By Water : 29.803842 -84.61188
Dog Island, the jewel-like barrier island that is best known to visitors for its pristine white sand beaches, good shelling, crabbing and shore fishing, and as a superior beach-picnic and recreational boating base.
There are about 100 homes on the island, although most of them are vacation homes, there are 30-33 full-time residents, most of whom practice xeriscaping (use of native vegetation for landscaping) for their sand-swept residences. Visitors can enjoy the barrier island beauty by boat or airplane, and though there are no typical tourist amenities: no food, public restrooms, and limited rooming (which must be arranged in advance through a local agency) there is plenty for the out-doors and beach-lover.
Birdwatching (especially shore species) opportunities are endless, beach and coastal hiking, and wildlife and natural habitats give endless hours of photography and sketch artists opportunities. Some of the best sunsets anywhere visit there year-round, and at least one famous artist resides there and takes full advantage of the natural beauty for his subject matter. Perfect Florida dune habitat strews the sandy "hills' with all manner of native vegetation, the golden waves of sea oats topping the list. (No picking the sea oats; no walking over the dunes, no dogs allowed) For picnicking or camping, locals favor the far points of either end, the west end (at the pass) best for day trips, shore fishing, and crabbing (in season). The east end (with shifting sand banks under the blue waters, approach by boat at your peril!) camping, shelling, and beach-bumming.
Dog Island is approximately 6 1/2 miles long and up to ¾ mile wide, encompassing 1,842 acres.
Places on Dog Island
Little Cove: 29.827561, -84.578119
Nice Beach 29.823867, -84.583500
Tyson's Harbor 29.810549, -84.585607
"Tyson’s Harbor is the home of the Dog Island Yacht Club. Transient slips for a fee are available but please do not tie up in any other slips but the transient ones. The “yachties” can get very irritated! The transient slips are well marked with yellow paint on the top of the posts. This is also the dock where the Dog Island Ferry arrives with guests staying at the Pelican Inn. It is a great destination for a picnic, to view the grass air strip, and to hike over to the gulf side of the island." by Rob Powis
Skippers Harbor 29.782483, -84.653600
Ballast Cove 29.790717, -84.629900