Englewood, Florida is a lovely Gulf coastal city stretching throughout Sarasota and Charlotte Counties, easily accessible as a day trip from nearby Tampa or Fort Myers. The gorgeous city is known for its unspoiled, uncrowded beaches, which offer a less-trafficked alternative to more popular area tourist spots.
Visitors can explore natural wonders at sites such as Cedar Point Environmental Park or Myakka State Forest, which serve as prime fishing and wildlife watching spots in the region. Important indigenous artifacts are showcased at Indian Mound Park, while wetland boardwalks offer sightseeing opportunities at Lemon Bay Park and Environmental Center.
1.Stump Pass Beach State Park
Stump Pass Beach State Park is a charming Florida state park in Englewood, stretching along three barrier islands within the city's Gulf of Mexico coastline. The park is known as one of Charlotte County's best fishing spots, providing opportunities for anglers to catch a variety of prize species throughout the year. A mile of gorgeous secluded beachfront is open year-round for swimming and sunbathing, providing stunning views of the pristine Gulf waters. Shelling opportunities are excellent throughout the winter months. A hiking trail at the park passes through five natural habitats, letting parkgoers spot gopher tortoises, least terns, snowy egrets, and frigatebirds. A kayak and paddleboat launch is offered on the park's east end. Ranger-led nature walks are offered throughout the winter months, along with walks for spotting turtles.
900 Gulf Blvd, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-964-0375
2.Manasota Key Beach
Manasota Key Beach is one of Englewood's most beautiful public beaches, originally developed and expanded for public use in the early 1960s. Today, the spacious sandy beach provides an excellent alternative to more trafficked beach areas at nearby Lido Beach and Siesta Key, flanked by gorgeous beach houses and quaint rental homes. Island visitors can stroll along the beach's beautiful Gulf of Mexico coastline and enjoy excellent opportunities for swimming, fishing, and sunbathing throughout the year. A boat launch provides opportunities for canoeing and kayaking, while sand volleyball courts are open for community-use pickup games. A lovely boardwalk makes for a picturesque site for beachfront strolling.
8570 Manasota Key Rd, Englewood, FL 34223
Englewood Beach is one of Florida's most beautiful Gulf of Mexico beaches, one of four public-access beaches located along scenic Manasota Key. The lively beach, which is also commonly referred to as Middle Beach, offers ample parking and beachfront space year-round despite its prime location and heavy visitorship during peak tourist seasons. Family-friendly amenities abound, including a children's playground, day-use picnic pavilions, and sand volleyball and basketball courts available for community pickup games. Spacious boardwalks make great spots for strolling and watching dolphins, manatees, and pelicans along the beach's shoreline. Water sports enthusiasts can rent WaveRunners or embark on parasailing tours offered by a number of area companies.
Manasota Key, FL 34223
4.Blind Pass Beach
Blind Pass Beach, also commonly referred to as Middle Beach, is a romantic Sarasota County beach stretching more than 3,000 feet along the region's beautiful Gulf of Mexico coastline. The spacious 66-acre beachfront park offers both Gulf and bay water access, perfect for stretching out with family and soaking up the sun during the warmer months. A lovely nature hiking trail meanders through the park's mangrove forest, while a fishing dock provides comfortable seating for anglers. Day-use picnic sites provide spaces for enjoying lunch, while a beach house offers public restroom and shower facilities. Visitors should note that no lifeguards are staffed on duty at the beach and should plan accordingly when swimming with young or novice swimmers.
7770 Manasota Key Rd, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-861-5000
5.Lemon Bay Park and Environmental Center
Lemon Bay Park and Environmental Center is a gorgeous 210-acre nature park in Englewood, preserving beautiful black mangrove forest, scrubby and pine flatwood, and mangrove fringe habitats along the city's Gulf of Mexico shoreline. Park visitors can enjoy 1.7 miles of stunning Gulf shoreline, open to the public for sunbathing and day-use picnic access. A canoe and kayak launch lets visitors take directly to the waters, while an eight-mile network of nature trails showcase interpretive signage on the region's flora and fauna. Wetland boardwalks also meander throughout the park's southern end, providing hiking access for visitors with mobility concerns. Other attractions include a butterfly garden and a public-access nature center hosting educational environmental programming throughout the year.
