Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary is located approximately five nautical miles south of Big Pine Key Popular for skin diving, snorkeling, fishing and boating, the sanctuary is considered by many to be the most spectacular reef in the Lower Keys. The remains of the H.M.S. Looe which sank in 1744, and for which the sanctuary is named, still remains on the ocean floor within the sanctuary boundaries. Throughout the sanctuary are majestic slopes, ledges and 7000 years of coral growth. A cave is located to the north in 12 feet of water. There are 39 buoys within the sanctuary. Near buoy #17 you will find tall coral formations that allow for good diving. Elkhorn coral is located to the northeast and a massive star coral on a pedestal can be found just south of the eyebolt.