Egmont Key, an island off St. Petersburg, is a relaxing beach day and history lesson in one. The island, which is a 20-minute ferry ride from Fort de Soto State Park, played roles in Florida’s Seminole Indian Wars, the Civil War and the Spanish-American War.
Visitors can see a still-functioning 159-year-old lighthouse, historic Fort Dade and a crumbling power plant. People lived there until about 1929.
On the beach, try snorkeling and shelling. Don’t forget an umbrella, water and food. Important note: the island does not have restrooms. The ferry is $20/person; reservations recommended.