|About 1,000 years ago, a small string of islands were pushed up from the Gulf floor on a limestone platform. Their geologic growth hasn't stopped since their birth. Shifting currents, sand erosion and countless storms have formed them into the paradise that we enjoy today.
These pristine islands are excellent swimming and nature sites, however, they are accessible only by private boat.
There are NO facilities of any type on any of these islands.
A picturesque lighthouse, built in 1887, stands as a sentinel from another time, on the southern end of Anclote Key while ospreys nest in the tall pines found throughout the island. The Anclote Lighthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places. It has recently been restored and was relighted on September 13, 2003, a proud monument to a long history of service to the local community. The lighthouse fell into disrepair after being deactivated in 1984. A restoration project was funded by state and federal funds as well as donations, and was a collaborative effort of International Chimney Corporation and Cornerstone Restorations. The lighthouse was relighted on September 13, 2003. In 2004 a new house was built near the lighthouse to serve as a residence for a park ranger. The Friends of Anclote Key State Park and Lighthouse, formed in 2005, open the lighthouse to the public once a year, on Lighthouse Day. If you're up to it, you can climb to the top of the lighthouse, as Capt Alex did on Lighthouse Day in 2007.
Nature study is perhaps Anclote's biggest attraction, offering natural vegetation, unspoiled beaches and abundant birdlife. More than 43 species of birds, dolphins, manatees and turtles call this area home. The North Anclote Keys and Dutchman Key are nestled on the lee side of Anclote Key. Primitive camping is allowed in a designated area on the north side of Anclote Key. There are a limited number of grills and a primitive picnic pavillion is available. For more information about the Anclote Key State Preserve camping rules Click Here.
3-Rooker Bar is a couple of miles south of Anclote Key. Larger than the North Anclote Sandbar but smaller than Anclote Key, 3-Rooker Bar also offers unspoiled beaches and abundant birdlife.