Located on the West coast of Florida, Sarasota faces the bay of the same name. It is separated from the Gulf of Mexico by a barrier of six islands, one of which is Lido Key with its magnificent white sandy beach. At the beginning of its history in the 18th century, the city was identified as Zara Zote on Spanish nautical charts; it was only in the middle of the 19th century that European settlers gave it the name that is still used today.
The city of Sarasota offers much more than its irresistible white sand and crystal blue water adored by its visitors. Sarasota is also famous for its cultural and environmental amenities. Sculptures and contemporary museums dot this beautiful city. Twice a year, an outdoor sculpture exhibition is presented to the public in the town centre along the bay. Sculptors from all over the world present their creation. For music lovers, Sarasota hosts the internationally recognized annual Sarasota Music Festival.
This event attracts world-renowned chamber music teachers and artists. The Festival presents many concerts and provides training to the most talented student participants. If you are a movie buff, you will not want to miss the annual Sarasota Film Festival, which attracts independent films from all over the world.
Sarasota is a community that takes great pride in its small-town feel. The town is a delight to walk through, particularly between Main Street and Palm Avenue where you will find many antique shops, chic boutiques and historic houses restored in the style of the early twentieth century. If shopping is your passion, visit St. Armands Circle, where you will find a collection of more than 100 specialty shops including large high-end stores as well as more personal local boutiques. Is there a better way to end an incredible day of shopping than a delicious meal in one of the
many restaurants of the neighboring Sarasota Quay area? If you prefer something a little more peaceful, pick up some tasty tidbits at the Sarasota Farmer’s Market, then go for a picnic on the beautiful Siesta Key beach. Before you leave, make a point to visit Historic Spanish Point, a 30-acre nature reserve with an outdoor history and archeology museum tracing the area’s development from the beginning of its colonization.
Tranquillity, authenticity, history and art are the four traits that make the city of Sarasota so special—a hidden corner of Paradise under the sun.
When to Go
Events We Love
Chalk Festival brings together the best pavement artists in the world to use the street as their canvas and create oversize paintings, 3D illusions and more. Come and enjoy food, drink, and live music!
Sarasota Agricultural Fair has something for everyone! Come enjoy agriculture, animals, entertainment on two stages, arts & crafts, comedy shows, music and much more!
Visit Sarasota by driving around in a car. A perfect way to catch the beautiful scenery at your own pace.
Experience other Cities