Sarasota County offers miles of trails and thousands of acres to explore in our natural area parks and preserves. Walks often focus on a blooming wildflower, rare or endangered animals, different habitats, or historical and cultural features.

This provides an in-depth experience for participants to learn the natural history or the human history of prehistoric Indians or settlers during a walk.

There are easy strolls on paved trails and longer hikes on winding footpaths through pristine woodlands. Our featured walks, which are led by local experts and park naturalists, provide an opportunity to explore the beautiful natural world around us.

Many Nature Walks are available for enrollment online. Once you create your account, you will be able to register for a variety of walks. Click here to see a list of walks that are available for online registration.

Types of walks

  • Birds    
  • Plants
  • Wildlife
  • Botany
  • Butterflies/ dragonflies
  • Astronomy
  • Fitness/wellness

What to bring on a nature walk

Participants on county nature walks should wear suitable clothes and shoes for walking. Plan for sun protection (hats, sunglasses and sun screen) and should have water with them. Most walks are less than 2 miles in distance and are 1.5-2 hours in duration. Walks may be on paved or natural unpaved surfaces. Cameras and/or binoculars are encouraged!

  • Bayfront Park

    BayfrontPark
    1. Address:4052 Gulf of Mexico Drive
      Longboat Key, FL 34228
    2. Phone:(941) 316-1999
    Amenities:
    1. Basketball
    2. Birding
    3. Canoe/Kayak Launch
    4. Dog Park
    5. Dog-Friendly (leash required)
    6. Fishing Pier
    7. Grills
    8. Pickleball
    9. Picnicking
    10. Playground
    11. Recreation Building
    12. Restroom
    13. Shelter / Pavilion
    14. Tennis
    15. Trail - Paved
    Categories:
    1. Boat and Kayak Launches
    2. Water Access Parks
  • Facility Hours of Operation5 a.m to 11 p.m.

Park Hours: 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Bayfron tPark Playground under the trees.

The Town of Longboat Key in collaboration with Sarasota County are pleased to announce the opening of the 3.54-acre Bayfront Park addition.

Completed improvements include a

  • playground,
  • restroom,
  • picnic shelters,
  • docks,
  • sidewalks,
  • parking,
  • rain garden,
  • stormwater treatment facility,
  • portions of a pedestrian bridge and landscaping.

Additional proposed improvements include a crosswalk with sidewalks to the Gulf-side parcel, where a dune walkover and observation platform will be constructed. The construction was managed by the Town of Longboat Key.

The Bayfront Park Recreation Center is a public recreation facility operated by the Town of Longboat Key, and provides affordable, wholesome recreation for the entire community. This includes leisure and recreational sports, organized sports leagues and activities, educational programs, cultural classes and seminars, social functions, and special events for all ages and interests.

This Gulf-to-Bay parcel was acquired in 2007 as part of the Neighborhood Parklands Acquisition Program (NPP) at a cost of approximately $8 million. In 2016, Sarasota County entered into a project agreement for up to $2 million with the Town of Longboat Key to make construction improvements to the Bayfront Park addition, utilizing a combination of funding sources including NPP, Tourist Development Tax and Surtax III funds. 

 

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