As part of my vacation to Florida I knew I wanted to be near the sea for a portion of it. During my research the Keys came up. I have heard about the Keys before, but didn’t realize it is about 800 islands with the larger islands connected by bridges.
We drove all the way from Orlando to the middle keys . We stayed at the Tranquility Bay Resort in Marathon. This was a beautiful resort with luxurious rooms ! We loved this resort. Our room was on the second floor surrounded by large trees. It felt like we were living in a luxurious tree house ! The resort had two salt water pools, beautiful grounds, and professional staff. As in all of the Keys the beach had sea grass , but that is to be expected in the Keys ! This resort is very close to the turtle hospital and the seven mile bridge. There were stores within walking distance. The beach was beautiful and perfect for relaxing ! Some photos below.
We stayed for two days at this resort ! I wish we had more time to thoroughly enjoy this resort. This resort had many iguanas . We snorkeled one day in the Keys. We had booked our snorkel tour in Islamorada, so we actually had to drive back to upper Keys from middle keys for our tour. The Florida Reef is the third largest coral barrier reef system in the world. I was hoping to see really colorful fishes and reefs. Most of the reefs we saw were brown. The fish were colorful, but not like snorkeling in Hawaii ! The day we went the sea was a bit rough so could be that they couldn’t take us to some of the more nicer areas. I did see a sea turtle, that was very cool. Overall I didn’t find the snorkeling to be worthwhile in the Keys .
In Marathon about 5 km from our resort we found a Pizza place that we had dinner in the first night we were there . The pizza place was called Driftwood Pizza , Pasta and Subs. This was probably the best food I had in the Keys ! We liked it so much that we had dinner there both days that we were in Marathon.
On our third day we started our drive to the Key West from Marathon. On our way we saw people swimming in a nice beach area. We pulled over and discovered this was a park, so we paid our admission fee and spend a few hours at this park. The park was Bahia Honda State Park. It was a beautiful park. From the park you could even see the old railroad tracks that the government initially tried building instead of the roadways through out the Keys. There was a really nice beach area. I have read it is also a great place for snorkeling. Perhaps the next time.
We drove for close to another hour or so and stopped at Mangrove Mama’s for lunch. This is a famous restaurant at the start of Key West. Perfect place for a break. The food was great and the ambiance unique to the keys !
We continued on and reached Key West ! The beginning and middle keys is beautiful, and I recommend spending a few days there if you are planning to visit the Keys. I found the middle keys to be more peaceful. Key West is unique enough that it has its own post !