Fleeton Year of Adventure travel blog

Driving into Key West

Typical architecture of old Key West

Lots of beautiful flowers in bloom - this one I think is...

The marker for the southernmost point in the continental USA - a...

Key West lighthouse (only 88 steps this time)

View over old Key West from the top

Ernest Hemingway's house, across from the lighthouse

A typical Keys location, while driving back up the highway

One of the old railway bridges used for fishing - they ran...

Stopping for a swim at Bahia Honda State Park along the highway...

On the 27th we drove southwest on Hwy 1 to it's end at Key West. Key West was in it's zenith at the start of the 20th century, after becoming a rich city from boat wreckers (who lured ships on to the reefs) and salvagers. Our big problem was finding parking - our guidebook said to follow the signs to RV parking, but there were no signs. We finally found an empty lot and took off on foot, but it was a very crowded little area in the old city. We found the southernmost point marker, which was jammed with people, and went up the lighthouse to the top. Unfortunately they didn't regulate who or how many people could go up and down the narrow winding staircase at one time, so there were times things were very tight, especially with people who let their little children crawl upwards while you were trying to come down! We had already seen that there were 3 cruise ships in port, including one of Disney's ones, so we know why the streets were so crowded. Walking around the old city was interesting - lots of neat plants, and lots of chickens running free around the streets. However, we didn't spend too much time there, and got back out onto the highway as fast as we could. The drive back up the highway to the mainland was pleasant, and we stopped at a little state park along the way to have a swim and rest on the beach, as we hadn't done that yet in the Keys. We were disappointed - the water was colder than we expected, but we stayed in for a while then sat in the sun. Having our own change room in the parking lot was nice (except for the sand that we dragged in), and we drove happily back up the highway to the first WalMart on the mainland at a place called Homestead, near Florida City.

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