While the beach is always the most obvious choice to entertain kids on an Anna Maria Island vacation, sometimes the little ones just need a break from all the sun and salt. Luckily there are tons of ways to keep the kiddos happy when vacationing in one of Florida’s most family friendly beach destinations!
10 Ways to Entertain Kids on an Anna Maria Island Vacation
Kids will have memories for years to come when the family gathers for an island style getaway!
Bring the kids down to Historic Bridge Street for a round of mini golf at the Fish Hole. This 18 hole course offers plenty of shade, cold drinks and is a nice respite from the Florida sunshine. They have a 3000 gallon Koi and turtle pond that the kids will love. Purchase fish food for a quarter. Afterwards head into the gift shop for some island souvenirs.
Coquina Beach at the south end of Anna Maria Island has a fun playground shaped like a wooden pirate ship. For an extra fun twist, let your kid dress like a pirate and take them to this beach side play spot. They’ll never forget the time you let them be “real pirates” on vacation! Stop by the Holmes Beach Dollar Tree at 3260 East Bay Drive and check out their selection of kids beach toys. Often you can find pirate costume supplies like the vest in the picture below.
Coquina beach access also has plenty of shade trees, restrooms, concessions and is the southern most stop for the free trolley.
Children absolutely love riding the free trolley! It’s big and colorful like a bus, makes a fun “ding ding!” sound and there is a pull chord signaling stops that kids will be more than thrilled to tug on. This is also an amazing way to enjoy sightseeing stress free. Grab a seat towards the back of the trolley since these seats are higher and have better window views for kids. The trolley runs from Anna Maria City Pier all the way down to Coquina beach with stops all along the way. Relax in the air conditioning and enjoy island scenes pass by. When you see something fun, hop off, and another trolley will be around approximately every 20 minutes to pick you back up.
Anna Maria Island has a huge selection of Ice Cream shops, so you’ll just have to visit one! Ice cream on a hot day is a no-brainer for parents. No matter which one you choose, they are all good.
Just off Marina Drive in central Holmes Beach you’ll find the Skate park, play ground and shuffle board courts. This is a fun way to spend an evening that will entertain the entire family. While the little ones play on the play ground, the teens can enjoy the skate park and the adults can play a round of shuffle board. After this activity walk over to one of the many nearby restaurants like Island Gourmet, Ugly Grouper or the Feast. All three are kid friendly lunch or dinner options.
While the Library may not be every kids idea of fun, the Island Library does offer a great spot for some quiet time. There is a separate children’s area, so you don’t have to worry about being too loud. Here you’ll find coloring sheets, puzzles and many great reads too! Every Tuesday from 10-11am there is a pre-school story time, and often fun activities to go along.
What kid, or adult, doesn’t want to enjoy a custom fresh made donut? Head to the donut experiment and you’ll find hot fresh donuts where you get to pick the toppings. Open daily from 7am-3pm, this is a must stop for visitor. Not only do they have a great selection of toppings like fruity pebbles, oreo and bacon, but they have some of the best coffee on the island.
Mote Marine Aquarium and Save our Seabirds are fantastic activities especially on rainy days. Both are located right next to each other just a short drive down to south Longboat Key. Mote Marine offers a fun and educational experience with many aquariums, shark tank, touch tanks and a turtle rehab facility. Mote Marine Laboratory is at the forefront on South west Florida Marine research. Kids love learning about sea creatures, and can even touch a few. After you’re finished up at Mote Marine ahead across the parking lot to Save our Seabirds sanctuary. Here you’ll find many species of injured animals that can’t be released back into the wild. Tickets for Save our Seabirds are separate, but you do get a discount when you show your Mote Marine ticket.
All kids love candy making the Flip Flop Shop and Candy stop an easy choice. Find it on Pine Avenue on north Anna Maria Island.
The Sarasota Children’s Garden is a one of a kind experience just for kids. Here you’ll find a lovely place to run around while enjoying unique and colorful outdoor installations . There is so much to see in this fairy tale garden from the 3 little pigs houses to hobbit ville and Snuffy the dragon. Much of the garden offers great old shady Oak trees, so you can enjoy the outdoors comfortably.
Everyone deserves to have fun during an Anna Maria Island vacation, and here are some fantastic rentals your kids will love! Try out these fun 10 Ways to Entertain Kids on an Anna Maria Island Vacation!10 Ways to Entertain Kids on an Anna Maria Island Vacation,