Day 1 – Island Time
It all starts on the beaches of Anna Maria Island. Rent some beach chairs and an umbrella and spend the first half of the day soaking up the sun. Not sure which beach to choose? Take the Beach Finder Quiz to find your perfect spot. Whether you enjoy serene sightseeing at Bean Point or watching for wildlife at Coquina Beach, there’s a little something for everyone.
After a bit of relaxing on the beach, stroll down on Anna Maria Island’s Pine Avenue, where local shops and restaurants line the street. Here, you can shop for souvenirs for each other at shops like Pink & Navy Boutique and Shiny Fish Emporium. It’s known as the Greenest Little Main Street in America and is bursting with island charm, making it a great stop to get yourselves acclimated to the beach vibes of the Bradenton Area.
End the day with a romantic dinner at Beach Bistro. The beachfront restaurant was selected by Bon Appétit as one of the most romantic restaurants in all of Florida – and for good reason. The only thing better than their quaint settings overlooking the beach is their upscale menu and perfect wine and dessert pairings.
Day 2 – Dinner and a Show
Wake up on day two with a soothing couples massage right on the beach. Sea-Renity Spa and Eco Boutique offers massages in a tiki hut that sits next to the water. Feel the cool Gulf breezes as you soak in the relaxation together and get ready for another unforgettable day. Once you’re fully relaxed, stray from the comforts of the massage table and start exploring the rest of the island on a tandem bicycle. Ride along on your very own tour of the piers to see the best sights and sounds that the island has to offer.
After you work up an appetite, make dinner plans at to Pier 22 in Bradenton. With a menu offering grouper piccata, wasabi tuna and stuffed lobster, and an ambience that blends casual and upscale, it’s an ideal place for your first dinner. The best part? It sits right on the beautiful Manatee River. Watch the sunset dip into the water over a bottle of wine.
Finish the day with some laughs at a live show at the Manatee Performing Arts Center. The local Manatee Players serve up a wide range of performances, with everything from raucous musicals to inspiring dramas. And they put on shows all year long, so you’ll have a new show to catch whenever you take your romantic getaway.
Day 3 – Action and Adventure
Your third day in the Bradenton Area is all about new adventures and it starts at Anderson RacePark. The high-speed go-kart track lets you live out your inner racecar-driving fantasies. Better yet, it makes for a fun and interesting date between trips to the beach. Just be sure to put your best foot forward on those pedals – winning bragging rights is part of the fun.
After some time on the track, it’s time for some time in the trees. Climb the trees and enjoy the coolest ropes course in the Gulf: TreeUmph! The course starts easy and gets progressively harder as you go along. It’s fun to compete with someone and see who can make it farther! If you’re lucky, you’ll make it all the way to the end and ride the adrenaline-inducing 650-feet-long zipline at the end of the course.
At this point, it’s probably time to pump the brakes a bit on the competitive dates. Rent some kayaks and relax on the water, side by side. Cruise along the calm shoreline as seagulls and pelicans soar above you. It’s nice to paddle right along the sandy shores but be sure to swing by Robinson Preserve to navigate the mangroves. And if you do end your day with kayaking, stop at Bean Point to see the most unbelievable sunset of your life. It’s the only fitting way to end a romantic getaway to the Bradenton Area.