USA: Which Florida Key is best for you?
May 3, 2019
by Jake Pool
With turquoise water as far as the eye can see, postcard beaches, world famous pie, and an irresistible tropical vibe, the legendary Florida Keys are on the bucket list of many travelers from the USA and all over the world. If you are thinking of visiting, you may be wondering which is the best Florida Key for you. Well, the answer is all of them if you have time! But for those in a hurry, check out these top recommendations in the main Florida Keys.
Things to do in Key Largo, Florida Keys: the closest island
Best places to eat in Key Largo
Key Largo’s restaurants are excellent, and you will be spoiled for choice. But I had to pick some, so….
Mrs. Mac’s kitchen
Featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine as having the Best Key Lime Pie. I can vouch as it was the best key lime pie I’ve ever had. We ate here three times during our stay, and the service was outstanding!
Snapper’s Key Largo
Wonderful ocean views and cocktails. I highly recommend the shrimp pasta and gator bites (especially if you’re looking to try something local and out of the ordinary).
Great local joint with a solid patio. They’ll also cook your fresh catch of the day at a reasonable price including the sides.
Where to stay in Key Largo
MB at Key Largo
Renovations from Hurricane Irma are ongoing, but this is a great bang-for-your-buck spot with oceanfront views. Plus, Snapper’s restaurant is next door!
Coconut Palm Inn
This spot has a great atmosphere, nightly fire pit, and gives out free drinks. Need I say more?
Waterside Suites and Marina (Recently renovated – a real bargain)
My girlfriend and I were a little skeptical when we first booked the room and mainly did so based on price. But, wow, we were totally blown away with the room we got. The renovations were awesome, and the service from the front desk was outstanding.
Best Beaches in Key Largo
Cannon Beach – John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
This is one of two beaches inside the park, and it was lovely. However, don’t let the ‘reef’ in the name of the state park fool you. The reefs are protected, and you’ll need to book a snorkeling tour in order to get out to the reefs and see the awesome underwater sights.
Far Beach – John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
Far Beach is a little less crowded than Cannon Beach as it is located at the back of the park. This is a great spot to chill out and have a picnic while enjoying some rays.
Harry Harris Park
We were told the park took a big hit during Hurricane Irma bus is open again. The beaches were very nice, and this spot was pet-friendly as well.
Things to do in Marathon, Florida Keys: the stylish haven
Best places to eat in Marathon
Castaway Waterfront Restaurant and Sushi Bar
I highly recommend a table by the canal. This spot had a lot of beers on tap, and the sushi was great.
7 Mile Grill
We only had breakfast here, but I can definitely vouch for the bagel all the way and the friendly, knowledgable staff.
Island Fish Co.
Great views and a solid tiki bar. The conch fritters were amazing!
Where to stay in Marathon
Tranquility Bay Beachfront Hotel and Resort
This was more of a family place with larger accommodations for families, but the views were stunning. Plus, it has a large, private beach.
Indigo Reef Resort – Keys Caribbean
We stayed in a townhome style accommodation with great views from the balcony. They said the manatees come to the docks, but we weren’t there at the right time.
Ask for Carmen, and you’ll unlock the best price on a great stay in all of Marathon. Note the ‘motel’ in the title. This isn’t a resort. Just a great place to stay and save money.
Best Beaches in Marathon
This beach is beautiful with plenty of parking. It doesn’t show up on many of the ‘best beaches’ lists, so it was a bit quieter than some of the state parks we visited.
Curry Hammock State Park
Great beaches and had a lot of activities to offer. The kayaking was great, and the rates were very reasonable.
Bahia Honda State Park
This is the creme-de-la-creme of Florida beaches. Not only is this one of the best beaches in Marathon, but this is also one of the best beaches in the USA. The views and snorkeling were amazing, and there is an old bridge in the park that was closed for use in the ’70s.
Things to do in Key West, Florida Keys: the party key
Best places to eat in Key West
Conch Republic Seafood Company
Very busy when we arrived and had great outdoor seating and ambiance. The food and service were wonderful, and it was fun to see all of the boats coming and going.
We stumbled upon this raw bar, and it turned out to be one of the best happy hour spots in all of Key West! Highly recommended.
We were told by everyone that this is a staple in Key West, and it lived up to its reputation. Everything was perfect from wine to food to dessert. The service was solid as well.
Where to stay in Key West
Southernmost Beach Resort
This spot was a bit of a splurge for us, but we definitely enjoyed the oceanfront views! Great spot if you have the cash.
Parrot Key Hotel and Villas
Great service here, and it gave us a lot of access to activities around Key West. It’s a solid base point if you want to stay in Key West.
Havana Cabana at Key West
Key West can be a little pricey on the hotels, but this spot is amazing! It’s a little further down from Duval Street, but it is spotless, the pool is fantastic, and so is the staff. Highly recommended.
Where to party in Key West
Touristy bar, but we had a great time! Irish Kevin is hilarious. If you want to take a look at what you’ll be getting into, they have webcams on their site.
The Cabaret at La Te Da
The show sells out fast and may seem a little pricey, but wow! This was one of the best drag shows I’ve ever seen. Hilarious!
The Green Parrot Bar
The bar has been around since 1890 and is a bit on the ‘divey’ side, but the music was great and the vibe was fun as well.