November 30 2022 By: Allison Kummery

Small Beach Access Paradise Exists on Siesta Key’s North End

Shell Beach – One of Sarasota’s Hidden Treasures

A slice may be generous, let’s say a sliver of beach access exists on Siesta Key’s north end and is known only to those who have achieved true local status…or those lucky enough to have stumbled on it from Trip Advisor. The sliver is named Shell Beach and arrived at via none other than Shell Road. If you’re entering the Key from the North Bridge taking Siesta Drive, the road naturally ends where it meets Higel Ave. in a sharp left turn. You’ll want to be going slow because once on Higel, Shell Road is the third right and if you get swept up in the beautiful surroundings, you’ll drive right past it. Furthermore, slow driving is a thing in Sarasota. If you want to truly embrace island life, then 30 mph is the max speed limit on the Key.

Turning onto Shell Road, you’ll come to know what few do, that a tiny piece of paradise awaits at the end of the road. Timing is everything here. There are only about 15 parking spots for public parking, including one handicap spot that is right up at the beachline. You’ve really got to be lucky to find a spot. This is not a beach destination to go to with large parties or those expecting full-on beach amenities. Shell Beach doesn’t have restrooms, concessions or even that many shells to be honest. But what it does have is a private, peaceful serenity that will have you making special plans to visit.

  • Hidden Gem: Shell Beach

  • Hidden Gem: Shell Beach

I remember the first time I went; I was new to Sarasota and a good friend took me there one weekend. Back then it was a little larger than it is now. Private properties are on either side of this part of beach and they now have pretty stringent signage dictating where their property lines start, so be cognizant of that on your visit unless trespassing is on your bucket list as well. But wedged in the middle of those two magnificent homes is a swath of sand where you can kick back and get your toes in the sand, take in a sunset, or go for a quick dip without all the fuss of the main beach. It truly is a treasure and one of the best kept Sarasotan secrets. Part of me doesn’t even want to see this article published for fear of letting its whereabouts get too widely known, but the best things in life ought to be shared.


Looking for other Things to Do in Sarasota? Check out one of our other BLOGS. You may also find additional Sarasota on our Activities page.

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  • Find Your Next Great Vacation Rental

    Looking for a place to satay near Shell Beach? Check-out the Banyan, only 1 block from Shell Beach!

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Shell Beach is perfect for romance. I would highly recommend a picnic with a loved one or a best friend there. If you need some space and solitude, there are two trees you can tie a hammock up to, it’s not already taken. A great little nook for a good read and good beer. My best advice is to go prepared with what you need, but don’t let it ruin your day if you can’t find a spot. Be ready to head through Siesta Key Village to plan B – Public Beach. And if you do get a spot, soak up every second!

About The Author
Allison Kummery

Proud mother, bonus-mom, plant mom, conservationist, salsa dancer, soccer enthusiast, sunseeker, customer service fanatic, and extreme observationist. Allison's a lover of life and seeks the genuine pleasures in her surroundings to create soul-enriching content for the explorer in all of us. If she's not humming a tune or writing a blog, there's a good chance she's thinking about food.

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