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With just a day in Sarasota, you can still experience the natural beauty and rich culture the area has to offer. Balancing your time between the delights of the beach and the draw of attractions, such as the Ringling museum and mansion, makes for a busy, but fulfilling, Florida day.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nature Lover
  • Foodie
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Beach Goer
  • Like a Local

12 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

12 Places

Perq Coffee Bar

Restaurants

The Ringling

History Museums, Art Museums, Speciality Museums

Ca d'Zan

Historic Sites

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

Gardens, Historic Walking Areas

Dry Dock Waterfront Grill

Restaurants

Longboat Key

Destinations

Lido Beach

Equipment Hire

St. Armands Circle

Points of Interest & Landmarks, Shopping Malls

Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium

Aquariums

Siesta Key

Destinations

Indigenous

Restaurants

meLange

Restaurants

parttimetravel's City Tips

  • Do your best to hit the beaches in the early morning or late afternoon when the sun isn't as strong.
  • Be sure to catch the sunset, which is often magnificent. The beaches, marina, and bridges are all excellent viewing spots.
  • Driving is definitely the best way to get around. All major attractions have ample parking.
  • Perq Coffee Bar
    Restaurants (Cafe)
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Start your day with the best cup of coffee in town. Perq is a step above your average coffee shop, offering organic, baked in-house goods, with vegan and gluten free options also available.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Trendsetter
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Tips
    • The small bites and pastries are excellent. Try the quiche.
    • Open Monday to Friday 7am-5pm, Saturday and Sunday 8am-4pm.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #314 of 791 restaurants in Sarasota
    • Sarasota favorite 11/07/2020
    • Delicious coffee and cookies 17/02/2020
    • Perq Coffee Bar
    Address:
    1821 Hillview St
    Sarasota, FL 34239-3606
    Phone:
    +1 941-955-8101
    Hours:
    Mon - Fri
    8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
    Sat - Sun
    8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Other:
  • The Ringling
    History Museums, Art Museums, Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    With a collection of more than 600 Baroque art masterpieces, The Ringling Museum displays works collected by circus magnate, John Ringling, who donated the estate to the state of Florida in his will.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Don't miss the Peter Paul Rubens collection, which some consider to be the finest in the world.
    • Be sure to check out the estate mansion and rose garden, also located on the premises.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #3 of 128 things to do in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Rainy afternoon visit to the Circus! 15/09/2020
    • A Must See if you are in the Sarasota area 04/09/2020
    • The Ringling
    Address:
    5401 Bay Shore Rd
    Sarasota, FL 34243-2161
    Phone:
    +1 941-359-5700
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Ca d'Zan
    Historic Sites
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    The gorgeous Ca d'Zan (Venetian for 'House of John') was built facing the waters of Sarasota Bay, and no luxurious detail was spared. It is a true work of art, and a splendor to behold.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Be aware that the mansion closes at 5pm, before the rest of the estate.
    • To see the higher levels of the home, be sure to book a guided tour when you arrive.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #6 of 128 things to do in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Almost a personal tour 15/09/2020
    • Oh to own a circus... 01/09/2020
    • Ca d'Zan
    Address:
    5401 Bay Shore Rd
    Sarasota, FL 34243-2161
    Phone:
    +1 941-359-5700
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
    Gardens, Historic Walking Areas
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    A quick trip to these beautifully maintained botanical gardens will have you feeling zen again. Paths are shaded by enormous banyan trees, and you can see tropical flora and fauna from all over the world.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Don't miss the area along the waterfront.
    • The garden closes promptly at 5pm, so be sure to arrive earlier in the day.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #5 of 128 things to do in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beauty and Fun in the Garden 21/08/2020
    • Mystical Magical Holiday Cheer! 21/08/2020
    • Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
    Address:
    811 S Palm Ave
    Sarasota, FL 34236-7726
    Phone:
    +1 941-366-5731
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Dry Dock Waterfront Grill
    Restaurants (American, Bar, Seafood)
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Enjoy views of the bay and boats on Longboat Key at this local restaurant, serving inventive, fresh local dishes — most of which are seafood.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Ask for a seat outside if you want the seaside views!
    • The "grouper bites" are always incredibly fresh, and are a must-order.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 22 restaurants in Longboat Key
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great view, Great staff, mediocre dinner 11/09/2020
    • Lunch 05/09/2020
    • Dry Dock Waterfront Grill
    Address:
    412 Gulf of Mexico Dr
    Longboat Key, FL 34228-4010
    Phone:
    +1 941-383-0102
    Price range:
    US$12 - US$34
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    11:00 AM - 9:00 PM
    Other:
  • Longboat Key
    Destinations
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Longboat Key is the longest island off Sarasota's coastline, spanning more than 12 miles. It is home to beautiful beaches, as well as many posh homes and resorts.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Beach Goer
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Tips
    • Resorts here offer some of the best options for tennis and golf in the state.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    • Longboat Key
  • Lido Beach
    Equipment Hire
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Lido Key is comprised of three beaches: North Lido, Lido Beach, and South Lido. Lido Beach is the largest and most popular of the three, with great public facilities and a swimming pool. The white sand and clear, warm waters here make this one of the best beaches in Florida.

