FLORIDA KEYS TRAVEL TIPS AND MAPS

The Florida Keys are one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States.  Traveling there by car takes you down a string of palm fringed tropical islands made of coral that stretch more than 120 miles from the Florida mainland down to Key West.  They are famous for their fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, and boating.

About 75,000 people live in the Keys full time;  many thousands more visit on their vacations.  Our travel guide will give you Florida Keys information on a single web page that will help you enjoy your visit to the Keys.

This page is organized under the following categories from top to bottom.  Scroll down to your area of interest.


Mile Marker System

Lodging

Camp Grounds

Restaurants

Tiki Bars

Attractions 

The final section has 5 interactive Keys maps.


The Five Regions with Maps on this Web PageThe Five Regions with Maps on this Web Page

The five maps on this page are divided into the regions shown on the map above.  From the mainland proceeding south they are Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Lower Keys, and Key West.

Restaurants, lodging, tiki bars, attractions, and maps are listed from north to south, by highest Mile Marker down to Mile Marker 0 in Key West.


OVERSEAS HIGHWAY MILE MARKER SYSTEM

Most Florida Keys travel is by car.  It takes half a day to drive nonstop from Miami to Key West.  That's no way to see the Keys.  You need to spend a few days or more to really soak up the magic of the many islands that make up the Keys.

There are only two ways to get into the Keys by car.  The main route is US-1 to Key Largo, but there is also Card Sound Road (County Road 905A) that branches off and ends up in North Key Largo. 

If you take Card Sound Road you will come to a legendary local watering hole, Alabama Jack's, just before you get to North Key Largo.

Alabama Jack's on Card Sound RoadAlabama Jack's on Card Sound Road

The Florida Department of Transportation has installed signs at almost every Mile Marker in the Florida Keys.  The one in the photo below is typical.  It is located about 84 miles northeast of Key West near Islamorada.

Mile Marker 84 at Whale Harbor BridgeMile Marker 84 at Whale Harbor Bridge

As you are driving south toward the Keys, the first Mile Marker you will come to is 127.5 at the junction of US-1 and the Florida Turnpike.  About one mile later you have to decide whether to stay on US-1 or head easterly on Card Sound Road.  Mile Marker 126.5 is at the junction of US-1 and Card Sound Road.

Jewfish Creek Bridge, Mile Marker 107.2Jewfish Creek Bridge, Mile Marker 107.2

The section of US-1 from Mile Marker 126.0 to  Mile Marker 107.2 at Jewfish Creek is known as the "18 Mile Stretch".  The stretch is two lanes and can get very crowded during holidays or emergency evacuations.  You need to drive carefully on this stretch;  one accident can shut things down for hours.

The Mile Markers end in Key West with Mile Marker 0 located at 501 Whitehead Street.  Mile Markers are used by locals and tourists to tell how many miles they are from someplace.  For example, Key West (Mile Marker 0) is 33 miles from Big Pine Key (Mile Marker 33).


FLORIDA KEYS TRAVEL TIP:  OUR TOP LODGING PICKS

We think Mom and Pop and smaller motels, hotels, and inns are a lot more fun than the big resorts.  Here are some that we like.

KEY LARGO (Mile Marker 108)

Gilbert's Resort
107900 Overseas Highway
305-451-1133

Key Largo Cottages
99306 Overseas Highway
305-453-1672

ISLAMORADA (Mile Marker 81.2)

Kon-Tiki Resort
81200 Overseas Highway
305-664-4702

LAYTON (Mile Marker 68.5)

Lime Tree Bay Resort
Mile Marker 68.5
305-664-4740

MARATHON (Mile Marker 58.7)

Gulf View Waterfront Resort
58743 Overseas Highway
305-289-1414

Barnacle Bed and Breakfast, Big Pine KeyBarnacle Bed and Breakfast, Big Pine Key

BIG PINE KEY (Mile Marker 33)

Big Pine Key Fishing Lodge
33000 Overseas Highway
305-872-2351

Barnacle Bed and Breakfast
1557 Long Beach Drive
305-872-3298

LITTLE TORCH KEY (Mile Marker 28.5)

Parmer's Resort
565 Barry Avenue
305-872-2157

SUGARLOAF KEY (Mile Marker 17)

Sugarloaf Lodge
17001 Overseas Highway
305-745-3211

KEY WEST (Mile Marker 0)

The Grand Guesthouse
1116 Grinnell Street
305-294-0590


FLORIDA KEYS CAMPGROUNDS

Camping in the Florida Keys is not only fun, it saves you money over many other lodging choices.  There are a limited number of public and private parks, so it's best to make reservations in advance. Here are some of our favorites.

