Two years ago, we vacationed to Anna Maria Island, Florida with my entire family. We had never been there, and we quickly fell in love. It’s a cute, mostly quiet place with everything you need for a fun beach vacation. Last February, Brandon and I had been contemplating taking the kids again and not three hours later, my mom called, wondering if we would be up for a big family trip. We quickly said yes, made plans to drive her suburban and do our first ever family road trip, and December couldn’t come soon enough.
We left the day after Christmas and took two days to drive down. We stopped in Dothan, Alabama for the night (which is a great place to stop!) and got to the island around 2:30pm the following day. We had two days as just the four of us until my family arrived. For those two nights, we stayed at The Pelican Post. We had a two bedroom suite, and it had everything we needed! At the front entrance, there were beach toys, bicycles, beach chairs, and other items that we were free to use during our stay. It was farther south on the island that we stayed last time, and it was neat to explore a new area.
The first night we had dinner at The Bridge Tender Inn and Dockside Bar. This restaurant was only a couple hundred feet away from where we were staying, and our meals were very good. I had the blackened fish tacos and black bean soup, and it was fabulous! The atmosphere is very neat, and it’s close to the dock so you can check out the boats.
The second night, we drove up to the northern part of the island for dinner at The Ugly Grouper. We ended up eating here twice during our stay! The Ugly Grouper is a very cool place, outdoor with live music, and places for kids to play.
Kenley saw some kids boogie boarding, so she wanted to give it a shot. We bought two from a gift shop nearby and had a lot of fun trying to do it! It was a good workout. We also collected a ton of seashells, with my dad finding the best ones right at sunrise when the tide is low.
When my family arrived, we all stayed in a 6 bedroom, 5 bathroom home that we rented through Anna Maria Island Accommodations. This is the second time we have rented through them, and it couldn’t have been better.
We spent our mornings playing at the beach, our afternoons pool side, and then normally a walk back to the beach to see the sunset. The weather was perfect the entire week.
Anna Maria Island is a little slice of heaven, and if you ever go, here are a few helpful links for places we love!
- Home Rental- Anna Maria Island Accomodations
- Best fish & Key Lime Pie: Tide Tables
- Donuts- The Donut Experiment
- Ice Cream- Small Town Creamery
- Restaurant- The Ugly Grouper
- Beachside Restaurant (a little fancier!): The Sandbar
- Restaurant: The Bridge Tender Inn and Dockside Bar