Florida Keys HolidaysReference WW38676
Visit the Florida Keys and immediately experience the laid-back atmosphere that is unique and a world away from big cities and theme parks.
A cluster of islands that begins just south of Miami, the Florida Keys are connected by the Overseas Highway’s 43 bridges — one seven miles long — over the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico.
The area is divided into five regions: Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key and Key West. Each region has its own special flavour, attractions including historic museums, flora, fauna, seafood restaurants, fishing, diving, water sports and unique, boutique-type shopping experiences.
Vistas of the Keys are dominated by emerald-green lagoons, deep-blue seas, nodding palms, rustling pines and olive-green mangroves. Sharing this eco-paradise are white herons, roseate spoonbills, pelicans, sea gulls, ospreys and countless underwater creatures.
The coastal waters of the entire 126-mile island chain, including its shallow water flats, mangrove islets and coral reefs, have been designated the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
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- Currency US Dollars ($)
- Flying time from UK 10 1/2 Hours
- Primary Language English
- Passport & Visas Brits must have a full 10-year British Passport that's valid for six months after you return to the UK.
The food in the Keys was amazing, we came across a hole-in-the-wall street food Cafe, Frita's Cuban Burgers which became our go-to place for food (and a beer) on the move. My favourite thing about my time in the Keys was the diving trip, we did an excursion with Dive Key West, the largest dive facility in the Keys and it was fabulous to deep dive in the outer reef amongst corals, gorgonians and larger fish found in the Florida Keys. We also went paddle-boarding through Key West's calm turquoise waters with Lazy Dog Adventures which was a lovely way to spend a morning and we even spotted tropical fish, crabs and sea cucumbers.
On the tip of the Florida Keys, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, lies the historic island city of Key West. Situated as it is at the gateway to the Caribbean and in close proximity to Cuba, this island supports a vibrant community and a long seafaring and naval tradition,
Key West, also known as the 'Conch Republic', has a distinct Caribbean flavour. The streets of its old quarter are lined with palms and pastel-painted, wooden colonial 'gingerbread' houses. It has been the favoured holiday haunt of greats like Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams, and Harry Truman. This is because of its relaxed atmosphere, colourful neighbourhoods, legendary bars and restaurants, offshore fishing opportunities, and lively nightlife. The city also hosts innumerable pageants, parades and festivals, has an active theatre culture, and several heritage museums.
The streets of Key West are attractions by themselves; buskers providing impromptu entertainment for those at sidewalk cafés or browsing the many stores. Visitors on holiday here flock to 'The Bight', the old harbour, to arrange sea trips for fishing, snorkelling, or diving. Nightlife in Key West starts with sunset drinks on the Mallory Dock, before moving on to areas like Bahama Village, and along Duval Street.
Most visitors to Key West choose not to drive because of the great public transport options. Park-and-ride shuttles and buses are available and recommended. A day pass costs $4. Key West is very pedestrian friendly with bike and scooter rentals available, a great alternative to driving as parking in Key West can be difficult.
The Dade-Monroe Express bus runs from Key Marathon to Florida City, offering round trips on the hour and stopping on demand. Greyhound runs a Keys shuttle bus several times a day between Miami International Airport, stopping at all major points along the Keys.
Explore one of the world's most scenic and intriguing archipelagos at Key West. The island is a perfect destination for families, as it combines the opportunity for dozens of water-based activities with some cultural and educational sightseeing.
Just beyond Key West are other islets along the Florida Keys chain, perfect for a day trip. Key Largo is known as one of the best places to go scuba-diving. Children can enjoy up-close interactions with marine life at the Dolphin Research Center and Turtle Hospital in Marathon.