If you visit 1 Florida beach, let it be this one!

I went a little MIA for a few days because John and I were busy soaking up the sun in beautiful Anna Maria Island, FL (Bradenton Beach, specifically) with my family. This island is becoming a quick favorite of mine and anytime we consider going to the beach, it’s always my first pick. I haven’t shared too many photos on here, so I figured I’d make today’s post picture heavy!

This place is wonderful for so many reasons. For starters, it’s located in the Gulf of Mexico, meaning there are spectacular sunsets to be viewed each and every night. Even on the cloudy nights, the sunsets are always breathtaking. Any other beach I’ve been to I’ve always had to drag myself out of bed at 6am to get sunrise shots, but in Anna Maria I can lounge around and end the day watching the sun set over the ocean.

There are super cool/rustic piers all along Bradenton Beach. They make great photos and since you aren’t allowed to walk on them there’s never people walking around ruining the shot :).

John and I by one of the piers

The condo my mom and stepdad rented for the week was not only beachfront, but it was also steps away from a TIKI BAR. It really doesn’t get much better than that in  my opinion.

Caribbean margarita/Mango margarita
John under the tiki hut
Malibu bucket (um, yum!)

Usually we don’t find many shells at the beach, but a storm must have blown in a whole lotta shells (along with that seaweed, but it didn’t smell so no bother!). We were finding amazing shells left and right. The picture above shows some of the great shells we found during our stay.

Tuesday, we ventured inland towards the Sarasota area to visit Myakka River State Park. If you’re ever in the Siesta Key/Sarasota/Tampa area, this park is absolutely worth the drive. We spent a few hours there and took an airboat tour and then strolled over to the canopy walk. It’s super scenic and as the park calls it, this place is the real Florida.

One of the many alligators we saw during our airboat tour
Canopy walk
Palm trees – viewed from the tower above the canopy walk
John and I at the top of the canopy walk tower

Anna Maria is full of great shops and restaurants. It’s everything I love in a beach: clear water, white sand, and not too touristy! It has a quaint small town feel and is the perfect destination for a beach vacation, even if it’s just a day trip. John and I had an amazing time and as usual it was great to see my family. I’m super thankful to be able to see them so often, even if I live 1,000 miles away!

Where have you vacationed this summer? Do you have a favorite beach?

32 thoughts on “If you visit 1 Florida beach, let it be this one!

  1. Danielle

    Beautiful photos! I’ve never been to Anna Maria Island, but maybe I should check it out. 🙂 Looks like you all had a great time! (p.s. I added you to my Blogroll! :))

    Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      You should check it out – guarantee you’ll love it! There’s little to no nightlife but I’m too lazy for any of that when I’m at the beach anywho. I added you back girl, thanks! 🙂

      Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      Aw thank you! I may or may not have been on my knees in the water tilting my camera like a crazy person whilst totally drenching my tshirt in ocean water to get that photo….so I’m glad someone appreciates it…:) It was a great time, I wish I could just live at the beach. -sigh-

      Reply
  2. Gma max

    Great shots (including the ones in the tiki bar :o). Wish we had been there too….looks like a place we would love. Glad you had such a good time. Love ya

    Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      You have to visit it sometime! I think it’s only a half hour or so from Sarasota, it wouldn’t be much further than Siesta Key. Siesta is a beautiful beach also, Anna Maria is pretty much the same just not as crowded. 🙂

      Reply
  3. Angie Germanoff Dine

    Steph I just love your outlook on life. It makes me happy to see you so at peace and happy in your life. And I enjoy your blogs, keep them coming. You have many talents girl, and glad to see you using them and sharing them with the rest of us. <3

    Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      Angie, thank you so much, that all means so so much to me! My life has changed so much over the past few months and I have never been as happy as I am now 🙂 It’s a great feeling and I am very happy to share those feelings and experiences with the world! I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog!! Miss all of you up at the lake!

      Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      Thank you Molly! Yes, it is one of the best beaches I’ve ever been to…plus I love the clear water because I can avoid stepping on weird things… 🙂 and thank you, its twenty-something: swimsuit edition. Just kidding, but I do love the suit…one of my fav summer purchases!

      Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      I know what that’s like! I have a long long list of places to visit. But I’m glad you added this one to your list, it’s a great beach and I hope you get there someday!

      Reply
  4. Mary Ann

    What lovely pics, Stephanie! I was recently in Naples (a few miles south of this place) and had beautiful beach sunsets, too. I also couldn’t believe all the gorgeous shells, as well! 😉

    Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      Thanks Mary Ann!! I have yet to go to Naples, but I’m sure we’ll get there eventually. I actually just heard that a tropical storm off the coast was churning up the ocean pretty good, so that explains the seaweed and all the great shells. I hope you enjoyed your stay in Florida 🙂

      Reply
  5. tania

    These photos are completely gorgeous!! They look like they are taken in a faraway tropical land. Must visit one day! Love love love your bright swimsuit too! Such a beautiful print!

    Reply
    1. twenty-something Post author

      Thank you so much! It is a beautiful place…there usualy isn’t seaweed there like in the photos, a tropical storm off the coast churned up the water and all the seaweed washed ashore, but it is still beautiful! Thanks for the compliment on the swimsuit, it’s my new favorite suit 🙂

      Reply
  6. janedwellable

    Hi Stephanie!
    My name is Jane and I’m with Dwellable.
    I was looking for blog posts about Anna Maria Island to share on our site and I came across your post…If you’re open to it, shoot me an email at jane(at)dwellable(dot)com.
    Hope to hear from you 🙂
    Jane

    Reply
  7. Pingback: The Best of 2012 |

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *