant: The Waterfront Restaurant is located on the northern end of Anna Maria Island offering gorgeous views of Tampa Bay. Their happy hour is everyday from 4:30pm – 6:30pm with the special including $3.00 beers on tap and $2.00 domestic bottled beer. For more details contact The Waterfront Restaurant at (941)778-1515. For more information visit their page

waterfront restaurant
The Waterfront Restaurant in Anna Maria

Beachhouse: The Beachhouse is located right on the beach offering beautiful views of the Gulf. Monday thru Friday from 3pm until 5pm at the bar you can enjoy reduced priced appetizers for $5.99 each and well drinks for $2.50, domestic drafts for $2.00, house wine for $3.00 and frozen drinks for $4.00. For more information call The Beach House at (941)779-2222. For more information visit their page.

Gulf Drive Cafe: Gulf Drive Cafe is one of the few restaurants on Anna Maria Island with a bar right on the beach. Happy hour is on Monday thru Friday from 2:00pm-5:30pm offering great food and drink prices. You can order domestic beers for $2.00 and well drinks for $4.00.  Contact Gulf Drive Cafe now for more details (941)778-1919. For more information visit their page.

7 Bridgetender Inn: The Bridgetender Inn is a dockside bar located at the end of historic Bridge Street. Docking is also available for boaters to pull in and dock to have some on-land fun. Happy hour offers discounted prices for beers, well drinks and house wine everyday from 4:00pm to 7:00pm. For more information call The Bridgetender Inn at (941) 778-4849. For more information visit their page.

The Sandbar: The Sandbar restaurant is an Anna Maria Island landmark, and the perfect spot for sunset cocktails. Located in the city of Anna Maria, The Sandbar not only boasts an amazing selection of libations, but offers delicious food. The Sandbar is open daily until 10pm.

 

Sandbar restaurant
The Sandbar Restaurant in Anna Maria.

 

Lobstahs: Lobstahs is a New England themed restaurant flying in Maine Lobsters to our sunny island daily. Their happy hour special includes discounted appetizers, beer, wine and well drinks running from 3pm-6pm. Lobstahs can be reached at (941)779-1000. For more information visit their page

10 Dcoy Ducks: Dcoy Ducks (or better known by the locals as The Duck) is a favorite spot for the locals of the island. Friday and Saturday nights from 6pm to 9pm you can enjoy 2 for 1 drinks with a band playing at 9:30pm. Call Dcoy Ducks for more details at (941)778-5888. For more information visit their page.

 

D Coy Ducks
D Coy Ducks in Holmes Beach

Anna Maria Island vacation rentals and accommodations

Island Real Estate has almost 300 vacation rental properties perfect for any Florida getaway to tropical Anna Maria Island. Book your stay today!

Anna Maria Island vacation rental
No Bad Days is a gorgeous vacation rental with a the perfect backyard pool tiki! Click on the image about to learn more about No Bad Days.