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Thread: Sunny getaway--Florida Keys? page

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    solstice's Avatar
    solstice is offline Senior Member
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    Sunny getaway--Florida Keys?

    Primal Fuel
    My health REALLY needs some real sun sometime this winter. We don't have a ton of money to play with----am I crazy to consider the Florida Keys for a long weekend? Can anyone give me any info or point me in the right direction? I'd really like to find a place to rent that has a stove so I can cook too!
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    BestBetter's Avatar
    BestBetter is offline Senior Member
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    Since money is an issue, I'd think that Miami would probably be cheaper than the Keys (both for cost of flight and accommodations). I'm actually in the process of planning a Miami trip for the same reason.

    One suggestion, which I've used in the past with great success is to use AirBnB.com to find a good place to stay that's cheaper than a hotel. I've been a part of this network for years, it's a really awesome way to travel on a budget (or make some money if you've got extra space).

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    solstice's Avatar
    solstice is offline Senior Member
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    thanks for this tip!
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    JoanieL is offline Senior Member
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    I haven't been in ages, but I remember the Key West fondly. Very laid back. Funny stuff to see (6-toed cats at the Hemingway Home). Spectacular sunsets. Cute bike cops. Very good food. Great bars. That's all I've got. Last time I was in Miami I think I was 11 - dinosaurs may still have roamed the earth.
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    katiethepiano's Avatar
    katiethepiano is offline Senior Member
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    I used to live in Florida. My husband is from Miami and we would frequently go to the Florida Keys, particularly Key West. Here's my take on someone who has spent a lot of time in both places:

    The Keys and Miami are two VERY different places. The island of Key West is small, only 7 miles across, and is very rich with historic treasures like the Hemingway House (amazing btw), the Truman Little White House, Las Tortugas, etc. It's very easy to walk everywhere you want to go, take a cheap cab ride, or rent a bicycle. The scenery is amazing - ocean is all around you. The snorkeling opportunities are amazing. I recommend snorkeling out of John Pennekamp State Park on Key Largo, but there's tons of great places in the lower keys too. There are cute bars and several amazingly fun cabaret clubs. There's also some great restaurants over there too. I recommend the Roof Top Cafe, where you can sit on the balcony overlooking Mallory Square at sunset.

    My personal tastes favor the Keys over Miami, so I'll try to hold back my bias. Miami is a huge city with a very rich night life and a great beach. Amazing bars and great restaurants that overlook the water and marinas. Unfortunately, that's all there really is to do. There's the Miami Seaquarium, which is a watered down version of Sea World. There are a few watersports rental places too. It's not the most pedestrian friendly place, so getting around is hard unless you dish out for a rental car or a cab. The Everglades are really cool, but it's very far south and you might as well be in the Keys to see them.

    Here's my opinion: Unless you're really into partying, Miami is totally boring. Hotel rooms are cheaper, but you get what you pay for. I second the AirBNB.com suggestion. There's a bunch of very cool old Victorians in the Keys you could potentially stay in. However, it's peak season, so rates may be high.

    I hope that helps!
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  6. #6
    cori93437's Avatar
    cori93437 is offline Senior Member
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    As a Floridian who has visited both places pretty frequently over the past 12 years...

    Everything Katiethepiano said. DITTO.

    I like to stay on Key West on occasion.
    We usually don't need to do anything other than walk the island.
    We never stay directly on Duval... it's touristy.
    There are nice B&B's a few streets off that have good rates and less street noise.

    Sometimes we just stay on one of the quieter Keys though since we have been there many times and our focus in on other things like fishing. Usually about every other trip.
    I ALWAYS make time for snorkeling!

    Sometimes we go to Miami as well... but not nearly as often, ans it usually has to be connected to some sort of event that I want to attend such as a concert. Then we'll spend a few extra days and hit Miami for some fishing on the coast or in the Blue Lagoon and Canals for Peacock bass.

    Husband and I are well past the party night life of Miami, but don't mind wandering around the streets of KW in the evening for a few drinks as long as it's not Spring Break or something silly.
    Also, unless you are prepared... always avoid the week prior to Halloween. It's Fantasy Fest. Which means... ummm... very ADULT. lol
    The rates for that week are completely insane, and when unaware people try to book most places give ample warning anyway.
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