Hernando County is a county located on the west-central coast of the U.S. State of Florida. As of the 2010 census, the population was 172,778. Its county seat is Brooksville and its largest community is Spring Hill, but also includes Bayport, Pine Island, and Weeki Wachee. Hernando is included in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL Metropolitan Statistical Area and is to the direct north of Pasco County. As of 2005, Hernando was the 35th fastest-growing county in the country.