570 Bay Park Blvd, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-861-5000
6.Englewood Farmers Market
Englewood Farmers Market has been held each Thursday morning between October and May since 2011, located along Englewood's downtown Dearborn Street in the heart of the city's historic district. The market serves as the primary showcase for the region's farmers and producers, who sell seasonal produce and fresh baked goods and pantry items each week. Fresh wild-caught fish from Florida fishers is also sold, along with a wide variety of international and artisan food items. Green space vendors sell native and exotic flowers, plants, and trees, while local artisans and crafters showcase their wares at the market's artisan mart. Live music performances are showcased each week, along with food trucks and vendors offering a sample of the region's culinary scene.
349 W Dearborn St, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-445-9209
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7.Cedar Point Environmental Park
Cedar Point Environmental Park is the premiere environmental park of Charlotte County, located along Englewood's beautiful Lemon Bay. The 115-acre peninsular park, which is operated by the Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center, was originally opened to the public in 1998 after six years of development. Today, visitors can enjoy guided nature walks and special event programming at the facility throughout the year. Park lands protect a wide variety of natural habitats, including nesting sites for American bald eagles. The historic Cookie House, constructed in 1931, preserves Florida's first full-time marine station and laboratory, which was moved to the peninsula in 2006. Other attractions include a visitor center selling local honey and offering exhibits on the region's flora and fauna.
2300 Placida Rd, Englewood, FL 34224, Phone: 941-475-0769
8.Indian Mound Park
Indian Mound Park, also known as Paulsen Point, preserves the traditional home of the ancient Manasota indigenous culture, who occupied the region between 1000 B.C. and 1350 A.D. Throughout their tenure at the site, the Manasota were known for their ceremonial burial practices and ceramics making, which was crafted in the Englewood Plain style. During the 1960s, archaeological excavations throughout the Englewood region uncovered a plethora of Manasota artifacts, including quartz arrowheads and copper beads indicating trading with indigenous groups as far away as Georgia. Today, park visitors can view preserved ceremonial mounds and indigenous artifacts at the park, which is part of the Trail of Florida's Indian Heritage. The park also provides direct access to the shores of beautiful Lemon Bay.
210 Winson Ave, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-861-5000
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9.Lemon Bay Playhouse
© Lemon Bay Playhouse
Lemon Bay Playhouse is the premiere community theater of Englewood, originally established in April of 1987 as a nonprofit organization. The playhouse, which is housed within a renovated storefront facility in Englewood's downtown district, produces seven theatrical productions each season, including several comedies, a mystery, and a drama production. Visitors can attend performances throughout the year of renowned plays such as Play On, Tuesdays with Morrie, and Love Letters. An annual Lemon Drops Summer Camp is hosted by theater professionals, open to participants of all ages and offering a chance to appear in a final camp participant theatrical production. Reader's Theater performances also showcase staged readings of plays, serving as a platform for new works by regional and national playwrights.
96 W Dearborn St, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-475-6756
10.Stump Pass Marina
© Stump Pass Marina
Stump Pass Marina is a gorgeous full-service marina in Englewood, located along the waters of the Gulf of Mexico's Intracoastal Waterway portion. The marina, which is located at Waterway exit 17A, offers boat storage and rentals, along with a full marina store selling bait and fuel for anglers looking to take to the Gulf's pristine waters for fishing. More than 300 boat slips are available in total, with two forklifts offered for water service. A full-service tiki-style restaurant serves up delicious coastal fare such as smoked salmon filets, Caribbean jerk chicken platters, and jumbo Gulf fried shrimp baskets. Clever bar bites are served up at the restaurant's bar, along with frozen tropical drinks, creative cocktails, and shaken martinis.
260 Maryland Ave, Englewood, FL 34224, Phone: 941-697-2206
11.Myakka State Forest
Myakka State Forest stretches for 2.5 miles along the beautiful Myakka River, which has been designated as an Outstanding Florida Water body for its pristine waters and unique ecosystems. The forest, which is jointly managed by the state of Florida and the Florida Forest Service, is a prime spot for bird and wildlife watching in the Englewood region, home to a wide variety of gorgeous wading bird species. More than 40 miles of nature trails meander throughout the forest, showcasing mesic flatwood populated with beautiful slash and longleaf pine trees. Visitor recreational opportunities include a canoe launch, bicycle and equestrian trails, and a pet-friendly park area for enjoying the natural scenery with well-behaved four-legged friends.
