Embark on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure as you traverse the scenic Overseas Highway from Key Largo to Key West.
Spanning just under 100 miles, this iconic journey takes you through the stunning Florida Keys, past idyllic beaches, historic landmarks, and fascinating wildlife. The drive can take around 2.5 hours without stops. However, the real fun lies in exploring the numerous attractions.
So, to make the most of your road trip, we’ve compiled a guide filled with must-see stops and recommendations for planning the perfect vacation. Get ready to hit the road and experience the ultimate Key Largo to Key West road trip!
Best Time To Visit The Florida Keys
The optimal time to explore the Florida Keys is between December and May. The weather is pleasant during these months, with cooler temperatures and less humidity.
The summer months from June to October can be hot, humid, and wet, with a higher chance of hurricanes. Plan your trip accordingly to avoid unfavorable weather conditions and make the most of your Florida Keys adventure.
Now look at the must-see attractions on Your Key Largo to Key West Road Trip.
Things to do in key largo:
1. Snorkel In John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
Located in Key Largo, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is the first undersea park in the United States. The park covers 70 nautical square miles of protected coral reef, making it a must-visit destination for snorkelers and divers.
You can enjoy various activities there, such as glass-bottom boat tours, scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, and canoeing. The famous Christ of the Deep statue, a nine-foot-tall bronze figure submerged 25 feet underwater, is a must-see for snorkelers.
2. Dive Into The Spiegel Grove Wreck
As the Dive Capital of the World, Key Largo offers over 100 dive sites within 45 minutes of its shores.
One of the most popular sites is the Spiegel Grove Wreck, a 510-foot Navy ship deliberately sunk in 2002 to form a new reef ecosystem. Dive alongside turtles and eagle rays as you explore this underwater marvel.
3. Harry Harris Beach And Park
Head to Harry Harris Park in Key Largo for a relaxing day at the beach. This popular spot offers a tidal pool, boat ramp, grills, picnic tables, showers, playgrounds, and a bike path.
It’s an excellent location for anglers and snorkelers, making it a perfect stop for a laid-back day in the sun.
1. Charter A Fishing Boat
Known as the “sport fishing capital of the world,” Islamorada is a paradise for anglers. Charter a fishing boat and enjoy a day out on the water. Try your luck at catching some of the abundant marine life that calls the Florida Keys home.
2. Scuba Dive In Pristine Waters
If you prefer underwater exploration, Islamorada boasts some of the best diving sites in the Florida Keys.
Locations like Davis Reef, Alligator Reef, and Pickles Reef nearby allow you to dive into crystal-clear waters and discover vibrant marine life. The Islamorada Dive Center offers PADI scuba diving trips to these incredible sites.
3. Unwind At Morada Bay
If you want a relaxing day, stop by Morada Bay for a laid-back beachside experience.
Enjoy refreshing drinks and delicious food as you soak in the picturesque surroundings of palm trees, white sand, and crystal-clear waters.
4. Explore The Forgotten Indian Key
Take a detour to the offshore Indian Key Historic State Park, accessible only by boat. This island has a rich history as the first county seat of Dade County in 1836 and was once a hub for shipwrecking.
Today, it’s open for visitors, so explore the island’s ruins and enjoy its abundant marine life.
5. Feed The Tarpon At Robbie’s Marina
At Robbie’s Marina in Marathon, you can hand-feed over 100 tarpons that gather in the waters daily. You can walk along the dock and feed these massive fish for a small fee.
However, watch out for the pesky pelicans that might try to steal your bait. While you’re there, don’t forget to grab a bite at Robbie’s Hungry Tarpon Restaurant and Thirsty Tarpon Bar.
6. Relax On Sandy Sombrero Beach
Sombrero Beach in Marathon is an idyllic spot to unwind, swim, and snorkel. Its sandy shoreline and calm waters make it a perfect destination during your road trip.
If you visit between March and May, you might spot loggerhead turtles nesting on the beach.
