Florida Guide > State Parks
Visiting Indian Key Historic State Park is made even more special because you can only access it by boat, canoe or kayak.
Situated on the ocean side of th U. S. 1, it is three quarters of a mile from the north shore of Lower Matecumbe Bay. This is a small island of some 10 acres that plays a big part of Floridas history (see article entitled "A History of Indian Key")
Indian Key shows signs of habitation from the times of the Prehistoric Indians to the 1800s when it became an affluent centre of the wrecking industry. Wrecking is the local word for the salvaging of cargo from shipwrecks. At this time there were rich pickings from the Spanish ships that were using the waters as a fast escape route.
There are several marinas that will rent you a boat to make your crossing; however probably the best way to get over is by canoe or kayak. This way you can float over the flats and maybe see a dolphin, some rays or in the winter some of those lovely gentle sea cows called manatees. Manatees come up river to escape the colder seas in winter
Robbies Marina will provede you with a tour that allows you to snorkel in the waters around the island and also makes several stops along the way
The most interesting trail on Indian Key is the one that follows the old road system:the old community was destroyed by marauding Indians, but you can still see the ruins and the foundations. The State Parks department have an archaeological program in place to uncover more of the historical foundations.
It is possible to take a walking tour if you visit between the hours of 9 am to 1 am. Note that no tours take place on tuesdays and wednesdays. Guided walking tours can be booked by phoning 305 664 4815. These start at MM 78. 5 boat ramp.
Fishing is good here and you are likely to catch flats, tarpon and bone fish on the flats and mackerel, snook and snapper elsewhere. You will need a licence. Tour boats can be booked by calling 305 664 9814 or 305 664 4196.
There are few facilities on this island, so you must go prepared with lots of water, some snacks and sun screen and insect repellant in the summer. The park is open from 8 am til sundown every day of the year.
Indian Key Historic State Park
P. O. Box 1052
Islamorada, Florida 33036
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Page added on: 5 February 2008
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