How to find out if beaches are open

By Best Western Siesta Key August 7, 2023

Normal Times

In general, our public beaches are open from dawn until dusk. It’s not wise to go swimming outside of those times. Along with no lifeguard on duty, pre-dawn and dusk are excellent times to encounter sea animals like jellyfish, stingrays, and maybe even sharks looking to feed.

During or After Storms

Avoid the beach when lightning is present. Lightning is prone to strike water, electrifying everything in it (including people). There can also be a transference of electricity through the damp sand, so thunderstorms are a great time to find something else to do indoors until the storm has passed.

Red Tide

This blooming bacterial algae is a naturally-occurring phenomenon that affects all of the marine life in an area when it’s present. Often it will kill a large number of fish, causing them to wash ashore. It can also make the air smell bad and cause difficulty breathing for some individuals. It is highly recommended that you avoid the beach during a red tide outbreak.

Flag Signals

The different flags you see flying beside lifeguard stands are meant to help you know if conditions are suitable for swimming, wading, or just staying on the sand. While green and yellow indicate mild to moderate surf conditions, red signals dangerous swimming conditions and double red means the beach is closed. The presence of dangerous marine life will be indicated with a purple flag.