Since shopping for our Florida home in 2017, I get fairly a number of DMs and emails asking about issues to do in Sarasota. This query appears to be further fashionable this time of 12 months when everyone seems to be flocking to hotter climate. One of many the explanation why we love residing right here is that there’s at all times one thing to do. This metropolis is stuffed with enjoyable actions (lots of that are free!), scrumptious locations to eat, and new areas to discover.
As we speak I’m going to spotlight a few of my favourite actions and eating places in Sarasota. And since I do know guests oftentimes wish to enterprise into the encompassing areas, I’m additionally going to share some native favorites that span from Siesta Key as much as Anna Maria Island. By the top, you’ll be able to pack your bags, throw on a snug airport outfit, and plan a visit!
Favourite Issues to Do in Sarasota
There are a ton of various methods to spend a day, or perhaps a week, in Sarasota. Your best itinerary will rely on your motive for visiting town and with whom you’re touring. Do you need to spend time stress-free on the seashore? Perhaps you’re hoping to do some procuring and eating along with your vital different? Or possibly you’re touring with youngsters and in search of enjoyable issues to do in Sarasota as a household? I’m going to the touch on somewhat little bit of every little thing, as we’ve loved doing it all around the previous few years!
Probably the most fashionable causes to go to or reside in Sarasota is for the breathtaking seashores. Personally, my favourite native seashore is Siesta Key. Not solely is the sand and water lovely however the location and facilities at this seashore are nice as effectively. Town paid for an enormous renovation of Siesta Key in 2016 and the end result was a giant improve! The facilities close by are nice together with the general public bogs, meals choices, and areas of shade. Whereas this seashore is probably the most accessible relating to parking, I’ll warn you that the majority spots are snagged by 10 AM throughout the busy season. So make sure you plan accordingly!
If testing seashores is on the high of your issues to do in Sarasota record, then you may additionally need to make your strategy to Longboat Key or Anna Maria Island. LBK has some lovely public seashore entry factors. The draw back is that the parking is extraordinarily restricted and there aren’t many facilities accessible. The massive public seashore on AMI, Coquina Beach, does have parking, bogs, and altering areas. Nonetheless, I nonetheless favor Siesta Key!
Native Issues to Do in Sarasota
One thing we’ve loved whereas residing right here is experiencing the distinctive native occasions. There’s at all times one thing occurring! Town hosts First Friday events, for which the streets downtown are closed and there are a ton of meals choices, procuring, and free leisure.
One among my favourite issues to do in Sarasota is to discover the Farmers Market on Saturdays. This market isn’t simply restricted to provide. As a substitute, it truly highlights most of the native outlets and artisans within the space.
And relating to occasions to plan round, I at all times verify the schedule on the Van Wezell, which is our native performing arts corridor. Sarasota will get nice musical acts to carry out right here and you may usually get actually affordable costs! You may see the present schedule here.
Child-Pleasant Issues to Do in Sarasota
In case you are in search of kid-friendly issues to do in Sarasota, I’d suggest Selby Garden and Mote Aquarium. Sarasota has had fairly a growth over the previous 5 years. Subsequently, town is working to improve quite a lot of the favored points of interest, together with each of those.
Selby Backyard is a good way to see a lot of the attractive nature Florida has to supply. Plus, it supplies some pretty water views! They continually have actions geared towards each youngsters and adults – You may take a look at their full schedule here. Selby Backyard is at the moment open, however it’s going by way of an enormous renovation that’s set to complete in early 2024.
Mote Aquarium is a very candy aquarium that seems like “old style” Florida. They too are getting a MAJOR improve, set to be accomplished on the finish of 2024. For now, you may go to the situation they’ve been at for many years on Longboat Key. They’ve sea turtles, manatees, rays and a lot extra!
The Sarasota Art Museum, which simply opened in 2019, is a superb spot to go to. They’re continually bringing in new artistic endeavors that really feel contemporary and related. At 15,000 sq toes, the museum feels substantial, however not overwhelming. I additionally love the candy bistro that they’ve on-site. It’s an ideal place to take a seat and seize a espresso. Along with displaying unbelievable artwork, the museum hosts a very enjoyable outdoor jazz performance as soon as a month. Throughout this occasion, you may chill out and benefit from the music whereas additionally grabbing a glass of wine and even dinner!
The Ringling Museum will little question pop up when you find yourself in search of issues to do in Sarasota. I discover the grounds of the Ringling Museum to be beautiful, however the precise reveals to be underwhelming. Moreover, the Ringling Museum is usually crowded, particularly throughout the busy season. So be ready to circle for parking and to come across some traces whereas visiting.
Purchasing in Sarasota
Whereas I wouldn’t say Sarasota is a shopping-centric city, we do have some true gems. Canned Ham Vintage is an unbelievable classic store that you simply shouldn’t miss. I’ve purchased so lots of my favourite objects there (the earrings are at all times top-notch) and they’re continually getting new stock! Camilyn Beth is a neighborhood designer who’s as proficient as she is variety. Her retailer is positioned proper on Palm Avenue, along with her design studio proper above! The Met Fashion House in St. Armands Circle has an ideal choice of a few of my favourite manufacturers resembling Veronica Beard, Self-Portrait, and See by Chloe!
