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KEY WEST, AN ISLAND WITH MORE TO DO THAN LAZE AROUND IN THE SUN
Of course, if your typical vacation is made of afternoons on the beach enjoying the sun and working on your tan to impress your colleagues back home, Key West will do just fine. But don’t believe that is all it has.
Key West is a unique island city located at the end of the overseas highway, Southwest from Miami. Though you wouldn’t think there is much to do on this small island, you could be surprised. Key West is a place for culture and history, where many well-known figures took up residence.
Whether you like to spend your vacation in harmony with nature, are a culture fan who wants to find out all about the city’s history, you’ll find something to do in Key West. Also, if you want useful tips on how to spend a nice few days while enjoying the city’s many advantages, read carefully: you won’t be disappointed!
The city offers an impressive selection of hotels, motels and other accommodation options, so you will most likely find just what you need.
KEY WEST AND NATURE
Maybe on the first look, an island in Florida doesn’t look like the perfect choice for a vacation in harmony with nature. But you would be surprised by all that Key West has to offer.
If your favorite type of beach is calm, with only a few other people and away from the bustling city center with its hotels, bars and cafés, you should definitely take a trip to Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park: this quiet park with a beach will let you enjoy nature the way it was meant to be enjoyed, and you can bond with nature on a nearly untouched beach.
This state park and other parts of the city offer countless activities related with nature. You can put on your wetsuit and visit a kayak rental place to go on a trip. You can also participate in some marine tours that sometimes feature dolphin spotting. If you are lucky enough, take a look at these amazing sea mammals known for their great intelligence and interactions with humans.
Your interest for wildlife and nature will also be fulfilled by two other very interesting locations: the Key West Municipal Aquarium, and the Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory. Find out about interesting marine and butterfly species that you maybe didn’t know about, and learn many things about Florida and the entire world’s wildlife.
A WEEKEND IN KEY WEST: THINGS NOT TO MISS OUT ON
If you’re only going to be in Key West for a short period of time, you definitely want to make the most of it while enjoying the city’s main perks. If you want to be accommodated in one of the city’s cheapest motels, rent a room at the El Patio motel to be accommodated in a cozy setting without paying too much. Once this has been dealt with, you’re ready for days of fun!
For starters, if your time is limited, you could probably use an activity that will let you discover the entire city in little time. That is why the city thought of offering tours on small trains or trolleys, so you can be comfortably driven around and have a good look at the city’s various places.
Then, you’re obviously looking for a good beach with lots of things going on. If so, Smathers Beach is your perfect choice. Between beach volleyball and water sports, you will have many activities available for you besides simply letting the sun color your skin.
Key West has something that no one should miss: Southernmost point, the southernmost place in the entire US! Even though technically the US has a navy base a bit further South, this place is the southernmost place of the American territory that is open to public. At this oceanfront location, see the sign reading “90 miles to Cuba” as well as a tribute to Cuban immigrants who died trying to reach Key West from Cuba.
At the end of the day, 365 days a year, Mallory Square is home to the well-known Sunset Celebrations: view a breathtaking sunset while enjoying the boardwalk’s many bustling locations such as bars, cafés, shops, and so on.
Finally, to enjoy Key West’s unique location in the middle of the sea, embark on a cruise from the harbor to the reef. There, the most adventurous ones will be offered the opportunity to go diving or snorkeling, while less adventurous travelers can look at marine wildlife from the glass-bottom boat. With all this, you will get a unique weekend in Key West, FL!
A PLACE FOR ART AND CULTURE
Granted, not everyone spontaneously heads out to an island in Florida to soothe their hunger for culture. But by now you should know that Key West is an exceptional place!
First of all, find out about an important yet underrated historical figure, President Harry S. Truman! Visit the Harry S. Truman Little White House, where he stayed for 175 days. Born in Missouri, Truman gave Key West great publicity by expressing his fondness for this city, and living there several winters.
Anyway, Harry Truman is not the only famous figure who set foot in Key West: so did British writer Ernest Hemingway! And he also left enough behind for the city to host an Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum. Find out about this figure’s way of life and history by visiting this monument.
If you want further knowledge of other eras’ ways of life, a visit to the Lighthouse and Keeper’s Quarters Museum would be a good recommendation. This place offers an impressive exhibition with cheap entry fees. On top of the lighthouse, you will get a good look at its surroundings, and though the lighthouse keeper was replaced by technology during the 20th century, you can still learn about his rudimentary way of life.
To have a comfortable stay and replenishing nights in between your busy days full of cultural discoveries, you need a hotel that will be comfortable and cozy. Pick the La Mer & Dewey House for that. From there, you will have access to the entire city of Key West, and will be able to enjoy its busy and bustling cultural life: art galleries, theaters with plays or dancing shows, all kinds of live performances, you will find everything you want on Key West’s program.
Price rangefrom $65to $971
- Hotel Doubletree by Hilton Grand Key Resort3from $207
- Hotel Southernmost Inn2from $202
- Hotel Ocean Key Resort & Spa4from $331
- Hotel Southernmost3from $266
- Hotel La Concha Key West3from $189
- Hotel Best Western Key Ambassador Resort Inn2from $179
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