• Sunset on Siesta Key. Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Marjie Goldberg. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.
  • Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Nita Ettinger. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.
  • Aerial view of Siesta Key Beach in Sarasota, Florida. Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Elizabeth Barnett. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.
  • Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Debi Pittman Wilkey. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.
  • Children's playground at Siesta Beach. Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Jennifer Brinkman. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.
  • Drum Circle. Siesta Beach is favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see earned Siesta Key's, Siesta Beach a No. 1 rating on Dr. Beach’s annual list of America’s Best Beaches. Photo by Debi Pittman Wilkey. Must Do Visitor Guides, MustDo.com.

Siesta Beach & Activities

Siesta Beach on Siesta Key is a favorite among Sarasota, Florida visitors and residents alike. It’s 99 percent pure quartz sand—perhaps the finest and whitest you’ll ever see.

Besides sunbathing and swimming, Sarasota’s Siesta Beach is a great place to fly a kite or play beach volleyball.

Folks travel from across the globe (or across town) just to set up a chair, or spread a towel on the powder-sugar soft sand and peer out into the crystal blue Gulf of Mexico waters.

Wildlife sightings include dolphins, manatees, egrets, pelicans, seagulls, and other coastal birds are quite common.

Siesta Public Beach has a concession at the Siesta Key Beach Pavilion that serves food from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily weather permitting. They offer hamburgers, hot dogs, healthy salads, Paninis, nachos, and other snacks. Most items are prepared to order, and they even offer specials. They also have beer and wine, along with a selection of soft drinks.

Siesta Beach is within easy walking distance of Siesta Key Village where you’ll find many shops and restaurants.

Best Beach in the USA – Siesta Beach

This Siesta Key public beach has been recognized with numerous awards; most recently 2020 No. 1 Beach in America by TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice™ awards and No. 11 Beach in the world by TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice™ awards. TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice™ awards also awarded Siesta Beach No. 1 Beach in American in 2011, 2015 and 2017.

No.1 ranking on Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman’s (AKA “Dr. Beach”) 2011, 2016, and 2017 annual list of America’s Best Beaches.

AARP rates Siesta Beach as the No. 1 Beach – Best Beaches in the World 2015.

USA Today Readers Choice Top Beaches in Florida.

TripAdvisor No.1 Travelers’ Choice™ Top 25 Beaches – United States.

Siesta Beach ranked No. 6 on National Geographic’s Top 10 U.S. Family Beaches list.

Concessions and Amenities

Siesta Beach amenities include:

  • Restrooms
  • Lifeguards on duty year-round – 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Labor Day through Memorial Day and 10 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day.
  • Concessions selling a variety of refreshments and snacks
  • Beach Chair and Umbrella rentals
  • Children’s playground
  • Lighted Public Tennis Courts
  • Outdoor showers
  • BBQ grills and Covered Picnic Areas

Easy handicap accessibility for pedestrians and users of wheelchairs, strollers, and beach carts via the 450-foot Mobi-Mat pathway, which extends across the sand from the concession pavilion towards the Gulf of Mexico.

Handicap wheelchairs and floating handicap wheelchairs are also available; they can be signed-out at the concession area at the Pavillion.

Parking and Beach Access

Although there is a large free parking area with 850 parking spaces, it fills up quickly during peak season so plan to arrive early in the day–before 10 a.m. in season and during holidays.

Several access points are found north of the public lot along Beach Road but parking is very limited.

This blog post has more information about Siesta Key beach parking.

Leave the car at your vacation rental or condo and walk, bike, hop on one of the many free transportation options including the Siesta Breeze Trolley which runs from Siesta Key Village to the Siesta Beach, South Siesta and Turtle Beach. Find more information about the free Siesta Breeze Trolley  and other companies offering free – tips only rides to the beach here.

Beach wheelchairs are available at no cost year-round for transport from parking areas to the shore, they can be signed-out at the concession area.

Siesta Key Beach Frequently Asked Questions

Is Siesta Beach Free? 

Parking and admission is free to all the beaches on Siesta Key –Siesta Public Beach, Crescent Beach, and Turtle Beach. Siesta Public Beach has a large parking lot with 850 spaces.

Is There Food at Siesta Key Beach? 

Yes! There is no need to lug a heavy cooler to the beach. Siesta Public Beach has a concession at the Siesta Key Beach Pavilion that serves food from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily weather permitting. They offer hamburgers, hot dogs, healthy salads, Paninis, nachos, and other snacks. Most items are prepared to order, and they even offer specials. They also have beer and wine, along with a selection of soft drinks.

Is Alcohol Allowed on Siesta Key Beach? 

Yes, it is legal to drink alcoholic beverages on Sarasota County beaches – you must be 21 years of age or older. Glass containers are not allowed on the beach.

Is Smoking Allowed on Siesta Key Beach? 

Yes, unfortunately, Florida statues don’t allow city or county governments to prohibit smoking in public venues including parks and beaches. Smokers are encouraged not to smoke but if you must, please properly dispose of the butts– do not bury them in the sand.

Does Siesta Key’s Beaches have Shells? 

Yes, all of the beaches on Siesta Key have shells. You can find shells–and sometimes sand dollars–on Siesta Beach, Crescent Beach, and Turtle Beach. The best opportunity for finding seashells is by exploring the water’s edge at low tide or after a storm. One rule of thumb: if a shell contains a live creature, leave it on the beach. Taking live shells–including starfish, sand dollars, and sea urchins is illegal, and the fine for doing so is $500 per shell, even if it is your first offense! If you find a live shell or one with a creature in it, gently place it back into the water, rather than throwing it because that can kill or maim the creature inside.

Does Siesta Key Beach have Restrooms? 

Siesta Public Beach and Turtle Beach have restroom facilities. There are no restrooms available on Crescent Beach.

Is Siesta Key Beach Dog Friendly? 

No dogs are allowed on Siesta Key’s beaches. However, Brohard Beach and Paw Park in Venice allows dogs.

Read our blog articles about beach safetyFlorida Sunshine Survival Tips and be sure to check out the article and infographic about Sarasota’s top beaches

Events

Volleyball tournaments that are hosted throughout the year.

Sunday evenings year-round folks gather near the Siesta Beach Pavilion about an hour before sunset for the weekly Siesta Key Drum Circle. This is a family-friendly event draws a big crowd of participants and onlookers for drumming, dancing and the occasional performers such as belly dancers. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to join in the fun.

Each year on July 4th and New Year’s Eve fireworks are launched here over the Gulf water providing a spectacular backdrop.

The Siesta Key Crystal Classic International Sand Sculpting Festival takes place in the Fall each year. There is also an amateur sand castle contest the second weekend in May.