• Heather

FREE & FUN Things to Do in Sarasota

Updated: Apr 4

No cost entertainment in Sarasota

Sarasota and the surrounding area ranks as the top place to retire in America and the 16th best place to live in the country according to the U.S. News & World Report Best Places to Live & Retire 2020-21. In addition to the sunshine, warm weather, and beautiful beaches including the Best Beach in the U.S., there is a lot to do in Sarasota. Here is a list of the FREE and FUN things to do. If I missed anything, please add it to the comment section below and enjoy all that Sarasota has to offer for the young and the young at heart.

#1 Fun in the Sun at the Beach (Lido Beach and Siesta Beach: the #1 Beach in the US)

  • Swimming

  • Sunbathing

  • Body surfing

  • Boogie boarding

  • Shelling

  • Build sand castles

  • Playing beach games like corn hole, frisbee, soccer, football

  • Walking

  • Reading a book you have been wanting to dive into for a while

  • Viewing marine life and bird watching

  • Picnicking

  • Taking a nap

  • Do yoga

#2 Hunt for Sharks Teeth at Caspersen Beach and Venice Beach, the Shark’s Tooth Capital of the World

#3 Watch the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico

#4 Snorkel at Point of Rocks


#5 Kayaking

#6 Boating on Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico


#7 Fishing at the T.J. “Tony” Saprito Fishing Pier at Hart’s Landing

  • Pier is temporarily closed while undergoing renovation but you can still fish along the seawall and sidewalks. The improvement project is expected to be completed in October 2021.

  • No license needed

  • Largest fishing pier in Sarasota County

#8 Fly a kite at one of Sarasota’s beaches


#9 Play in the sand and the ocean with your furry friend

#10 Dance at the Siesta Key Drum Circle at Siesta Beach on Sundays beginning an hour before sunset

#11 Explore the John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art on Mondays (free admission every Monday)


#12 Visit the Marietta Museum of Art and Whimsy

  • Free admission BUT a donation is strongly suggested

  • Closed until November 2021

#13 View local artworks at the Third Friday Art Walk at the Towles Court Artist Colony

  • Every third Friday of the month from 4pm to 8pm from October to April

  • Features live music

#14 Stroll the galleries along Palm Avenue in Downtown Sarasota at the “First Friday Palm Avenue Gallery Walk”

  • Held on the first Friday of each month from 6pm til 9pm

#15 Tour the sculptures in the Sarasota Bayfront Park


#16 Take a selfie with the Unconditional Surrender statue

#17 Ride a bike on the Legacy Trail


#18 Walking, Bird Watching, Picnicking at a local park

#19 View Dolphins, Manatees, Sea Life, and Birds

  • At any of the bayfront parks, Ringling Bridge, and beaches (particularly the passes)

#20 Visit a local Farmers Market

#21 Disc Golf in Payne Park


#22 Skate Boarding at the Skate Park at Payne Park


#23 Bring your children or grandchildren to a playground

#24 Attend a festival

#25 Volunteer

#26 Friday Fest: Sarasota’s free outdoor summer concert series on the Bayside Lawn of the Van Wezel


#27 Music on Main: Lakewood Ranch Free Concert Series on the First Friday on the month

  • Postponed until further notice

#28 Read a book

  • pick up a book at one of the county libraries or one of the community free library book box exchange

#29 Workout at a neighborhood outdoor gym (this facility is in Arlington Park next to the playground between Waldemere Street and Hawthorne Street)

#30 Tour Siesta Key Rum, also known as Drum Circle Distilling.