The Bradenton Herald (Sunday) - - Front Page - BY SARA NEALEIGH

The travel web­site Fodors has rec­om­mended Anna Maria Is­land as be­ing among the best beach towns.

With more than 8,000 miles of shore­line in Florida, it can be dif­fi­cult to pick the best spots in the sand.

Whether you pre­fer the beaches of the Pan­han­dle, West Coast or East Coast of Florida, each beach is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent and spe­cial.

But there are some that are just plain hid­den gems, and if you’ve ever been to Anna Maria Is­land, you know those beaches and oth­ers around the Tampa Bay area would qual­ify for that des­ig­na­tion.

Fodors, a travel re­source web­site, high­lighted 11 “Un­der-the-Radar” Florida beach towns to visit this win­ter. Three Tampa Bay-area beaches made the list, in­clud­ing Anna Maria Is­land.

Com­ing in at No. 7, “Anna Maria Is­land ac­tiv­i­ties are as good as Florida’s Gulf Coast beach life gets,” Fodors noted. Restau­rants, beach rentals and quiet res­i­den­tial neighborhoods are just some of the draws to the is­land men­tioned in the lis­ti­cle.

Cedar Key, a group of is­lands about 130 miles, or more than two hours, north of Tampa, was No. 5 on the list.

Pass-a-Grille Beach, at the south­ern end of St. Pete Beach, was des­ti­na­tion No. 8.

Just south of the Tampa Bay area, Gas­par­illa Is­land was men­tioned at No. 10.

Braden­ton Her­ald file photo

Anna Maria Is­land was named one of the best Un­der-the-Radar Florida beach towns to visit this win­ter in a re­cent Fodors rank­ing.

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