Parks

Venetian Waterway Park offers a 10 mile trail along both banks of the Intracoastal Waterway where joggers, bikers and strollers with four legged friends can travel all the way to Caspersen Beach.

Legacy Trail Totaling more than 12 miles in length the trail runs from just south of the City of Sarasota to Venice following the former CSX railroad corridor. The trail provides 15 areas to stop, rest, learn about its history or just enjoy the natural beauty. The rest stops include 7 trailheads which offer access points with free parking. The trailheads are located at Potter Park in Sarasota, Bay Street Park and Oscar Scherer State Park in Osprey, Laurel Park in Laurel, Nokomis Park in Nokomis, Patriots Park and the historic Venice Train Depot in Venice. In addition to the trailheads, users will find eight rest station areas that offer restroom faculties and places to sit and relax.

Myakka River State Park With 57 square miles of wetlands, prairies and woodlands, Myakka is popular for hiking, fishing, camping, and wildlife observation. Suspended 25 feet above the ground is a wooden walkway extending 100 feet through the hammock canopy. There’s a tower soaring 74 feet in the air providing spectacular views of treetops, wetlands and prairie/hammock. This is where you can look down on eagles, hawks, vultures and the tops of live oaks and palms. There’s also fourteen miles of the Wild and Scenic Myakka River flowing through so, bring your kayak or canoe. It’s possible to rent one from the Myakka Outpost as well.

Oscar Scherer State Park Fifteen miles of trails through natural habitat provide opportunities for hiking, bicycling, and wildlife viewing. This park is one of the best places to see our Florida scrub-jay, a threatened species found only in Florida. Canoeists and kayakers will enjoy paddling along South Creek, a black-water stream that eventually flows into the Gulf of Mexico. Rentals are also available.

Ongoing Group Rides & Jogging Meets:

Cycling: Enjoy all levels of group training with morning, evening and weekend rides from Bradenton to Port Charlotte. More Info

Jogging: The Manasota Track Club has regular training runs from Englewood to Venice and Sarasota with morning evening and weekend runs for all levels. More Info

Other interesting rides:

Boca Grande Bike Path – Length: 6.50 miles Surface: Asphalt

Visitors come to Gasparilla Island for its soothing beaches, upscale eateries, shopping and the history in and around Boca Grande. You, too, can sample these amenities up and down this paved 6.5-mile trail.

Parking and Trail Access – To access the northern trailhead from Port Charlotte, take State Route 776 south to SR 771, which accesses the island via the Boca Grande Causeway (toll). The trailhead is on the left, just past the causeway.

To reach the Range Light Beach access, follow the above directions onto the island, but continue on SR 771 south. The access point is on the right, within sight of the old lighthouse.

Cape Haze Pioneer Trail

Length: 6.80 miles Surface: Asphalt

When you walk, run, skate or bike the nearly 7-mile Cape Haze Pioneer Trail, you’re tracing the line that once serviced Florida’s early phosphate industry and also moved people, livestock and locally grown crops to waiting steamships in Boca Grande.

There are plans to extend the trail south to the Gulf and connect it with the Boca Grande Bike Path.

Parking and Trail Access – To reach the Robert and Anne Mercer Trailhead from Port Charlotte, take State Route 776 west to SR 771 south. The trailhead lies on the right about a block south of the intersection.

To reach the Rotonda Boulevard East trailhead, follow the above directions but continue south on SR 771 about 2 miles, then turn right on Rotonda. The trailhead is on the left.

To reach the R. David Johnson Trailhead, follow the directions to the Rotonda trailhead but continue south on SR 771 just more than 2 miles to Harness Road; turn right and continue to the trailhead.