Anna Maria Island at a Glance
Anna Maria Island just may be one of the most unpretentious places left on the planet. No one’s consulting their schedule via web-
Longboat Key at a Glance
If Anna Maria Island is a bit of a beach bum, then Longboat Key is her more sophisticated seaside cousin. Quiet, leisurely and relatively upscale, Longboat Key lures visitors who want a bit of pampering. Here, travelers dine well on globally-
Bradenton at a Glance
There’s plenty to do in Bradenton, making it a great spot to take a break from the beach. Visitors will find a vibrant downtown with restaurants, galleries and boutiques along with the South Florida Museum (home to Snooty, quite possibly the world’s most famous manatee) as well as a planetarium, science and natural history exhibits. Visitors can shop and explore Village of the Arts, a working artists’ community or check out Emerson Point Preserve archaeological site and Gamble Plantation (once a working antebellum sugar plantation), and the historic fishing village of Cortez. Just off of I-
Lakewood Ranch at a Glance
Lakewood Ranch began its life as a planned residential community, but it’s grown up now, becoming an attractive place for visitors too. Most spend their time exploring the upscale boutique shops and restaurants on Main Street (there’s everything from a Parisian café to a Scottish pub to Russian restaurant to a sushi place), or catching a mainstream or indie flick at the small movie theater. There’s a good chance you may wander into an event while visiting: farmers markets, festivals and concerts are held regularly, including "Music on Main" (free and held the first Friday of every month). A great deal of Lakewood Ranch is set aside as park or public recreational space, and visitors can take advantage of the area’s playgrounds and miles of walking and jogging trails.