A Guide to Sarasota, FL (and more)

Early this month I took a trip to Sarasota, FL as a means of exploring the state I live in and just getting away from the regular suburban area I’m used to. At first, I was entirely convinced that Sarasota and that general area of Florida really didn’t have anything fun to do. I mean, sue me, I’m used to being surrounded by theme parks and shopping centers and the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Based on my research prior to going there, Sarasota didn’t really seem to offer that same level of excitement. After spending a week exploring Sarasota and other places nearby, I realized that maybe Sarasota doesn’t offer the typical suburban experience, but it does have a lot of fun things to offer.

When I first got to Sarasota it was raining because, of course, this is the Sunshine State. If it didn’t rain would it really be a Florida summer? The hotel I stayed at was really nice. It was central to a lot of popular attractions which made finding something to do every day a really easy task. My second day in Sarasota was where the real fun started by visiting the Ringling Museum of Art. Every Monday at the Ringling is free Monday which means that admission to the museum is free. Although you aren’t permitted to enter the Circus Museum or the Ca’d’Zan, the museum does give you a lot to see. Of course, I visited on a Monday and spent most of the day looking through the art pieces and admiring the collection of pieces. The museum was really interesting because there were a lot of different kinds of art pieces other than just paintings. There were portrait photos, glass pieces, large paintings, woodwork, all throughout the museum and it was incredible that it was all free for a day. FREE. I PAID NOTHING TO GET IN. If you’re a big fan of museums, please go visit that one for the day. It’s really interesting to see the things that are considered art and the way that art changes over years and even locations. Personally, I’m a huge fan of museums so I was great to spend all day there. Also, right outside the museum there is this really pretty garden full of flowers. The flowers smell so amazing and it was a good way to end the museum visit just walking through the garden and appreciating the real variety of flowers.

Another great place to visit in Sarasota is the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium. The entrance ticket is a little expensive but in my opinion, it’s definitely worth it. If you’re a big fan of aquariums, this place is really fun. There are a lot of different sea animals and because it’s a laboratory, it’s a really cool way to learn about marine life and ways to help the oceans heal. Although the aquarium didn’t take up a lot of my day, it was really fun to visit and to learn a lot more about the animals that live in the ocean. Honestly, it was mind blowing to even try to comprehend the variety of creatures in the ocean and how HUGE they are.

Although I did visit a lot of other really cool places, I just want to touch on the beach in that area. So, if you don’t know, I’m a  big fan of beaches. Beaches are my happy place, they’re relaxing, they’re a good place to just go and do nothing and get your mind off of every stressful thing in life. I got to visit Siesta Key Beach which was honestly the nicest beach ever. The sand was soft, the souvenirs for visiting the #1 beach in the USA were cute, and the food sold right outside the beach was pricey (but don’t worry, I didn’t spend my money on that). Overall, it was a really gorgeous beach with lifeguards and a park and tons of options for people who maybe like the beach but need a break from being directly in the hot Florida sun for hours. Plus, for being rated the #1 beach in the USA, it didn’t feel crowded at all. Sure when you walked along the shore you could see the overwhelming number of people, but it didn’t feel packed the way other beaches typically do. I would definitely recommend making a stop there if you ever visit Florida.

Overall, Sarasota and surrounding areas were so much fun. It was a good getaway from suburban business and I would love to go back. Let me know if you’ve been or if you want to here more about the places I’ve been!

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