KEY LARGO (Mile Marker  102.5)

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
102601 Overseas Highway
305-451-6300
Reservations made at ReserveAmerica.com

LONG KEY (Mile Marker 67.4)

Long Key State Park
67400 Overseas Highway
305-664-4815
Reservations made at ReserveAmerica.com

MARATHON (Mile Marker 56.0)

Curry Hammock State Park
56200 Overseas Highway
305-289-2690
Reservations made at ReserveAmerica.com

Jolly Roger RV Resort
59275 Overseas Highway
305-289-0404

BAHIA HONDA KEY (Mile Marker 36.8)

Bahia Honda State Park
36850 Overseas Highway
305-872-2353
Reservations made at ReserveAmerica.com

SUGARLOAF KEY (Mile Marker 20)

Sugarloaf KOA
251 State Road 939
800-562-7731

KEY WEST (Mile Marker 0)

Boyd's Key West Campground
6401 Maloney Avenue
305-294-1465


FLORIDA KEYS TRAVEL TIP: OUR TOP RESTAURANT PICKS

There are hundreds of restaurants from the Upper Keys to Key West.  Your Florida Keys travel will take you by many of them on the Overseas Highway. There are many good ones, so we've picked a few of our favorites.

KEY LARGO (Mile Marker 101.7)

Hobo's Cafe
101691 Overseas Highway
305-451-5888

TAVERNIER (Mile Marker 90.8)

What the Fish Rolls and More
90775 Old Highway, Unit 6
305-440-3650

ISLAMORADA (Mile Marker 87.7)

Twisted Shrimp
Mile Marker 87.7
305-453-6377

LONG KEY (Mile Marker 70)

Lobster Crawl Bar and Grill
70001 Overseas Highway, Marathon
305-664-5252

LAYTON (Mile Marker 68.4)

The Florida Boy Bar & Grill
68450 Overseas Highway
305-998-4061

MARATHON (Mile Marker 49.5)

Barracuda Grill
4290 Overseas Highway
305-743-3314

BIG PINE KEY (Mile Marker 33)

Milagro Restaurant and Bar
31044 Avenue A
305-440-3534

Kiki's Sandbar Bar & Grille, Little Torch KeyKiki's Sandbar Bar & Grille, Little Torch Key

LITTLE TORCH KEY (Mile Marker 28)

Kiki's Sandbar Bar & Grille
183 Barry Avenue
305-872-4500

RAMROD KEY (Mile Marker 27)

Boondock's Grille and Draft House
27205 Overseas Highway
305-872-4094

SUMMERLAND KEY (Mile Marker 25)

The Galley Grill
24862 Overseas Highway
305-745-3440

CUDJOE KEY (Mile Marker 22)

Square Grouper
22658 Overseas Highway
305-745-8880

SUGARLOAF KEY (Mile Marker 20)

Mangrove Mama's
19991 Overseas Highway
305-745-3030

BIG COPPIT KEY (Mile Marker 3)

Bobalu's Southern Cafe
301 U.S. 1
305-296-1664

KEY WEST (Mile Marker 0)

Garbo's Grill
409 Caroline Street
305-304-3004


FLORIDA KEYS TIKI BARS WE LIKE

The Keys have some of the greateast tiki bars anywhere.  Some of the restaurants we've listed above have tiki bars.  Here are a few others we like.

KEY LARGO (Mile Marker 108)

Gilbert's Tiki Bar
107900 Overseas Highway
305-451-1133
This is the first tiki bar you will come to in the Keys. It's on Overseas Highway just before you cross the Jewfish Creek Bridge.

