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8 Things to Do in Your First Week in Longboat Key

August 4, 2022


8 Things to Do in Your First Week in Longboat Key
Longboat Key is a small town in Manatee and Sarasota counties, located on a barrier island along the central west coast of Florida, nestled between Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.  Longboat Key offers a peaceful reprieve compared to the other popular keys in the area like Siesta Key or Lido Key, with beautiful white sand beaches and crystal-clear aquamarine water. It features 12 miles of stunning white-sand beaches and dazzling aquamarine water. Longboat Key's charm includes waterfront golf, fine dining, and outdoor activities like kayaking, and it is also an idyllic place to just kick back and enjoy reading a book on one of the beautiful white sand beaches. Longboat Key real estate is competitive because inventory is limited, and the location is desirable for vacation homes, retirees, and those simply looking for a relaxed lifestyle. Here you will find mainly single-family homes or condominium apartments. Many condos include tennis courts, pools, beach access, and water views. People are drawn to Longboat key for its laid-back elegance and natural beauty. It is a great place to enjoy a vacation or even consider moving to, whether you are a golf enthusiast looking to retire in paradise or are looking for your family’s next adventure destination.

Learn about the interesting history

Longboat Key has an intriguing history. It was originally inhabited by Native Americans, and the first European to visit and explore the key was Juan de Anasco. It is rumored that a famous pirate, Jean Lafitte, was shipwrecked near Longboat Key. Until 1842, Cuban and Spanish fishermen resided on the island, and a fish camp and trading post for the Native Americans was on the island's northern part. Looking back at maps from this time, you can see the area referred to as "Saraxola" and "Zarazote." In the early 1900s, the key went through a period of property owners' purchasing and developing the area. Construction on the Ritz Carlton began in 1926, a turning point for Longboat Key to become a popular vacation destination. Today, you will find Longboat Key has several high-end resorts, beachfront rentals, fine dining, and endless outdoor activities that draw in tourists from all over.


Golf lovers can practice their swings at one of the island's championship golf courses. The Resort at Longboat Key Club really has the wow factor with 45 holes of championship golf across 410 acres of lush greens along the white sand beachfront.

Enjoy some R&R at a resort

Photo courtesy of Zota Beach Resort
The Longboat Key Club Resort offers a top-notch golfer's paradise and includes 226 luxury guest rooms and suites with access to the resort's restaurants and lounges and its award-winning Tennis Gardens. There is something for everyone, whether a massage and a day by the pool are your dream vacation activities, or if you prefer golf or even renting a jet ski to explore. At Zota Beach Resort, enjoy access to the private beach and Viento Kitchen + Bar, which is a great place to grab a bite to eat and enjoy a cocktail while soaking up the Florida sunshine. Longboat Key offers a variety of accommodations to meet your needs.

Outdoor water adventures

The Gulf of Mexico provides warm breezes and warm and inviting water. Test your paddling skills at one of the many outdoor recreation companies where you can rent paddle boards and kayaks or go on self-guided tours on glass-bottom boats through the Mangroves. Enjoy a Mangrove kayak tour where you'll visit a secluded nature preserve with Mangrove tunnels, where you can swim, snorkel, fish, or simply take in the gorgeous views. You may get lucky and see a majestic dolphin, a passing sea turtle or watch elegant sea birds fly by and dive for their lunch. Not only will you see breathtaking nature, but you will also get a panoramic view of Sarasota Bay and the city's skyline.

Walking trails

Take in the Longboat Key Trail's beautiful coastal views while working up a sweat on the 10 miles of beautiful walking trails. Venture to Sarasota to enjoy South Lido Park, where you can see four bodies of water: Sarasota Bay, Brushy Bayou, Big Pass, and the Gulf of Mexico. Robinson Preserve is where you can bike, jog or walk the trails, and don't forget to check out the five-story observation tower where you can take in breathtaking views.

Enjoy fresh local seafood

Longboat Key has no shortage of amazing dining options. If you are craving some fresh local seafood specialties, go where the local fishermen eat at Dry Dock Waterfront Grill. This casual bayfront staple offers fresh seafood and views of the ocean. If you want something a little more romantic, dine at the Euphemia Haye, which is located in a charming historic cottage, and don't forget to ask about their dessert room at the Haye Loft.  If you are looking for some European flare, enjoy renowned French cuisine paired with fine wines at Maison Blanche.

Learn about the local ecosystem at the Mote Marine Aquarium

The Mote Marine Aquarium is an independent, nonprofit marine research organization in Sarasota. Mote provides an incredible experience for the whole family, and you can even have breakfast with the sharks! Keep the kids busy while searching for megalodon teeth and watch shark training. Knowing that the aquarium supports research and rehabilitation for sea creatures, you can do this with peace of mind.

Check out the local real estate

Homes for sale in Longboat Key may not stay on the market long, as people are drawn to the elegant, laid-back lifestyle and beautiful coastline. Many of the residences here are either single-family homes or condominium apartments. If you are interested in a house or condos for sale in Longboat Key, you will want to make sure you have an expert Longboat Key real estate agent. Kepecz-Hays Team brings 40 years of experience as Luxury & Waterfront Property Specialists to help you find your dream home.  If you are ready to start your search for a home or condo in Longboat Key, get in touch with us today.

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Work With The Judy Kepecz-Hays Team

Dive into luxury with the Kepecz-Hays Team, renowned realtors for Florida's Central West Coast, emphasizing Longboat Key, Lido Key, and Sarasota. With an impressive $2.4 billion in career sales, our team combines an expansive international network with expert marketing strategies. For buyers, we offer a select range of premier properties and private viewings. Experience the best of Sarasota County — its pristine beaches, arts, paddle sports, and shopping. From insightful neighborhood guides to tips for seamless buying and selling, we're your key to Florida's elite real estate. Choose Kepecz-Hays Team for unparalleled excellence.