We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Best Beach/resort

uk
Level Contributor
271 posts
51 reviews
Save Topic
Best Beach/resort

From Orlando to Naples we want to stop off which is the best beach resort with a 9 year old who likes to go in sea and at night we like a nice meal not too expensive though.

Estero, Florida
Level Contributor
1,253 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Best Beach/resort

Unfortunately, best beach resort and not too expensive do not fit into the same category.

South Seas on Captiva is my favorite beach resort in this area due to the grounds and the location at the tip of Captiva but it isn't cheap. They do run specials during the summer that makes it more affordable but it is never cheap.

If you provide a budget for what you are looking for, the search could be narrowed and your question answered a little better.

uk
Level Contributor
271 posts
51 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Best Beach/resort

Hi

I did look at that aswell as West Wind Inn and Pink Shell resort. From South seas can you walk to restaurants or is a big complex? Also would we be better staying there longer and doing Naples as a Day trip as I assume beaches in Naples wont be as nice. Also we were thinking of a trip to the everglades or is there an air boat trip near there. My daughter not keen on loads of flies etc. We also stopping in Sarasota on way down for 1 night as that 2 hours from orlando and then sanibel another 1hour as im told

Estero, Florida
Level Contributor
1,253 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Best Beach/resort

South seas has shopping and restaurants on the grounds. Day trips to everglades and Naples are not a problem. Other restaurants off property are not far away and a little more reasonable price wise.

Naples beaches are not much different from Captiva.

Consider babcock Ranch for a day trip. Airboats are neat but they are very loud and that scares some kids. http://www.babcockwilderness.com/eco.htm

Naples zoo is good for kids too. http://www.caribbeangardens.com/

If you do go to Sarasota, be sure to check out Mote Marine, your daughter will like it if she is anything like my two about the same age. http://www.mote.org/

Sarasota to Captiva is a solid two hours, maybe a little more.

Captiva to Naples is a solid hour, maybe more depending on where in Naples and traffic at the time.

Sarasota, Florida
Destination Expert
for Sarasota, Longboat Key
Level Contributor
4,184 posts
107 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Best Beach/resort

why not stay in the Sarasota area? Siesta Key's Crescent Beach is one of the best there is, and there are places to stay that can be less expensive. Alternatively you could stay on Anna Maria Island, another great beach and family-oriented (and closer to Orlando). Are you looking for an all-inclusive place or would a condo or a motel suffice?

uk
Level Contributor
271 posts
51 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Best Beach/resort

both so long as its clean etc. We have look at many options, staying at the hlemsley 1 night, sanibel 4 nights to do everglades and would like a trip to miami. Now we are thinking sarasota 1 night, sanibel, 3 nights fort lauderdale 3 nights, drive upto coca beach 1 night then to airport.

Is sarasota beaches as nice as the others ie sanibel and is it worth all this driving?

Sarasota, Florida
Destination Expert
for Sarasota, Longboat Key
Level Contributor
4,184 posts
107 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Best Beach/resort

If I added your numbers correctly, it seems as if you're staying 11 or 12 nights in total. You will be doing a lot of driving, some of which (Miami/Fort Lauderdale area) will be crowded. But it will give you a nice variety and is certainly do-able.

Regarding beaches, Sanibel is known for its fantastic assortment of shells, and you and your child will spend many happy hours strolling the beach looking for a new perfect one. Sarasota has a series of beaches on its keys, one of which -- Crescent Beach on Siesta Key -- is considered one of the top beaches in the country; it has a soft powdery sand that is unbelievable! The beach on Lido Key is also wonderful. Florida West Coast beaches have very little surf (unlike the East Coast); there is more of a Caribbean feel to them.

For a stay in Sarasota, the Helmsley is decent but quite dated. I'd suggest instead staying at the Lido Beach Resort or at a condo on Siesta Key.

As for timing, my recommendation would be 4 nights in Sarasota, 3 nights in Sanibel, 2 in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale area and 2 in Cocoa Beach. Enroute from Sanibel to Miami/Fort Lauderdale you can take some time in the Everglades. Why 4 nights in Sarasota? It's a small, manageable area but with much to do in and around the area. Myakka State Park has a boat ride among the alligators; Lido Key is next to Mote Aquarium and to St. Armands Circle (shops and restaurants); downtown has a hands-on Science Museum. You definitely won't get bored.

uk
Level Contributor
271 posts
51 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Best Beach/resort

that sounds good however we have 5 nightsd in disney and another 8 nights to play with. I have since looked on internet and agree lido at sarasota is better and seems a lot to do around the other islands. so mayber there 4 nights, sanibel 1 night just to see beaches etc 2 nights miami, 1 night cocoa. We are so undeceided. We did want to see naples but dont think we will fit everything in. Alternatively we could go from orlando to sanibel for 4 nights and so miami and naples as day trips and then back up to lido for 4 nights but it will then be a long drive to orlando airport.

Sarasota, Florida
Destination Expert
for Sarasota, Longboat Key
Level Contributor
4,184 posts
107 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Best Beach/resort

I was wondering whether you actually would dare to skip Disney with a 9 year old along! And after 5 days you all should be very ready to get away to the relative quiet and peace of one of our west coast beaches.

Your new itinerary looks very good though I might drop 1 day off of Sarasota and add it to Sanibel (thus 3 Sarasota, 2 Sanibel, 2 Miami, 1 Cocoa). When I stay just one night in a place it feels too much like living out of a suitcase and not being able to unwind; thus I was giving you 2 nights in Sanibel. You'll still have time to enjoy most of what Sarasota offers. To maximize your time here, I'd leave Orlando early and get to Lido by noon (from Orlando to Lido is about 130-140 miles, call it roughly 2 1/2 hours plus or minus). Then on your last day in Sarasota, linger until after lunch and drive down to Sanibel in the late afternoon. You'll have two nights in Sanibel and one full day+ .

I like Lido Beach Resort (especially the tower), but there are some other places you might want to check out as well. Consider Limetree and also Suntide Island Beach Club; these are condos/time shares with kitchen facilities but no on-site restaurants. There are plenty of restaurants nearby.

Estero, Florida
Level Contributor
1,253 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Best Beach/resort

Just my 2 cents worth but I would replace Miami with Key Largo and go out on the glass bottom boats to see the coral reefs at John Pennekamp and maybe swim with the dolphins at dolphin plus.

http://www.dolphinsplus.com/

Would also consider spending just 2 nights in Sarasota and allow for two nights in Cocoa to have time to tour Cape Canaveral.

While in Orlando, be sure to visit Green Meadows petting farm if she likes animals at all. Great place for kids that age.

http://www.greenmeadowsfarm.com/

That should definitely make for quite a memorable trip.

Boston...
Level Contributor
136 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Best Beach/resort

Any chance you could drop Cocoa for this trip?