Bradenton / AMI
We spent a couple of days in Bradenton / Anna Maria Island last week, and had the nicest time! The kids were so excited to go to the beach – Leo buckled himself in his car seat half an hour before we left, he was so excited to get there!
Parking was tricky, they’ve removed a lot of street parking recently. I wouldn’t try it on the weekends, but during the week it was doable, and so worth it! I think Anna Maria Island has the best beaches in the world.
The ocean water felt wonderful, not cold at all. We saw lots of schools of little silvery fish, which Alia did not like. She tried to stay away from them, but they’re everywhere!
Kaden was digging or building in sand the whole time like he always does, and he’s the one who’s never ready to leave the beach when it’s time too.
This was Kjersti’s first trip to the ocean! She tried to eat sand repeatedly, played in the waves with Landon or I holding her, and napped in my lap in our little beach tent.
We stayed at a Springhill Suites in Bradenton on the Riverwalk, and the room was very nice – plenty of room for all 6 of us to be comfortable, which is so nice to find in a hotel room! Plus it had free parking, breakfast, & WiFi. We’d definitely go back.
Our first night we had dinner at Island Ocean Star, several of my siblings had recommended it as the best food on Anna Maria Island, and it was really good! The kids especially loved walking around the marina afterwards.
I was a bit nervous Leo was going to try to jump on a yacht. Thankfully he didn’t, but he did love looking at them – the next morning at breakfast he said to me “You know that place I had sushi? Can we go back, to look at those boats again?”
We went back to the beach to watch the sun set after dinner. I had told the kids we weren’t swimming because we didn’t bring swimsuits, but the ocean was calling them and you only live once you know, so they swam in their dinner clothes.
The next morning we checked out the Riverwalk. There was a lot of neat things to see! We made it as far as the playground before turning around.
We hung out in our room the rest of the day, played Kings Corners, ate snacks, & watched old Mickey Mouse cartoons. We had dinner at Catch 22 which had an awesome atmosphere, plus blackened grouper sandwich, which is my favorite at the beach.
We went to the beach for sunset again (with swimsuits, and a couple extra family members this time), and it was wonderful. You just can’t beat being at the beach and watching the sun go down.
Leo found a crab in the waves, which was pretty exciting too!
We got ice cream back in Bradenton, perfect way to end a trip to the beach.