Ultimate Anna Maria Island Area Beaches Guide

The Gorgeous Sandy Beaches in the Bradenton Coastal area of Manatee County Florida

Located on the stunning Gulf Coast of Florida south of the St. Pete Beaches, Anna Maria Island is a 7 mile stretch of pristine beaches. From the picturesque and charming coastal town of Anna Maria, to the old Florida historic town of Bradenton, Anna Maria Island offers a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure.

Ultimate Anna Maria Island Area Beaches Guide

What this Guide covers
This guide is all about the beach areas: the beaches, access points, parking, wildlife, activities, sand and water, beachfront area, shelling, and anything related to being on the beach! Everything you need to know about the beaches for a day, a weekend, a quiet moment, vacationing, moving or buying in the area.

Also see surrounding area Beach Guides in our Ultimate Florida Beaches Guide

Anna Marie Island Florida Area Beaches

This guide starts at the north end of Anna Maria Island and includes the beaches on the barrier island that includes the cities of Anna Maria, Holmes Beach, and Bradenton Beach and the beaches across the island.

Anna Maria

  • Anna Maria Beach
  • Bayfront Park
  • Bean Point Beach

Holmes Beach

  • Manatee Beach


  • Cortez Beach
  • Coquina Beach



Anna Maria

When you think of the most gorgeous white sand beaches, the north end of Anna Maria Island is the image you are thinking of. Pictures of Anna Maria Island are the epitome of the ideal beach. And it’s not just the beach. The quaint towns are picturesque with community heart and spirit. No high rises or gated communities blocking you from exploring. And best of all, this little piece of paradise is very welcoming to visitors.

At the north end of Anna Maria Island is the quiet and charming town of Anna Maria. On the bayside of this glorious barrier island is the City Park Pier and Bayfront Park and around the northern tip lies Bean Point Beach.

Bayfront Park

Bayfront Park Beach is on the bayside of northern Anna Maria Island and offers more parking and lots of family friendly activities. Have a picnic at a pavilion, launch a kayak or paddle board, fish on the Pier, eat the local cuisine, and shop at the local stores along the main street heading to the pier.

Parking on the beach side is very limited and there are no facilities if you do find a place to park. There are a few beach access points, though most have no parking and are for residents or those walking from Bayfront Park, just a couple blocks away.

Bean Point Beach

At the northern tip sits one of the most instagramable beaches in Florida, Bean Point Beach. The beach got its name from the first resident of the island, George Emmerson Bean. Bean Point Beach is one of the most beautiful beach spots in Florida with the powdery white soft sands, gentle waves, wide open beachfront, stretches around the northern tip of the barrier island creating an idyllic setting for beach lovers. Whether you’re a sunbather, a beachcomber, or a water enthusiast, you’ll find your paradise here. The beachfront is perfect for long walks at sunrise or romantic sunset strolls.


Holmes Beach – Manatee Beach

Manatee Public Beach, located in Holmes Beach is one of Bradenton Counties managed beaches that sits in the middle of Anna Maria island. Featuring the same fabulous sands as the northern island beaches with wide beachfronts, volleyball courts, playground, picnic area, facilities and lots of room to play. This is a popular beach with both locals and visitors as it is the one that is straight across the northern causeway onto Anna Maria Island with free parking and amenities.


Bradenton – Cortez Beach

This is 2nd of the County managed beaches and is just south of the central area causeway. There are interesting spots such as the “three old piers” as locals call it, even though they were never piers,

Bradenton – Coquina Beach

Coquina sits at the south end of Anna Maria Island with a gorgeous wide open beachfront with soft white sand that is a bit shellier than the beaches to the north. The beach is actually named after the small coquina shells that are plentiful here.

This beachfront is so wide and expansive and what makes Coquina even better, is the park with lots of parking that runs the length of the beach. Along this park are walking and bike paths, tons of picnic areas, restrooms, and weekly local markets. It is a spectacular beach to spend time with friends and family.


Beach Life & Cultural Feel of Manatee’s Beachfront Communities

Anna Maria Island is very community focused and striving to keep these gorgeous beaches available for everyone to access and enjoy. The culture is friendly and welcoming with tons of parking, shops, dining and community spirit.

Bradenton Beach embraces its cultural heritage with various events and festivals throughout the year. From art shows to live music performances, there’s always something happening in this vibrant community.

Sand, Water, Beachfront & Shoreline

The beachfront is wide throughout this coastal region and the sand and waters are divine. White powdery soft beaches at the north end gradually change to shelly greyer sand at the south end. The Beachfront along the entire coastline features a wide flat shoreline. The water reflects a gorgeous blue green color blending into a deep blue on the horizon and is warm for most of the year.

Wildlife: Sealife and Shorelife

Anna Maria Island is a bird sanctuary with pelicans, cranes, herons, feral parrots, sandpipers, osprey, hawks, vultures, seagulls, crows, and bald eagles.

Keep an eye out for dolphins playing in the surf and the occasional manatee making a gentle appearance. For a closer look, consider joining a guided eco-tour to explore the mangrove estuaries and spot the local fauna.

Activities and things to do 

The warm and inviting waters of the Gulf of Mexico are a playground for water enthusiasts. From swimming and snorkeling to paddleboarding and kayaking, Bradenton Beach offers a myriad of water activities. The calm and clear waters make it an ideal spot for families with children and those looking to explore the underwater world.

Shelling along the waters edge is a favorite past time and there are always shells to be found anywhere along the coast.

Horseback Riding

Anna Maria Island is one of the few places in Florida where you can experience horseback riding on the beach. C Ponies, The Real BeachHorses, and Gulf Coast Ponies.

Bradenton Beach area is not just about sunbathing and swimming. The town offers a range of activities for all ages. Fishing enthusiasts can cast their lines off the historic Bridge Street Pier, while adrenaline junkies can try parasailing for a bird’s-eye view of the coastline. Rent a bike and explore the island, or join a local tour to discover the area’s unique charm. Manatee Public Beach offers amenities such as volleyball courts, playgrounds, and a beachside café, making it perfect for a family day out.


Shopping includes the weekly market along Coquina Beach and lots of small town local shops. Explore the shops along historic Bridge Street, where local artisans showcase their crafts, and dine in one of the charming restaurants for a taste of the community’s culinary delights.


Uniquely Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island’s Coquina Beach is a beachfront location that you won’t find anywhere else in Florida. Featuring tons of free parking that runs along a stretch of picnic, walking, biking and play areas. What puts it over the top, is a weekly local market along this path. 

Scenery, Sunsets and Sunrise

Sunsets on Anna Maria Island and Longboat Key are spectacular. With the sun setting in the west, all of the beaches in this region offer a perfect view of the sun setting across the Gulf.

Where to Stay or Live

When visiting or moving to the Bradenton area, you will find options for homes, condos, town homes, hotels, and beach homes. The area brings visitors and residents who are looking for a beach town lifestyle in a fun diverse community. It is also a popular location for those who are looking for their winter home or vacation rental investments.

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Also see surrounding area Beach Guides



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