To kick off 2019, I was lucky enough to spend a week in the Florida Keys with some friends. We drove through all the Keys, down to the Southernmost Point of the Continental USA!
Key West is probably the most well known Key. This place is a total tourist trap, so expect a ton of people year-round. There are lots of restaurants, bars, gift shops and places to sightsee.
My favorite thing about Key West was the transportation they offer – JEEP TRAINS! They converted old Jeeps into a fun train attraction for adults and kids. How cool is that?
Key West is the farthest key heading south, and is where you can find the buoy marking the Southernmost point of the Continental USA, which is only 90 miles from Cuba! You can even take a ferry there if you want.
Another fun stop at Key West is the World’s Smallest Bar. It’s the size of my dorm room back in college, but filled with wayyyy more people. This place is always poppin’ and a great place to meet some new friends.
The Key West lighthouse is also worth noting. You can go up to the top (for a price) for a great view. But the ground view is what I was most impressed with. There are trees that grow into other trees! I’ve never seen anything like it. Scroll down to see what I’m talking about.
If you want to escape the craziness of Key West, head to the N=northern Keys for some great boating, fishing, snorkeling, wakeboarding, kayaking or whatever you want to do. Depending on where you go, and the time of year, you may want a light jacket due to the wind. As I mentioned. I went in January and there were a few spots I was happy to be in more than shorts and a tank top!
The Big Pine Key has a great spot called Blue Hole where I got to see a few alligators up close for the first time. It was pretty wild. You can also spot some Key Deer here, which look like regular deer but much smaller. They’re more like the size of fawns when they’re full grown. They are actually endangered so seeing them is pretty cool in itself.
As you keep heading up route 1, you’ll drive across the Seven Mile Bridge. The name says it all – it’s a lonnnnnggggg bridge. They have an area for pedestrians to walk across, but it was super windy so come prepared! This is also a great spot for fishing and sunsets.
Another cool bridge worth noting is the Bahia Honda Railroad Bridge. This old bridge was constructed between 1905 and 1912 and once connected the Bahia Honda Key with the Spanish Harbor Key. Keep an eye out for wildlife – I spotted a mama iguana and her baby here! We didn’t get too close as to not disturb them, but the zoom on the camera captured the moment pretty well.
When you stumble across wildlife, please remember to give them their space for their safety as well as your own. After all, you wouldn’t want someone walking into your house uninvited!
If you wander around this area you can see parts of the abandoned bridge as well as what’s left of some buildings on the beach. There is a building with 3 walls barely standing, as well as the remains of other structures and maybe even some part of the bridge. It’s pretty interesting place for sure!
One of my favorite Keys, and the one we stayed at during our time in Florida was Marathon. This is a great kiteboarding and snorkeling spot. It’s even home to a famous aquarium on the show Tanked.
There’s also a turtle hospital that you can go and learn about the rehab and how they get released back to the wild. There are lots of places here to find out more about the wildlife that calls the Keys home and see them up close! During our stay, we actually found an injured Pelican and safely transported him to a hospital to get the care he needed. We are told Nygal the pelican made a full recovery.
No matter what you’re into, there’s something for everyone to do in the Keys. If you want some recommendations for your next trip, comment below! Thanks for checking out my blog 🙂