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The Lost One

Anyone ever been to Key West, FLA?

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Taking the wife there for her 40th birthday. Will be there for 4 nights/5 days.  Of course, I've researched a ton and so I've read about many things to do there. However, I'm looking to hear from anyone who's had personal experiences and can recommend things to do. 

Thx

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10 hours ago, The Dreaded Marco said:

My wife and I spent a couple days in Key West last year.

The trip to Dry Tortugas National Park was definitely the highlight.  

I've been reading up on that trip and it's been split. Some loved it like you, others said it wasn't worth it as there's too much travel time and not enough time there. And if the weather is poor the trip is terrible. 

Thx for the feedback. 

Edited by The Lost One

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A couple places my wife and I enjoyed eating:

DJs Clam Shack - casual walk up stand that’s downtown.  Great for a quick lunch.  We got the shrimp tacos and a lobster roll.

Latitude - we ate lunch here another day though dinner/sunset would be amazing I’d imagine.   You take a boat to another island so that’s an experience on it’s own.  Awesome food and beautiful views.  Make reservations ASAP when you get down there as it was hard to get in (if you decide to go).

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Just now, The Lost One said:

I've been reading up on that trip and it's been split. Some loved it like you, others said it wasn't worth it as there's too much travel time and not enough time there. And if the weather is poor the trip is terrible. 

Thx for ther feedback. 

The boat trip there and back was just about as much fun as the time spent at the fort.  Probably luck of the draw but the folks we met and conversed with were a high point of the excursion.

There was plenty of time on site to explore the fort, beaches and snorkeling.

Obviously, the weather is a crap shoot.  

IMO, 5 days in Key West is probably too many, especially if you don't take one of them to see this National Park.  Highly recommended.

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No, never even heard of it. Does FLA=Florida?

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went a couple times as a single chap ... hedonistic joy.  drank a ton.  partied a ton more.  did i mention the ladies?

prolly not much help to your sitch, but, yes ... i've been. 

 

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When you go to Key West, you just hang and things just come to you. It has such a different vibe there. I wouldn’t plan anything and just enjoy figuring things out once you get there.

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I'd recommend doing a walking food tour there.  I had some of the best conch fritters ever on one of those tours.

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And take in some live music at night.  A lot of local artists doing acoustic stuff and what not.

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Louie's Backyard is a great restaurant with nice deck seating on the water.  Lunch is very reasonably priced for high end food.  Dinner is pricey.  Here is an example lunch menu (changes often).

 

Edited by Don Hutson
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Yes. Love it. We did standing paddle board lessons which was fun, also kayak and snorkeling. 
 

restaurant recommendation: Santiago’s - get the goat cheese filled dates. 

Edited by bigmarc27

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If you’re lucky and you plan things just right, you won’t hear a single Jimmy Buffett song.  Probably too hard a task for a first time visitor, though 

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Blue Heaven for breakfast. I loathe Key West in general, but this place is awesome. 

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9 hours ago, The Dreaded Marco said:

My wife and I spent a couple days in Key West last year.

The trip to Dry Tortugas National Park was definitely the highlight.  

This is the only reason I want to go back to Key West

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It's on my short list of places to go to if I ever want to disappear from society.

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If you have a car, you can drive up to No Name Key and Big Pine Key and check out the Key Deer. They’re like the size of German Shepherds 

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I was just there thanksgiving week. Bicycles are the best way to get around.

We did the seaplane trip to Fort Jefferson and absolutely loved it. The flight was amazing as he flies low and you see sharks, turtles and wrecks on the way out. Everyone gets a headset and the pilot will point things out to you. We brought snorkel gear and I went almost all the way around the fort with lots of sea life. Lots of time at the fort if you fly.

DJ's Clam Shack for lobster rolls. Irish Kevins for a good time and drinks. Green Parrot if you want to hang like a local.

Eat some fresh hogfish. In the old days we called it hog snapper.

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Forgot to mention that if you want to stay at a Great B&B in a slightly quieter area of town, I highly recommend the Mermaid & the Alligator.  

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3 minutes ago, Osaurus said:

If you have a car, you can drive up to No Name Key and Big Pine Key and check out the Key Deer. They’re like the size of German Shepherds 

Big Pine Key = No Name Pub 

great bar that used to be a house of ill repute.

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2 minutes ago, Joe Mammy said:

Big Pine Key = No Name Pub 

great bar that used to be a house of ill repute.

Best key deer sighting is just east of there in some canal/boat launch neighborhood 

Edited by Osaurus

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Hemingway's house is pretty cool. I'm a big fan. There are polydactyl cats everywhere and you can even see the urinal he took from Sloppy Joes which is enshrined in the backyard (I so wanted to use it but there were too many tourists hanging around).

If you like pickleball they just opened 6 new courts at Higgs Beach. I was playing with the locals most mornings. They drink beer in between games @ 9:00am. KW is one of the few places in the US where you can walk around with a beer in your hand in the am and nobody notices or cares.

