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Insider's Guide to the Free Trolley

We love, love, love the free Island Trolley on beautiful Anna Maria Island. What a great way to get you and the rest of your gang from one end of the island to the other in such a sustainable, eco-friendly and budget-friendly way. It's a great way to ease up traffic congestion and lets you focus on the gorgeous landscape that makes Anna Maria Island so special while catching the salty breezes.

Read on for all of the information, facts, and statistics you need to know about Anna Maria Island's Free Trolley.

Anna Maria Island Free Trolley FAQs

  1. The Anna Maria Island Free Trolley runs every 20 minutes.

  2. It's best to arrive 10 minutes prior to the scheduled time.

  3. Ensure the driver can see you at the stop.

  4. Let the bus operator know if you require additional assistance with riding the bus.

  5. The Free Trolley runs north and south for the entire length of Anna Maria Island.

  6. There are 9 pick up locations on Anna Maria Island. They are the following:

    • A - Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach

    • B - Gulf Dr/Bridge St, in Bradenton Beach

    • C - Gulf Dr/27th St, in Bradenton Beach

    • D - Manatee County Beach in Holmes Beach

    • E - Gulf Dr/Wachovia in Holmes Beach - Northbound Only

    • F - Gulf Dr/Pine Ave in Anna Maria

    • G - Anna Maria City Pier in Anna Maria

    • H - Gulf Drive/78th St in Holmes Beach - Southbound Only

    • I - Island Shopping Center in Holmes Beach - Southbound Only

  7. The Free Trolley serves the following locations:

    • Anna Maria City Pier - Anna Maria

    • Island Shopping Center - Homes Beach

    • Manatee County Public Beach - Homes Beach

    • Bridge Street - Bradenton Beach

    • Coquina Beach - Bradenton Beach

  8. In the city of Holmes Beach, there is a Northbound-Southbound Loop. Ensure you are waiting at a stop on the correct street depending whether you are traveling north or south (see photo below)

  9. The fixed route services are not available on holidays like New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

Free Trolley North-Southbound Loop.png

Anna Maria Island Free Trolley Rules - Do's and Don'ts

  • Shirts and shoes are required.

  • No open food or drink containers

  • No weapons

  • No profanity or loud talking

  • No flammable or explosive material

  • No playing personal electronics without personal headphones

  • No alcoholic beverages

  • No electronic bikes or scooters

  • Do not block the aisles with personal items

Anna Maria Island Free Trolley - The Best Stops and Insider Tips!

Here are our favorite stops, must-sees and things to do that you just can't miss along the Free Trolley Route, with Insider Tips for you to enjoy your visit. The Free Trolley is a really fun way to get around the Anna Maria Island with a quick hop on hop off route that can help you explore the island in a really fun and unique way. The kids love it and so do we!


The current Trolley Schedule is listed at the end of the article.  Click to jump to bottom

Insider Guide to the Free Trolley on Anna Maria Island, Florida


First Stop
Anna Maria City Pier 

Starting off at the Northern end of the island, jump off the Trolley at Anna Maria Island City Pier. Before you meander down the 100-year-old pier, turn around and go grab an ice cream at Two Scoops Ice Cream shop. There's no better way than transporting yourself back to your childhood like heading down the pier with an ice cream in your hand, while you take a look and see what the fishermen are catching, look for our local dolphins out for an easy bite. The City Pier is also a great place for a sunset cocktail while listening to a local musician playing during the early evenings. 


Try to find our plank, towards that last bench closest to the restaurant ''

Boardwalk to Anna Maria Island City Pier
Insider Tip

The Anna Maria Island

City Pier is one of the most recognized sites on the island. It's a great place to take photography


This is an excellent stop to for some shopping therapy on Pine Avenue, Anna Maria. There is something for everyone in the family on this street. 

Guys will love the AMI Outfitters shops that have 2 locations on this street. Full of fishing gear, paddle boards, kayaks, clothing, hats, sunglasses, packs and much, much more. After that grab a sample of cheese and bread offered at the Olive Oil Outpost.

Kids will love stopping into the Flip Flop & Candy Stop for a sweet treat. Shiny Fish Emporium is our kid's favourite spot to paint a sand dollar and eat a Hawaiian Bubble Ice Cream that is a unique treat to the island. 

Girls will love our favourite shops, Island Cabana, Libby's Jewelry, Pink & Navy, Emerson's Art Gallery and Emporium. There is something for everyone's taste and budget on Pine Avenue.

Eveyone will love a made to order donut from 'The Donut Experiment'. The best donut you will ever taste and ridiculously fresh!



Beach Stop
Palm Drive, Anna Maria  

The main attraction to Anna Maria Island are the pristine, soft, sandy, beaches. We want you to stop here because the world famous 'The Sandbar Restaurant' is located directly on the beach between Spring Avenue and Pine Avenue. Just head down Palm Avenue to the beach and turn right (north) to walk up to 'The Sandbar'. This place is where the island congregates for a warm sunset dinner, so be warned it gets really busy during holidays and high season. If you get stuck, great alternatives like Rudy's Subs, Slim's Place, Harry's Grill and Sign of the Mermaid are all close by on Pine Avenue. 


