Here at Fun Roads, we make sure our TV crews spend lots of time in Florida… especially the part that’s south of Miami. Exploring the Everglades, the Florida Keys and side road trips across I75’s Alligator Alley to the Gulf Coast lets you experience Florida’s best from laid-back Key West to the glamor of Marco Island.
So when the weather starts to turn chilly up north, the snowbirds (and everyone else) escape to a warmer climate south on I75 and I95 or east on I40. The Fun Roads crew was no exception and like almost everyone who drives to Florida, they visited the Florida Keys. So whether you’re an angler, RV’er, Foodie or sun worshipper, you’re sure to find plenty to do and see.
The Florida Keys is a string of islands and islets with the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Gulf of Mexico on the other. Getting there from Miami is a 120-mile road trip on US 1. You’ll be amazed at just how much fun you can have in that 4-hour drive. You’ll cross 43 bridges which connect 31 islands in what is known as “America’s Caribbean Islands.” US 1 ends at Key West… the southernmost point in the US. Now Key West is more Caribbean than American with a never-ending carnival atmosphere featuring street artists, outdoor cafes and a wide variety of great restaurants.
Endless sunshine and glistening blue water make the Florida Keys a haven for the sports buff or anyone who loves a day at the beach. If your idea of the perfect vacation is catching the sea breeze and soaking up the sun, then you’ll love Seaward Cruises, we experience a short cruise with a leisurely lunch later on we sailed away for a whole day with ports of call all along the Keys from Island Mauritius, Holiday Island Marina, up to Naples. And for those who appreciate a faster pace, the area’s marinas offer parasailing, jet skiing, and water skiing also provide boat rentals and launching facilities so you won’t have to do a lot of driving. Though parking, especially for RV’s, is plentiful wherever you go.
Fun Roads found information on fishing seasons, tournaments, and supplies easy to come by, after all, the Florida Keys boasts some of the best deep-sea fishing in the U.S. Charters are available for any type of fishing and certified captains are ready to take you out for some great catches. Offshore sport fishing is seasonal during the winter months, king mackerel, sailfish, all sorts of reef-type fish, snappers, groupers, cobias and during the summer months, the majority being dolphin, tuna, Wahoo, within an occasional marlin.
Scuba and snorkeling enthusiasts dive at the chance to get under the water to see the Keys unique marine life. Video helps divers remember their encounters with the most amazing array of colorful and unusual creatures. If you’re not an experienced diver, don’t let that slow you down, many of the dive shops offer one-day resort courses, which allow you to explore the reefs under the supervision of a dive expert. Sightseers are also welcome to view any of the states underwater parks by glass-bottom boats, like at Key Largo’s John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park.
This was the first American underwater sanctuary ever established. Its founder and namesake was both an environmentalist and a former editor of the Miami Harold who wished to preserve the delicate balance of the marine ecosystem. This coastline offers 55 varieties of coral and 500 species of fish. The landside side of this park has equally impressive white-sand beaches, picnic facilities, and nature trails.
So when your road trip to this tropical paradise of islands, you set your own pace. Invigorating or relaxing, you can find it in the Florida Keys.