Things to do

20 Things To Do In Anna Maria Island As A Tourist

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Anna Maria Island, nestled along Florida's Gulf Coast, beckons tourists with its laid-back charm and pristine natural beauty. From white sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters to vibrant local culture and diverse wildlife, Anna Maria Island promises a wealth of experiences for every traveler.

Whether you're seeking relaxation, outdoor adventures, or cultural exploration, this article 20 Things to do in Anna Maria Island highlights the best activities and attractions that capture the essence of this island paradise.

1. Soak Up The Sun At Bean Point Beach

Bean Point Beach, located at the northern tip of Anna Maria Island, is a hidden gem perfect for tourists seeking a perfect beach experience. Known for its pristine white sands and crystal-clear turquoise waters, Bean Point Beach offers a serene escape from the more crowded tourist spots.

Here, visitors can enjoy leisurely walks along the shoreline, marvel at breathtaking sunsets, and spot diverse wildlife, including dolphins and seabirds. The beach’s natural beauty and relatively untouched environment make it fun things to do Anna Maria Island for sunbathing, swimming, and picnicking.

With panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay, Bean Point Beach is a must-visit destination for all.

2. Explore Anna Maria Island Historical Museum

The Anna Maria Island Historical Museum is the best things to do in Anna Maria Island for tourists interested in the rich history and heritage. Housed in a charming 1920s building that originally served as an icehouse, the museum offers a glimpse into the island's past through various exhibits and artifacts.

People can explore displays that detail the island's early Native American inhabitants, the development of the fishing industry, and the evolution of local communities over the decades. Highlights include a replica of an old fishing shack, original pieces from the island's first jail, and engaging stories about the pioneers who shaped the island.

Moreover, the museum provides an informative and engaging experience which makes it an Anna Maria Island Florida things to do for those looking to deepen their understanding of the Island's unique cultural and historical landscape.

3. Stroll Along The Coquina Baywalk

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Located on the southern end of the island, this scenic boardwalk meanders through lush mangroves and along the picturesque shores of Leffis Key Preserve. The Baywalk provides an excellent opportunity for wildlife observation, with numerous bird species, marine life, and native plants visible along the way.

Informative signs enhance the experience by offering insights into the local ecosystem and the importance of mangroves. Additionally, the peaceful environment and stunning views of Sarasota Bay make it a perfect spot for a leisurely walk, photography, or simply enjoying the tranquility of nature.

4. Take A Leisurely Walk Along The Bridge Street Pier

The Bridge Street Pier provides a perfect blend of scenic views, recreational activities, and local charm. Situated at the end of Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach, the pier extends into the tranquil waters of Sarasota Bay, providing stunning panoramic vistas and a peaceful atmosphere.

Visitors can enjoy strolls, watch the abundant marine life, and even try their hand at fishing with gear available for rent nearby. The pier is also surrounded by a vibrant area filled with quaint shops, waterfront dining options, and entertainment.

5. Enjoy At Manatee Beach Park

Manatee Beach Park boasts pristine white sands and clear turquoise waters, ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and beachcombing. The park is well-equipped with amenities, including picnic tables, grills, a playground, volleyball courts, and showers, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable visit for families and groups.

Moreover, the on-site cafe serves delicious snacks and refreshing beverages, while the nearby lifeguard stations enhance safety for all visitors. Manatee Beach Park also provides stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico which makes it an excellent spot to witness breathtaking sunsets. Hence, with its combination of natural beauty and convenient facilities, Manatee Beach Park is a perfect destination for a relaxing and fun-filled day.

6. Wander Through The Anna Maria Historic Green Village

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The Anna Maria Historic Green Village is a must-visit destination for tourists on Anna Maria Island. This eco-friendly village features a collection of beautifully restored historic buildings, each showing the island’s rich heritage while incorporating modern green technologies such as solar power and rainwater harvesting.

Visitors can explore quaint shops, enjoy delicious treats at the village cafe, and learn about sustainable living through interactive exhibits and educational displays. The serene gardens and picturesque surroundings provide a relaxing atmosphere, perfect for a stroll.