If you wish to take a stroll up the beach, Bean Point is a great location to look out onto Tampa Bay, Egmont Key, and Passage Key, when it is above water level. It's a bit of a hike about 1  mile north.


To work off any vacation over-indulgence, Beach Yoga is also offered in the mornings on selected days of the week.

Insider Tip

The Sandbar is busy! 

Make resrvations for indoors or get there early to decrease your wait time for outdoor dining

The Sandbar Restaurant on Anna Maria Island Florida


Surfing Stop
White Avenue, Holmes Beach  

Surfer dudes, enthusiasts and thrill seekers will want to get off at the CrossPointe Fellowship Church stop at the cross streets of Gulf Drive and 85th Street, Holmes Beach. Head down White Avenue to the public beach access where you can catch the best waves on the island. Surfers have been surfing the waves here forever and if you have a day with nice high waves it's worth the trip just to watch the locals carve up the waves. Most often the waves are tame and it's a great place to teach kids and beginners the basics of surfing.


Turtle Talks are offered at the CrossPointe Fellowship Church ecery Tuesday at 10:00 am during the months of June and July. These are educational sessions and videos about our nesting sea turtles taht call Anna Maria Island home. Given by the Anna Maria Island Turtle and Shorebird Monitoring Group. Location is 8605 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach. 

Girl Surfing at Anna Maria Island, Florida
Insider Tip

Sign up your kids for the Free Summer Surf Camp from June to July

hosted by Eternal Summer Surf Camp

surfing icon


Shopping Stop
Marina Drive, Holmes Beach  

One of my very favourite trolley shopping stops on Anna Maria Island is the stop across from the Plaza where Marina Drive and Gulf Drive meet. There are actually 4 mini plazas in this area where you will find beach decor, clothing, shell shops and art galleries. Make sure you hit them all starting at 56th Street and Marina Drive for Saltair Boutique and Raider's Reef Shell Shop. We love Saltair Boutique for their budget-friendly, super-stylish, clothing, jelwelry and handbags. The Sand Dollar is another favourite clothing, beach decor shop. We can never leave these shops without buying something!


Great spots to hit for a cocktail or a bite after a hard day of shopping are Eat Here, Tortilla Bay and The Feast restaurants.


Manatee Public Beach Stop
Manatee Ave, Holmes Beach  

The Free Island Trolley stops at the major public beaches which include Manatee Public Beach. Located in the heart of Holmes Beach right off of Manatee Avenue. This is a great beach stop since Manatee Public Beach boasts a huge amount of amenities like the AMI Beach Cafe, famous for their 'All you can eat Pancake breakfasts', gift shop, beach rentals, volleyball, picnic tables, playground and more... Check out our Beach Guide for a full list.


This beach has good shelling, especially after a storm at low tide. You will find coquinas, lightning whelks, angel wings, clams, cockles, olives, conch and more. Please remember to leave the live ones in the water and take only your favourite ones to avoid beach erosion.

Insider Tip

Manatee Public Beach and Coquina Beach are the only beaches on Anna Maria Island that have lifeguard stations

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Snadals on the Beach


Groceries, Pharmacy, and Shopping Stop
East Bay Drive, Holmes Beach  

I call this the 'Essentials Stop', pick up your groceries at the largest on island grocery store called Publix at the corner of Manatee Avenue and East Bay Drive. Walgreens and CVS Pharmacies are also located in this large plaza. My favourites shop to buy a tourist t-shirt is Island Bazaar. They have a huge collection of stylish sweatshirts, t-shirts, tank tops, sunglasses, beach bags, and more for eveyone in the family.


Bridge Street Pier Stop
Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach  

Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach is another must stop for a historic walk along the pier on the Bay side. We've never seen a more picturesque pier, with pastel buildings, a wooden spire with the town clock on top. It truly is a beautiful thing to see. 

Take a stroll along Bridge Street to get there and you will pass pretty boutiques, a cafe and Island Time Grill Restaurant where everyone gathers for a cocktail. 

Tide and Moon Jewelry located directly on the pier is a must stop for unique Anna Maria Island silver jewelry. 

Bridge Street Pier on Anna Maria Island, Florida
Insider Tip

Bridge Street Pier is a picturesque site on the island. Look for manatees and pelicans. It's a great place to take photography

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Signs from Beach Market on Anna Maria Island


Coquina Beach Stop
Gulf Drive, Bradenton Beach  

Coquina Beach is the last 'Must See' stop on the Free Island Trolley. You can load your bikes on the Trolley and ride the Boardwalk path that stretches the length of Coquina Beach. With a tree lined path, it's a cool way to take in the sights and sounds of beach life. The Australian Pine trees are home to seasonal wild parrots taht truly make you feel like you are in the Carribean. There are lots of picnic tables, grills, and Pavilions to host large family gatherings. This beach also has a cafe, lifeguard stations, and many more amenities. For the full list Click here to access our Beach Guide.


Mote Marine Aquarium is located across the street which is another great stop for kids to experience the local marine life of Florida. 


It's a great idea to hit Coquina Beach on a Sunday to coincide with the beach market that is hosted seasonally. 

Coquina Beach Pier on Anna Maria Island
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Anna Maria Island Free Trolley Schedule

To download and print the Free Trolley Schedule, press this button

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