“The World’s Finest, Whitest Sand” – Great International Sand Challenge
Siesta Key is a Florida Gulf Coast destination that has garnered the respect of an international audience for its regional splendor and natural beauty. Without doubt, the most alluring aspect of Siesta Key are its award winning beaches and pristine white sands. Yet, Siesta Key is more than just its beaches, it’s also one of the most fun places to shop, dine, and enjoy the area’s nightlife. A captivating barrier island situated 8 miles of the coast of Sarasota, FL in the Gulf of Mexico, and home to more than 20,000 full time residents, Siesta Key is one of the world’s most appealing vacation destinations as well as one of the most prestigious places to live.
Siesta Key History
Over the past three decades Siesta Key has captured global attention for its gorgeous beaches, putting it down in history as one of the best places on earth to spend some time in the sand. Yet, in its early days it wasn’t the sand that brought crowds to the barrier island, but the waters.
Originally known as “Clam Island” or simply “Sarasota Key,” Siesta Key was home exclusively to indigenous peoples and fishermen looking to capitalize on the region’s unique marine opportunities up until the 1850s. At the end of the 19th century, word slowly began to spread about this picturesque small island and its luxurious emerald coastline. The area was deemed Sarasota’s “best kept secret,” but it wouldn’t stay a secret for long. When local entrepreneur Captain Roberts converted his oceanside estate into a hotel, drawing tourists from the mainland, Siesta Key’s burgeoning reputation as a vacation destination quickly blossomed into something more permanent. Siesta Key now draws upwards of 350,000 visitors to its sandy shores each year.
Siesta Key Attractions and Activities
In 1987 the Great International Sand Challenge awarded Siesta Key’s main beach, Siesta Beach, as “The World’s Finest, Whitest Sand.” The Travel Channel called it “Best Sand Beach in America” in 2004, and Trip Advisor’s named it #1 Traveler’s Choice Award for World’s Best Beach. Not only is it Siesta Key home to some of the most beautiful, or most visited, beaches on earth, it’s also has some of the safest. Year-round lifeguard protection ensures that you’ll have the chance to enjoy worry-free fun in the sun.
Fishing and Boating
With sun-kissed summers and mild winters, the Florida Gulf Coast is prime real estate for fisherman, boaters, and recreation-seekers. The region’s lengthy coastline, coupled with countless inlets, bays, and tidal creeks make a day on the water an appealing idea. Regardless of experience, visitors and residents can enjoy time on the open water fishing – game fish like spotted sea trout, snook, and tarpon are in abundance – snorkeling, diving, parasailing, and much more.