As a child, I loved rolling in the surf off Michigan’s west coast. Not too long ago, a visit to a local beach in Sarasota carried me back to those memories. A remote beach near Siesta Key is a sweet spot with soaring surf, no crowds, and delicious air currents — Turtle Beach.
This beach came recommended by friends after I complained about the traffic jams inevitable during tourist season. A local told me about Turtle Beach south of Siesta Key. To get there, we passed through a charming village near Crescent Beach. It consists of a market, several shops selling surf gear, a few clothing stores, ice cream shops, kayak and bike rentals — typical fare for a beach enclave — and no chain stores. I felt like I had time traveled.
After passing lovely resorts and cottage rentals, we arrived at Turtle Beach. Across the street is Turtles on Little Sarasota Bay, so we stopped in for a lunch of mahi mahi and grouper sandwiches. The outdoor seating put us directly on a small bay with coconut palms listing behind us. The salty winds made for a perfect setting on an 80* day.
A short walk from the restaurant brought us to the lee side of beach — the sand a little browner than Siesta or Lido beaches — but it looked like home to me. After a sizable drop off, the waves gallumphed and retreated, bounced and shimmied. No boom boxes muffled he sounds of the ocean; no commerce interfered with the rhythms of the wind. I could have been a child of the 50’s sitting on the shores of Lake Michigan.
Walking back to our car in the late afternoon sun, I stopped to watch a game of horseshoes in progress — an apt ending to a day of nostalgia and tranquility.
The Sarasota Spectator
Our Sarasota Spectator is Betsy Miller, a retired high school teacher and college professor. Originally from Columbus, Betsy has fallen in love with the Gulf Coast of Florida, especially Sarasota. Blogging about the area has been a creative outlet for the writer, opening up an avenue of exploration. You may find the bon vivant enjoying happy hour at a tiki bar, shopping on historic Main Street, or seated at a concert or show at a local theater. Chances are you also might find her buried in a book on one of our beautiful beaches. Asked to give one word about her feelings for Sarasota, Betsy replied, “Smitten.”