What are the Best Places to Ride Bikes on Anna Maria Island?

During your vacation on Anna Maria Island, you might be surprised at just how easy it is to get from place to place. Since the island is just seven miles long, you can easily travel by car, on foot, or even by golf cart! But one of the most fun, budget-friendly, and eco-conscious ways to see the sights of the island are by biking. You can visit a local bike rental company to get started and then take off to whatever destination you please! 

While you’re biking around, there are a few dedicated places where biking is truly magical, allowing you to get the best view of the island and the surrounding areas. Here are a few of our favorite places to ride your bike near our Anna Maria Island vacation rentals!

bradenton beach on Anna Maria Island

There’s truly something for everyone on Anna Maria Island, from the gorgeous white sand beaches to the delectable seafood and unique shopping. If you’re looking to immerse yourself in nature, you’re in luck, as AMI is full of gorgeous surroundings and breathtaking wildlife everywhere you look. One of the best ways to get up-close-and-personal with nature is by bike riding, giving you a unique look at the area while you get your exercise. Luckily, there are tons of great places to bike near our Anna Maria Island vacation rentals.

City Bike Paths

man riding bike

Anna Maria Island is divided into three distinct cities: the City of Anna Maria, Bradenton Beach, and Holmes Beach. There are city bike paths through all three of these areas that allow you to easily get anywhere you need to go. You’ll find five miles of bike paths along Gulf Drive in Bradenton Beach, which will take you into the other two cities as well as the nearby Longboat Key.

Biking is an easy way to get anywhere on the island, but if you need to get a little further away, take advantage of the Anna Maria Island trolley. This free service is perfect for navigating the island quickly, and the trolley itself is bike-friendly! Simply mount your bike on the trolley and head to your destination.

Coquina Bike Path

Coquina Beach is located on the south end of the island and is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. It’s also perfect for cycling with its seven miles of pristine coastline. The Coquina bike path is easily accessible and will bring you north toward Cortez Beach. While you’re cycling, be sure to check the waves for dolphins or look up to the sky to try to spot the native blue heron!

Lake Manatee State Park

Located in nearby Bradenton, Lake Manatee State Park is the ideal biking destination for nature lovers. The park offers a family-friendly biking experience with 2.5 miles of paved interior roads that take you through various landscapes, as well as 2.34 miles of off-road terrain for the more experienced biker. You’ll get to experience breathtaking panoramic views of the lake, witness the wildflowers when they’re in bloom, and chat with the campers as you head through the campground loops.

beach bikes lined up on the sidewalk

You don’t even have to bring your own bike to enjoy the trails here! Bicycle rentals are available at the ranger station and are suitable for either trail you may choose. In addition to cycling, you can enjoy tons of other fun outdoor activities at Lake Manatee State Park, including fishing, swimming, boating, picnicking, and more. Bring your kids out to the playground and let your furry friend run on the trails.

Bradenton Beach Bike Paths

Bradenton Beach, located at the very southern end of Anna Maria Island, has an intricate series of bike paths taking guests all throughout the city. There is a multi-modal path that allows both pedestrians and bicyclists and will take you down Gulf Drive to the Longboat Pass Bridge along Coquina Beach. 

These paths are perfect for a unique view of the waters or for making your way onto the mainland. There are actually more than five miles of bike paths within Bradenton Beach itself, and those paths connect to over 50 miles of lanes across the island and onto Longboat Key! 

Robinson Preserve

white bird in flowers

Located just about 15 minutes from Anna Maria Island in the mainland city of Bradenton, you’ll find Robinson Preserve. This preserve covers almost 500 acres and provides the most stunning ecosystems, including coastal and wetland habitats. Not only can you explore the incredible bike paths to make your way throughout the Preserve, but you can also take advantage of kayaking opportunities, picnic spots, stunning forests to hike through, and more. Head to the water and you might even spot some dolphins or manatees!

The main biking trail here is paved and is ideal for bikers of all ages and skill levels, but if you’re more confident on your bike, there are more trails that offer varying degrees of difficulty. All in all, you’ll have more than 7.5 miles’ worth of trails to explore throughout the preserve, so you can spot the wildlife and enjoy nature to your heart’s content.

Lake Manatee State Park

Lake Manatee State Park is a bit of a drive at 45 minutes away, but if you’re willing to make the journey, it’s totally worth it. This park lies just outside of Bradenton and houses a whole host of ecosystems like sand pine scrubs and flatwoods. As you travel through the park’s nearly 7 miles of trail, you’ll be able to spot gray foxes, bobcats, eagles, and more!

This park offers a 2.5-mile trail that’s more family-friendly and is paved for easy riding. More experienced cyclists might also enjoy the 2.34 miles of off-road cycling that takes you into the more hidden sections of the park. Either way, this is one location that you certainly won’t want to miss out on if you’re a nature lover! 

Things to Keep in Mind

There are a few things to consider when biking on Anna Maria Island. All traffic laws and signs apply to cyclists, so be sure you are following the law. Ride on the same side of the road as traffic is flowing, and use hand signals at stops and turns with shoulder checks. Always yield to pedestrians and use available crosswalks when applicable. Florida law requires helmets for cyclists under 16, and helmets are recommended for cyclists of any age.

Cycling is one of the best ways to get anywhere on the island from our Anna Maria vacation rentals. Biking presents the perfect way to spend quality time with your loved ones while enjoying some good exercise and gorgeous nature. Contact us today for more information on biking on AMI and all of our available accommodations!