Anna Maria Island is a barrier island north of Longboat Key. Anna Maria is a charming small town at the north end of the island with an “old Florida” feel. With no high rises, unlike Longboat Key to the south, you find small homes, old hotels, beach restaurants, a beautiful boat harbor and an historic pier. We recommend:
The Sign of the Mermaid, at 9707 Gulf Drive in Anna Maria, is a funky, fun, casual restaurant featuring the best in fresh seafood. They had six local fish of the day with the ability to choose from several preparations for each one. I enjoyed a great dinner with local friends.
Waterfront Restaurant, 111 S. Bay Blvd.: This restaurant comes highly recommended by locals for its great food.
Sandbar Restaurant: A great spot to meet with friends for sunset on the beach. 100 Spring Ave. in Anna Maria. It is popular, so make sure to go early.