Spending time in one of our vacation rentals in Sarasota, FL is a great way to experience the abundant sun, sand, and surf of southwestern Florida! Home to world-class beaches, warm Gulf of Mexico waters, and beautiful island keys, this charming city is one of the most popular destinations for vacation rentals in beautiful Tampa Bay thanks to its gorgeous sugar sand beaches, myriad city attractions, and uncrowded coastal location.
Bring the family, that special someone, or a group of friends for a fun-filled tropical getaway.
Where is Sarasota, FL?
A beautiful gem on the west coast of Florida, tucked in between Tampa and Naples, Sarasota and its surrounding keys offer a huge number of unique spots to enjoy. With year-round beautiful weather and something for everyone, this area features dining, fantastic shopping, and some of the most gorgeous beaches in the world. Imagine fine dining with your feet in the sand, cocktails outside under palm trees, and exploring all of the unique character of the city. Here on your perfect vacation, it's all possible!
With a convenient international airport and tons of must-see destinations right on your doorstep, a stay in one of our Sarasota vacation rentals is ideal for longer stays - including day trips to the keys and further destinations like fun-filled Disney World!
Things to Do in Sarasota, FL
While many towns along Florida’s Gulf Coast boast scenic views and clean beaches, Sarasota ranks among the best coastal cities for those seeking more than a run-of-the-mill beach vacation. With a thriving performing arts scene, world-class museums, pristine state parks, and a location not far from all of the great professional sports teams in Tampa, Sarasota is a dynamic mid-size city – and our vacation rentals will put you up front to all the action in south Tampa Bay!
Kids will love building sandcastles in the soft white sand while parents suntan on local beaches such as Siesta Key Beach (ranked “Best Sand Beach in America” by the Travel Channel in 2004), Lido Key Beach, and Longboat Key Beach. These keys are also romantic destinations for a casual stroll at sunset, where magnificent pink and purple hues can be seen across the sky.
After exploring the beautiful historic area and marina downtown, spend a day on the keys! Experience a taste of the ritzy life on the gorgeous Siesta Key, trying fresh fish at restaurants between bouts of high-end shopping, or head across the bridge from downtown to Lido Key for statues, shops, music, and all types of dining in St. Armand's Circle.
For a fun daytime activity, tour the extravagant grounds and acclaimed Barnum and Bailey Circus Museum at the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, or treat the kids to a day at Sarasota Jungle Gardens, which features 10 acres of botanical plants and birds, including flamingos that roam around the grounds - the kids will love feeding them! After they're all tuckered out, sample the catch-of-the-day at one of Sarasota’s many harbor-side restaurants. Finish off a great day with dancing into the night at a St. Armands Circle nightclub.
Outdoor Adventures in Sarasota
For nature appreciators and outdoor enthusiasts, Sarasota offers hikes, nature trails, and plenty of protected wilderness and coastal salt marsh areas to explore. Myakka River State Park, located 18 miles southeast of town, has daily tours of the swampy wetlands Florida is known for. Alligators, turtles, frogs, cranes, herons, egrets, and many more species can be seen on land and in the water along the old-growth Cyprus tree groves in this park.
Both kids and adults will enjoy visiting the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium, a non-profit marine research center that’s home to a huge variety of native aquatic wildlife, from manatees to sharks to sea turtles. If you’ve booked a stay in April, make sure to check out the Shark’s Tooth Festival, which is held every year in Venice Beach (33 miles south) and is the largest festival of its kind anywhere in the world.
Day Trips from Sarasota
Sarasota is central to pristine coastal habitat and beaches on many nearby keys, which are all worth a visit. Beginning 21 miles north in Anna Maria Island, take a leisurely drive south along the Gulf Coast with stops in Longboat Key, St. Armands Key, Siesta Key, and Casey Key (the part-time residence of writer Stephen King).
Beyond the keys, Anna Maria Island has plenty of vibrant things for you to do, see, and eat under the bright sunshine. Take the bridge over to the mainland and you'll find yourself in Bradenton, which features a charming downtown area right on the water, with gorgeous views of the marina and pier.
Though probably best kept for a long weekend, a 131-mile trip to Orlando and its famous theme parks, including Disney World, Busch Gardens, and Universal Studios, is a sure bet for family fun and definitely worth the drive. Sports fanatics are well served with three professional sports teams residing in Tampa Bay, just 61 miles away.
For a fantastic home base in southwest Florida, look no further than a vacation home in Sarasota. Choose your favorite today!
Photo credit: Jared via Flickr