Friday, August 25, 2017

5 Interesting Places You Need To Explore in the Florida Keys| Beautiful Gift Ideas for the Boater in Your Life


The Florida Keys sits on the southern coast of Florida, forming the southernmost part of the United States. The island stared at the southeast coast of Florida about 24 km south of Miami. It spreads out in a subtle curve near Key West stretching to the westernmost part of Dry Tortugas.

The islands extend along the Florida Straits, separating the Atlantic Ocean to the east and Gulf of Mexico to the northwest. At least 95% of Florida Keys sits in Monroe County but spans into Totten Key in Miami-Dade County. As of 2014 US Census, about 77, 136 residents call the area their home. Much of the population is concentrated within a few areas which 32% of the residents dwell in Key West City.

The Florida Keys holds a dark history. Back in the days, pirates use to hide in some islands in the Florida Keys during their plundering heists. But it all stopped when the US Navy started to patrol the area sometime in 1822 and built their base in Key West. As the only chain of corals in the US, it contributed to the early economic growth in the area. Usually, ships will run aground in shallow reef and locals would salvage the cargo then resell it. This tradition called as “wrecking” was one of the reasons why the area prospered. 

Today, Florida Keys are known for its beaches and for its historical places. Some of the top rated destinations in the area are:

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park along with the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary remains as the only living coral reef in the US. Hundreds of tourists flock the area to experience diving and snorkeling in its waters. Here, tourists can discover firsthand the beauty of the underwater life.  The park has a beautiful covered beach with a small swimming area for the kids. But people go here just to snorkel and dive; some say it is one of the best spots in the world. There are picnic areas, wide parking lot and an information center which also display about marine life and habitats.

Bahia Honda State Park

One of the most beautiful beach in the area, quite possibly in the state of Florida is Bahia Honda State Park. There are nice picnic areas littered in the beach as well as a campground.  The park has two separate beach areas; both have magnificent views of the water.  If you really love the water, one beach facing the open ocean while the other face the old railroad bridge.

Dry Tortugas National Park

For the more adventurous mind, the Dry Tortugas National Park can be your playground. Located 70 miles from Key West the national park is accessible only by seaplane or boat. But the trip is all worth it, the Dry Tortugas National Park has some of the clearest waters in the Gulf of Mexico, and boasts seven pristine beaches. Fort Jefferson, a massive fortress completely envelops one island, a sight you do not want to miss.

Hemingway House

Another popular destination in Keys is the Hemingway House, an important part of Florida’s rich cultural history. Tourists come here to pay their respect to one of the world’s most famous writer. The Hemingway House is the home of Ernest Hemingway. Visitors can also get a chance to see wandering cats around the house; many are the direct descendants of Hemingway’s well-known pet cats. 

Dolphin Research Center

Home to the popular TV Series “Flipper” is would be a shame not to visit the Dolphin Research Center. The center educates visitors about California sea lions and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Visitors can also watch how trainers interact with dolphins.

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