A Fun Look at Traveling by Segway: Where This Little Vehicle Came From

You might not think of a Segway ride as being especially exhilarating until you actually get on one and cruise through a scenic destination like Anna Maria Island.

Segways are convenient, efficient, economic, accommodating, and all-around fun to hop on. If you want to ease some of the parking frustrations of your vacation and access all the little parts of the island from your Anna Maria Island vacation rental, a Segway is the way to go.

people on segways
Photos from Pixabay

Introducing….the Segway!

The Segway was brought to market in 2001 after a few years of testing and perfection with the official name the Segway HT, for human transporter. The name was subsequently altered just a bit to Segway PT (personal transporter), and it grabbed hold of a market that hardly existed at the turn of the century.


The Segway is built around its stand-up weight shifting technology. Users stand atop a panel with two wheels, hold onto a top frame bar, and lean left and right to alter the course of the transporter. The computer gyroscopes read the rider and safely transport them by roadside or sidewalk.

“The Little Vehicle That Could”

The popular personal transporter was invented by Dean Kamen under Segway Inc. Like a number of popular products, the name of the company and the original product became synonymous with any product of its kind.

Now, most people refer to any stand-on personal transporters with that specific design as a segway, despite the fact that other types exist from different companies entirely.

None have achieved the market penetration of the Segway and its defining self-balancing technology.

The Segway Today

Despite initial acclaim and attention, the Segway had a hard time elevating itself beyond a novelty item for many. The initial market price of $6,000 was a bit more than many could manage and large urban areas had a difficult time assessing the status of the Segway as an official motor vehicle, a manual transport bicycle, or some other designation.

Nowadays, Segways and other similar products thrive as efficient tools for getting around a city or tourist town.

They are common items for renting, where customers take them on local beaches, through walking trails, and along major tourist locations where vehicle parking and access are not always readily available – such as in the case of Anna Maria Island.

We personally see many clients stay at our Anna Maria Island pet-friendly rentals and explore the island without ever using public transportation or renting a car – and Segways are one of those alternative transportation options that truly work!

Segways are commonly used here on island tours. Visitors can get a glimpse of major attractions and places to see as they navigate around while experiencing the freshness of the ocean air and the pleasant weather. They are also popular with city officials and the police.

Plan Your Vacation

Go on a fun Segway-bound adventure while visiting Anna Maria Island. Take a look at our rentals on Anna Maria Island for a perfect place to stay while enjoying it all.

The Island’s Two Top Providers

Segways are wonderfully effective for touring the island or just getting around. The island has two top providers who offer affordable rentals and tours.

Zegway by the Bay in Holmes Beach specializes in one to two-hour tours around the island. Tours can hit Bean Point, Historic Bridge Street, the AMI Pier, Coquina Beach, Leffis Key, and more. Prices are reasonable, and 4 tours are offered each day with up to 7 people per tour.

Alternatively, you can visit Segs By the Sea, located right in the Historic Bridge Street area. The guide likes to take guests along the Coquina Trail, especially during sunset, to see the glistening Gulf waters under the sun.

They provide both guided and non-guided tours. You can receive group specials and choose from custom tour routes that cover Longboat Key, the Cortez Fishing Village, Holmes Beach, and more.

Realize the fun of the Segway on your island vacation and find out what the hype was all about for yourself. This unique vehicle is a clever way to transport yourself across the island as if you found a cheat sheet to the traffic.