Talking of St. Armands Circle, spending a day procuring, eating, and exploring this space is a favourite factor to do in Sarasota for a lot of guests. It’s an ideal space if you happen to’re seeking to simply get out, seize a chunk to eat, and do a little bit of procuring. My favourite eating places in St. Armands are Shore, Colombia (a basic that has been round for greater than 100 years), and Crab and Fin. Equally, if you happen to’re procuring downtown, there are lots of nice locations to seize meals or cocktails as effectively. I really like Owen’s Fish Camp for dinner (they’ve an ideal area out again for teenagers to run round with reside music), State Street for cocktails, Selva for dinner (don’t miss the home chopped salad), and the Fountain for an off-the-cuff pizza date.
Favourite Eating places in Sarasota
Okay, now that I’m serious about it, eating in Sarasota wants its personal part – There are simply so many nice choices! It’s onerous to nail down my favorites, however here’s a record of some of my favorites. I say this as a result of I do know I’m going to by accident depart somebody I really like off the record!
Seafood Eating places
- Walt’s: This restaurant is third generation-owned and so they catch fish each day. I really like the Oscar off the Hook and the fish dip! Wait occasions could be lengthy, as this can be a massively fashionable spot for locals and guests alike.
- Veronica’s: Set in Southside Village, Veronicas is a darkish, cozy uncooked bar. They’ve an superior skirt steak, the most effective Caesar salad, and superior oysters (clearly!) I really like eating on the bar, which is first come first serve, however they do take reservations for the eating room.
- Owen’s Fish Camp: An enthralling seafood restaurant set in an previous cottage – That is such a darling place to dine. There’s a big yard with a separate bar and so they usually have reside music. The Low Nation Broil is superb, and if they’ve Scamp because the native catch get it (belief me)!! Owen’s will get insanely crowded, so that you’ll need to arrive early and be ready to attend, as they don’t take reservations.
- Spearfish: Positioned on Siesta Key, this little informal spot has quick, contemporary, simple, and really tasty dishes. The grouper bites and the coconut shrimp are my private favorites on the menu.
- Whitney’s: One among my absolute favourite issues to do in Sarasota is dine at Whitney’s. This informal spot is ready in an previous gasoline station, and on most days all of the home windows and doorways are open. The queso is superior and I additionally love the LBK Bowl. This menu is nice for sharing and so they have reside music each Friday!
- Jack Dusty’s – In order for you a pleasant, stress-free brunch with a view, I’d take a look at Jack Dusty’s within the Ritz. I really like sitting outdoors and catching up with girlfriends on a reasonably Sarasota day!
American Eating places
- Indigenous: Positioned downtown in an lovely cottage, this restaurant is domestically sourced with an ever-changing menu. Every thing I’ve had right here is mouth-watering, even the best dishes. That is the right spot for a pleasant date night time or to have fun an important day. The chef is now additionally opening up a food truck at Calusa Brewery, which I plan on visiting quickly!
- Meloria: DC transplants opened this area final 12 months and it has turn into a neighborhood favourite. Sarasota has quite a lot of great seafood spots and, surprisingly, quite a lot of Italian eating places. So, this high-end American menu crammed an empty area of interest! The coconut panna cotta on the dessert menu is unbelievable, and I’m not even a dessert individual. Right here’s somewhat insider tip…Should you sit on the bar, you may order the “off-menu burger”, which is to die for!
- Shore: There are two Shore areas, one in St. Armands and one on LBK. I really like each, however if you happen to can swing it, snag a desk on the Shore LBK with a water view. I get one thing totally different each time I dine right here and I’ve by no means been upset.
Different Forms of Delicacies
- Florence and the Spice Boys: This tremendous fashionable meals truck opened their first everlasting location this 12 months and the area is as superb because the meals. They utterly reworked the restaurant that they took over and added so many private touches. The menu is at all times fascinating! A few of my favorites embrace the turmeric fried hen sandwich and the fried brussel sprouts.
- Origins Pizza: Origins is my go-to when ordering pizza. They’ve a number of areas now, which makes eating in tremendous simple. The newly opened spot at The Landings is nice. I at all times order my pie skinny and further crispy!
- Columbia: The oldest restaurant in Florida, Columbia is a full-on attraction. Dinner generally is a little bit of a zoo, since that is on so many guests’ “should eat” record. Because of this, I usually love to do a late lunch right here and I get the 1905 salad with the unique Cuban.
- Artisan Cheese Company: Whereas that is largely a cheese store (and a rattling nice one!) you can too pop in for lunch or to order a cheese board and glass of wine to remain. The lunch menu is usually small, however mighty, and the area has a really cool industrial, but welcoming, really feel. The store additionally has nice sourdough, natural wines, spreads imported from all around the world, and the most effective cheese choice in Sarasota.
- State Street: Should you love a cocktail, that is your home. Positioned within the coronary heart of downtown, this darkish, romantic bar is inside strolling distance to so many eating places. I really like grabbing a martini right here earlier than heading off to Selva, Owens, or one of many different nice spots on Principal Avenue.
Phew, so long as this record of issues to do in Sarasota appears to be, I really feel like I’ve solely scratched the floor! I shared a number of further Sarasota favorites in this post as effectively. And if you happen to occur to be touring right here (or wherever!) this winter, you could need to take a look at my travel must-haves, airport outfit ideas, and my favourite travel beauty products.