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If a trip to Southern Florida is in your future, don’t miss the Florida Keys. They’re a destination for travelers looking for a memorable experience. Like people, each key has a unique personality and name. So what are the names of the Florida Keys?
Today, we’re looking at the primary keys and what they offer visitors. You’ll likely want to plan a trip to the Keys when we finish. As the Florida Keys are an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise, you’ll have plenty of opportunities for fun and relaxation.
So grab the sunscreen and a fruity drink, and let’s dive in!
What Are the Florida Keys?
The Florida Keys are a chain of islands located off the southern coast of Florida. They stretch over 120 miles from Key Largo in the north to Key West in the south. A series of bridges and causeways, including the Seven Mile Bridge, connects the islands.
They’re famous for their crystal-clear waters, coral reefs, and diverse marine life. They’re a popular destination for those interested in fishing, snorkeling, and scuba diving. However, they offer more than just aquatic activities.
You can experience a rich cultural heritage and culinary scene. Both feature a mixture of Caribbean and American influences, showcased in elegant restaurants, art galleries, museums, and historic landmarks.
This is the place to visit to experience natural beauty, outdoor adventure, and culture. Don’t worry if you hope to relax. These islands have plenty of sunny beaches to park your chair and soak up the sun.
How Many Florida Keys Are There?
The Florida Keys are a massive chain of over 1,700 islands so it’s hard to list all of the names of each key. The exact number of keys in the Florida Keys can be difficult to determine because sources vary in their classification of what constitutes a “key.”
Only 42 of the islands interconnect by the Florida Keys Overseas Highway. Of the connected islands, the state has five main Keys: Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key, and Key West.
Some many more minor keys and islets, typically only accessible by boat, also comprise a part of the Florida Keys.
What Is the Most Popular Key in Florida?
Key West is the most popular. It sits at the southernmost point of the United States and has a one-of-a-kind atmosphere. It has a reputation for having a laid-back lifestyle, colorful architecture, and historic landmarks.
Key West attracts millions of tourists, primarily during the peak season from December to April. Visitors encounter the many popular hotspots by land, air, and sea. On the other hand, the island offers many activities, including water sports, art galleries, music venues, and a bustling nightlife scene.
When Is the Best Time to Visit the Florida Keys?
The best time to visit the Florida Keys is from December to May. The weather remains warm and dry during this time, making it perfect for outdoor activities such as swimming, snorkeling, and fishing.
The temperatures during these months range from the mid-70s to low 80s Fahrenheit. Unfortunately, this is also peak season, so expect higher prices and crowds.
If you want a more affordable and less crowded visit, come during the shoulder seasons. This is typically from September to November or June to August.
However, the weather during these months can be unpredictable. You have a higher chance of rain and potentially a hurricane. But you can snag a deal and still enjoy plenty of sunshine.
What Are the Five Main Keys in Florida?
These Keys are a popular destination for travelers seeking sun, sand, and tropical scenery. They’re divided into five main areas, each with its own character and charm. Let’s explore the five main keys and look at their unique features.
Key Largo is the northernmost and largest of the Florida Keys. It’s known as the “Diving Capital of the World” and a popular destination for scuba diving and snorkeling enthusiasts.
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is a popular attraction and home to various marine life. Additionally, visitors can explore Everglades National Park, just a short drive away.
The island offers a blend of adventure and laid-back charm. Whether a nature lover, water sports enthusiast, or just looking for a relaxing beach vacation, you can find it here.
Islamorada is the name of a group of six islands in the middle of the Florida Keys. Many know it as the “Sportfishing Capital of the World” and a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts. Anglers often catch sailfish, marlin, tuna, and bonefish.
The islands also feature beaches, crystal-clear waters, and beautiful sunsets. Explore the Indian Key Historic State Park, an uninhabited island accessible only by boat and home to historic ruins and hiking trails. Whether you’re an angler, a beachgoer, or simply looking for a beautiful getaway, Islamorada has exciting things to do.
Keep in Mind: Before you plan a trip to Florida, make sure you’re Prepared for Love Bug Season!
Marathon is a group of islands approximately halfway between Key Largo and Key West. Some of the other names of the keys that make up Marathon in Florida include Crawl Key, Vaca Key, Flat Deer Key, and Boot Key.
One of the main attractions in Marathon is Sombrero Beach. It offers crystal-clear waters and a white sandy beach. It’s great for swimming, snorkeling, sunbathing, or lounging.
Another popular spot in Marathon is the Dolphin Research Center. You can learn about dolphins and interact with them in a safe and controlled environment. The center offers a range of activities, including swimming with dolphins, trainer-for-a-day programs, and educational tours.
The island also has several nature reserves and parks, including Curry Hammock State Park. You can hike trails, kayak, and birdwatch.
You may also enjoy a scenic drive over the Seven Mile Bridge, one of the longest bridges in the world. The views of the surrounding waters are nothing short of stunning.
With plenty of family-friendly attractions, this key makes an ideal destination for travelers of all ages. Whether you want a relaxing beach vacation, an adventure-filled trip, or an educational experience, you don’t want to skip Marathon.
Big Pine and the Lower Keys
Big Pine and the Lower Keys are a group of islands located towards the southern end of the Florida Keys.
Here you can find the National Key Deer Refuge, the home of the endangered deer species. You can take a guided tour or hike through the refuge and observe the deer in their natural habitat.
Take the chance to see Bahia Honda State Park. It offers pristine beaches, clear waters, and abundant marine life. You can swim, snorkel, and kayak the day away. The soft sandy beach is also for relaxing and enjoying the crashing waves.
Keep in Mind: Florida is one of the most popular places to visit, but many people Hate RVing in Florida!
Key West is the southernmost island in the Florida Keys. It’s famous for its vibrant culture, lively nightlife, and historic architecture. One of the main attractions in Key West is the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum.
You can learn about the famous author’s life and see his original manuscripts and personal belongings. The home also has a colony of six-toed cats, descendants of Hemingway’s beloved pets.
No trip to Key West is complete without visiting Duval Street. It’s a colorful street lined with restaurants, bars, and shops. Visitors can enjoy fresh seafood, tropical drinks, and live music in a friendly atmosphere.
Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply looking for an exciting vacation destination, Key West has a lot to get excited about.
Which Keys Will You Visit?
So, did you know the names of these Florida Keys? With so much to see and do, choosing just one is hard.
The good news is that you can easily explore multiple keys during your trip, creating a truly unforgettable Florida Keys experience. We had an incredible time and already know we’ll return as soon as possible.