Want to Do Something Adventurous?
Updated: Dec 16, 2018
Don't have a Boat? Find boat rentals at:
Horseback Riding on the Beach
Kayak Tours and Eco Adventures
Bradenton Beach for snorkeling? Actually, Bradenton Beach is home to one of the Gulf’s best beach access snorkeling and SCUBA diving locations.
First time snorkelers as well as advanced divers should find Bradenton Beach a great spot because it is one of few spots on the Gulf where saltwater beach diving is really good. And one of the great advantages of beach diving is the fact that you don’t need a boat!
Finding the dive site is easy: it stretches out perpendicular to the third of three small piers on Bradenton Beach (the southernmost pier). You simply pick a spot in the general area of the third pier, swim out about 100 yards and start looking for rock outcroppings jutting up from the sandy bottom.
You won’t find hard coral structures but, a variety of colorful sponges and soft coral! The Third Pier Reef, as it is known, also attracts a wide variety of game-fish and marine tropicals: large stingray, grouper, snapper, hogfish, gobies and blennies are plentiful. And, if you’re extremely lucky, you may have a close encounter with a barracuda or a 500 pound goliath-grouper!
Concrete was also dumped about 250-300 yards offshore – this too attracts fish and serves as an anchoring spot for soft corals and sponge. It is a little deeper, so the visibility is likely to be better, but only very strong swimmers should try to go out this far! More Info HERE
The quality of the snorkel/dive is totally dependent on the weather. Strong westerly winds can reduce visibility to about two feet–making the dive virtually useless. The best way to plan the trip is to set up a tentative date and check the weather reports for the area.
Regina Sugar Barge: This 1940 shipwreck is located at 7th Street, just north of the intersections for Gulf Drive and Cortez Road. You should be able to see the buoy marking the spot from the beach at Gulf Drive Café.
Remember, the best diving conditions include several days in a row of calm water, slack tide and full sun.
The best place during the winter months in Crystal River, Florida (about 2.5 hours north of AMI) with the Crystal River Manatee Tour. The warmer the water gets, the more they come down by AMI. They stay up in Crystal River when it’s cold because it’s a natural spring and the water there is always about 72 degrees. When the water warms up, around March, they begin to leave the river. By the end of May, you may not find any in the river or bay.
Sightseeing Boat Tours
Egmont Key State Park is a Florida State Park located on Egmont Key, at the mouth of Tampa Bay, in the state of Florida, United States. It lies just north northwest of Anna Maria Island and northwest of Fort De Soto Park and can only be reached by boat or ferry.
Many visitors to the island are boaters, and private boats can be rented nearby. But it’s also easy to take the Tampa Bay Ferry for a day trip, leaving from nearby Fort De Soto Park.
Private Boat Tours
Egmont Key Adventures (Holmes Beach)
M V Minnow (Holmes Beach)
Island Pearl Excursions (Cortez)