2000 S River Rd, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-460-1333
12.The Englewood Area Historical Museum
© The Englewood Area Historical Museum
The Englewood Area Historical Museum was originally opened to the public in 2015, showcasing the rich cultural and social history of the Charlotte County area. The museum, which moved to its current location at the historic Lampp House in 2018, is overseen by the Southwest Historical Organization of Resources and Education along with the Friends of the Englewood Archives. Visitors can explore one of the city's oldest historic houses and view exhibits and artifacts connected to the region's indigenous, pioneer-era, and 20th-century history. An historic old timers' tour is offered by museum docents throughout the week, elaborating on the city's past, present, and future. At the museum's gift shop, visitors can purchase books by local authors or pioneer crafting kits for young history buffs.
604 W Perry St, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-208-5942
13.Charlotte Harbor Tours
© Charlotte Harbor Tours
Charlotte Harbor Tours is one of West Central Florida's premiere boat touring companies, led by Captain Ross aboard the company's beautiful 2007 Bonnie Joy Robalo touring boat. Unlike many other touring charter companies in the area, all tours are private for visitor groups, led one-on-one by experienced tour guides. Fantastic views of the Gulf of Mexico coastline are offered aboard all tours, which are narrated in vivid detail, elaborating on historical facts and area urban legends. Tour participants are welcome to bring their own food and beverages aboard tours, though visitors should note that wine and glass containers are not permitted on board. Morning, afternoon, and sunset cruises are available throughout the week.
7080 Placida Rd, Placida, FL 33946, Phone: 941-830-1972
14.Farlow's On The Water
© Farlow's On The Water
Farlow's On The Water is an award-winning Gulf waterfront restaurant in Englewood, originally opened in 2003 by namesake owners Laurie and Keith Farlow. The restaurant, which is located along the banks of beautiful Ainger Creek, offers indoor and outdoor seating throughout the year and serves up delectable Southern-style cuisine at lunch and dinner. High-quality fresh seafood and fish entrees change daily, served up alongside standard specialties such as Southern-style shrimp and grits, St. Croix seafood pies, and house specialty fish tacos prepared with homemade tropical kiwi pico de gallo. Mouthwatering steaks, spare ribs, and chicken entrees are also available, along with delicious appetizers such as Caribbean-style chicken wings, Southern peach quesadillas, and tuna nachos. A full menu of handcrafted specialty drinks and martinis are served up, along with frozen tropical drinks and full wine and craft beer menus.
2080 S McCall Rd, Englewood, FL 34224, Phone: 941-474-5343
© Howard's Restaurant
Howard's Restaurant is a family-operated homestyle restaurant in Englewood, owned by brothers-in-law Ken White and Bryan Domian. The charming surf-and-turf-style restaurant, which originally opened to the public in 1955, serves up high-quality coastal entrees at reasonable prices, striving to cultivate a family-friendly, comfortable atmosphere for all guests. All entrees are prepared to order, made with wild-caught local fish and USDA Choice prime steaks. Excellent sea entrees include deluxe captain's platters piled high with haddock, scallops, and shrimp, while land entrees range from sirloin steaks and baby-back ribs to classic Italian entrees such as chicken parmesan and homestyle lasagna. An extensive wine menu is complemented by a craft cocktail list and a selection of national craft macrobrews.
70 N Indiana Ave, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-473-0171
16.Vino Loco Gourmet
© Vino Loco Gourmet
Vino Loco Gourmet has been voted as Englewood's best wine restaurant, located within the heart of beautiful historic Old Englewood Village. The restaurant, which is helmed by restaurateur Joyce Colmar, has been acclaimed in national publications such as Coastal Living and Harbor Style for its high-quality wine and tapas selections. Diners can pair more than 350 fine international wine varieties with their choice of gourmet tapas offerings, ranging from hummus or charcuterie boards to Spanish-style delicacies such as shrimp chueca, bocadilla serrano, and albondigas. Many wine offerings are affordable for diners on all budgets, offering chances to sample the best of the world's wine offerings at reasonable prices. Takeout wines are also available from the restaurant's wine cooler, which can special order wines for pickup with advance notice.
