Posted on 1/22/2021

Visit The Best Piers on Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island is home to three prominent, public piers. Ideal for everything from people watching to fishing, the piers also make for prime spots to catch a breathtaking Gulf Coast sunset. Anglers will revel in the ample supply of snapper, jack crevalle, sheepshead, and black drum that linger near the Anna Maria Island piers, bridges, and other structures. 

Each of the piers in this area is worth a visit to sample its unique offerings and views. Don't forget your camera, because you're sure to capture plenty of epic sights to share with friends and family back home!

Rod and Reel Pier

Photo Credit: Carol VanHook via Flickr CC2.0

875 N. Shore Dr., Anna Maria Island, FL

Located on the north end of the island, The Rod and Reel Pier measures 350 feet in length. This charmingly rustic, wooden pier extends over the sparkling turquoise waters of Tampa Bay in the City of Anna Maria. Perfect for enjoying a genuine "Old Florida" setting against the backdrop of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge with boats of all kinds sailing to and fro on the horizon. If you're lucky, you may even catch sight of a passing dolphin or manatee!

At the end of the pier, the catch of the day beckons hungry pier-goers at The Rod and Reel Pier Restaurant, an AMI treasure since 1947. With two levels of indoor and outdoor dining areas overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, it's the best place on this side of the island for fresh seafood and Key Lime Pie.

This is a great spot to drop a line for flounder, grouper, mackerel, and more. If you're planning to fish in the waters surrounding AMI, be sure to get a local fishing license, available at any area bait shop.

The Anna Maria City Pier

Photo Credit: jcsullivan24 via Flickr CC2.0

100 S. Bay Blvd., Anna Maria Island, FL

Considered one of the top attractions in Manatee County, this historic pier is more than a century-old. The 700-foot-long structure is situated at the north end of the island off Pine Avenue, just south of Bayfront Park. It's a popular spot for catching watercolor sunrises and dramatic sunsets over the Gulf of Mexico, along with breathtaking views of Tampa Bay and the Sunshine Skyway Bridge connecting Bradenton and Sarasota.

As a favorite hangout of pelicans and other migratory birds and marine life, it's also a great spot for wildlife spotting. A patient photographer can truly capture unparalleled scenes from the City Pier. A landmark in the city of Anna Maria, the pier is a haven for anglers.

The longest of the island's piers, the City Pier saw extensive damage from Hurricane Irma in 2017, leading the original 1911 pier to be demolished by the city in 2018. After a nearly three-year rebuild, the new Anna Maria City Pier opened on June 19, 2020. The City Pier Grill and Bait Shop are now open as well.


Bridge Street Pier

Photo Credit: secondhanddogsmom via Instagram

200 Bridge St., Bradenton Beach, FL

For a brilliant mix of nostalgic and modern Florida, the Bridge Street Pier is the place to be. Also known as the Bradenton Beach Pier, the Bridge Street Pier was built in the 1920s on the southern end/ bay side of the island. The pier was once part of a bridge that served as the only access point to the island south of the mainland village of Cortez.

The Bridge Street Pier and Bridge Street serve as the shopping and dining hub of Anna Maria Island. Many tours and watersport excursions depart near the pier as well. The pier area features a host of recreational opportunities and modern amenities, including a pavilion, benches, clock tower, and playground, and the best shopping on the island.

Plan your visit around a meal or two to take advantage of stellar original eateries and ice cream parlors - like the Anna Maria Island Oyster Bar. This local favorite offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and a weekend brunch, set against spellbinding views of Sarasota Bay and the Intracoastal Waterway.

The Anna Maria Island piers are conveniently located to all points of our island community. Use your GPS or feel free to ask us for help in locating the one nearest to your vacation rental, and consider that your pier-hopping start point!

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