Vacationing is a great way to bond with your children/grandchildren and make memories that will last for the rest of their lives. Sarasota has a variety of fun places designed for families. Here are some of our favorite places for family fun in Sarasota.
7101 Palmer Blvd
Sarasota, FL 32432
You don’t have to travel all the way to Busch Gardens or Disney’s Animal Kingdom to see exotic animals. The Big Cat Habitat is a 501c3 non-profit organization that provides safe, loving, and permanent homes for exotic and domestic animals in need. Everyone will enjoy coming face to face with lions, tigers, primates, bears, and exotic birds. There is even a petting zoo.
Open Wednesday through Sunday, 12 pm to 4 pm.
5947 Clark Center Ave
Sarasota, FL 34238
This complex features 50,000 square feet of state-of-the-art entertainment for kids and adults. Some of the activities include bumper cars, billiards, a go-kart race track, an arcade with a large prize center, plus a Bazooka Ball simulated combat game. It is wholesome fun for the entire family and a great way to spend the day as a family.
Open seven days a week.
2010 Adams Lane
Sarasota, FL 34237
Sarasota’s circus heritage and circus-inspired themes can be found everywhere in the city and Circus Park is no exception. This is one playground unlike anything else you’ll find. If you have children, this place is a dream come true, featuring brightly painted clown cars and circus animals. There is also a small splash area, rock climbing, slides, music makers, swings, and so much more.
Bring a picnic lunch and make it a day your children will never forget.
1600 Ken Thompson Parkway
Sarasota, FL 34236
Water critters like manatees, sharks, sea turtles, otters, and tropical fish are all here at Mote. Mote can be both educational and fun as visitors explore touch pools, hands-on exhibits, and windows into the science and conservation of the laboratory and aquarium. The big attraction, a 135,000-gallon outdoor tank, is home to sharks and other marine species. The aquarium is large, spanning three buildings and an outdoor area. The facilities are clean and well-maintained, plus the staff is very friendly and knowledgeable. Open 365 days a year.
1534 Mound Street
Sarasota, FL 34236
The Children’s Rainforest Garden at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is a tropical jungle environment where kids of all ages can discover, explore, and play. The rainforest area features a twelve-foot waterfall, swinging bridges, field research stations, caves for exploring, and an adventure trail. There is also an Amazon village with an amphitheater.
The focal point of the grounds is a 100-year-old Banyan tree that provides a perfect photographic background. There is a single entry/exit so that no child can enter or exit without parental supervision. Of course, parents will enjoy themselves too. The area also features an outdoor butterfly garden, bromeliad garden, bamboo garden, epiphyte garden, fern garden, a mangrove walkway, and a breathtaking tropical conservatory display garden with more than 6,000 orchids.
Open every day except for Christmas.
2211 Fruitville Rd.
Sarasota FL, 34247
Kids absolutely love Bob’s Train because it is a restaurant located in four actual train cars. The retired Ringling circus train cars are filled with circus photos and artifacts. Two of the cars serve as a museum-style exhibit for the history of the Ringling circus. The menu is family-friendly, offering hamburgers, hot dogs, sandwiches, salads, and more.
Open Monday through Friday for lunch from 11 am to 2 pm and for Sunday brunch from 10:30 am to 2 pm.
Traveling with children can be challenging, but it can also be rewarding. These places where you can have family fun in Sarasota can help everyone have a great time during their trip.