20 W Dearborn St, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-473-8466
© Mango Bistro
Mango Bistro is an award-winning restaurant in Englewood helmed by restaurateurs Ricardo Ruggiero and Marie Laforge, originally opened to the public in 2008. The restaurant strives to emphasize environmental responsibility in all of its operations, minimizing plastic waste and recycling as much restaurant waste as possible, making it a great choice for diners looking to minimize their carbon footprint. Delectable global fare blends French and Brazilian cuisine influences, infusing unique European and modern American twists. At breakfast, diners can choose from a variety of creative paninis and crepes, paired with a full menu of coffee shop fare. At dinner, gourmet burritos are available in flavors ranging from chipotle shrimp to Thai chicken. Each Friday and Saturday evening, the restaurant hosts live world music performances, including bossa nova, flamenco, and rumba music sessions.
301 W Dearborn St, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-681-3500
18.Nicola's Italian Kitchen
© Nicola's Italian Kitchen
Nicola's Italian Kitchen has been voted as Englewood's best Italian restaurant for more than 25 years running, opened by Italian immigrants Nicola and Tina de Fazio, who moved to the United States in the mid-1960s. The restaurant, which was originally opened to the public in 1965 in Connecticut, moved to its current Englewood location in 1990 after the couple's relocation to Florida. Today, it serves up high-quality classic Italian entrees at lunch and dinner, all prepared from scratch according to family recipes. House specialties include eggplant parmesan, baked stuffed manicotti, chicken marsala, and frutti di mare. Excellent pasta dishes are also served up throughout the day, ranging from homestyle spaghetti puttanesca to classic meat and ricotta lasagna.
8647, 4343 S Access Rd, Englewood, FL 34224, Phone: 941-474-6195
© fred goldstein/stock.adobe.com
Catania's Winery is one of West Central Florida's premiere wineries, located near Englewood's Gulf of Mexico coastline. The high-quality winery, which is owned and operated by John and Margherita Catania, opened to the public in 2011. Today, it crafts full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc varietals, which are produced on site at the company's Englewood winery facility. Tastings are offered Wednesday through Saturday afternoons or by appointment for guests ages 21 and older, detailing the winemaking process. Winery visitors can also purchase fine imported Italian olive oils and a wide array of winemaking and coffeemaking products, including items for at-home wine production.
524 Paul Morris Dr # B, Englewood, FL 34223, Phone: 941-475-7553
19 Best Things to Do in Englewood, Florida
- Stump Pass Beach State Park, Photo: Mosto/stock.adobe.com
- Manasota Key Beach, Photo: Mosto/stock.adobe.com
- Englewood Beach, Photo: Evelyn/stock.adobe.com
- Blind Pass Beach, Photo: scottevers7/stock.adobe.com
- Lemon Bay Park and Environmental Center, Photo: Norm/stock.adobe.com
- Englewood Farmers Market, Photo: MinDof/stock.adobe.com
- Cedar Point Environmental Park, Photo: Norm/stock.adobe.com
- Indian Mound Park, Photo: naka/stock.adobe.com
- Lemon Bay Playhouse, Photo: Lemon Bay Playhouse
- Stump Pass Marina, Photo: Stump Pass Marina
- Myakka State Forest, Photo: Edelweiss086/stock.adobe.com
- The Englewood Area Historical Museum, Photo: The Englewood Area Historical Museum
- Charlotte Harbor Tours, Photo: Charlotte Harbor Tours
- Farlow's On The Water, Photo: Farlow's On The Water
- Howard's Restaurant, Photo: Howard's Restaurant
- Vino Loco Gourmet, Photo: Vino Loco Gourmet
- Mango Bistro, Photo: Mango Bistro
- Nicola's Italian Kitchen, Photo: Nicola's Italian Kitchen
- Catania's Winery, Photo: fred goldstein/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: Richard/stock.adobe.com