Skipper's Dockside
528 Caribbean Drive
305-453--9794

ISLAMORADA (Mile Marker 82)

Lorelei Cabana Bar & Restaurant
96 Madeira Road
305-664-2692

MARATHON (Mile Marker 54)

Island Fish Company Tiki Bar
12648 Overseas Highway
305-743-4191

Sugarloaf Lodge Tiki BarSugarloaf Lodge Tiki Bar

SUGARLOAF KEY (Mile Marker 17)

Sugarloaf Lodge Tiki Bar
17001 Overseas Highway
305-745-3211

STOCK ISLAND (Mile Marker 4) 

Hogfish Bar & Grill
6810 Front Street
305-293-4041

KEY WEST (Mile Marker 0)

Sunset Tiki Bar & Grille
617 Front Street
305-295-0207


FLORIDA KEYS TRAVEL TIP: TOP ATTRACTIONS

There are many things to do in the Florida Keys, including a lot of family friendly attractions.  

KEY LARGO (Mile Marker 102.6)

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
102601 Overseas Highway.  This is the first undersea park in the United States.  The park has a wide variety of tropical plants, shore birds, and marine life.  Tour boats are available to show you the features of the living coral reef.

TAVERNIER (Mile Marker 92.6)

Harry Harris Beach and Park
This county park has pavilions, barbecue grills, picnic tables, a basketball court, a playground.  It also has a protected beach with a nice swimming area.  

ISLAMORADA (Mile Marker 84.5)

Theater of the Sea
Mile Marker 84.5, Islamorada, Florida. Tel: 305-664-2431.  An old attraction where you can swim with dolphins and watch sharks, turtles, and other species swimming around in front of you. 

Theater of the Sea in IslamoradaTheater of the Sea in Islamorada

DUCK KEY (Mile Marker 61)

The Dolphin Connection
Hawk's Cay Resort, 61 Hawk's Cay Boulevard, Duck Key, FL 33050. Tel: 1-888-814-9154.  This is one of the most popular places in the Florida Keys to learn about dolphins and swim with them.

Having Fun at The Dolphin ConnectionHaving Fun at The Dolphin Connection

BAHIA HONDA KEY (Mile Marker 36.8)

Bahia Honda State Park
36850 Overseas Hwy, Big Pine Key, FL 33043. Tel 305-872-2353. Great view of the ocean, a nice beach, swimming, boating, fishing, and snorkeling. 

Bahia Honda Railroad Bridge, by Jerzy Strzelecki via Creative CommonsBahia Honda Railroad Bridge, by Jerzy Strzelecki via Creative Commons

KEY WEST (Mile Marker 0)

Key West Aquarium
1 Whitehead Street (Mallory Square), Key West, Florida 33040. Tel: 305-296-2051. This historic museum is a place where you can get up close and personal with animals such as horseshoe crabs and Florida lobster.  You will enjoy a 90 minute guided tour. 

Mallory Square
400 Wall St, Key West, FL 33040.  Tel: 305-809-3700.  This is the gathering place for locals and visitors.  There is all kind of entertainment, food vendors, and the best sunset in Florida. Free.

Mallory Square Key West at SunsetMallory Square Key West at Sunset

Hemingway House
907 Whitehead Street, Key West, FL 33040. Tel: 305-294-1136.  The great author lived here from 1931 to 1940.  It has many of his furnishings and the first in ground swimming pool in Key West. 

Truman Little White House
111 Front St., Key West, FL 33040.  Tel: 305-294-9911.  Florida's only presidential museum.  The 33rd President of the U.S. stayed here many times and it displays some of his memorabilia.

Hemingway Home in Key WestHemingway Home in Key West

Learn more about Key West by visiting our page on this website.  Click on the southernmost marker to go to that page.


FLORIDA KEYS INTERACTIVE MAPS

The five interactive map images below are from the Monroe County Tourist Development Council.  If you click on the image, you will be taken to an interactive map that allows you to zoom in and really get an up close look at the details of the Keys.






FLORIDA KEYS WEB CAMS

The Monroe County Tourist Development Council has links to dozens of Florida Keys Webcams .  You can enhance your Florida Keys travel by snooping around the Keys in real time to your heart's content.


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