Bradenton is located at (27.488217, -82.577743).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 37.4 km² (14.4 mi²). 31.4 km² (12.1 mi²) of it is land and 6.0 km² (2.3 mi²) of it (16.14%) is water.
Located just south of the Tampa Bay area, in growing Manatee County, Bradenton (population 54,090 as of April 1, 2008/14.44 square miles and incorporated May 19, 1903) is a fabulous place to live and to visit. There are many activities in which to take part that allow you to stay active and informed as a citizen of Bradenton, including exploring our art scene in the Village of the Arts and immersing yourself in our historical offerings at the South Florida Museum and the DeSoto National Monument.
Moreover, during our 12 months of warm weather you can take part in such activities as simply having some good ol' fun-in-the-sun and enjoying the easy life on our beautiful beaches. Or, you could participate in one or more of our multitude of aquatic and terrestrial activities such as fishing, hunting, scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, camping, tennis, biking, sailing and golf. In addition, not only is Bradenton is home to the world famous IMG Academies, but we also have over 60, that’ right, 60 golf courses.
Considering this, we certainly earn our moniker as a sportsman's paradise!
The area now referred to as the City of Bradenton was first discovered by Europeans in 1539. Hernando DeSoto and his band of salty adventures made first landfall in our area at Shaw's Point, taking the first sandy steps from his landing craft on the Manatee River onto what is now the DeSoto National Monument. From this landing site he began his 4,000-mile trek in search of the famed El Dorado, the lost city of gold. He didn't find El Dorado and eventually returned to Spain but his heritage lives on in the many streets and districts which bear his name. However, the city of Bradenton derives her name from Dr. Joseph Braden, whose nearby fortlike house served as a refuge for early settlers during Native American attacks.
Not surprisingly, Bradenton has emerged from such a historic inception to now be the home of numerous successful individuals and businesses, including Tropicana Products, Inc.; Champs Sports and the corporate offices of Bealls Department Stores. Bradenton and her citizens love to play and but also love to host. Bradenton has fun family events, including Winter Wonderland, Get Down Downtown, and the many fantastic Hernando DeSoto Historical Society celebrations, are held throughout the year along historic Old Main Street and beautiful Barcarrota Boulevard - the brick-paved thoroughfare running adjacent to the scenic Manatee River - all of which are open to the whole community.