Summer Bucket List Part 1: 5 Must-Dos in Sarasota

Summer Bucket List Part 1: 5 Must-Dos in Sarasota

Summer Bucket List Part 1: 5 Must-Dos in Sarasota Riviera Dunes Marina Blog

Summer Bucket List Part 1: 5 Must-Dos in Sarasota

Just a short drive from Riviera Dunes Marina lies Sarasota renowned for its beautiful beaches. However, Sarasota has much more to offer than sun and sand! From museums to lush botanical gardens, there are plenty of must-dos in Sarasota that you’ll want to add to your summer bucket list!

Here’s part one of our summer bucket list when you’re in Sarasota.

1. Sarasota Farmers Market

The summer season welcomes a bounty of bright vegetables, fruit and other specialty foods local to the Sarasota area. Discover fresh ginger, microgreens, lush beets and you guessed it—Florida oranges! In addition, the Sarasota Farmers Market features plant vendors selling everything from herbs to flowers as well as artisans offering handmade soap, artwork and more eclectic goods! When you’re done perusing the exciting vendors, stick around for lunch at one of the food vendors serving up steak, German food and burgers . . . just to name a few. The market is located at 1 N. Lemon Avenue and operates every Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

2. Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary

One of the most unique must-dos in Sarasota is to visit Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary, an animal sanctuary for large, exotic animals. In addition to caring for exotic animals in need, the sanctuary is also an educational opportunity where you can learn about animal care and habitat preservation. Some animals you might see are bears, birds, ligers, lions and tortoises! There is also a petting zoo where you can get up close with goats, llamas and chickens.

3. Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

Surround yourself with beauty and nature when you visit Selby Botanical Gardens. Enter the gardens’ seven acres of tropical bliss as you traverse the Children’s Rainforest Garden where visitors can learn about this unique environment. Then, in the Tropical Conservatory, this is the gardens’ public greenhouse where you will see the first blooms of the plants. Of course, you won’t want to miss the koi pond, fern garden or the Towering Bamboo garden, where bamboo can grow up to 40 inches per day! See it all for yourself and more at the botanical gardens in Sarasota.

4. The Sarasota Classic Car Museum

Antique car lovers will be mesmerized at the Sarasota Classic Car Museum, the second oldest antique car museum in the country! Admire over 75 antique cars from Bentleys to Cadillacs. You’ll even get to see cars owned by John Lennon, Paul McCartney and a collection of cars owned by John and Mable Ringling. Then make sure you make a stop in the gift shop to take home a treasure and remember your visit for years to come!

5. The Beaches

Of course one of the top must-dos in Sarasota must include a visit to the beach! Popular beaches to visit are the No. 1 voted beach, Siesta Key Beach, Lido Beach, Venice beach, among other beaches and their islands. Learn more about Sarasota’s beaches and islands in this previous post

Next: 4 Tips for Protecting Yourself from the Florida Sun

August 2017: Fun Things to Do in Sarasota

August 2017: Fun Things to Do in Sarasota

August 2017: Fun Things to Do in Sarasota Riviera Dunes Marina

August 2017: Fun Things to Do in Sarasota

Looking for fun things to do this month? While summer is nearly over, there are still plenty of things to do in the Sarasota area! Here’s your guide for weekend fun in the Sarasota area for August 2017.

This weekend, Aug. 11–13, head to Historic Spanish Point in Osprey for a docent-guided walking tour! During this enriching tour, you’ll get to experience the history, architecture and nature of Old Florida.

For home goods lovers, you’ll enjoy perusing the vintage and antique goods at Vintiquity Lane’s European-style, monthly market on Aug. 19–20. It’s also important to note that this market opens every third weekend of the month in Sarasota’s Design District, which is located at 1540 N. Lime Ave. At the market, you will discover repurposed, kitschy home treasures, clothing and other unique artifacts from yesteryear. Here are the upcoming market hours:

  • Saturday—8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Sunday—10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

If you haven’t heard by now, Venice, FL is known as the “Shark Tooth Capital of the World.” In addition to the vintage market, you’ll also have a better chance to find shark teeth in Venice since the kids will be back in school. Shark teeth are often found near the beach accesses that are south of the jetty. All you need is your shovel and strainer, and you’ll be equipped to find these local treasures. Happy searching!

End the month of August 2017 at Friday Fest on Aug. 25! Friday Fest is a family-friendly, outdoor music series held at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. This month, groove to the R&B and funky tunes from local band Jah Movement Reggae Band as you enjoy a view of the Sarasota Bay. The show begins at 5 p.m. and ends at 9 p.m. Food and beverage vendors will also be on site, and the event will take place rain or shine! So, bring your beach towels or chairs and join in for this fun evening on the bayfront!

Next: Free Things to Do Near Bradenton in Summer 2017

Where to Eat, Shop & Play in Sarasota, FL

Where to Eat, Shop & Play in Sarasota, FL

where-to-eat-shop-play-in-sarasota-fl

Where to Eat, Shop & Play in Sarasota, FL

Just a short drive away from Riviera Dunes Marina is Downtown Sarasota with many places to eat, shop and play! From galleries to Vietnamese cuisine, here’s a list of fabulous recommendations when you’re thinking about taking a day trip to Sarasota.

Where to Eat

Downtown Sarasota offers a splendid variety of cuisine, from Vietnamese to seafood. Enjoy a mouthwatering seafood stew or more casual bites at Marina Jack. Accompanied by live music, it’s a fun place to spend some time even after dinner’s well over.

Pho Cali Vietnamese Noodle House is perfect for chillier days when you want to be comforted by a bowl of one of their homemade, signature noodle soups. They also have authentic dishes including rice vermicelli bowls and boba tea for an after-meal treat.

For Latino cuisine, you won’t want to miss Selva, a modern spot where you can lounge and enjoy exquisite tapas, a variety of ceviche and other sensational bites.

Where to Shop

Sarasota is known for its exciting and unique shopping experience! Have you been looking for one-of-a-kind glassware and fine linens for your next dinner party? Look no further than Malbi Décor offering an assortment of Italian items for your home.

For artisanal gifts, Artisans’ World Marketplace is the best spot in town. Products hail from Africa to Asia, so you’ll be sure to find a rare treasure.

The latest fashion trends can be discovered with just one visit to RUE SRQ, where Natalie Rue Morgan offers a carefully curated selection of items including handbags, cocktail rings and much more.

Where to Play

Live music lovers will enjoy The Gator Club! Depending on the evening you visit, you’ll hear Top 40 hits to reggae tunes or rhythm and blues. There’s even something for the whiskey aficionados! In their bar, discover 180 whiskey varieties.

Adorers of art will want to visit Art Center Sarasota, which is home to three galleries with many juried exhibitions. There are also youth programs and classes on Saturday if you and your family are looking for a fun weekend activity. Historic Burns Square is also chockfull of galleries, boutiques and shops.

Get out in nature at the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens to see rare orchids among more than 20,000 plant varieties. The young ones will enjoy their own rainforest garden as well, so it’s certainly perfect for the whole family!

If you’re in the Bradenton area, make sure you check out our list of Top Things to Do in Bradenton, FL

Next: Free Holiday Events Near Bradenton