Hunt for Shells on Anna Maria Island

Hunt for Shells on Anna Maria Island

Do you like to collect shells for something at home, or a project your working on? If the answer is yes, then we suggest vacationing here on Anna Maria Island this winter. Anna Maria Island has crystal clear waters, white sandy beach and a healthy amount of Florida sunshine. If you are staying in one of our Beach and Gulf View vacation rentals, then you will be close to where you’ll find the shells. There is something for everyone when you vacation on Anna Maria Island including looking for rare Florida seashells. Let’s look at where you and your family can hunt for the shells and what shells you’ll find.

Early Morning

Hunt for Shells on Anna Maria Island

Many of the families who visit Anna Maria Island have kids who like to get up at the crack of dawn even while on vacation. So why not go ahead and head to the beach in the early morning to hunt for some seashells. Walk slowly by the water searching for that perfect shell that you’d been wanting. You may find several different kinds of shells, but we know of the few you may find. Many shells may have washed up on the beach during the night and so this can be the perfect time to find some. If it is low tide you may be able to find a few starfish but be sure to check if they are alive or dead. If they are alive, please leave them there and give them another chance at living more.

Where to Shell?

Anna Maria Island has many beaches that you and your family can head to find those perfect shells. Holmes Beach, Coquina Beach, Bayfront Park and Bean Point are great places to start to look for those beautiful shells. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty a little because sometimes the best shells you will find may be buried a little in the sand. We suggest that you bring a bucket (borrowing one from the kids will work), a small shovel, sunscreen and water shoes or flip flops. If you are bringing the kids with you, we suggest that you bring a towel with you as well because we know they will get wet.

What Shells Can You Find?

Hunt for Shells on Anna Maria Island

One thing that you might have to remember that when you go shell hunting, you need to know what you are looking for. So, we have a few that we know you will be able to find on Anna Maria Island. Here are a few of the shells you may come across while you are on your shell hunt.

  • Cockle Shell – These are very distinctive and found by many because of their fan shape they have.
  • Coquina Shell – These tiny, cute looking shell are what we call coquina shells. They are not any bigger than a dime and will come in a variety of colors and patterns.
  • Junonia Shell – This shell is one of the rarest that you will come across on the island. Because it’s so beautiful, many shell collectors consider this one to be the best one.
  • Banded Tulip Shell – This shell is named after it’s colored bands that can be seen on the exterior.
  • Horse Conch Shell – This shell has been Florida’s state shell since 1969 and is a beautiful shell. You’ll often find this shell in a larger size but you’ll find them small too.
  • Murex Shell – The Murex shell is often identified by the spines located on the outside of the shell. Many will get these shells mixed with a whelk but they are bright in color compared to whelks.

While there are many other shells that you will come across while hunting for them, these are just a few we thought you’d enjoy. And a few little tips to remember while you shell, it’s best to go after high tide in the morning. We highly suggest wearing water shoes or flip flops, so your feet don’t get cut in the process of wading through the shallow waters. Beach and Gulf View vacation rentals will keep you and your family close to the fun and action on Anna Maria Island. We can’t wait to see you as you come down to stay with us.

Celebrate the 4th of July on AMI

July 4th on AMI

Independence Day is on its way and there is no better place to stay than with AMI Locals. Celebrate with Parades, Food, Fireworks and Beach Vibes!

A few of our AMI Locals favorite recommendations for delicious food to start and finish the day :

1. Ginny’s and Jane E’s Café and Gift Shop

A fun, funky, Bakery/café serving breakfast and lunch, in a relaxed, atmosphere with loads of crazy fun things to look at and/or purchase.  Try the giant cinnamon rolls to get your weekend off to a great start.
Located at 9807 Gulf Dr. Anna Maria Island, FL 34216  941.778.3170

2. The Sandbar Restaurant

A beautiful beachfront seafood restaurant serving classic dishes that will be sure to satisfy any appetite. The Sandbar is located on the north end of Anna Maria Island and has been a favorite of locals for decades. Dine with your toes in the sand and a drink in your hand on the waterfront deck or enjoy inside dining. The Sandbar offers a gulf to table, farm to fork, and pasture to plate award winning menu. Specials vary weekly -100 Spring Ave, Anna Maria, FL 34216   941.778.0444  
* Fireworks just after sunset over the Gulf have been canceled this year to protect nesting turtles!

