The Gulf of Mexico often looks like a lake and in the summer the water temperature averages 83ºF/23ºC.
Take a short walk across the 1925 historical "swing" bridge and rent a boat. Meander through the intra-coastal waterway and around the mangrove islets, then dock at the local hang out for a cold beer and seafood cocktail on the waterside deck.
For a fun mini eco-adventure, take a 30-minute kayak paddle up South Creek to Oscar Schrerer State Park where the Spanish moss drapes from the trees. On the way you can silently explore the mangrove islets. You'll see herons, osprey, eagle, and other wildlife in their native habitats. Kayak rentals and tours are available close by.
Step on to the beach and cast your fly rod! There are lots of fish in the shoreline. Or fish from the little bridge up the road, a favorite local spot. You can also hire a guide and hunt for tarpon and other game fish. There's world-class fresh and saltwater fishing here. Fishing licenses are required, but are easily available at the local bait & tackle shop.
Dozens of fine and championship golf courses are only a short drive from the Gulf Surf. There's also a driving range just 1.5 miles away. Prime golf season is from December through April.
Hunt for fossilized shark's teeth and other ancient bone fragments. They've been on the key for millions of years and a good eye will find them scattered among mounds of seashells.
From May through October you can count hundreds of endangered loggerhead sea turtles' nests when they lay their eggs on Casey Key's protected beach.
No need to go all the way to the Everglades to see alligators! Just visit Myakka River State Park only 15 miles away. Take a guided tour on the largest airboat in America and see the big reptiles swimming in the lake.
Florida is home to hundreds of bird species and is visited by abundant migrating and breeding birds each year. It is perhaps best known for waterbirds including sandhill Cranes, ibises, and anhingas, Egrets, pelicans, osprey, and eagles are also plentiful.
Pods of dolphins swim by daily and feed close to shore. Jump in your kayak and follow them for as long as you can.
Spectacular sunsets, cloud formations and summertime lightening storms are breathtaking subjects for the professional or amateur artist.
There's a good spot by the south jetty where the locals hang out. Windflight is the local surf shop and has all the surf gear, accessories, and beachwear you could possibly want.