The 10 Best Things to Do in Holmes Beach, United States

August 3, 2017 Kelli Reichel

Holmes Beach is a small town on Anna Maria Island in the Gulf of Mexico just south of Tampa Bay. It boasts miles of gorgeous white, sandy beaches, emerald Gulf waters, and abundant sunshine.If you want to spend a day on the water, there is excellent fishing in the waters surrounding Anna Maria Island. Take a charter boat and head out in the Gulf for an exciting day of sport fishing. The grouper, snapper, or mackerel you catch can provide the ingredients for a delicious seafood dinner at your vacation rental. Inshore or backwater fishing is also very popular. Enjoy a beach picnic with the locals under the Australian Pines, or find a secluded cove and enjoy some private sunbathing. Prefer an animated beach crowd? Then the all-you-can-eat pancake breakfasts at "Cafe on the Beach" is your scene.
Restaurants in Holmes Beach

1. Bean Point

Anna Maria, Anna Maria Island, FL
Excellent
81%
Good
14%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 723 reviews

Bean Point

Reviewed By mj1776 - Au Gres, Michigan/Seaford, NY

from Sandbar Restaurant where there is parking and facilities. A long beach walk is one of the glories of Anna Marie Island. This walk takes you past residential beachfronts on a beach that is unusually wide with beautiful Gulf sand and vegetation. Along the way the houses are set back so far and the beach is often so deserted it can become a walk of isolation which is a real treat on this always getting more crowded island. It is usually windy up at Bean Point. If you do your walk at sunset that is perhaps an added bonus. This is a wonderful walk no matter what time of the day or moon lighted time of night you indulge.

2. Manatee Public Beach

4000 State Road 64 and Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL 34217
Excellent
62%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 517 reviews

Manatee Public Beach

Reviewed By TFopinion - Pennsylvania

Straight ahead as you cross on to Anna Maria Island (AMI) is the popular, family friendly Manatee Public Beach. Compared to most of the other more secluded, off the beaten path beaches on AMI, this one offers beach goers all they need during their day of soaking up the sun. Public parking is free and plentiful but can fill up quickly on busy days.

The long building heading the parking lot has its key amenities on the beach side for customer convenience. There is a wide variety of items offered at the snack bar (prices are expectedly high), outside seating and a gift shop and restrooms. They even serve breakfast here each morning. The tiki bar offers adult beverages but they can’t be taken on the beach. Chairs and umbrellas are available for rent and there is a beach volleyball area. No dogs. Wash off areas are also provided as you exit the beach. Live music from 3-5 pm (I think) is offered every day.

I may have missed listing other amenities here but if you want to have these available to you while at the beach, this is a good choice. If you’re looking for a more secluded, less crowded beach without the amenities, try Anna Maria Island beach (my fav) 5 minutes north from Manatee (but limited parking) or Coquina Beach to the south past Longboat.


3. Coquina Beach

1800 Gulf Dr S, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL 34217
Excellent
77%
Good
20%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 332 reviews

Coquina Beach

Reviewed By smokeymontreal - montreal

This is my favorite beach ever. Free parking,washrooms and changing rooms picnic tables and trees to sit under. You can walk on flat sand for a long time

4. Coquina Baywalk

1301 Gulf Dr S, Anna Maria, Anna Maria Island, FL
Excellent
54%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
10%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 199 reviews

Coquina Baywalk

A small nature park on Anna Maria Island perfect for relaxing walks.

Reviewed By ViolaAunt - Indianapolis, Indiana

I have gone past this many times and have thought about stopping. I have stayed on the island three summers in a row and this was the summer I finally did it. It was a pleasant walk from my rental on 8th Street. My first full day on the island, I got up early to talk a walk. I am sure glad that I headed south where it was more secluded. I walked along the beach until I was directly across the street. Since it was early morning I only encountered one other individual. I felt like I stepped back in time into a jungle. The view of the bay was awesome.

5. Bradenton Beach

South Gulf Drive, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL +1 941-792-5300
Excellent
72%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 742 reviews

Bradenton Beach

Reviewed By cymru1948 - Aberdeenshire

Bradenton Beach & Anna Maria island in general

Has (almost guaranteed) great weather. Some fantastic beaches, attractive scenery, good restaurants, nice small shops, and friendly people.

