STEP BACK IN TIME to OLD FLORIDA CHARM
Heading north from Coquina Beach, Cortez is one of the nicest beaches on Anna Maria extending from 5th street to 13th street along the Gulf of Mexico. This is a family-oriented beach with plenty of kids who know how to use a skimboard, build sandcastles and fly a kite. The water is typically calm with light surf. Sandy dunes, Australian Pines and Sea Grapes shade the parking area where cars are hidden from view.
Parking is free with no lifeguards or shower/bathroom facilities. If staying on the island, leave the car behind and hop aboard a Free Trolley running north on Marina Drive and South on Gulf Drive to more beach and shopping districts. For only 75 cents, take the Longboat Key Trolley @ Coquina Beach to downtown Sarasota with stops on Longboat Key and St. Armands Circle. Daily service runs from 6 am to 11 pm every 30 minutes.
The vacation rentals on Anna Maria Island vary from apartment efficiencies and motel rooms to cottages and rental condominiums. The atmosphere is relaxing and casual with plenty of good restaurants, performing arts and quaint little shops. What makes Anna Maria so attractive to visitors is its private island feel… so book early and go back in time on this little island paradise.