Beaches on Manasota Key

Blind Pass Beach, also known as Middle Beach is less than a mile away, just south of 7020 Manasota Key Road,and it has a secret, “away-from-it-all” ambiance. There are no lifeguards and only a few amenities, including a beach house with restrooms and a handful of picnic tables. You’ll also find plenty of free parking, but don’t miss the not-so-obvious entrance to it. Wind your way to a prime spot on the 3,000-foot beach through dunes and waving sea oats or explore the nature trail and wind through the mangrove forest. It is popular for shark tooth hunting. Locals call this beach “Middle Beach” to differentiate it from the Blind Pass Beach 35 miles south on Sanibel Island.

Manasota Beach on the key’s north end is the only beach where a lifeguard is on duty. It’s also a great place to watch the sunset or the reflection of the moon and stars in the water because the park is open until midnight. It is thought to be the lease crowded beach in Sarasota County.

Englewood Beach benefits by being in Englewood’s city park system, so amenities are plentiful. Although you won’t see a lifeguard, on-site rentals are available from the Beach Guy, so forget about lugging sand chairs and umbrella cabanas along. Volleyball, footballs, boogie boards, cornhole games and rafts are also available for rent. You can also go parasailing. It is closest to the great restaurant area on the island.
Stump Pass Beach State Park, farthest south on the key, is flanked by two uninhabited islands to the east. The beach is ideal for sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling or surfcasting. The park has full amenities including picnic pavilions.

A 1.3-mile sandy nature trail takes you through the low-lying forest with pockets in the trees giving you glimpses of the wild Gulf Coast on one side and the calmer luminescent aqua waters on the other.
It’s flat and gentle with only a handful of people passing you by.The trail ends at Stump Pass, the end of the island where the Gulf meets the bay. You will be wowed by the view.

This is also a good spot to spy a West Indian Manatee or a Loggerhead Sea Turtle (one of the most concentrated spots for these sightings in the world). More sea turtles nest in Manasota Florida than anywhere else on the Gulf Coast, particularly the threatened Loggerhead sea turtle.