Sarasota Bay Eco-tourism

Recreational Boating

Boating & Angling Guides

The following guides provide useful information for boaters using Sarasota and Manatee County waters. They also provide vital information to educate boaters about responsible use of waterways and protection of natural resources.

Find out more about recreational opportunities around Sarasota Bay.

Speed Zones

Speed zones are marked with signs and/or buoys that have an “International Orange” circle, which signifies the area is a regulated waterway. It is the boaters responsibility to read and follow the regulatory messages on these markers. If you don’t understand these markers you can learn about them from the resources below.

Florida’s Recreational Boating Requirements

Provides information on rules and requirements for boating such as life jackets, vessel lighting, accident reporting, speed restrictions, etc.

How You Can Protect Seagrass

Seagrass provides benefits for everyone. Learn more about the benefits and what you can do to help protect seagrass by downloading the Florida’s Seagrass Meadows pdf

Navigating Florida’s shallow waters can be a challenge for even the most experienced boater. With a little care, you can avoid damaging seagrass habitat (and your boat!) and avoid fines, fees and other costs associated with running aground. For more information visit

Clean MarinaFlorida’s Clean Marina Programs

Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has a series of Clean Marina Programs that raise awareness with marine facilities and boaters regarding environmentally friendly practices. Marinas, boatyards and marine retailers receive “clean” designations by implementing and maintaining a host of best management practices.

The Florida Clean Marina Program is a voluntary designation program demonstrating environmental stewardship. Participants receive assistance in implementing Best Management Practices through on-site and distance technical assistance, mentoring by other Clean Marinas and continuing education. To become designated as a Clean Marina, facilities must implement a set of environmental Best Management Practices (BMP) designed to protect Florida’s waterways. These BMP’s address critical environmental issues such as sensitive habitat, waste management, storm water control, spill prevention and emergency preparedness.

Thank you for supporting the local marinas that have been designated Clean Marinas by DEP.
Cannons Marina – Longboat Key – 941-383-1311
Crow’s Nest Marina – Venice – 941-484-7661
Galati Yacht Sales – Anna Maria Island – 941-778-0755
Gulf Harbor Marina – Nokomis – 941-488-7734
Hyatt Regency Marina – Sarasota – 941-812-4063
Longboat Key Moorings – Longboat Key – 941-383-8383
Marina Jack – Sarasota – 941-955-9488
Regatta Point Marina – Palmetto – 941-729-6021
Riviera Dunes Marina – Palmetto – 941-723-9595
Twin Dolphin Marina – Bradenton – 941-747-8300
The Venice Yacht Club – Venice – 941-488-7708

Boating is fun!

Recreational BoatingUnited States Power Squadrons

The United States Power Squadrons (USPS) is a non profit, educational organization dedicated to making boating safer and more enjoyable by teaching classes in seamanship, navigation and related subjects. Their members are boating families who contribute to their communities by promoting safe boating through education. USPS, America’s largest non-profit boating organization has some 45,000 members organized into 450 squadrons across the country.

Anna Maria Island Power Squadron
Phone: 941-792-0394

Manatee Sail & Power Squadron boat
Phone: 941-746-3368

Sarasota Power Squadron
Phone: 941-953-7565

Venice Sail & Power Squadron
Phone: 941-408-8591

For more information on public boating safety, seamanship, and navigation courses offered by U.S. Power Squadrons and U.S. Coast Guard auxiliaries in our area, call Boat U.S. toll-free at 1-800-336-BOAT.

Coast Guard

Your local Coast Guard Auxiliary offers a free boat inspection to advise boaters of state and federal safety requirements. Violations found during these courtesy exams will not be reported to authorities.

Paddling Guides

Eco-tourism kayak tripRegional Kayak & Canoe Suppliers

  • Almost Heaven: 941-504-6296
  • Florida Watersports: 941-798-3721
  • Beach Bums: 941-778-3316 (offering discount if you mention Bay Wise)
  • Economy Tackle: 941-922-9671
  • Silent Sports: 941-966-5477
  • Midnight Pass Bike and Kayak: 941-346-0891
  • Siesta Sports Rentals: 941-346-1797
  • Island Style Watersports: 941-954-1009

If your business would like to be added to this list please send your kayak/canoe rental info to