One of our favorite pastimes is pulling our boat up to a sandbar with friends and family, cracking open a cold beverage, and blissing out for a day in the sun. Luckily, our region has sandbars aplenty where we can do just that.
Sandbars begin life underwater. As waves break, they pull material from the shore, moving it farther into the ocean. further into the ocean. During heavy storms, large waves can build sandbars far from shore, until they rise above the water’s surface.
If you’re looking for a great spot to pull up to while you’re out on a boating adventure, here are a few of our favorite sandbars.
A sandbar at the east end of Big Pass that’s more like an island, it’s usually visible but slightly underwater. It’s a super-popular spot to drop anchor.
Sand Dollar Island
Bring a beach chair, an inner tube and snorkel gear and spend the day hunting for sand dollars and seashells.
Beer Can Island
An Instagram-favorite, this undeveloped, white-sand spot on Longboat Key is idyllic, full of mangroves and fallen trees. Pack a picnic, hang a hammock between branches—and don’t forget to snap a photo.
Jewfish Key Sandbar
This huge sandbar, pictured above, is the perfect place to hang out with friends. It’s a fantastic spot for a swim just next to secluded Jewfish Key, a 38-acre island that’s home to just six families. Keep your eyes peeled for water birds, great horned owls and screech owls, gopher tortoises and, of course, manatees and dolphins.
No matter where you ultimately stop, we highly recommend cruising around Sarasota Bay to discover its sandbars—we’re spoiled for choice. And if you don’t have a boat, no problem—we’re currently taking orders for 2022 Grady-Whites and we have a fantastic rental program if you’re not ready to buy just yet.