Destination Guide

Destination: Bradenton/Sarasota

The Bradenton-Sarasota region of Florida fits the definition of overlooked and underrated by both tourists and golfers alike.

That's a mistake on both accounts. This Gulf Coast destination, sandwiched by Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg to the north and ritzy Naples to the south, still offers the mild winter weather of the Sunshine State and attractions good enough to entice beach bums and golfers to visit year-round, but with a sleepier, small-town vibe.

Sarasota's best rounds come courtesy of the Arnold-Palmer-designed Legacy Golf Club at Lakewood Ranch and the Troon Golf-managed Sarasota National in Venice. There are a couple dozen more courses to consider, just be sure to save some energy for post-golf adventures.

Sailing and chartered catamaran and fishing trips are great day excursions on the Gulf of Mexico available in either city. Boaters can explore Beer Can Island.

The miles-long Siesta Key Public Beach ranked no. 1 in the world in 2011 by Dr. Beach for its soft, sugary-white sand, but the Venice Beach, Longboat Key Beach, Anna Maria Island, Bradenton Beach and Lido Key Beach are also revered shoreline spots for families and sunbathers.

Spoiled guests love the luxury of the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota and, across the Sarasota Bay on a thin finger of land, the Longboat Key Club & Resort, home to 45 holes of golf in Longboat Key.

Sarasota boasts a vibrant arts community. The paintings at the world-famous Ringling Museum of Art highlight the museum scene. John Ringling's Ca D'Zan Mansion, made of Venetian Gothic architecture, and the Ringling Circus Museum are intriguing, too. A nationally recognized opera house, ballet company, symphony orchestra and multiple theaters reside just a mile down the road from the Ringling complex.

Sarasota's quaint Towles Court art district comes to life with brightly painted wooden homes filled with galleries, shops and restaurants. Main Street is for strolling, whether you're on the prowl to eat, drink or shop. St. Armand's Circle across the Ringling Causeway is another hotspot.

Away from the hustle and bustle, the gigantic Myakka River State Park offers miles of hiking trails, campgrounds, cabin rentals, and airboat tours.

The Sarasota Jungle Gardens animal park showcases the Florida wildlife. For a different kind of migratory bird, check out Ed Smith Stadium, the spring training headquarters of the Baltimore Orioles. The stadium is fresh off a $31-million renovation completed in 2011. Up the coast, the McKechnie Field, home of the minor-league Bradenton Marauders, hosts the Pittsburgh Pirates spring training camp. Nick Bollettieri's Tennis Academy, where Andre Agassi honed his game, calls Bradenton home as well.

