Taking a trip to Lovers Key State Park is certain to be a great experience. The park is a total of 712 acres and consists of four barrier islands, canals, and tidal lagoons. There is a great deal of wildlife there, including dolphins, manatees, and exotic birds. Lovers Key is known as the main barrier island with the other three being Black Island, Long Key, and Inner Key.
Prior to 1965, the island was only accessible by boat but today is accessible by road as well. The island was a popular destination for couples and this is what led to its namesake.
Access and Cost
This state park is 20 miles north of Naples, Florida, and can be reached through the Bonita Beach Road in Bonita Springs. The cost to get in the park ranges between $2-$8 depending on how it is being accessed and the number of guests coming. Parking is free. There is also a boardwalk that gives access to the beach.
Lovers Key State Park is highlighted by a two-mile-long beach that often featured in lists of top beaches. There are numerous ways to relax on this beach including swimming in the Gulf of Mexico, building a sandcastle, picnicking, or soaking up the sun.
The wildlife on this key is breathtaking and includes the aforementioned dolphins, manatees, egrets, ospreys, and even bald eagles. Because of this, dogs are prohibited from the beach. You’ll find all of these aspects perfect for a completely relaxing and calm experience.
Exploring on your own
If you’re looking for a more active experience and to be surrounded by greenery, Black Island features more than five miles of trails that are open to cyclists, hikers, and joggers. For those who have a boat, there is a boat ramp within the park and access to other large bodies of water including Estero Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.
There’s also a kid-friendly aspect with two playgrounds, many picnic areas, and even a gazebo. Finally, fishing is permitted and anyone who wishes to do so can actually purchase bait at the shop close to the main entrance of the park.
Rental Services and Tours
Lovers Key State Park also has a number of rental services. This includes the ability to rent canoes, kayaks, bikes, pedal boats, chairs, paddleboards, and umbrellas. In addition, there are guided tours of the park and nearby areas via kayak or canoe. There are also a few local boat tours that have both dolphin tours and sunset cruises available.
Obviously, there’s a lot to do here so get started in planning a fun and relaxing trip today. You’ll be sure to fall in love with Lovers Key State Park!