The Islands Are Only Accessible by Boat.
While many visitors use small shallow-draft personal powerboats, many other types of vessels (kayaks, canoes, sailboats, SUP’s, etc.) can be used, and almost all types are available for rent by various outfitters throughout the region. We encourage everyone to check weather conditions as they relate to the type of vessel and skill before setting out, and make sure your vessel is in a safe operational condition and you have all the necessary safety equipment and supplies for a safe and enjoyable trip on the water. It’s also important to notify someone of your plans or file a float plan with a responsible friend or family member and follow up with them when you’re safely off the water.
FOSI is working on an initiative to provide for increased accessibility to several recreation Spoil Islands throughout the region. We have completed the first phase of the initiative with funding from the Indian River Lagoon NEP Council, and help from local agencies and organizations. Spoil Island SL3 in St. Lucie County now has matting and amenities (tables, pedestal grills, and fire rings) aimed at helping those with limited mobility to enjoy the islands. The upcoming phases of the initiative look to improve further on those amenities, and expand to include additional islands and counties within the region.
At present, FOSI has a beach wheelchair available for use on the islands. For more information on the wheelchair and its availability, please contact FOSI.
For an in-depth resource with information on public boat ramps/paddling craft launches, including addresses, hours, fees, phone numbers, ramp types, and parking information, go to FWC’s Florida Public Boat Ramp Finder. For those who are planning on camping and are launching from a public ramp, it is always recommended that you contact the managing entity to ensure overnight parking is allowed.
Seagrasses & Mangroves
Both seagrasses and mangroves are important habitats for the health and productivity of countless inshore, coastal, and offshore species, as well as the overall health of the lagoon. These valuable resources are present on and around island in the region and it’s imperative that we do our part when using the islands to ensure they are protected. When boating in the lagoon keep an eye on water depth and make sure your hull and prop aren’t impacting seagrasses. When on the islands, refrain from using mangroves or other native trees to tie off, instead place anchors in areas of bare sand either onshore or in the water. By implementing these simple practices, you can help to ensure the resources and animals of the lagoon are there for everyone to enjoy.