7. Stroll Along Palmetto Avenue Beach

Palmetto Avenue Beach boasts powdery white sand and clear turquoise waters, perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and beachcombing. The beach is less crowded than some of the island's more popular spots, providing a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere.

Here, visitors can enjoy stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico, especially during the breathtaking sunsets that paint the sky with vibrant colors. With its natural beauty and tranquil ambiance, Palmetto Avenue Beach is an ideal destination for all.

8. Experience The Charm Of Island Players Inc

Experiencing the charm of Island Players Inc. is a delightful activity for tourists on Anna Maria Island. Located in a quaint, historic building in Anna Maria, Island Players Inc. is the island’s oldest community theater, renowned for its high-quality productions and intimate setting.

People can enjoy a diverse array of plays and performances, ranging from classic dramas and comedies to contemporary works, all brought to life by talented local actors and directors. The theater's cozy, welcoming atmosphere and charming decor add to the overall experience which makes it a perfect evening outing for those looking to immerse themselves in the island’s vibrant artistic community.

9. Wander Through Holmes Beach

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Holmes Beach is a charming and vibrant destination on Anna Maria Island. This beach town features stunning stretches of white sand and clear blue waters, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and beachcombing.

Beyond the beach, visitors can explore an array of quaint shops, local eateries, and cafes that capture the island’s laid-back atmosphere. On the other hand, outdoor enthusiasts can rent bicycles, paddleboards, or kayaks to explore the scenic coastline and nearby waterways.

Holmes Beach also hosts various community events and markets which provide a taste of local culture and craftsmanship. With its welcoming vibe, beautiful scenery, and diverse activities, Holmes Beach is the best things to do on Anna Maria Island Florida.

10. Experience The Magic Of Paradise Boat Tours

Paradise Boat Tours offers a captivating way to explore the stunning waters and abundant marine life of the area. As a tourist, you can embark on guided tours that show the natural beauty and wildlife, including dolphins, manatees, and diverse bird species.

The tours provide an educational and entertaining experience with knowledgeable guides who share fascinating insights about the local ecosystem and history. Whether you opt for a daytime adventure or a romantic sunset cruise, Paradise Boat Tours offers a memorable and picturesque outing and is the best things to do Anna Maria Island.

11. Discover The Fish Hole Miniature Golf

Fish Hole Miniature Golf is a delightful attraction on Anna Maria Island, perfect for tourists seeking family-friendly fun in a charming, tropical setting. This unique mini-golf course features 18 holes set amidst lush landscaping, tranquil koi ponds, and vibrant local flora.

The course's whimsical fish-themed decor and water features add to the playful atmosphere. In addition to mini-golf, the Fish Hole offers shaded seating areas and provides misting fans to keep players cool during their game.

12. Experience The Island Players Community Theatre

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Island Players Community Theatre on Anna Maria Island offers a delightful cultural experience for tourists. Situated in the heart of this charming barrier island off Florida's Gulf Coast, the theatre presents a variety of live performances, including plays, musicals, and comedy shows throughout the year.

Its intimate setting and community-focused atmosphere provide a unique opportunity to engage with the island's artistic community and enjoy evenings filled with talented performances. Whether you're a theater enthusiast or simply looking to immerse yourself in local culture, attending a production at Island Players Community Theatre promises a memorable and enriching experience during your visit to Anna Maria Island.

13. Discover The Allure Of Egmont Key Lighthouse

Accessible by boat, this historic lighthouse has been guiding mariners since 1858. Visitors can explore the island’s rich history, including remnants of a 19th-century military fort and the lighthouse itself.

The island is also a wildlife refuge, offering opportunities to see gopher tortoises, seabirds, and other native species. Pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and scenic trails make Egmont Key perfect for hiking, swimming, snorkeling, and picnicking.

The combination of historical intrigue and natural beauty provides a unique and enriching experience which makes a trip to Egmont Key Lighthouse an unforgettable part of any visit to Anna Maria Island.

