Havana Cabana, Anna Maria Island's Cuban restaurant

 

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The Havana Cabana Grill is a Cuban restaurant situated on the Marina Drive, Holmes Beach on Anna Maria Island. The restaurant has a large selection of dishes available for people eating in and ordering out. The food served is a mixture between Greek, Italian and Cuban traditional dishes and there are a variety of others. There are dinner specials available and for the adventurous spirits out there the catch of the day will offer a delicious fresh meal. Be sure to ask what it is!! There is a relaxed atmosphere in the restaurant and one immediately feels at home and welcome.

On my visit to the Havana Cabana I had an authentic Cuban sandwich and my aunt had the Sopa del Dia, both of which were extremely good. I would recommend any of the sandwiches that are made with Cuban bread. There is so much to choose from and I will definitely be going back. The restaurant is owned and managed by John Droukas who is also the chef, you can be sure one of the better chefs on the island. The best way in testing the theory is by testing the food. We were served by a kind lady by the name of Michelle Ruiz del Vizo who was very knowledgeable of the state of Florida and its cultural heritage. We learnt from her the meaning behind the term ‘cracker’, used to describe people who are born in Florida. The term derived from the crack of the whip above herds of cattle that were being herded by the first Floridian residents, early pioneers of the region. She is a proud Cuban cracker.

To view what is available you can visit http://www.havanacabana.net/ which is a website containing the menu and contact details.

Now, enough reading for you and time to crack on to the Havana Cabana grill to experience the culinary delight that awaits you.

 

Havana Cabana Grill
5904 Marina Drive
Holmes Beach, Florida 34217
941-254-4999

Top 5 Ice Cream Places on Anna Maria Island

Hey dudes and dude-ettes!!  You’re back with The Island Kid right here on Kids Corner, the best place to get the best news on Anna Maria Island.  I’m here today to tell you guys about the absolute best places on the island to get your ice cream fix. Now, here on Anna Maria Island, there are plenty of places you can go if you want a frozen treat to eat. But if you’re unsure of which places are best and which places to rule out. Read on for good info!coffee ice cream

            Best Places for Ice Cream on Anna Maria Island

ice cream
1: Two Scoops: This ice cream shop is a small shop nestled between Two Sides of Nature and across from the Anna Maria City Pier. With 32 rotating flavors, some as weird as blueberry pie and as normal as your classic vanilla, your pallet will always be pleased. They also have pastries, assorted lunch foods, and candy bars.

2: Dips: An ice cream shop near Three Island Monkeys and The Loft #5 in Anna Maria, this itty-bitty place packs the punch when it comes to ice cream. With thousands of flavors and topping variations, your experience will never be a bore.  Plus the classic candies and toys on the wall are great for a trip down memory lane.

3: Tyler’s Ice Cream is just over the bridge in Cortez Village.  Well worth the jaunt to enjoy some delicious gourmet flavors-literally hundreds over the years!  They have locally themed, as well as delicious classic flavors…and finding out what their latest is, is always part of the fun.  But creating your own flavor of shake just can’t be beat!

4: Joe’s Eats and Sweets: This place is the bomb.com. It’s got everything from chocolate to cotton candy & nerds and more! They also have pie on a stick-yes, on a stick- and various types of milkshakes and malts. This place is big colorful building right near Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach, so climb the steps, and check it out!

5: Holy Cow: No, I’m not shocked, they just have really good ice cream!  This place has many different combos of flavors and toppings, plus much more. They include a little mini gift shop inside the shop, plus indoor and outdoor seating. So feel free to enjoy your ice cream while browsing the trinkets.

Bonus tip – about 15 minutes off Anna Maria Island is a fantastic custard shop called Sweet Berries.  They mix all kinds of goodies in their custard ice cream and call it a concrete.  yum!

Whether you’re looking for just one spot or want try them all, these places are the best on the island.  So next time you’re visiting, go check ’em out! Let us know what you thought, and check back with us here on Kid’s Corner.

Bradenton Beach Marina Boat Rentals

Bradenton Beach MarinaThe Bradenton Beach Marina has the largest fleet of boat rentals on Anna Maria Island.  It is located at 402 Church Ave, in Bradenton Beach.  BBM purchased many new boats in 2013 including 18’ Bowriders.  They rent everything from Jet Skis to large pontoon boats by the hour or by the day.

Anna Maria Island’s geographical location creates lots of opportunities to explore.  The Gulf of Mexico opens up to its east, Tampa Bay to the North, the Manatee River to the west and Sarasota Bay to the south.  With a boat or Jet Ski, you can explore it all.  Perhaps you’d enjoy a day trip to Egmont Key, or a quick run to Sarasota for dinner.