7. Visit The Marathon Turtle Hospital
The Turtle Hospital in Marathon is a unique facility that rescues, rehabilitates, and releases injured sea turtles. Visit the Florida Keys Turtle Hospital in Marathon for a unique educational experience.
This facility rehabilitates injured sea turtles and releases them back into the wild. Book a guided tour to learn more about the hospital’s efforts and even feed the turtles.
1. Seven Mile Bridge
The iconic Seven Mile Bridge is a must-see on your Key Largo to Key West road trip. This engineering marvel connects Knight’s Key in the Middle Keys to Little Duck Key in the Lower Keys.
Take in the breathtaking views as you drive across the crystal-clear waters of the Florida Keys. However, avoid traveling during peak hours as there are insane traffic lines. It’s best to schedule in advance.
2. Bahia Honda State Park
A short detour from the Overseas Highway will take you to Bahia Honda State Park, home to one of the most beautiful beaches in the Florida Keys.
Unwind on the white sand, swim in the calm waters, or explore the shoreline. If you visit between April and October, you might spot loggerhead turtles nesting on the beach.
3. Gaze at the Tiny Key Deer
Visit the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key to see the smallest North American white-tailed deer family member.
The refuge covers 9,000 acres and serves as a sanctuary for the Lower Key marsh rabbit and the silver rice rat. This destination is a must-visit for nature and animal enthusiasts.
1. Visit The Hemingway Home
The Ernest Hemingway Home in Key West is a must-see attraction. During the 1930s, this historic residence was home to the famous American writer and Nobel Prize winner.
Take a tour of the home and learn about Hemingway’s intriguing life, surrounded by descendants of his own cats.
2. Explore Duval Street
Duval Street in Key West offers quirky attractions, souvenir shops, and delicious key lime pie.
Take advantage of the iconic Sloppy Joe’s Bar, once Hemingway’s favorite hangout. At the street’s southern end, the family-friendly Butterfly Garden is a delight for all ages.
3. Enjoy Cuban Coffee At Cuban Coffee Queen
Start your day in Key West with a delicious cafe con leche from Cuban Coffee Queen. This popular spot is perfect for grabbing a quick bite and coffee before exploring the island.
3. Paddleboard Yoga With Lazy Dog Charters
For a unique and relaxing experience, try paddleboard yoga with Lazy Dog Charters. Enjoy a leisurely morning on the water, practicing your yoga poses while surrounded by the beauty of Key West.
4. Dolphin Watch & Snorkel Tour With Honest Eco
Embark on a dolphin watch and snorkel tour with Honest Eco to get up close and personal with the playful dolphins that inhabit the waters around Key West.
Enjoy an eco-friendly tour on SQUID, Key West’s first electric-powered charter boat, and snorkel in crystal-clear waters teeming with marine life.
5. Catch The Sunset At Mallory Square
Experience the vibrant atmosphere of Key West by catching the sunset at Mallory Square.
Every evening, this lively spot buzzes with street performers, vendors, and visitors, all coming together to soak in the breathtaking sunset views.
6. Indulge In Key Lime Pie
No trip to the Florida Keys is complete without trying the famous Key Lime Pie.
Stop by Kermit’s Key West to sample their delicious frozen Key Lime Pie on a stick, a refreshing twist on the traditional dessert.
7. Southernmost Point Buoy
Snap a photo at the Southernmost Point Buoy, marking the southernmost point in the continental United States.
This iconic landmark is a must-visit during your stay in Key West.
Your Key Largo to Key West road trip is an adventure that should be savored over time. From charming eateries, unique attractions to vibrant beachfronts, these islands evoke a true sense of relaxation and tranquility. Be sure to leave plenty of room in your itinerary for unexpected discoveries.
You’ll likely never forget your journey down the Florida Keys, an unforgettable experience that will remain etched in your memory for years. By following our guide, you can plan your journey to ensure a memorable and enjoyable adventure from start to finish.
So pack your bags, hit the road, explore with purpose, and enjoy the ride; this unlikely vacation won’t leave you wanting more.