Thursday, 19 March 2015

Anna Maria Island

March 18th we got the itch to go see something different. Judy had been to the Red Barn Market in Bradenton and suggested that we give it try. Just west of Bradenton is Anna Maria Island which is a great spot to spend an afternoon.

It is what is called a barrier island along the coast. It is a seven mile strip of white sand.

So this morning we saddled up and the four of us headed out on a day of sun, sand and shopping.

A two hour drive got us to the market and she was right. It is huge. We walked around for at least an hour and we didn't even hit the entire place. We did pick up a couple of items before heading over the bridge to the island.

We arrived at Holmes Beach where we parked and jumped on the free ship utile bus that takes you from one end of the is,and to the other. Our first stop was the southern tip at Bradenton Beach. John and Judy are ready for our adventure of the day.

The Coquina Bay Walk took us up through the shrub, over boardwalks and to different advantage points along the water.

After that hard work in the 90' weather we headed back to the beach for ice cream!!

Then back on the shuttle for the ride to the north tip of the island where there is a pier that you can walk out to a restaurant at the end. Lots of people out there fishing also. A neat spot.

Back on the shuttle again to take us back to Holmes Beach where we went for a nice long walk on the beautiful white sand beach.

A stop at Long Horns on the way home for a lovely dinner to top off another awesome day in paradise.


Thursday, 5 March 2015

Wekiwa Springs State Park

An hour and a half north of here, near Apopka is Wekiwa Springs State Park. A natural spring fed river flows crystal clear and calling to me. March 4th was to be a hot 80'+ sunny day and we were going to take advantage of it. We loaded up our kayaks and also loaded up John and Judy in to Big Mo and headed north.

Where the spring opens up the area has been made into a beautiful swimming spot. You can see the water bubbling up from the underground spring and there were guys trying to dive down into the mouth of the spring opening. The force of the water flowing is so strong that it would just pop them back up. The water rises at 74' all year round. A beautiful spot.

John and Judy rented a couple of kayaks and we carried ours down to the river and hit the water. What a great day to be paddling! I love the reflections of all the colors in these clear waters.

We paddled up the Wekiva River for a couple of hours (not sure why the river and park are spelt differently??) on our way back down we corralled our kayaks on the water to eat our picnic lunch.

Lots of wildlife to be seen.

This fellow let me get within a foot of him to take his picture. I could almost reach out and touchhim.

Lined up so cute at turtle school.
Just soaking up the sun. This was a small one. Maybe 4 feet long.

We stopped for a nice dinner on our way home to complete another great day in paradise!!
Until next time - safe travels.