Arts / Entertainment
Biking & Hiking
Boats & kayaks
Dining / Nightlife
Dog Parks / Beaches
Fun Things to Do
Golf & Tennis
Relocate & Re-Invent
Ainger Creek Park
Ainger Creek is a popular place for recreation near Manasota Key due to its variety of activities. You can kayak
or canoe and launch your boat from a public boat ramp into the south Florida waters. If you bring your own boat, you
will need to have your boating license displayed on it.
Cedar Point Environmental Park
on route 775
Cedar Point Environmental Park has five nature trails, picnic tables, a small playground and a visitor center
with kids’ touch table. Bald eagles and gopher tortoises live among the 88 acre park’s pine flatwoods, oak scrub,
salt flats and mangroves fringing Lemon Bay Aquatic Preserve. The park offers guided tours every Saturday and Sunday
(in season) at 10:00am.
Port Boca Grande Lighthouse (Gasparilla Island)
At the extreme southern end of Gasparilla Island, 21 miles from Manasota Key, you can visit the harbor and the
Port Boca Grande lighthouse. The structure was erected after the discovery of phosphate in the early 1880s.
It consists of a one-story dwelling with a square tower. On top there is a circular lantern room designed to protect
the lens, which produces a white light interrupted by red flashes. As the phosphate trade was growing, the railroad
line extended to Port Boca Grande, north of the lighthouse. In 1969, Port Boca Grande was Florida's fourth busiest
port, and a bridge for vehicles connected the island with the mainland. The lighthouse, the dwelling and the
surrounding area became the Gasparilla Island State Park, with a museum that covers the history of the area from
Native Americans to the present time.
Cayo Costa State Park
Cayo Costa State Park is a small barrier island that can be seen from Boca Grande Pass. This recreational,
natural and scenic resource is accessible only by boat and contains 9 miles of pristine beaches and 5.5 miles of
trails meandering through a variety of natural communities suitable for hiking and biking. Bike rentals, primitive
cabins and tent camping are available on the island. The two-year waiting list for cabins attests to the popularity
of this park. An amphitheater provides educational programs about the island's ecology and history. Visitors can use
the boat dock, or anchor off the beach to enjoy the swimming, shelling or viewing the native wildlife, including
manatees, dolphins and various species of birds.
Don Pedro Island State Park
Don Pedro Island was purchased by the state in 1984 under the “Save Our Coast Program.” This barrier island,
accessible only by boat, covers approximately 225 acres with approximately 1 mile of white sandy beaches on the
Gulf of Mexico. At this Blueway Trail, there are 12 dock slips for public use, picnic tables, grills, and a large
picnic shelter with beach boardwalks and restroom facilities. In 2005, the state expanded the park facilities to
include a 90-acre addition from the mainland of Englewood with the main entrance on Placida Road. With more than
32,000 people visiting by boat every year, the state gave permission in January 2006 to Grande Tours to provide
ferry service to and from the state park for landlubbers. Water taxis are also available.
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary
Corkscrew Sanctuary is located northeast of Naples and operated by the National Audubon Society. The
Sanctuary’s 11,000 acres are within the Big Cypress Swamp. They contain the country’s largest remaining stand of
400 to 700 year-old virgin bald cypresses. The Sanctuary is the largest remaining breeding ground for the endangered
Go HERE for more area parks.
Fitness & Health
Shops, Spas, Salons
Attn. Intl. Visitors
(listed north to south)
Anna Maria Island