In the Sarasota and Tampa Bay area, we’re blessed to have so many areas to go stand up paddle boarding. In this post, we’re going to give you five of our favorite areas to SUP Sarasota and Tampa Bay.
South Lido Beach
Here you’ll want to get there early, as it’s filled with kayak and SUP rental businesses. But what a beautiful spot. There are several mangrove tunnel trails filled with fish and native birds. The trails take about an hour, and you need to watch the tides so you don’t become stuck. But you can also get out into Sarasota Bay and explore that area too, it’s a beautiful area.
Launch your SUP then park your car. After paddling for three miles, catch a glimpse of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge through the Manatee River. Here the possibilities are almost endless. Once you exit the Preserve, you’re in the River and there the paddle can just keep going for as long as you’re comfortable. There’s plenty of fish and wildlife, and if you’re lucky you can even see dolphins or manatees.
Just across from Robinson Preserve is Emerson Point Preserve. There is an official launching point which places you in a beautiful mangrove tunnel exiting into the Terra Ceia Aquatic Preserve. Here too you need to watch the tides. But this is another location with endless possibilities. The more experienced you are, the further you can explore.
Fort Desoto Park
This is the perfect escape with crystal clear water on clear calm days. Launch right from the mangroves. Paddle near the shoreline, or cross and head to the little island across the bay. There’s beautiful white sand beaches, and plenty of wildlife to see.
Weedon Island has so much to offer. There is a launch site, plenty of mangrove islands to explore which create channels, and tunnels. The water is shallow, and there’s so many fish, making it a popular fishing site too. From dolphins, to manatees, sting rays, birds and all kinds of fish, you’re sure to see something!