Fun Things to Do Around Sarasota with Your Kids this Summer

Are you headed to the Gulf coast of Florida with your family this summer? Don’t miss out on all that Sarasota has to offer. Here, we offer some suggestions of fun things to do.

  • Check out some marine life. The Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium is both fun and educational, with all sorts of exhibits from coral reefs to sea jellies to river otter and alligators. You’ll enjoy seeing manatees and sea turtles, but the really exciting event happens Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 11am, when the trainers feed the 135,000 gallon tankful of sharks.
  • Have a jungle adventure. Sarasota Jungle Gardens, a family-owned local zoo, has 200 species, including parrots, snakes, lemurs, and alligators. Big Cat Habitat is an animal sanctuary that focuses on housing big cats like tigers and lions but also has non-cat species like bears, monkeys, sloths, foxes, wallabies, and more.
  • Do some science. The Suncoast Science Center has a state-of-the-art lab with classes that allow school-aged kids to do experiments they wouldn’t otherwise be able to do. The state-of-the-art equipment in the lab can help them with experiments that they wouldn’t be able to do at home.
  • Stroll through a garden. The Marie Selby Botanical Gardens cover 15 acres in the former home of Marie and William Selby. Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1998, it’s got beautiful displays of vibrant flowers in exhibits like the Orchid Show, the Tropical Conservatory, or the Children’s Rainforest Garden.
  • Visit a park. There are plenty of parks from which to choose in Sarasota, so pick one and have a ball with your family! Urfer Park has a playground, fitness equipment, hiking and biking trails and, if you go far enough in, wetlands and cows. Oscar Scherer State Park features hiking, camping, picnicking, rollerblading, snorkeling, paddling, and more. Myakka River State Park is one of the largest parks in Florida, and offers camping, bird watching, horseback riding, and wildlife viewing.
  • Visit a circus museum. Sarasota used to be the winter home of the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus. Today, The Ringling is the official state art museum of Florida, with extensive grounds and a vast collection of artworks. There’s also the Circus Museum, where your kids will love exploring a collection that includes performer wardrobes, props wagons, and more.
  • Walk through the trees. Have a fun adventure with your kids at TreeUmph, an elevated outdoor park nearby, in Bradenton. Swinging around in the park’s aerial courses, you’ll cross suspended bridges and do zip line courses with crazy obstacles.

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