Now a wildlife refuge, Egmont Key is a natural island escape with significant history. It was a camp for captured Seminoles during the Third Seminole War and was a Union Navy base during the Civil War. Located at the mouth of Tampa Bay, southwest of Fort De Soto Park. This 440-acre island is the home to one of the last government-operated lighthouses in the U.S. Built in 1858 still serves as an active navigational aide to all ships entering Tampa Bay.
Several boats offer snorkeling excursions to this island which is accessible only by boat. Egmont Key also has a variety of significant natural resources, including a large population of gopher tortoises, and its beach is used as a nesting area by loggerhead sea turtles. In addition to snorkeling, visitors to the island can enjoy beaches, hiking trails and the historic fort and lighthouse.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection cooperatively manages Egmont Key with the U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service and the U.S. Coast Guard
Hours: 8 a.m. - sunset.Open Year-Round
Time To Experience Activity
Egmont Key Ferry from Fort De Soto Park
Take an adventurous ride to beautiful Egmont Key on a 46-foot, U.S. Coast Guard Certified Tour Boats ferry. All tours are fully narrated, informative and fun...
Short boat ride to get there from Desoto park. No restrooms on island. Make sure you take drinks with you! Lighthouse, cemetery, ruins. Bird sanctuary on island that's off limits. Beautiful uncrowded...