Dinghy to grocery stores West FL

NOTE:  I have not updated this blog since 2014

I've unsuccessfully attempted to find a good source for free/low cost dinghy docks accessible to grocery stores in western FL.  So, I'm creating my own list.  This information came from a variety of resources, so I can't guarantee its accuracy.  Be sure to check your charts and cruising guides for more information.   People familiar with the west coast of FL will notice the listing is based on locations from North to South.  During our cruising travels, I intend to verify the information as much as possible.  If you find any errors, please email me at maryd33950@gmail.com

I also have a blog that lists pumpout boats in FL.  It is

Cedar Key
I'm told there is an anchorage with access to a grocery store at Cedar Key, which is north of Tarpon Springs.  In studying the cruising guides, it seems there is conflicting (bad vs. good) reviews of the anchorage and town.  I suggest you consult the guides and charts before going here.  A boater told me that there is a free dock in town and if you tie up in the slips, not the t-dock where people fish, you shouldn't have any problems with the locals.  

Madeira Beach

There is an anchorage in a cove north and east of the Welch Causeway bridge, near the American Legion.  A floating dinghy free dock is at McDonalds north of the bridge.  A Publix grocery store is in a shopping center next to McDonalds.
Link to chart

You can take your boat into a small anchorage at 27 45.081'N and 82 43.737W and dinghy to a sea wall at 27 45.405'N and 82 43.917'W.  You are then right by Publix and Sweetbay.  The anchorage holds 6ft all the way in and is a clearly marked channel for two marinas, but keep close to the sea wall.

Anchor east end of Belleair Causeway.  Belleair Bluffs.  Anchor off the boat ramp, dinghy to ramp. Walk 0.6 miles up the hill to Publix (2770 W Bay Drive)

Clearwater Beach
There is a Publix north side of the Clearwater Causeway.  The easy way to access it is from the anchorage at Mandalay Channel.  There is a city public dingy dock in front of a restaurant.  Go around the restaurant and continue north less than a block to the Publix.  If you are in the Clearwater City Marina, the best way is to use your dinghy, go north under the bridge, and turn right to go to the city dinghy dock.
Chart of Mandalay anchorage, not to be used for navigation.

St. Petersburg
Vinoy Basin is closed for anchoring since the establishment of the mooring field.  For more information regarding the mooring field, go to

Electric Marina is north of the St. Petersburg Pier also known as Vinoy Basin.  Electric Marina has a dinghy dock for $5/day or $25/week.   There is also a hourly dock at the marina.  The link for the marina website is
A map link is below
Grogery stores are
Stop & Shop
432 1st Street North, (727)822-0276 0.3 mi NW

250 3rd Street South

There is a Saturday market in by Demans Landing in the winter months.

St Petersburg Beach Boca Ciega

Treasure Island
Go in towards Blind Pass from ICW and then north into the canal across from Blind Pass Marina (stay close to port shore for deep water) and you can anchor and dinghy to Publix dock. You can anchor in the last most northerly cove.  See link below for chart.

Bradenton Beach
Bradenton Beach has a free dinghy dock next to the city pier.  The pier is on the south side of Bradenton Beach Marina.  You can anchor on the east side of the ICW.  There is a free trolley running the length of the island about every 20 minutes.  At the north end of the island you will find the Publix and Ace Hardware.  Link for more information

Anna Maria Island
The trolley that runs up and down the island stops at a Publix grocery store.  Best option is to go ashore near the Cortez bridge on the west side and walk to the main road and go north to Publix.

At the center of this barrier island is a central shopping plaza with Publix grocery store, both CVS and Walgreens pharmacies, an Ace Hardware with a decent selection of “boater” and fishing supplies, a dollar store. 

Sarasota Bay
The former anchorage is now a mooring field managed by Marina Jack's marina in Sarasota Bay, southeast of the Ringling Causeway.    Here is a link to Marina Jacks.

