A RELAXED BEACH WITH A CHANCE TO CAMP BY THE GULF
Nothing matches the fun of camping out on a Florida beach. It’s not allowed on most beaches, but it’s encouraged at charming Turtle Beach, on Siesta Key’s southern tip. Turtle Beach is a tranquil, isolated Florida escape featuring picnic facilities, a playground, a horseshoe pit, a volleyball court, boat ramps, and more. There’s excellent fishing at the adjacent Blind Pass Lagoon and kayaking in Little Sarasota Bay. Turtle Beach is one of the rare remaining south Florida locations where you can park your RV or pitch a tent right beside the Gulf of Mexico, sleep next to the surf and under the stars, and wake up with the rising Florida sun. Majestic palms are abundant, and cool breezes off the Gulf are frequent at Turtle Beach.
Turtle Beach gets its name from its numerous loggerhead sea turtle nests; loggerheads in turn get their name because their huge heads look like fireplace logs. Loggerheads are a threatened species and Florida’s “official” state saltwater reptile. Turtle Beach is also a splendid and popular spot for bird watching, shell collecting, and strolls in the moonlight.
The beach offers more than 3 dozen campsites for both tents and RVs, all less than 700 feet from the sparkling Gulf of Mexico. Electricity and cable are available, too. Sarasota County purchased the Turtle Beach campground facility in 2006, and the county is now completing enhancements that include additional parking, landscaped walking paths, and improved signage. If you intend to camp, you’ll need reservations. Sarasota County residents can reserve campsites up to nine months in advance; out-of-town campers can reserve campsites up to six months ahead. Turtle Beach is never overcrowded, but it’s quite popular, so make your reservations early. A maximum stay of 30 nights is allowed during any 45-day period. For the convenience and safety of everyone, no pets or campfires are allowed.
Turtle Beach has plenty of room; it’s always clean and quiet, and it’s only minutes from bustling downtown Sarasota. Come visit, and become a “happy camper.” Should you decide to stay, residential properties, including stylish condos and single-family luxury homes near Turtle Beach, are available in several price ranges. You may not find a nicer beach anywhere on the Gulf of Mexico.