14. Uncover The Magic Of Leffis Key Preserve

Leffis Key Preserve is a hidden gem on Anna Maria Island, perfect for tourists seeking a serene and immersive natural experience. This pristine preserve, located on the southern end of the island, offers a network of well-maintained trails and boardwalks that wind through lush mangroves and coastal habitats.

Here, people can enjoy peaceful walks while observing a rich variety of wildlife, including native birds, fish, and other marine creatures. The elevated observation platforms provide stunning panoramic views of Sarasota Bay and the surrounding landscapes. Leffis Key Preserve's tranquil environment and beautiful scenery make it an ideal destination for nature lovers.

15. Visit Bradenton Beach

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Bradenton Beach is a vibrant and inviting destination on Anna Maria Island. Nestled on the southern end of the island, this area boasts stunning stretches of sandy beaches with crystal-clear waters ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and beachcombing.

The historic Bridge Street area is the heart of Bradenton Beach, featuring an array of quaint shops, waterfront restaurants, and lively bars. Moreover, visitors can enjoy fishing or strolls on the iconic Bridge Street Pier, rent kayaks or paddleboards to explore the serene bay waters, or take a sunset cruise for breathtaking views.

16. Experience The Anna Maria City Pier Grille

Situated at the end of the historic Anna Maria City Pier, this charming eatery provides an inviting atmosphere where visitors can enjoy a wide range of freshly prepared dishes, from seafood classics to hearty breakfasts and casual lunches.

Diners can savor their meals while taking in panoramic vistas of the sparkling waters of Tampa Bay and the bustling activity of the pier. The Grille's relaxed, friendly ambiance makes it a perfect spot to unwind, enjoy a refreshing drink, and watch for dolphins or pelicans. 

Therefore, with its combination of tasty cuisine, picturesque setting, and the pier’s historic charm, the Anna Maria City Pier Grille offers a memorable dining experience.

17. Visit Bob Brown Art

Bob Brown Art is a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts on Anna Maria Island. Nestled in the heart of the island, this gallery shows the stunning works of Bob Brown, a renowned artist known for his evocative paintings that capture the essence of coastal life.

Visitors can explore a diverse collection of artwork, ranging from serene seascapes and dynamic marine life to vibrant abstract pieces. The gallery provides a serene and inspiring environment, allowing art lovers to appreciate the intricate details and vivid colors of Brown's creations.

18. Indulge In Tranquility At Aluna Wellness Center & Spa

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Located in a peaceful setting, this holistic wellness center offers a range of services designed to promote relaxation and well-being. Guests can enjoy therapeutic massages, soothing facials, and invigorating body treatments, all performed by skilled therapists using natural and organic products.

The spa also offers yoga classes, acupuncture, and wellness consultations to support overall health. With its calming ambiance, serene garden, and personalized care, Aluna Wellness Center & Spa provides the perfect escape for those looking to unwind and recharge amidst the island's natural beauty.

19. Explore Anna Maria Rocks

Anna Maria Rocks is a delightful and unique destination, perfect for many things to do at Anna Maria Island. This charming shop offers a wide variety of beautiful, hand-painted rocks and gemstones, as well as an array of jewelry, home decor, and souvenirs crafted by local artisans.

Here, visitors can participate in rock painting workshops, where they can unleash their creativity and design their masterpieces to take home as personalized mementos. Interestingly, the friendly and welcoming staff are always on hand to provide guidance and inspiration. Therefore, situated in a vibrant part of the island, Anna Maria Rocks offers a fun and artistic experience that is ideal for all ages.

20. Create Memories With Anna Maria Island Dolphin Tours

Anna Maria Island Dolphin Tours offers an unforgettable experience for tourists. These guided boat tours take visitors on a scenic journey through the Gulf of Mexico and Sarasota Bay, where dolphins are often seen swimming, jumping, and playing in their natural habitat.

The knowledgeable and friendly guides share fascinating insights about the local marine life and ecosystem, enhancing the experience with their expertise. In addition to dolphin sightings, the tours often include opportunities to see manatees, sea turtles, and various bird species.

Lastly, with the breathtaking coastal scenery and the thrill of encountering these magnificent creatures up close, Anna Maria Island Dolphin Tours is a must-do activity.