In late February of 2020, I took a visit to the Florida Keys. It was two weeks earlier than shelter-in-place orders went into impact in California in March, and I bear in mind once I arrived residence and landed in San Francisco airport feeling like oh wow, that is getting critical. The subsequent week we have been all mandated to remain residence. Talk a few pendulum swing, from feeling the complete freedom of exploring magical islands to the restrictions of a hometown lockdown.

It’s been a full yr since my journey to the Florida Keys. I’ve been to numerous particular locations on this earth, however there’s some kind of magical mud that floats by means of the air and makes the environment in the Florida Keys further interesting. It’s not simply the location, it should be one thing to do with the historical past of the area and the cultures that blend in that a part of the world.

The Florida Keys are a collection of coral archipelagos in the southernmost a part of the continental United States, they get their identify from the Spanish phrase cayo, that means small island. I coated loads in 4 days there, spending most of my time exploring Key West and someday making the lengthy drive to Key Largo and again.

On arrival, the laid again vibe of Key West was immediately obvious. I dropped down in Key West only a few hours earlier than sundown and headed to Mallory Square. I used to be greeted with the sounds of metal drums and slack key guitar and the most superb sundown.


Key West is small and straightforward to navigate, most individuals get round on a bicycle, scooter, or on foot. The sounds of coastal breezes in the swaying palm timber paired with the whirring of air conditioners was the background music I heard as I explored. Here’s a glimpse of what I noticed and few of my favourite stops.


Duval Street is legendary however stuffed with vacationers. It’s lined with retailers and bars and I didn’t get pleasure from it very a lot throughout the day due to the crowds…



…  it’s rather more enjoyable in the night when it’s balmy and you’ll get pleasure from dwell music whilst you sip a rum drink.

Mallory Square is a well-liked vacation spot for the sundown, however equally interesting is the seaport stroll alongside the harbor with all the boats and open air eating places situated alongside the meandering wharf, all taking part in dwell music.

I ended in to see the Ernest Hemingway House and actually cherished the structure, particularly the second story wraparound porch. Lucky Ernest to dwell in such a phenomenal residence! Below is an image of his private workplace. He cherished cats and I spied a few dozen on the property!

Taking a self guided tour of the Key West Cemetery in the Old Town is a factor, it’s there you’ll discover numerous historical past and some comical gravestones.


Another worthwhile cease was the Butterfly & Nature Conservatory, stroll round inside the place unique birds and butterflies are flying throughout and don’t miss the cute flamingo couple in the center.


What about the different Keys? There are so many! I’ve all the time wished to drive this freeway between Key West and Key Largo so I spent a full day on a highway journey forwards and backwards. It’s 100 miles from the zero mile marker in Key West to Key Largo.

I used to be feeling bold so I drove from Key West to Key Largo in the morning and all the approach again to Key West in the night. I didn’t get to see and do the whole lot the different Keys have to supply, however I ended at a number of well-known spots. Much of the enchantment for me was simply driving the freeway, it’s one thing I’ve all the time wished to do!

I rented a automobile in Key West then I drove to Key Largo having fun with the morning views over the Seven Mile Bridge and arriving two hours later in Key Largo for an early lunch at Mrs. Macs, situated at the 99 mile marker. There are two areas, I selected the bigger one and it’s true they’ve the tastiest fish (get the contemporary catch!) and it’s there I developed a critical crush on the ground.



My subsequent cease after lunch was to feed the tarpons at Robbies is Islamorada at mile marker 78. Pay a number of {dollars} and head out to the docks to feed the tarpons, they’re enormous! But look ahead to the pelicans, they’re swarming in all places and really grasping. Robbie’s additionally gives boat leases should you really feel like a water journey and there are artisans on the property promoting native items.


I ended in Islamorada to spend the afternoon, to see Morada Bay, and to go to the native artwork retailers. It’s right here the place I photographed this art print which I named ‘Serenity Now’ as a result of… clearly. 🙂


Across the freeway I ended in for a style at the well-known Florida Keys Brewing Company with its very colourful and inventive inside. I cherished their rainbow resin counter tops and now I desire a BEER signal made with bottlecaps too.



I wished to make it to the Sunset Grille at mile marker 47 in Marathon Key for dinner and a sundown. It sits proper at the fringe of the Seven Mile Bridge. I arrived early as a result of it’s a preferred place with swimming, nice meals, dwell music, and a view of the bridge. I stayed for nearly two hours I cherished the vibe a lot, and wow what a sundown!

I left after sundown and made it safely again to Key West that night. It was a 200 mile highway journey however what an unimaginable day!

I spent my final day biking round Key West however having to pause each minute as a result of…. the actual property. I can’t even with the island fashion houses and their shiny coloured shutters surrounded by lush plantings and swaying palm timber. Dreamy!



Lodging is basically costly in Key West however I discovered a price range different. I stayed in a shared feminine bunk room at NYAH resort and simply saved the whole lot in a locker. It was excellent, they’d a pool, free bicycles, and breakfast each morning and the lodge is centrally situated inside strolling distance of the whole lot in Key West.


So that’s my glimpse of a visit to the Florida Keys, it was such a enjoyable place to hang around and I can inform it’s a tremendous place to dwell! The Keys captured my coronary heart, I look ahead to a return sometime.

My subsequent journey to Florida can be a highway journey alongside the Gulf to see Fort Myers, Marco Island, Naples, Bonita Springs, Sanibel Island, Clearwater and St. Pete, so if there’s anyplace I ought to cease on that highway journey, let me know!

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