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Top 15 FREE {YES FREE} Sarasota Area Activities by RVAFL
Posted by Jana Troyer | Friday, February 10, 2017

Southwest Florida has a long list of fun attractions, but many can be expensive. We know that when you go on vacation, every little bit counts so our team has compiled a list of our Top 15 Free {YES, FREE} Sarasota Area Activities allowing you to explore our beautiful sites and sounds without the added cost.

 



1.     Spend the morning, afternoon or evening at one of our world-renowned beaches! Our beaches have some of the most spectacular turquoise-blue waters and sugar-fine sand; and they rival and beach you would have to float or fly thousands of miles for. The calm waters are perfect for an afternoon of paddleboarding or cruising around in a kayak. For those looking for relaxation, bring your favorite floatation device and laze in the crystal waters while catching a glimpse of dolphins frolicking in the distance. The sunsets on Florida’s Gulf Coast are not to be missed. We like to pack our dinner (and favorite beverage) and experience all that Mother Nature has in store for us - the orange, pink and purple hues of our sunsets are photo-worthy #sunset #paradise #rvafl

2.      Drum Circles regularly form on Siesta Key beach on Sundays, and Nokomis Beach on Wednesday and Saturday and are a sight to behold. Here you can move to the rhythms of the drums while soaking up our magnificent sunsets - bring your dancing shoes!

3.      Every Monday, the John & Mable Ringling Museum is free to the public. Here you’ll glance at the circus magnet's expansive personal art collections, as well as peruse the special visiting galleries that are on display. Not in town on a Monday; the outdoor grounds area are free to the public any day of the week and include bay views, children's playgrounds, Mable Ringling's prize-worthy rose garden, exotic fountains and more!

4.      See the quaint Island of Anna Maria via the free trolley.  The trolley travels from the Anna Maria City Pier to Coquina Beach daily (exluding major holidays). The trolley makes plenty of stops along the 7-mile stretch - from local eateries (may we suggest a grouper sandwich) to delightful ice cream shops, there is something for every palate.

5.      Bayfront Park in downtown Sarasota offers something for everyone. Children love to splash around at the splash fountain or burn off energy at the playground, and adults can take refuge in the beautiful scenery before them. Watch the majestic sailboats come into harbor, or catch a glimpse of a manatee floating by. Just a short walk away is the world-famous ‘Kissing Statue’.  The 26’ tall statue, officially titled “Unconditional Surrender” is the perfect place to take a #selfie.

6.      Spend an afternoon at Paw Park with your furry friend. Venice’s South Brohard beach is the only beach in the county where canines are allowed and is beloved for it. Tire your pooch out in the surf, while basking in the sun.

7.      Did you know that Venice, Florida is often referred to as the “Shark Tooth Capital of the World?” Walk along the coast at Caspersen Beach and collect prehistoric sharks’ teeth. These little gems make for great souvenirs - especially for kids. Rumor has it the largest shark's tooth found along these waters was over 5 inches wide...challenge accepted.

8.      A short drive inland, the bustling local community of Lakewood Ranch has a free concert the first Friday of each month along Main Street. Listen to live music, participate in activities that dot the street or eat at one of the delicious restaurants. Either way they'll have you swaying in the streets.

9.      Bradenton Riverwalk is the perfect spot to burn off some energy and soak in some beautiful sights. Located on the Manatee River, the area boasts a skate park, splash pad and playground area as well as running paths with stopping areas to soak in the views.

10.    Take a walk out onto Anna Maria City Pier. Often you’ll find dolphins playing in the water and many different bird species at this quiet Northern section of the island. And if the day is clear, and you look hard, you can even see Tampa's Sunshine Skyway off in the distance.

11. Bike along the Legacy Bike Trail of Sarasota. The 10-mile trail offers picturesque views of waterways, as well as lush flora and fauna. Shaded benches and drinking fountains are at nearly every mile and multiple trailheads and free parking make the trail easily accessible.

12.  Have a picnic at the Ted Sperling Park at South Lido Beach. Located on the north side of South Lido Beach, and a local favorite, this area offers a nature trail, a canoe/kayak launch site, public restrooms and picnic areas.

13.  Just outside the mall at University Town Center is a 600-acre community park known locally as Benderson Park. The park offers a 3.5 mile loop for running, picnic areas and a well-appointed playground for the children. On the weekends you can catch a glimpse of rowing events (recently boasting the Olympic Trials) and once a month the park has a free family movie night. Bring your blanket and watch a movie under the stars.

14.  Window shopping along St. Armand’s Circle - here you’ll find the latest fashion trends, local artists showcasing artwork and souvenirs for your loved ones back home. In order to make this truly free we recommend leaving the wallet at the hotel - tempations and unique treasures abound that even a seasoned shopper won't be able to resist.

15.  For a small fee, experience the natural beauty of the Myakka State Park. One of the oldest and largest state parks, hikers can explore trails that cross large expanses or take scenic lake tours on airboats.  As with all state parks, active or non-active military receive free access on certain holidays so check the website for specific dates.

 

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