If you are visiting Sarasota make sure to add the Ringling Museum to your bucket list. This location served as the winter home of John Ringling and his wife Mable. They traveled all over Europe, and Venice had a very special place in their hearts, as was evident by the beautiful architecture of the Museum. You can walk through the grounds for free! There is only a cost if you want to go inside to see the circus collection. We chose to stick to the grounds, and we were not disappointed.
The gardens contained some of the most beautiful and unique plants and flowers I have ever seen. There is a stunning eucalyptus tree, and if you have never seen one of these they are stunning. They look like they have been splattered in tons of different paints. As the different layers of bark start to peel back, they reveal these brilliant colors. There is also a beautiful garden filled with statues and red roses which is a must see if you go.
The mansion that John stayed at is at the opposite end of the entrance, and that was personally my favorite stop along the way. The mansion is right on the water which makes for some stunning views. The workers there were so friendly and knowledgeable about any questions we had. There were also statues of all the animals that comprise the Chinese Zodiac. I was born in the year of the monkey and Carla the year of the goat.
Our last stop was outside the Museum of Art which to me looked like a giant pink palace. I was in love with the architecture and all the sculptures. I felt like I was transported to Venice inside this place. This would be a beautiful location for engagement or senior pictures. I love the way the photos turned out at this location. The dress I wore I have had for a few years, and I never had an occasion to wear it to. It was perfect for this photo shoot. I would love to go back and check out the inside of the museum. I highly recommend this place next time you guys find yourselves in Florida. Thank you for reading! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!