3. The Beach House Restaurant

On the beach, amazing views and delicious food. The Beach House will not disappoint. The Beach House Restaurant is located on the Bradenton Beach end of AMI and a second option for toes in the sand and beach vibe dining.  Seafood is their specialty offering some of the worlds best Oysters, Shrimp and Fish; but don’t worry you can also order up amazing New York Strip and many other delicious selections as well – 200 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach, FL 34217  941.779.2222
* Fireworks just after sunset over the Gulf have been CANCELED to help protect sea turtle nesting!

JULY 3rd – Parade Time!

The July 3 parade will begin at Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach at 10 a.m., proceed through Holmes Beach and end near City Pier Park in Anna Maria at approx. 11:30. The parade is a fantastic event by the Privateers held annually and loved by all.

Looking for a place to lay your head after a fun-filled day? has availability with spectacular properties and a wonderful team to assist you with property needs.  Here are just a few examples:

Surfer’s Dream

Welcome to Surfer’s Dream, a beautiful new construction home perfectly located just a short walk off beach! This 4 bedroom, 6.5 bathroom home, plus loft, is absolutely amazing.

The Ritz

This gorgeous and unique home will leave you breathless, and with plenty of space and privacy for a single-family, multi-family, or large group of friends and/or family combined – everything you could want in a luxury beach vacation rental home is found here at The Ritz.
This home features 7 bedrooms, with 6 King beds, a Full over Full bunk bed, and a Queen sleeper sofa bed.

Island Paradise

Island Paradise is a beautiful beachfront condo with absolutely, incredible views. It makes you feel like you are living right on top of the beautiful blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico! The property has 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths.

For more information check out  – take a look around and give us a call when you find your dream home away from home. We will get you all set up for the vacation of a lifetime.

We are so excited to hear from you and share our Independence Day here on Anna Maria Island.

3 Restaurants to Try on Anna Maria Island this Summer

Summer will be here before you know it, and now is the time to start getting excited over the food you’ll find on the island. Anna Maria Island has many different restaurants that provide seafood, kid-friendly food, and southern food. Staying in one of our AMI vacation rentals will keep your family close to several of these delicious places to eat at. We understand that you’re on vacation and who wants to cook all week while you’re relaxing. Let’s look below at three restaurants to try Anna Maria Island this summer with the family.

Mr. Bones BBQ

bbq ribs smoked

Does your family love pulled pork, BBQ ribs, BBQ chicken & more? Then look no further as you can find all that southern deliciousness at Mr. Bones BBQ in Holmes Beach. This restaurant opened up in 1992 and has become a staple to get some fantastic BBQ on the island. Some of the things you’ll find on the menu are spare ribs, baby back ribs, BBQ chicken, jambalaya, and more. If you get stuffed at the restaurant, then take your leftovers back to your vacation rental and savor them for another day or night. Mr. Bones BBQ is one restaurant that is a must-try on the island!


Another restaurant that your family may enjoy is the SMOQEHOUSE located over in Holmes Beach. This is another restaurant where you’ll find traditional BBQ dishes like the SMOQEHOUSE Cuban, Pulled Pork Sandwich, Brisket Burger, and Sarasota Special. For the kids, they offer grilled cheese, pulled pork sandwiches, and cheeseburgers. Their hand-cut fries are just like you’d find on a boardwalk on the east coast and are to die for. This can become your new favorite restaurant to give a try on your next vacation to Anna Maria Island this summer!

Brick’s Smoked Meats

sandwich with beef brisket, fries and coleslaw

While Brick’s Smoked Meats is not located on Anna Maria Island, it was one that we wanted to mention—located in Bradenton is where you’re going to find this Texas BBQ-style restaurant. The family will love some of the menu items from their “OMG” Brisket Chili Cheese Fries, Pulled Pork Platters, St. Louis Ribs, Bacon Burnt Ends, and more. Don’t worry about the kids not having something to eat because there is something for everyone on this menu. This is a restaurant that is worth trying on your vacation to Anna Maria Island if you’re looking for a home-cooked southern BBQ.

There are many other fun restaurants that we could mention in this post; we wanted to share these with you. If you haven’t booked your next vacation to stay in one of our AMI vacation rentals, give us a call today. We can’t wait to see you and your family this summer and about how you enjoyed one of these restaurants!