Longboat Key is a town in Manatee and Sarasota counties along the central west coast of the U.S. state of Florida, located on and coterminous with the barrier island of the same name. Longboat Key is south of Anna Maria Island, between Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. It is almost equally divided between the Manatee and Sarasota counties. The town of Longboat Key was incorporated in 1955 and is part of the Bradenton-Sarasota-Venice, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. The town's population was 6,888 at the 2010 census, which decreased from 7,603 at the 2000 census. It increased to 7,505 in the 2020 census.
Longboat Key was originally inhabited by Native Americans. The area of what is now Longboat Key was scouted by Juan de Añasco who was the first known European to explore the key and Hernando De Soto's as his scout. He spent about two months attempting to find a landing site, and he was also most likely the first European man to s