Famous for it’s sunsets, relaxed atmosphere and for being a place that Ernest Hemingway loved, Key West is a place not to be missed when you’re in Florida. Whilst we were in Miami, my friend and me decided to drive down there quite spontaneously. Keep reading for a quick day trip guide to this charming town!
About Key West
Surrounded by the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, the tropical climate of the Florida Keys attracts many visitors. The climate is tropical all year round, just make sure you avoid Hurricane season when planning your visit! Many famous people including Harry Truman and Ernest Hemingway loved the relaxed vibe of Key West.
How to Get There
Don’t underestimate the time it takes to drive from Miami to Key West like we did! Even though it’s only around 260kms, it takes around 4 hours to drive as the speed limits in Florida are quite strict!
But don’t let that put you off as the drive is one of the nicest I’ve ever done! It takes you all along the US Highway No. 1, also known as the Overseas Highway. You might wonder why it’s so special. Well, it basically consists of 42 bridges that connect the 200 coral reefs that form the Florida Keys. The views are stunning to say the least. All keys are quaint and beautiful and it’s worth making a few stops along the way. For example at the Turtle Hospital (read more about it here).
What to Do
1. Admire the Architecture
The architecture in Key West is quite something! The wooden historic buildings are super colourful and have the nicest features. I loved strolling through the streets and discovering them!
The city of Key West only has 25.000 residents, but it is home to some famous buildings, including the Little White House built by Harry Truman and Ernest Hemingway had a house here which is now a museum and home to a ton of cats!
2. Visit the Southernmost Point in the US
Since this landmark is a very popular spot among tourists, it’s insanely hard to take a picture of the actual landmark itself, but I did find the imprint on the pavement much more interesting!
Did you know that it’s only 90 miles by sea to Cuba from here?
3. Watch the Sunset
Key West sunsets are the one thing you definitely shouldn’t miss out on! Even though it takes quite a while to drive back to Miami at night, definitely don’t miss out on the sunset! Head to Mallory Square or to Sunset Pier to catch the most stunning sunset!
4. Do Some People Watching
I love people watching! It’s my mum’s and mine favourite past-time when we go shopping and sit in cafés and people watching in Key West is a whole other level! We were lucky enough to visit Key West when Fantasy Fest was happening.
Fantasy Fest happens every year on the last weekend of October and there’s a huge parade and lots of festivities take place. Everyone dresses up in the craziest ways (see below) and the streets are packed with party-goers at night!
All in all, Key West was a unique experience for me, the long stunning drive down to the islands, stunning sunsets and a wild party life make Key West a place that should be on your bucket list!
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