If you are visiting the area and want a taste of authentic Florida, you might want to spend an afternoon exploring the Robinson Preserve in Bradenton. A few years ago this former farming area was restored to it’s natural, beautiful state and is now a 487 Acre preserve where you can visit…for free.
Not all Florida beaches are created equal. Some have great surf, some are beautiful but are difficult to access…but there is one spot on the central gulf coast that has been a favorite of mine for as long as I can remember. That is Whitney Beach on Longboat Key. The sand is white and soft, the water is gorgeous, and there is hardly ever anyone there.
While Bradenton, Florida might not be the most sought after destination…it does have it’s hidden jewels. The beaches are beautiful (and there is actually parking), the people are friendly, and now to add another to that list…you can find some great live music here. Downtown consists of about 5 or 6 bars, all of which are decent, but on Sunday and Tuesday evenings, something special happens and the sounds of blues and swing come out of Corks cigar bar. You almost can’t help but be drawn in…
Everytime I head back to Florida from Munich, I am seriously craving some sun, saltwater, and seafood. Usually one of the very first stops when I am home is the Cortez Kitchen for a fresh blackened grouper sandwich and a beer after an awesome day at the beach. If you are looking for a locals spot with an authentic Florida vibe, you have to check this place out.