Posted on 2/8/2023

Nightlife on Anna Maria Island

Are you searching for the perfect place to unwind after a long day on the beaches of Anna Maria Island? Or, perhaps, you're looking for fun ways to shake up your typical island nightlife routine. Anna Maria Island (AMI) has a vibrant after-sundown scene you don't want to miss.

From waterside tiki bars to local seafood joints with live music, we have rounded up our favorite nighttime hot spots to ensure your next night out on the island is one that you won't forget anytime soon!

Anna Maria Island Specializes in the Laid-Back Party

No matter how you define it, Anna Maria Island is far from being a large-scale party island. While there are plenty of restaurants and bars to visit and live music to be seen, the atmosphere on the island is more laid-back than what some may expect from a party destination.

Anna Maria Island's beaches are calm and serene, with plenty of spots for visitors to relax and soak up some Florida sun. There are a handful of live music venues but there's not the wild nightlife scene you'd find in bigger cities like Tampa and St. Pete.

The Best Places For a Night Out on Anna Maria Island

The island is far from being a high-profile party destination. Still, it's perfect for those looking to escape life's hustle and bustle and unwind with cocktails (or mocktails) after a long day in the sun. In general, the vibe on Anna Maria Island is all about relaxation and taking it easy, and so is the nightlife.

While Downtown Anna Maria has many options for nightlife destinations, the ones listed below are located up and down this stunning barrier island, from Holmes Beach to Bradenton Beach and everything in between.Here are our recommendations for a night out on Anna Maria Island.

Anchor Inn

Photo Credit: Kucher Serhii
  • Good For: Dive Bar, Smokers, Bar Games
  • Address: 3007 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Anchor Inn
Located in Holmes Beach, this fun and local-feeling bar has everything you could ask for in a fun night out with friends. Play a game of pool, dance to your favorite jukebox tunes, or start a round of darts with your pals.

The island's staff is renowned as both attentive and very friendly, making this one of the best spots for Anna Maria Island nightlife.Be forewarned, however, that this bar is smoking-friendly, and the ventilation isn't the best. Also, it's cash only.

Bortell's Lounge

 Photo Credit: bortells
  • Good For: Watching the Game, Great Food, Dive Vibes
  • Address: 10002 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Bortellâs Lounge
This makeshift sports bar is one of the best places on the island to catch a game with a tap beer and a Fried Bird Sandwich near Anna Maria Island Beach. With its myriad of big-screen TVs and chill atmosphere, it's the perfect spot to kick back and relax as you cheer on your favorite team.

The food is seriously delicious, which may come as a surprise based on the vinyl-covered stools and dive bar ambiance. Do yourself a favor and order a BBQ Chicken Pizza!

The Doctor's Office

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Craft Cocktails, Upscale Vibes, Date Night
  • Address: 5312 Holmes Boulevard, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: The Doctorâs Office
If you're looking for something a bit more upscale, or perhaps you've got a date to impress, we can't recommend The Doctor's Office enough! The Doctor's Office is the place to go on your Anna Maria Island vacation if you're into craft cocktails.

Try the Painkiller for an upscale take on an island favorite. The food here also hits home, so save room for small plates or dessert if you're coming after dinner.

Hurricane Hanks

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Yummy Food, Craft Beer, Drinks, and Dinner
  • Address: 5346 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Hurricane Hanks

Hurricane Hanks is a longstanding popular hangout on AMI. Though it's more of a restaurant than a bar, you can easily extend your evening here until the restaurant closes while not battling loud music to having a conversation.

That being said, it's got super fun vibes and friendly staff with delicious cocktails and icy cold beer.

The Bridge Tender Inn

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Comfortable Ambiance, Delicious Food, Live Music
  • Address: 135 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: The Bridge Tender Inn
Located on the southern tip of Anna Maria Island, in Bradenton Beach, The Bridge Tender Inn is a longstanding favorite among both locals and tourists alike.

This is a great option if you want to combine a night out with a delicious meal at a lively American eatery. Blackened Fish Tacos and the Doggie Burger (a hamburger stuffed with yellow rice) are local favorites.

Check the schedule for trivia, bingo, and live music options!

Sandbar Seafood & Spirits

Photo Credit: vsl
  • Good For: Drinks and Dinner, Beachfront, Sunset Views
  • Address: 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Sandbar Seafood & Spirits
Sandbar Seafood & Spirits is another popular restaurant on AMI, where you're able to kick back and relax without necessarily dining with them. It's a great option for those who want to sip on a cocktail after dinner with their toes in the sand, as it's right on the beach.

You can't beat the views here, given its prime seaside location. Though it isn't open very late (till 10:00 PM on weekends and 9:00 PM on weeknights), it's the perfect place to kickstart your night out on AMI.

The Kokonut Hut

Photo Credit;
  • Good For: Tropical Drinks, Sunset Views, and Beachfront Nightlife
  • Address: 900 Gulf Drive N, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: The Kokonut Hut
This tiki-style bar is a great beachfront option for late-night cocktails and fun with friends. The bartenders are skilled and friendly, creating the perfect combination for a good night out.

The Grouper Rueben and Island Shrimp Po' Boy are entree favorites. The Kokonut Hut is also open for breakfast; in case you imbibed too much the night before, it's an excellent choice for a boozy brunch.

The Ugly Grouper

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Great Food, Happy Hour, and Fun Ambiance
  • Address: 5704 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: The Ugly Grouper
The Ugly Grouper is a local favorite, and it's easy to see why. With their extensive seafood and burger menu, delicious drinks that pack a punch, and friendly service staff, you can't go wrong.

The Happy Hour options can't be beaten, plus they have live music on select nights. Check the schedule to see if someone's performing while you're in town! If not, The Ugly Grouper offers a wide variety of bar games to keep you and your friends or family having fun all evening.

Island Time Bar & Grill

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Beachy Vibes, Laid-Back Atmosphere, Outdoor Seating, Live Music
  • Address: 111 Gulf Drive S, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Island Time Bar & Grill
This open-air bar is ideal for those wishing to soak in every last second of island life before heading back home. With a nightly live music schedule, this spot is perfect for grabbing some tacos and soaking in the ambiance.

It can get pretty loud, meaning it's also perfect for those looking for quintessential party vibes on AMI.

Freckled Fin Irish Pub

Photo Credit:
  • Good For: Beachy Vibes, Live Music
  • Address: 5337 Gulf Dr, Holmes Beach, Anna Maria Island
  • Website: Freckled Fin Irish Pub
A typical American-Irish pub, Freckled Fin's is a great stop if you're not looking for something too formal and are leaning more toward pub vibes than a sit-down restaurant. They do offer a full menu, however, with American and Irish fare.

They have plenty of TVs to watch important games, occasional karaoke, and live music some nights. It's definitely a recipe for a fun night out.

AMI is at its Best When The Sun Goes Down

Anna Maria Island isn't just beautiful and relaxing during the day; it comes alive at night with various entertainment, drinks, and good vibes.

Whether you want to enjoy a peaceful beachy evening or go on a wild trip to a dive bar, AMI has something for everyone. If you're looking for live music, a dance floor, craft cocktails, and amazing views, then AMI is absolutely the place to be.

Book your beachside vacation rental near one of these great after-sunset destinations.

Previous Beach Flag Colors: A Beach-Goer's Guide 11 Best Waterfront Restaurants on Anna Maria Island Next