For more information, check out their website or give them a call (941) 778-2288.

Need some Anna Maria Island Vacation Rentals that allow for docking a boat?  No problem, we have the answers for your perfect vacation home on a canal.  Be sure to contact us if you have any questions.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2012 Home Games

Tampa Bay Buccaneers logoEnjoy NFL action live and in person at the next home Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game, just less than an hour from the beaches of Anna Maria Island!  Sunday November 25th at 1pm in Raymond James Stadium the Bucs take on the Atlanta Falcons in a classic NFC South Divisional matchup.  Catch Josh Freeman, future Hall of Famer Ronde Barber and the November 4th Offensive Player of the Week RB Doug Martin in action.  Tickets available from just $35 at www.buccaneers.com.

Sarasota Medieval Fair is great day trip for Anna Maria Visitors

Renaissance Festival

Hear ye, hear ye!  The Sarasota Medieval Fair occurs annually in the month of November.  Just a short trip from Anna Maria Island it is a perfect day trip for visitors.  The Sarasota Medieval Fair is located at the Sarasota Fairgrounds on Fruitville Road rain or shine from 10-6 each weekend.  Enjoy performances by Jousters and Human Combat Chess.  Jump in and participate in craft demonstrations of pottery, basket weaving, blacksmith work, torched glass beading and even leather working.  Bring your appetite because the turkey legs are HUGE and the beer is served cold.

Tickets are available at the Medieval Fair website.

Visit Island Real Estate’s top ten list of things to do for more ideas of what to do when visiting Anna Maria Island.

Home Depot Workshops for Kids

Kids' Workshop near Anna Maria IslandThe Home Depot offers Kids’ Workshop near Anna Maria Island on the first Saturday of every month.

Designed for children ages 5-12, the kids can enjoy making a FREE craft project from 9am-12pm on the first Saturday of each month.  They receive hands on instruction, a commemorative pin and certificate of achievement, not to mention, their very own Home Depot workshop apron.

Check with their website each month to see what they will be making.

Check out Island Real Estate’s top ten things to do information pages that make your visit to Anna Maria Island a breeze.  Visit our top ten things to do as a family.  Top ten things to do if you are a kid on Anna Maria Island.  AND lots more top ten lists of things to do!

Awesome Aquariums near Anna Maria Island, Florida

Florida Aquarium
Florida Aquarium

Today’s information is about some of the awesome aquariums near Anna Maria Island There are so many cool places to go if you’re interested in exotic or local marine animals.

To kick it off, there’s the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota. They have 100’s of different animals. Some of them have been injured & are being hospitalized right there in the aquarium. They also have technological games & activities that you can participate in during your visit. You can explore & discover the marine life they have there, touch stingrays in their touch tank & so much more.

We can’t forget about Snooty, the oldest Manatee in captivity.  Bradenton has a much smaller aquarium however it is a quick trip just of Anna Maria Island.  The South Florida Museum has lots to do including a planetarium.   Manatee’s are often seen in the canal pool side.

There’s also the Clearwater Marine Hospital (C.M.H.) in Clearwater that holds one of the most unique dolphins ever, Winter. If you haven’t seen the movie Dolphin Tale, Winter is a dolphin that lost her tail in a crab trap accident & is the one & only dolphin with that kind of disability. She now has a prosthetic tail & is living happy & healthy in C.M.H. You can see Winter & all her friends at C.M.H. & some of the other activities. They have a hurricane simulator, some of the actual props & sets that they filmed in the movie, otters, turtles, & so much more. See more at SeeWinter.com

Enjoy your summer & keep in touch with Kid’s Corner!

Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium in Sarasota, FL

Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium is located in north Sarasota a short drive from Anna Maria Island. The Aquarium is a wonderful day-trip full of fun activities for everybody.  Enjoy the touch pools, working labs and high tech interactive exhibits! Mote marine also has weekly shark-feedings that are fascinating to watch. You can even book an Eco boat tour during your visit. There is plenty to do and see at this wonderful non-profit organization.

Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium
Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium offers a variety of Florida marine life to discover.

Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium

The entire facility is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m daily including all holidays.

Mote Marine has two buildings filled with Aquariums along with a shark tank, turtle tank and an Otter exhibit. You will need to walk across a street to see all the areas so be sure to wear comfortable shoes.

Also consider stopping at the Save our Seabirds (SOS) facility located in between the two Mote facilities. Admission is half price with a Mote Marine ticket. Ticket sales go to help this great organization rehabilitate injured wildlife.