But, it is a victim of the foregoing superlatives, as this corner of paradise is so popular that it is swamped by visitors.
Streets are a mass of crawling traffic and parking is almost impossible. Pre-booking, for dinner, is pretty much a necessity at any restaurant.
The two main roads and bridges feeding the island frequently (moreso at weekends) can have lines of traffic queuing back 3 to 4 miles onto the mainland following a drawer bridge being raised to let a single small yatch pass.

At late afternoon, the road up from Longboat key can take 35 min to progress the 2 miles from coquina beach to the south Anna Maria / Cortez bridge.

Due to the traffic, the "free bus" is often greatly delayed, resulting in quite large groups waiting at popular bus stops and subsequent slow journey times.

Barrington Beach itself if very nice, the the Beach shelves very steeply. We observed dolphin pkaying and jumping, yards from the shore

So, overall, give me Siesta Key, anytime.

6. Bradenton Beach City Pier

Bridge St, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL 34217
Excellent
53%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 191 reviews

Bradenton Beach City Pier

Reviewed By RetireeOTR - Manton, Michigan

Took the trolley down from Anna Maria City pier numerous times during our stay. Trolley is free (donations accepted). Stopped at Bridge Street to walk the shops and grab a bite to eat, the pier usually has people fishing, there are places to sit in the shade at the end and a few swings as well, usually one side or the other has some shade which is nice too. Looking in the water you can see fish, there are pelicans and cormorants and seagulls and other types of birds as well....watching the boats and the bridge go up was so relaxing, could sit there all day. Very nicew.

7. Anna Maria City Pier

100 S Bay Blvd, Anna Maria, Anna Maria Island, FL 34216 +1 941-779-1667
Excellent
59%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 355 reviews

Anna Maria City Pier

This place is temporarily closed due to a hurricane. It will reopen when repairs are complete.

Reviewed By krashtest d - Utrecht, The Netherlands

The pier is beautiful, historic, wonderful, free - and closed. Apparently Hurricane Irma harmed a lot of it, and for some unfathomable reason the local politicians haven't rushed out to get it rebuilt. If this had been Provincetown, or any other coastal town with a pier as a major attraction, either it would have been fixed by now, or there'd be something temporary available. As it is, there are big PIER CLOSED signs everywhere - and oddly, no sign telling travelers there is another pier (Rod and Reel) just a half mile north. I don't know what the politics involved are, but it's ridiculous. The businesses around it are not getting badly hurt yet because no one seems to realize the pier is closed - but once word gets out, they'll really suffer.
Not to mention, the reasonably-priced family restaurant at the end of the pier is closed too, leaving no nearby choices for an entire family to sit and eat unless they're semi-expensive.
Very disappointing.

8. Anna Maria Island Historical Museum

402 Pine Avenue, Anna Maria, Anna Maria Island, FL +1 941-778-0492
Excellent
59%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 125 reviews

Anna Maria Island Historical Museum

Reviewed By lorriemck - tampa, fl

Stopped in with grandkids - a quick history display of life on AMI over the years. Small gift shop - and don't forget the Jail !

9. Bridge Street Pier

200 Bridge St, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL 34217-2467 +1 941-778-2662
Excellent
59%
Good
37%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 56 reviews

Bridge Street Pier

Reviewed By Becky T - Fostoria, Ohio

A great walking destination at the end of Bridge Street on AMI. We walk there almost daily especially after dark. Love seeing the sailboats moored in the bay with lights on their masts, looking like stars in the dark sky. The wide lighted pier has benches all along it for taking a break as needed. Go all the way to the end & try out the big porch swings! At night the green lights in the water allow you to see marine life (minnows, squid, angel fish). Anna Maria Oyster Bar is at the pier for dining. Their are public bathrooms too.

10. Manatee Beach Park

4000 State Road 64, Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island, FL 34217 (941) 748-4501
Excellent
59%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 12 reviews

Manatee Beach Park

Reviewed By jody2013

Water and sand beautiful! Showers available. Store with ice on site as well as a restaurant. Also areas to grill and plenty of shaded areas!

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