I highly recommend Twin Dolphins
Marina in Bradenton. Located on the Manatee River, it's a short hop - with no bridges - out to the Gulf and a quick right at the river's mouth will give you access to Tampa Bay. Key West
is about 27 hours on the rhumb line. The river and marina have adequate depth
for most cruising sailboats.
Docks are floating and surrounded by a substantial breakwater providing hurricane
protection for up to a Cat 3 and 12 foot tidal surge. The slip rental includes wifi
, 30 and 50 amp electric
(non-metered), 100+ cable channels, water
, beautiful showers, laundry
facilities, pool and hot tub. An onsite restaurant - Pier 22 - provides inconsistent food
, but a great bar with excellent (cheap) happy hour and great views of the river.
The marina is located at the beginning of the Bradenton RiverWalk, a mile and a half path along the river with fishing
, a skate park, amphitheater and more. The city hosts a number of excellent events
on the RiverWalk including the Bradenton Blues Festival and the RiverWalk Regatta
, a Formula 2 boat race
. Two blocks in the other direction is old Main Street which offers a number of bars and restaurants as well as a small market. Anything else you might need is within a 5-mile radius - West Marine
, Publix, Lowes, Best Buy, etc.
I have lived here for about nine months and think of it as home. For me, living aboard
a 40' sailboat, the cost is $730/month in the winter and $780/month in summer (when I switch to 50 amp service
to run the other air conditioner). The Marina has about 400 slips and about 20% are occupied by liveaboards. It's a good community of sailors, powerboaters, screwballs and nut jobs. My son describes it as a floating dormitory.
If you get down here, check us out. I'm at B Dock
. Just ask for Jason at the Marina office. Stop by and I'll make you a Painkiller.