Tag: Travel

Anna Maria Island

Transportation Tips: Getting Around on Anna Maria Island

On Anna Maria Island, we relish in our slower pace of life. It’s a place to slow down, rest, and relax. Because we are a smaller island, it’s totally acceptable (and recommended) that you explore our whole island to find all the magic that awaits from the North End of Bean Point to the tip of Coquina Beach. Best part when visiting AMI? You definitely don’t need to worrying about renting a car for your whole crew! We’ve decided to highlight some of our favorite creative and more environmentally-conscious ways to get around.

Trolley

A major staple of Anna Maria Island is our FREE trolley! Sit back, relax, enjoy the view and leave the driving and parking to someone else. Hop on and off as often as you like. Early birds will be excited to know island trolley service starts at 6am from both ends of the loop. Trolleys typically run at 20 minute intervals until 9pm, then every 30 minutes until 10:30pm.. Trolleys offer both air conditioned and open-air seating and are such a fun way to get from one end of the island to another, with plenty of stops along the way. Just wait at one of the trolley stops within operation hours and they’ll come pick you up, no payment, plan, or bus card needed!

Ride-Sharing/Airport Rides

While we may be a small town we’re not totally old-school. Ride-sharing apps like Uber and Lyft are available on Anna Maria and surrounding areas! If you’re specifically looking for a ride to your rental from the airport, we recommend using a local driving service. There are plenty of safe options we can recommend in the area, just ask our team when booking or planning your trip and we can provide some suggestions!

Monkey Bus

Commonly referred to as “The Monkey Bus”, their unmistakable fleet is available to drive you wherever you want to go! Get this… rides are free- the drivers and their fleet run entirely on tips! Want a ride to dinner? Need to run a couple errands? Want a safe ride back from getting drinks? Give the Monkey Bus a call! Unlike the trolley, their vehicles can cross all the bridges, meaning you are not necessarily limited to the Island if you need a ride in-town or in Cortez. You can also pre-book trips which is great for larger groups! If you’re looking for an added fun twist, they even have a karaoke-equipped vehicle! Just be sure to bring some cash to generously tip your local driver! Open daily Noon to 3:00 a.m.

For Rides Call 941-565-6542

Bikes

Our favorite option… Explore the island like a true islander: On bike! With Anna Maria Island being only 7 miles long from one end to the next it’s easy to get from place to place on a bike. Hopping on a bike is the perfect way to explore Anna Maria Island and stop at some of the wonderful shops, bars, or beach spots it has to offer. Pack your wheels or rent a variety of different bikes from one of the many affordable local rental shops like Beach Bums on Pine Avenue. Some rentals even include bikes so be sure to ask when booking with us at A Paradise! Just don’t forget your helmet and to stay safely on the sidewalk or in bike lanes and the island is yours to ride!

Photos from Pexels.com

Day Trips

Family Day Trips from Anna Maria Island

While Anna Maria Island is known to be one of the most relaxing beachside vacation spots in Florida, sometimes you might be looking for a little taste of adventure! Especially if your family is planning a longer stay here on AMI and wants to make a quick day trip to somewhere exciting, there are so many options for everyone in the family. From theme parks to museums to sporting events, the quick day trip from AMI is certainly worth penciling into your island vacation plans. We’ve compiled a variety of popular recommendations below, all within a reasonable driving distance from our little slice of paradise on the Gulf of Mexico.

Walt Disney World

Of course, we had to start big here! While we may think Anna Maria is the happiest place on Earth, it doesn’t hurt to make a trip to the other Happiest Place on Earth. Did you know that Disney World is only about a 2-hour drive from AMI? If you’re planning a family trip to AMI it’s definitely worth the trek to Orlando for a Disney day! Then, you can come back and unwind on our calming beaches.

Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure

Day Trips

Also in Orlando, this a great option for some of your bigger kids or thrill-seekers. Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, and the recently-updated Harry Potter World are all just about 2 hours from AMI and are great choices if you want to get your adrenaline pumping on some roller-coasters or visit Hogwarts, and then retreat back on the Anna Maria beaches afterwards.

Downtown Tampa

Day Trips

With so much to offer, you can pack a plethora of activities into a day trip to Downtown Tampa. From catching a sporting event like a Tampa Bay Lightning Game or a big concert at Amalie Arena, to exploring the wonder of the Florida Aquarium, to trying many different cuisines and taking in the sunset at Armature Works. Downtown Tampa is safe, walkable, and picturesque!

Busch Gardens

Rollercoaster lovers and adrenaline seekers: Busch Gardens is a must-do. Only a little less than an hour drive from AMI and offers the best of both worlds— fast-paced rides, and lots of zoo life. It’s home to over 200 different species of animals AND Florida’s tallest roller coaster. Our closest and most beloved local theme park. 

Adventure Island

Right across the street from Busch Gardens is Adventure Island! This expansive water park is a particularly popular destination in the warmer Florida months. Wave pools, lazy rivers, and LOTS of wild slides. Adventure awaits at Adventure Island.

MOSI

Also in that area near Busch Gardens and Adventure Island in Tampa, is MOSI. The Museum of Science & Industry is a must for inquiring minds and imaginative spirits. It’s fun for kids of all ages and adults alike, with a variety of interesting activities and consistently exciting visiting exhibits.

ZooTampa at Lowry Park

Get wild at Lowry Park. ZooTampa at Lowry Park is a 63-acre nonprofit zoo located in Tampa, Florida. It was previously voted the #1 Family Friendly Zoo in the US by Parents Magazine, and is recognized by the State of Florida as the center for Florida wildlife conservation and biodiversity. 

You can really have the best of both worlds with an Anna Maria Island vacation. Come relax on the beach and take a day trip to some of our easily accessible adventures! Give us a call and we’ll help find you the perfect place to relax and unwind amidst all the fun ahead: 941-778-4800

Photos from Pexels.com

Holmes Beach Office

On Anna Maria Island
5201 Gulf Drive
Holmes Beach, Florida 34217
941-778-4800
Se Habla Español | Wir sprechen Deutsch

Ellenton Office

Located in Ellenton Plaza
945 25th Drive East
Ellenton, Florida 34222
941-729-2381

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