    Good for
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Beach Goer
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • It's slightly less crowded and more relaxed here than the more famous Siesta Key Beach.
    • Lots of public parking is available.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #18 of 161 Outdoor Activities in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Paradise with my sisters♡ 04/09/2020
    • Love this resort. Best customer service too! 22/08/2020
    • Lido Beach
    Address:
    Ben Franklin Drive
    Lido Key
    Sarasota, FL
    Phone:
    +1 941-306-6653
    Other:
  • St. Armands Circle
    Points of Interest & Landmarks, Shopping Malls
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Right beside Lido Beach, St. Armauds is the go-to spot for shopping with a European design and feel. Check out the many boutiques, galleries, and cafes in between the larger shops.

    Good for
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Shopping Fanatic
    • Family
    Tips
    • Public parking is available.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #21 of 128 things to do in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Love it! 13/09/2020
    • great getaway 01/09/2020
    • St. Armands Circle
    Address:
    300 Madison Dr
    Suite 201
    Sarasota, FL 34236-1300
    Phone:
    +1 941-388-1554
    Hours:
    Sun
    11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
    Mon - Sat
    10:00 AM - 10:00 PM
    Other:
  • Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium
    Aquariums
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    This aquarium is small but well run, and makes for a great stop to see some of the area's wildlife up close. Don't miss the manatees!

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Like a Local
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The manatees and sea turtles are located in a separate building from the main aquarium, and you'll need to purchase your ticket for entry in the main structure first.
    • Part of the aquarium is outdoors, so you'll want to dress for warm weather.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #10 of 128 things to do in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Smaller but plenty to see, nice exhibits 19/09/2020
    • Excellent 17/09/2020
    • Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium
    Address:
    1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy
    Sarasota, FL 34236-1004
    Phone:
    +1 941-388-4441
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
    Other:
  • Siesta Key
    Destinations
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Located just southwest of Sarasota, Siesta Key Beach has frequently been named the 'number one beach in America' for its white powder sand and crystal clear water.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Beach Goer
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Earlier in the day is better, both for parking and for the heat.
    • Siesta Key is home to families and groups by day, and it's a good spot for nightlife in the evening.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    • Siesta Key
  • Indigenous
    Restaurants (American, Seafood)
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    Many locals cite Indigenous as the best restaurant in town for its creative use of fresh ingredients, and its consistently great menu options. Their secret is the use of locally sourced, freshly caught ingredients.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Trendsetter
    • Like a Local
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Don't miss their wild mushroom bisque — it's a house favorite!
    • Fresh fish is never a disappointment.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #38 of 791 restaurants in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Avoid the Resturant 10/09/2020
    • Amazing food. Adorable spot. 14/06/2020
    • Indigenous
    Address:
    239 S Links Ave
    Sarasota, FL 34236-6926
    Phone:
    +1 941-706-4740
    Price range:
    US$8 - US$28
    Hours:
    Fri - Sat
    5:00 PM - 7:30 PM
    Other:
  • meLange
    Restaurants (International, Fusion, Gastropub)
    See more photos
    parttimetravel Says:

    If you're looking for a place to grab a drink or a glass of wine to round out the day, meLange is a stylish lounge that's a great place to do so. They also serve inventive American modern cuisine.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Trendsetter
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • It's open late — until 2 am!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #89 of 791 restaurants in Sarasota
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Outstanding hidden gem 27/07/2020
    • Impeccable 19/06/2020
    • meLange
    Address:
    1568 Main St
    Sarasota, FL 34236-5803
    Phone:
    +1 941-953-7111
    Price range:
    US$12 - US$35
    Hours:
    Sun
    5:30 PM - 10:00 PM
    Wed - Sun
    11:30 AM - 2:00 PM
    Wed - Thu
    5:30 PM - 10:00 PM
    Fri - Sat
    5:30 PM - 12:00 AM
    Other:
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