3 Fun Day Trips Close to Anna Maria Island

Before you check into your choice of Anna Maria Island vacation rentals – or after you get there and need a get-away from Anna Maria Island for the day – there are some nearby tourist destinations that you should check out.

All three (SeaWorld Orlando, Legoland, and Busch Gardens) are fun for the whole family and offer the chance to experience a great day trip while staying on AMI.

SeaWorld Orlando

SeaWorld Orlando plays host to a beautiful array of ocean creatures, as well as putting on some spectacular shows and having some fun rides. SeaWorld, which opened in 1973, has expanded over the years. Now, it is chock full of attractions that both you and your kids can enjoy.

Rides at the park include Infinity Falls (which teaches an important lesson regarding fresh-water conservation), Journey to Atlantis (a hybrid roller coaster ride and water flume ride), the Kraken (the park’s sole floorless roller coaster, which goes up over 150 feet high), Mako (named for one of the speediest sharks on the planet), and the Wild Arctic (which ends with you being greeted by harbor seals, beluga whales, and walruses).

You can also visit Sesame Street, which is brand-new for 2019. This area of the park has attractions that include Slimey’s Slider, Elmo’s Choo Choo Train, and Abby’s Flower Tower. All of these attractions are exciting for kids, but adults can enjoy them and even reminisce about their own childhoods.

Of course, Sky Tower (which opened with the park in 1973) is a ‘must’. You can look out over Orlando from 400 feet above the ground and experience a gorgeous panoramic view.

Don’t forget to take in a show or two! You can watch nine dolphins swim with their trainers during Dolphin Days or catch killer whales doing stunts in One Ocean. Beware, you might get wet if you’re sitting up front. Pets Ahoy is perfect for animal lovers (including those of you who are booking Anna Maria pet-friendly vacation rentals) since it showcases talented dogs, ducks, cats, and more. Finally, Sea Lion High: The New Class depicts sea lions Seamore and Clyde going to school to get their diplomas.

dolphin at seaworld by anna maria island
Photo from Shutterstock


Your kids will thank you for taking them to Legoland. This theme park and resort has everything your kids could ask for. First off, there is a water park, which includes the Build-a-Raft River, an Ice Cream Hut, cabana rentals, the Joker Soaker play area, and the LEGO Wave Pool. All provide great ways to cool off on hot summer days.

Then, you have regular rides. You can hop aboard the AQUAZONE Wave Racers, attend the Ford (or Ford Jr.) Driving School, ride the NINJAGO ride or hop aboard Mia’s Riding Adventure. Kids of all ages love the Grand Carousel, and The Dragon is a ride that is thrilling for the whole family.

There are a variety of shows you can catch, including a 4D Theater, a live water ski show, and The LEGO City Brick Builders. When you get hungry, you can check out an array of restaurants and snack vendors. Burger Kitchen serves up some delicious bites, and adults might enjoy the Panini Grill. There’s also Taco Everyday, Pepper & Roni’s Pizza Stop, and Kingdom Cones, among others.

Busch Gardens

It’s hard to visit Florida without wanting to visit Busch Gardens. This is a great location for families since it has something for everyone. Roller coaster fanatics will delight in the newest ride, the Tigris, which will launch you backward and forward, sending you into an inverted roll at over 60 mph, 150 feet above the ground.

There’s also Florida’s first family spin roller coaster, Cobra’s Curse, the 335-foot freestanding drop tower known as Falcon’s Fury, the Congo River Rapids, a Serengeti Express, and the Sesame Street Safari of Fun play area’s Air Grover. A new hybrid coaster is under construction and will be open in 2020.

Plan Your Visit

Each of our rentals is uniquely designed and is stocked full of all the amenities you’d expect from your vacation property, like high-speed wireless internet, convenient parking, fully equipped kitchens, and more. Our properties are also centrally located while still remaining residential to give you your privacy. What more could you ask for? Contact us today to book your Anna Maria Island rental today!

If you want to skip the lines, you can buy a Quick Queue package, and you can also buy a single-day photo package to help you preserve the memories you’ll make at Busch Gardens.

Once you’ve gotten tired out from all the rides and safaris, you can grab some grub from one of the many pubs and restaurants. The Brew Club is a favorite for adults, and if you love to barbecue, then head to Zambia Smokehouse. The Serengeti Overlook Pub, Garden Gate Café, and Dragon Fire Grill & Pub are also some top eateries in the park.

These three parks make for enthralling day trips while you’re staying on Anna Maria Island. Just remember, they’re constantly packed with park-goers, so you will have crowds to contend with. But you know and we know it is totally worth it!