Check out Mote’s website for daily events and activities for the entire family! Island Real Estate also has more information on aquariums close to Anna Maria Island.

Mote Marine Laboratory Aquarium
Mote Marine has Sea Turtles like this Loggerhead to see during your visit!

Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium
1600 Ken Thompson Parkway
Sarasota, FL 34236
(941) 388-4441

Family Fun, Playgrounds and parks on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island – There are several family fun activities across the island perfect for keeping the kids entertained. No matter which of the three cities you are visiting on Island, you wont have to travel far to find a play place.

Anna Maria Island has a phenomenal skate park in Holmes Beach for the child that skateboards or roller blades. The bigger kids and teenagers are the perfect age to tear it up at the skate park. Located directly next to the skate park is a nice little playground set for the little ones, and a shuffleboard court for the grown ups. If you are lucky, catch a glimpse of Anna Maria Island’s beloved pirate ship parade float Skully wag, often parked just by the skate park.

The most Northern and generally quietest playground is located in Anna Maria City at 310 North Bay Boulevard and named Anna Maria Bay Front Park. This park is gorgeously located directly on the bay side beach, so you can enjoy swimming and playing on the play ground equipment. After visiting Bay Front Park, head over to nearby Rod N Reel pier for lunch!

If you are looking for a playground right on the Gulf of Mexico, look no more. There is a fabulous playground in Holmes Beach at the Manatee Public beach. Manatee public beach offers concessions, volley ball nets, picnic areas, bathroom/changing area and tourist information.

In Bradenton Beach head over to Herb Dolan park located on the corner of Avenue A and 25th Street directly on Anna Maria Sound. This park offers a playground, basketball courts and a large field for baseball. This park is tucked into a Bradenton Beach neighborhood, and is often not crowded.

On the very southern end of the Island find Coquina beach with tons of activities including a fun Pirate ship shaped play ground, paved walking/bike paths, concessions and bathrooms.

Public Beach Holmes Beach
Manatee Public Beach

Amy’s Top 10 Family Friendly Things to Do While Visiting Anna Maria Island

Fish Hole Miniature Golf CourseAmy1. The Fish Hole Miniature Golf-An 18 hole golf course located on Historic Bridge Street. They have a koi pond that the kids will love to feed! Open 7 days!
115 Bridge Street
Bradenton Beach, FL 34217
(941) 778-3388

2. Anna Maria Bay Front Park– This is a great family friendly park which offers a playground, grills, picnic tables. There is a bay beach as well with views of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge and Egmont Key. There are public restrooms and showers to wash off the sand!
316 North Bay Blvd
Anna Maria City, FL 34212

Bay Front Park3. Two Scoops Ice Cream Parlor– They offer sundaes, ice cream cones, cookies & candy or you can grab lunch, sandwiches, hotdogs & chips!
101 South Bay Blvd
Anna Maria City, FL 34216
(941) 779-2422

4. Anna Maria Island Community Center-The Center has so many programs and activities for kids, teens and adults too!
407 Magnolia Ave
Anna Maria City, FL 34216
(941) 778-1908

5. South Florida Museum-This great museum located in Downtown Bradenton has Bishop Planetarium and Parker Manatee Aquarium all under one roof! You must see Snooty; he is the oldest known manatee!
201 10th St. West
Bradenton, FL 34205
(941) 746-4131

Eternal Summer Surf Camp6. Eternal Summer Surf Camp-This is fantastic, free program offered in the summer. Every Sunday beginning July 4th, there is a 2 hour instructional class for children 14 and under. Did I mention it’s free?
Located at the beach on White Avenue

7. Mote Marine Laboratory-You can explore the sea through the touch pools, viewable-working labs and interactive exhibits. See sharks, dolphins, manatees and sea turtles, along with more than 100 other species of marine life.
1600Ken Thompson Parkway
Sarasota, FL 34236
(941) 388-4441

8. Clearwater Marine Aquarium– This is a great family day trip to Clearwater. The aquarium is the official home of the Dolphin Winter, star of the new blockbuster movie, Dolphin Tale!
249 Windward Passage
Clearwater, FL 33767
(727) 441-1790

Go To The Beach9. De Soto National Park-This national park teaches the local history through a hands-on exhibit and re-enactments for the young and old. Pack a picnic and you can explore the nature trail!
8300 De Soto Memorial Hwy
Bradenton, FL 34209
(941) 792-0458 ext. 105

10. GO TO THE BEACH!