See also


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Courses

Course City Rates from
Course City Rates from
Rosedale Golf & Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
River Run Golf Links
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
Tatum Ridge Golf Links
Tee Times
Sarasota $10
Estuary Course at River Strand Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $40
Sanctuary Course at River Strand Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $40
Creek/Oaks Course at Heron Creek Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
North Port $20
Oaks/Marsh Course at Heron Creek Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
North Port $25
IMG Academies Golf & Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
Legacy Golf Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
The River Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
Marsh/Creek Course at Heron Creek Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
North Port $20
The Highlands Golf Course
Tee Times
Sarasota $12
Tributary Course at River Strand Golf and Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $40
Waterlefe Golf & River Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $12
Pinebrook/Ironwood Golf Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $13.85 - $16.00
Boca Royale Golf & Country Club
Tee Times
Englewood $4
Jacaranda West Country Club
Tee Times
Venice $10
Duffy's Golf Center
Tee Times
Port Charlotte $8
Peridia Golf & Country Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
Suncoast Golf Center
Tee Times
Sarasota $10
Sabal Trace Golf & Country Club
Tee Times
North Port $15 - $27
Oyster Creek Golf Club
Tee Times
Englewood $19 - $25
Village Green Golf Club of Sarasota
Tee Times
Sarasota $11 - $24
1/2 at University Park Country Club
Tee Times
University Park $29
Venetian Golf & River Club
Tee Times
North Venice $15
Terra Ceia Bay Golf & Tennis Club
Tee Times
Palmetto $10
Second/Third at Lake Venice Golf Club
Tee Times
Venice $19 - $30
Sarasota National Golf Club
Tee Times
Venice $35 - $79
Riverwood Golf Club
Tee Times
Port Charlotte $2
The Groves Golf Course
Tee Times
Sarasota $11.68
Bent Tree Country Club
Tee Times
Sarasota $25 - $39
2/3 at University Park Country Club
Tee Times
University Park $29
Links at Greenfield Plantation
Tee Times
Bradenton $10
Manatee County Golf Course
Tee Times
Bradenton $15
Imperial Lakeswoods Golf Club
Tee Times
Palmetto $10
Preserve Golf Club at Tara
Tee Times
Bradenton $8
First/Second at Lake Venice Golf Club
Tee Times
Venice $19 - $30
3/1 at University Park Country Club
Tee Times
University Park $29
Misty Creek Country Club
Tee Times
Sarasota $10
Buffalo Creek Golf Course
Tee Times
Palmetto $10
Bobcat Trail Golf Club
Tee Times
North Port $10
Esplanade Golf & Country Club at Lakewood Ranch
Tee Times
Lakewood Ranch $15
Third/First at Lake Venice Golf Club
Tee Times
Venice $19 - $30
Stoneybrook Golf Club
Tee Times
Bradenton $11
Stadium Course at TPC Prestancia Sarasota $205
Hatchett/Meadows at Pelican Pointe Golf & Country Club Venice $31 - $72
East Course at Laurel Oak Country Club Sarasota $100
Palms/Live Oaks at Oak Ford Golf Club Sarasota N/A
Sara Bay Country Club Sarasota $60
Links Course at Rotonda Golf & Country Club Rotonda West $12.99 - $22.99
Orange Nine at Palmetto Pines Golf Course Parrish $22
White Nine at Palmetto Pines Golf Course Parrish $22
Executive Course at Bobby Jones Golf Complex Sarasota $5.50 - $12.75
Ritz - Carlton Members Club Bradenton $125
Panther Course at Plantation Golf & Country Club Venice $66
Mission Valley Golf & Country Club Nokomis $30 - $45
British Course at Bobby Jones Golf Complex Sarasota $11 - $37
Timber Creek Golf Course Bradenton $10 - $23
King Dunes Course at Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club Bradenton $40 - $75
Lakes Course at Palm-Aire Country Club Sarasota $80
Live Oaks/Myrtle at Oak Ford Golf Club Sarasota N/A
American Course at Bobby Jones Golf Complex Sarasota $11 - $37
River Wilderness Golf & Country Club Parrish $60
Calusa Lakes Golf Club Nokomis $10 - $58
Serenoa Golf Club Sarasota $20 - $38
Tara Golf & Country Club Bradenton $60
Bobcat Course at Plantation Golf & Country Club Venice $66
Long Marsh Nine at Long Marsh Golf Club at Rotonda West Rotonda West $23.99 - $43.99
White/Blue at Myakka Pines Golf Club Englewood $15 - $36
Greens of Manatee Golf Course Bradenton $30
Key Royale Club Holmes Beach $14
Bird Bay Golf Course Venice $26
Venice East Golf Club Venice $12 - $20
Concession Golf Club Bradenton N/A
Gator Creek Golf Club Sarasota $105
Blue Nine at Palmetto Pines Golf Course Parrish $22
Champions Course at Palm-Aire Country Club Sarasota $80
Pinemoor East Golf Club Rotonda West $20.00
Lemon Bay Golf Club Englewood $70 - $80
Myrtle/Palms at Oak Ford Golf Club Sarasota N/A
Palm View Hills Golf Course Palmetto $9 - $24
White Marsh Nine at Long Marsh Golf Club at Rotonda West Rotonda West $23.99 - $43.99
Red/White at Myakka Pines Golf Club Englewood $15 - $36
Royal Lakes Course at Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club Bradenton $40 - $75
River Isles Golf Club Bradenton $13
Gasparilla Inn & Club Boca Grande $85
Blue Heron Course at The Oaks Osprey $105
Gleneagles/Turnberry at Waterford Golf Club Venice $30 - $58
Coral Creek Club Placida $125
The Resort at Longboat Key Club - Links on Longboat Longboat Key $50 - $106
Rolling Green Golf Club Sarasota $20 - $29
West Course at Laurel Oak Country Club Sarasota $100
Eagle Course at The Oaks Osprey $105
Bradenton Country Club Bradenton $70
Blue Course at Gulf Gate Golf Club Sarasota $20
Red Course at Gulf Gate Golf Club Sarasota $30
Sawgrass/Gleneagles at Waterford Golf Club Venice $30 - $58
Harborside Red/White at Longboat Key Club & Resort Longboat Key $50 - $106
Harborside White/Blue at Longboat Key Club & Resort Longboat Key $50 - $106
Capri Isles Golf Club Venice $30 - $58
Stoneybrook Golf & Country Club Sarasota $30 - $85
Palms Course at Rotonda Golf & Country Club Rotonda West $19.99 - $39.99
Heritage Oaks Golf & Country Club Sarasota $55
Preserve/Hatchett at Pelican Pointe Golf & Country Club Venice $31 - $72
Venice Golf & Country Club Venice $75
Hills Course at Rotonda Golf & Country Club Rotonda West $18.99 - $33.99
Harbourside Blue/Red at Longboat Key Club & Resort Longboat Key $50 - $106
Sawgrass/Turnberry at Waterford Golf Club Venice $30 - $58
Pinemoor West Golf Club Rotonda West $15.99 - $26.99
Club Course at TPC Prestancia Sarasota $151
The Meadows Country Club Sarasota $35
Sorrento Par-3 Golf Course Nokomis $7
Red Nine at Palmetto Pines Golf Course Parrish $22
Pine Valley Nine at Long Marsh Golf Club at Rotonda West Rotonda $23.99 - $43.99
Meadows/Preserve at Pelican Pointe Golf & Country Club Venice $31 - $72
Founders Golf Club Sarasota $95
Cypress Links Course at Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club Bradenton $40 - $75
Blue/ Red at Myakka Pines Golf Club Englewood $15 - $36
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