10 Must-Visit Family-Friendly Spots in Manatee County, FL

Discover the top 10 family-friendly spots in Manatee County, FL that are sure to make your vacation a memorable one. From interactive museums to stunning beaches, there is something for everyone in this beautiful part of Florida.

10 Must-Visit Family-Friendly Spots in Manatee County, FL

As a local expert in Manatee County, I have had the pleasure of exploring and experiencing all that this beautiful part of Florida has to offer. From its stunning beaches to its rich history and diverse wildlife, Manatee County is a popular tourist destination for families. As a parent myself, I understand the importance of finding activities and attractions that cater to all ages. That's why I have compiled a list of the top 10 family-friendly spots in Manatee County that are sure to make your vacation a memorable one.

Tampa Bay History Center

If you want to learn about the rich history of Manatee County and the surrounding areas, then the Tampa Bay History Center is a must-visit.

This interactive museum features exhibits that showcase the region's past, from Native American settlements to Spanish explorers and early pioneers. Kids will love the hands-on activities and games that make learning about history fun and engaging.

Manatee Village Historical Park

For a more immersive experience, head to the Manatee Village Historical Park. This living history museum takes you back in time to the late 1800s with its collection of restored buildings and artifacts. You can explore a one-room schoolhouse, a general store, a church, and even a courthouse.

The park also hosts special events throughout the year, such as Civil War reenactments and pioneer days.

Anna Maria Island

No trip to Manatee County is complete without a visit to Anna Maria Island. This barrier island is known for its stunning beaches, crystal clear waters, and laid-back atmosphere. Families can spend their days swimming, sunbathing, and building sandcastles on the beach. There are also plenty of water activities available, such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and parasailing.

Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium

Located on City Island in Sarasota, the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium is a must-visit for families who love marine life.

This research facility and aquarium is home to over 100 species of marine animals, including manatees, sharks, sea turtles, and otters. Kids will love the interactive touch tanks and the chance to see these amazing creatures up close.

South Florida Museum

The South Florida Museum in Bradenton is another great place to learn about the local wildlife. It is home to the Parker Manatee Rehabilitation Habitat, where you can see manatees being cared for and rehabilitated before being released back into the wild. The museum also has exhibits on Florida's history and archaeology, as well as a planetarium that offers educational shows for all ages.

De Soto National Memorial

For a dose of history and nature, head to the De Soto National Memorial in Bradenton.

This park commemorates the landing of Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto in 1539 and features a replica of his ship. Families can explore the nature trails, have a picnic, and learn about the Native American cultures that inhabited the area before European settlement.

TreeUmph! Adventure Course

If your family loves adventure and outdoor activities, then TreeUmph! Adventure Course is the perfect place to visit. This treetop obstacle course features zip lines, suspended bridges, and other challenges that will test your physical abilities and teamwork skills. There are courses available for all ages and skill levels, making it a fun activity for the whole family.

Emerson Point Preserve

For a peaceful and scenic escape, head to Emerson Point Preserve in Palmetto.

This 365-acre park offers hiking trails, picnic areas, and stunning views of the Manatee River. Families can also go fishing, birdwatching, and kayaking in the preserve. It is a great place to relax and reconnect with nature.

Manatee Performing Arts Center

If you're looking for some indoor entertainment, then the Manatee Performing Arts Center is the place to go. This state-of-the-art facility hosts a variety of shows and performances throughout the year, including plays, musicals, concerts, and dance recitals.

It is a great way to introduce your kids to the arts and support the local community.

Robinson Preserve

For more outdoor fun, head to Robinson Preserve in Bradenton. This 682-acre park offers hiking and biking trails, kayaking and canoeing opportunities, and a nature center where you can learn about the local flora and fauna. Families can also enjoy a picnic or go fishing in the preserve's freshwater ponds. Manatee County has something for everyone, and these are just some of the many family-friendly activities that you can enjoy during your visit. Whether you're interested in history, nature, or adventure, there is no shortage of things to do and see in this beautiful part of Florida.

So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable family vacation in Manatee County!.

Sophia Spurr
Sophia Spurr

Evil tvaholic. Typical travel advocate. Evil coffee practitioner. Devoted pop culture ninja. Devoted sushi buff.