Imagine a place where time stands still, where vibrant history intertwines with breathtaking natural beauty. Welcome to the Florida Keys, a mesmerizing coral archipelago located off the southern coast of Florida, where adventure, relaxation, and pure bliss converge. As the destination recently celebrated its bicentennial, you have the opportunity to embark on a journey like no other – a celebration of 200 years of history and culture in the captivating Florida Keys & Key West.
HONORING THE U.S. NAVY’S TWO CENTURIES OF PRESENCE
Picture yourself gazing up at the sky, heart pounding with anticipation, as the acclaimed Blue Angels streak through the air, leaving trails of awe and admiration in their wake. In honor of the U.S. Navy’s remarkable two-century presence in Key West, the Southernmost Air Spectacular took center stage at Naval Air Station Key West on April 15-16, delivering an exhilarating air show that paid homage to the heroes who have safeguarded these turquoise waters for generations.
NEW ACCOMMODATIONS IN THE KEYS
Escape to a world of unparalleled luxury and comfort as the Florida Keys unveiled new accommodation options designed to elevate your stay. Everglades National Park proudly presented the Flamingo Lodge & Restaurant, a haven of tranquility boasting 24 units with kitchenettes and awe-inspiring vistas of Florida Bay. Meanwhile, Islamorada welcomes you to experience the Sun Outdoors resort, an oasis of relaxation featuring full hookup RV sites, marinas, a shimmering pool, and an array of amenities that promise to pamper your senses. And at Chesapeake Beach Resort in Islamorada, you indulge in the height of coastal elegance with newly added villas, a boat ramp, and a dock, ensuring that every moment spent here was one of pure bliss.
For those seeking an underwater thrill, Hawks Cay Resort on Duck Key invites you to plunge into the depths with scuba diving experiences through Better Than Most Scuba, where you can discover a world of mesmerizing marine wonders beyond your wildest dreams.
AQUA LODGES AND KEY WEST’S NEWEST ATTRACTIONS
Immerse yourself in a world of whimsical wonder as Marathon unveiled its latest gem – Aqua Lodges. Picture yourself in a tiny house-style unit perched right on the waterfront, surrounded by stunning vistas and modern comforts that beckons you to unwind in style. Meanwhile, Key West invited you to embark on a unique eco-vacation experience with Mellow Ventures Backcountry Outfitters. You have the opportunity to spend the night aboard a distinctive catamaran cottage, where the gentle sway of the ocean will lull you into a state of complete serenity. And for those seeking unforgettable moments, The Keys Collection’s four properties in Key West offer a vibrant tapestry of entertainment and creativity.
KEY ATTRACTIONS AND CULTURAL HIGHLIGHTS
Step into a world frozen in time as you visit Marathon’s Pigeon Key Visitor Center and train depot, now nestled in a picturesque bayside setting. Embark on guided tours of this historic island, where stories of the past come alive and transport you to another era.
In Key West, become captivated by the wonders of Truman Waterfront Park, home to the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center. You can engage with interactive exhibits that unveiled the secrets of the enchanting mangrove habitats and marine life, leaving you with a deep appreciation for the fragile ecosystems that make the Florida Keys so extraordinary. And for an unforgettable underwater adventure, set sail on the Pride of Key West, a glass-bottom boat operated by Fury Water Adventures. Marvel at the vibrant tapestry of marine life that thrives beneath the crystal-clear waters, carrying on a seven-decade tradition of showcasing the natural wonders that lie beneath the surface.
The Florida Keys & Key West beckon you to embark on a grand adventure, a celebration of 200 years of history and culture that ignite your spirit and leave you forever changed. With pristine beaches, translucent waters, and a vibrant tapestry of experiences awaiting your arrival, there had never been a better time to explore this beloved vacation destination. You joined in the festivities, honoring the past, reveling in the present, and embracing the future, celebrating the extraordinary bicentennial of the Florida Keys and Key West.
This article feature is from our annual special edition issue, the L.A. STYLE Magazine Most Influential of 2023.