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Casa Marina is a really nice place to stay if you want romantic and can swing the $$$.It's also right next to Louie's, though I have to say Louie's is one of those places that maybe is classic, like 'you should have seen it back in the day...' then everyone finds out about it and the next thing you know it's mostly tourists. And it's expensive. If you're just hanging, I'd say go somewhere else like Blue Heaven, Good Life or Pepe's, but it's true if you want a great meal for a big birthday or anniversary Louie's probably is the option. The back side of Pepe's is a nice place to hang out and drink. If you're into literary stuff Hemingway's house was great, it's also just a cool true Key West home. I haven't been but yeah that Latitudes place looks pretty nice too, I'd give that a shot.

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Wow guys!  Tons of great info, including the hedonistic joy, hot ladies and being too much for my snitch. 

I'm going to look back into doing Dry Tortugas either by boat or sea plane. Have to see the costs.  

Will have to look into Latitudes, Firefly Key West, Louie's Backyard, and Santiago's. We were already checking out Blue Heaven and the Green Parrot. Also doing a kayak/ snorkeling adventure through Danger Charters. Hitting up Hemingway's and Fort Jefferson are on the list. 

We were debating between Casa Marina and Ocean Key Resort and Spa and went with the latter.

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Flew into Ft Lauderdale and drove down 2 years ago for a week. Great time ,we absolutely loved it. Stayed at the Orchid Key Inn, on Duval but tucked back ,great for walking everywhere. Really fun place

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Spent our honeymoon there 15 years ago. I'll bet it's way different now

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1 minute ago, flapgreen said:

Spent our honeymoon there 15 years ago. I'll bet it's way different now

Spring Break every day imo

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Some good seafood at Hurricane Hole Restaurant right at the marina. I would suggest going out fishing as well. You can get a charter through here also. Anything you catch, they will prepare it for you and provide sides for a minimal cost. 

Last time we were there for a baseball tournament, the kids and dads went out fishing on an off day and we had enough fish to feed the entire team + families. 

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Been there a few times

Sunset pier is worth a visit one evening

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Drop by Dante's for some interesting views

And we like the half shell bar

Conch Republic is a good dinner spot imo

 

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Check out The Garden of Eden. Just understand you will never be able to unsee what you may see there.

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Seriously check out Duval st at night lots of fun. If your into fishing Dream Catchers is a great charter they put my wife and I on the fish.

We also enjoyed the Dry Tortugas trip too.

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On 2/8/2020 at 10:13 AM, SaintsInDome2006 said:

Casa Marina is a really nice place to stay if you want romantic and can swing the $$$.It's also right next to Louie's, though I have to say Louie's is one of those places that maybe is classic, like 'you should have seen it back in the day...' then everyone finds out about it and the next thing you know it's mostly tourists. And it's expensive. If you're just hanging, I'd say go somewhere else like Blue Heaven, Good Life or Pepe's, but it's true if you want a great meal for a big birthday or anniversary Louie's probably is the option. The back side of Pepe's is a nice place to hang out and drink. If you're into literary stuff Hemingway's house was great, it's also just a cool true Key West home. I haven't been but yeah that Latitudes place looks pretty nice too, I'd give that a shot.

I have been here and the scenery was awesome. Nothing like eating on a beach. The food is terrific too. You need a reservation or you can’t go on their water taxi/shuttle thing. Worth it if you want a special night. 

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Went there in '92. Getting drunk there is pretty easy ;)

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I haven't been but a friend and I are entertaining the idea of riding out there and back from Key Largo on our bikes.

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On 2/7/2020 at 11:53 PM, The Lost One said:

Taking the wife there for her 40th birthday. Will be there for 4 nights/5 days.  Of course, I've researched a ton and so I've read about many things to do there. However, I'm looking to hear from anyone who's had personal experiences and can recommend things to do. 

Thx

Lots of good info in this thread so far, here's lots more:

https://forums.footballguys.com/forum/topic/728889-key-west-vacation/

Edited by Wingnut
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Last time I was there, there was no Uber or Lyft allowed...I believe there is now though.

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2 hours ago, Wingnut said:

Last time I was there, there was no Uber or Lyft allowed...I believe there is now though.

There was Uber when we were there in 2018. :)

Edited by belljr

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One place to keep in mind for the drive through the keys is Keys Fisheries in Marathon.  Most restaurants are mediocre in the keys other than Key West.  They're mostly tourist traps serving low quality fare to people wouldn't ever return even if the food was great.  Keys Fisheries was decent.  They are famous for their lobster reuben.  It's not cheap at $23 but their other food is as good or better and cheaper.  It has relaxed outdoor seating with a nice atmosphere.  Here is their menu.

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On 2/9/2020 at 3:16 PM, Apple Jack said:

I haven't been but a friend and I are entertaining the idea of riding out there and back from Key Largo on our bikes.

That is 107 miles, sounds exhausting.

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On ‎2‎/‎9‎/‎2020 at 4:04 PM, msommer said:

Went there in '92. Getting drunk there is pretty easy ;)

Key West kind of reminds me of Cocoon, day drinking with a bunch of people who are over 60 and acting 20.  But it was fun.

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As far as the main drag of bars (Duval) - big fan of Irish Kevins fwiw

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