Are you looking for a long weekend getaway? Or would you prefer a relaxing week-long stateside destination? Well, a Siesta Key honeymoon holds endless options for fun! Not only that, but Siesta Keys also owns the title of “best beach in America” by Conde Nast traveler. This stretch of beach on the Florida coastline has a low-key vibe, fresh seafood and endless day adventures. Siesta Key is a barrier island stretching eight miles long and is easily accessible by bridges connecting it to Sarasota. The pristine island is comprised of Siesta Beach, Crescent Beach, Turtle Beach and Siesta Key Village, each with their own, unique character and charm.
Siesta Key is an easy flight from DC and can be reached by a few local airports on the mainland of Florida. We recommend Tampa International for the least expensive flights. Slightly further away you can find Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport. Both offer inexpensive car rental options or ride sharing to finish the last leg of your trip to your accommodations!
Pro-tip: To avoid an abundance of traffic and congestion, there are free trolleys and taxi shuttles that run throughout the island 24 hours a day. The Siesta Breeze trolley is a free service run through the town Chamber of Commerce and allows visitors to remain car free throughout their trip. (Even better, no drinking and driving after a night celebrating!)
Credit: Just Enough Focus
The island hosts a bevy of accommodation options, with the most popular being time-share condominium rentals or AirBnB. If you are looking to host a small destination wedding, house rentals are the perfect way to keep your group together with plenty of private space and entertaining options!
Pro-tip! When booking any accommodations through self hosting companies, make sure to thoroughly read reviews and check references on condos and private homes. Never book your stay outside of the proper online sites like AirBnB or VRBO; they each offer renters protection and will support you should something happen to go awry!
Land to Sea
Now I don’t know about you, but when I am at the beach I cannot wait to hit up my first fresh seafood dinner upon arrival. I highly recommend The Cottage for dinner if you are as into seafood as we are. They have non sea lover options such as short ribs and to die for truffle fries; what really sealed it for us was the delish tapas menu that was packed with flavor. I’m still dreaming about their fresh mussels in a rich cilantro butter and wine sauce.
For those looking for destination wedding options or simply refined upscale dining, Ophelia’s on the Bay is our top pick. Their open air deck overlooks the waterway and chef Daniel Olson produces locally inspired fine dining that will have you wanting to come back every night of your trip. We highly recommend the Diver Scallops in Truffle Kabayaki Sauce with Green Tea Noodles or the Fresh Point Judith Calamari Fritti.
Hunting for the perfect easy lunch? Hit up the Crescent Beach Grocery. While it appears a simplistic grocery store, the mini deli and market in the back creates custom fresh sandwiches, pastas, and treats perfect for a day on the beach!
Have a Little Fun!
Of course you have chosen a beach getaway for hours upon hours of sun soaking on the beach right?! But what about other adventures you can get into? CB’s Saltwater Outfitters is a one stop location for jet ski rentals and fishing charters. They offer fly fishing and in-shore fishing charters depending on how adventurous you and your honey want to partake in! Looking for a more boozy afternoon of fun? Drum Circle Distilling offers free rum distillery tours with samples! Located right over the bridge in Sarasota, we recommend the Siesta Key Toasted Coconut!
Pro-Tip! Manatees are frequent visitors in the inlets around Siesta Key! If you want to see the gentle cows of the sea up close, keep in mind that they are heavily protected by law and harassment of them can result in up to a $50K fine. Your safest and best way to interact with Manatees and other sea wildlife are through one of the guided manatee kayak tours.
credit: Roberts & Co. Events
The sandy beaches of Siesta Key were also voted the best beaches in the United States by Travel Channel. What makes them so amazing, beyond the intimate setting and lack of hustle on the island? It’s the crystal fine sand on the beach. Its almost like baby power wispy grains, and a brilliant white color. While not meant for sand castle building, it’s perfect for beach to table lazy afternoons at the daiquiri bar or just lounging while watching the waves crash gently!
Looking for more Honeymoon inspiration or great DC Elopement inspiration? We have you covered from Honeymoon packing essentials to great tour spots!