Siesta Key is world-renowned for its beaches, but you may not realize that there are several distinct beach areas on this beautiful vacation island. If you are coming for more than a couple of days, we recommend that you explore all of our gorgeous stretches of sand – we are confident that you will enjoy each of them for the unique experience they provide. If you are ready to learn why this region is one of the best areas in the country for sand and sun lovers, grab your beach chair and beach umbrella – and get ready to fall in love.
Turtle Beach: For those who are familiar with Siesta Key Public Beach (discussed later in this article), Turtle Beach is a bit of a departure. As you approach the southern end of the Key, you’ll first notice Turtle Beach Campground on the right. Immediately past the campground, the main road splits in two – Midnight Pass Road continues to the left and Blind Pass on the right takes you through a park and along the shoreline. Turtle Beach has easy parking with a short walk to the sand, which is grittier than the powder sand to the north. But many people prefer the quieter, smaller beach that offers more shells and is home to seasonal turtle nests. From the beach, you can walk to two restaurants across the road and kayak rentals are launched here as well. The bird watching in the park is fantastic, but it is important to note that there are no lifeguards on Turtle Beach. Local Tip: For those who like to ride bicycles, it is less than 5 flat miles from Siesta Key Village to Turtle Beach.
Crescent Beach: Located diagonally across from the Stickney Point Bridge just to the south, Crescent Beach showcases the pristine, powder-soft sand that Siesta Key is known for. While Crescent Beach is primarily populated by vacationers staying in the condos and hotels lining the Gulf, many other vacationers stop by to experience the beauty of Point of Rocks – where shallow water and unique coral formations make for the best snorkeling on the Key. You can put a kayak into the water, fish among the rocks, or walk north for many uninterrupted miles. Crescent Beach does not have amenities, but there are restaurants, coffee shops, and ice cream parlors located directly across Midnight Pass Road – within easy walking distance.
Shell Beach: This tiny beach went seemingly unnoticed for many years, but has gained a steady following of devotees over the last decade. Located on the north end of the Key off Higel Road, the beach is at the end of Shell Road, a narrow road with limited parking. But if you do manage to get a parking spot (or if you choose to ride your bike to the spot) you’ll be rewarded with a gorgeous view of Lido Key and spectacular, less crowded sunsets. Shell Beach has no amenities and is small in size – but still rates among the locals’ favorite areas.
Siesta Key Beach: The crown jewel of Sarasota’s beaches is Siesta Key Beach, twice ranked as the #1 Beach in America by Stephen “Dr. Beach” Leatherman (2011 and 2017) and twice by Trip Advisor (2015 and 2017). The accolades are well-deserved, as anyone who has visited this incredibly impressive and beautiful beach can attest. The world-famous quartz white sand covers an expansive area and wide shoreline that is carefully watched over by multiple lifeguards. Families will enjoy concessions, restrooms, a restaurant, a large playground, picnic areas, showers, and a viewing pavilion. There is a mat that extends from the main pavilion to the water for those who need more accessible accommodation. (or you can rent a beach wheelchair here.) The beauty of Siesta Key Beach is unparalleled, and the amenities allow families and visitors to enjoy a full day in the sand and calm, clear waters.
Everything You Need at All Our Beaches – With One Call
There are many ways to enjoy Siesta Key’s beaches – whether you are a sunbather or love to explore. With one call to Ride and Paddle, you can rent beach chairs, umbrellas, road bikes or beach cruisers, beach wheelchairs, kayaks, snorkel gear, skimboards, boogie boards – and more. Don’t plan a visit to Siesta Key without calling us – we will have everything you need for a fantastic beach vacation waiting for you when you arrive.