A grocery store is a 9 minute walk from O'Leary's.  The store website link is
A google map link from O'Leary's to the grocery store is
http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&f=d&saddr=5 Bayfront Drive, Sarasota, FL+near+60603&daddr=1451 1st Street, Sarasota, FL&date=01/03/2011&time=10:02am&ttype=dep&dirflg=r

Englewood/Lemon Bay
Anchor in 6 feet south of the park and north of the Tom Adams Bridge.  You leave the ICW and go east towards shore midway between markers 25 and 26.  Dinghy to park on east shore north of anchorage.  Walk one mile to Publix.
Link to chart on Cruisers Net:


Punta Gorda
Although there isn't a grocery store within walking distance from the anchorage, there is a farmer's market on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in downtown Punta Gorda, just a couple of blocks from a dinghy landing.  There is a small beach between  the Best Western hotel and Gilchrist Park where you can land your dinghy.   There is also a ladder attached to the Best Western dock.   More information about the farmer's market is below

It is a 5-minute walk to a convenience store from the dinghy landing.  It is is Old Town Convenience, 311 W. Marion Ave., (941)833-9337.  A google map link is

Information regarding the anchorage is also below (anchorage number 61 on the cruiser's net page)

You can take a bus from Gilchrist Park to a Publix grocery store in Punta Gorda for $3 one way.  The bus service (Dial a Ride) website is

There is a dinghy dock at Fishermen's Village Yacht Basin.  It is free if you intend to patronize the shops or restaurants at Fishermen's Village.  Be sure to check in with the marina office, for if you intend to use the pool and other marina facilities, there is a $15 daily fee.  There is no grocery store at Fishermen's Village, but there is a farmer's market on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m from January through March.  A link to the marina is

Team Punta Gorda and the city have placed bicycles at  the public marinas and the Isles Yacht Club for visitors to use free of charge. You sign out for the bikes at the appropriate marina or yacht club office. There is also  a tricycle with basket at each location.

Captiva Island Roosevelt Channel
Between markers 37 and 39 is an anchorage just south of the Tweenwaters Inn.  You can dinghy to McCarthy's Marina and pay a flat $15 fee and walk to the Island Store for groceries.   A link to McCarthy's Marina is
A chart of the anchorage is below

For more information on this anchorage go to Cruiser's Net at

Ft. Myers Beach
Coming in through Matanzas Pass into the Ft. Myers Beach Harbor you will find a large anchorage south of the 65ft fixed bridge.   There are now 70 mooring balls in the harbor, so anchoring is almost impossible.  Dinghy dockage comes with the mooring.  Call Harbormaster at 239-463-9258 for a mooring assignment.  At the southend of the canal south is a place to tie up a dinghy which is behind a grocery store.  There isn't a dock there and it looks like the bank could be muddy depending on the tide.  We prefer riding the trolley that runs from under the bridge across the street from Matanzas Inn and stops at a Publix grocery store.

Cape Coral
If your mast can clear a 55ft cable, there is an anchorage at Bimini Basin where you can dinghy to a park and walk to grocery stores on East Cape Coral Pkwy.
Link to anchorage

City dock mooring for $10 night.  7-11 store 1/2 mile from marina.  Link to city dock

Marco Island
Smokehouse Bay anchorage.  When entering the main channel to Marco from the Gulf, head east to marker R 12 and turn into Collier Bay.  Follow marked channel to Smokehouse Bay.  Watch for low tide depths at north end of Smokehouse Bay.  Dinghy under a low bridge South of Esplanade Marina and tie up at a dock by Winn-Dixie grocery store.  The dock has a ladder.  During low tide we couldn't get our dog up on the dock. Link to Cruiser's Net for additional information:

Link to Esplanade Marina

Marathon Boot Key Harbor

If you are on a mooring ball in the harbor, you can leave your dinghy at the marina dinghy dock and walk about a mile north on Rt. 1 to Publix or Winn-Dixie and take a cab back to the marina dinghy dock for $5.
Link to marina website

 Key Largo Tarpon Basin
At SM1140 is Tarpon Basin anchorage.  At the SE corner is a very nice free dinghy dock and park by the Monroe County government center.  About 1/2 mi SW of the government center on A1A is a Publix in addition to a K-Mart, Radio Shack and other stores in a shopping plaza.  Also located at the government center is a free pumpout boat and dumpster for trash.
Park at Dinghy Dock

A good source of information regarding a dinghy dock at Key Largo is on the Cruiser's Net website.  Here is link

Key West
There are a few links below that describe the anchorages around Key West.
Another link with good anchorage chart of Key West
This blog is helpful regarding two dinghy docks at Key West
There is a mooring field run by the City Marina and a dinghy dock at the marina.  A grocery store is .4 mi from the marina.
Link to city marina
Link to grocery store