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Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

Saratoga Springs...
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Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

This was our first trip to Keys. We had two kids, ages 6 and 9, one set of parents and two sets of grandparents. The primary excuse for this trip was a 40th birthday and a 70th birthday celebration. We usually travel to Orlando and Anna Maria for the kids, so this was a nice diversion for us.

We stayed in Long Key at a condo that was heavenly! We had 8 in our party, so our criteria were 3+ bedrooms, waterfront, boat dock, and water view pool. This place was wonderful, and the owners were absolutely wonderful. We rented a boat for the week. http://www.vrbo.com/227285

More in a while.

Saratoga Springs...
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1. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

Some details about the trip:

Upon arrival at FLL, rented cars and drove to Florida City Super-Walmart to grocery shop, then headed down US1 towards the Keys. Somehow we messed up our directions to Alabama Jack's and so we ate dinner at the Buzzard's Roost in Key Largo. This was our only disappointing meal of the trip. The service was terrible, and the food was just ok.

The next day, we picked up the boat rental, did some fishing, and spent most of the day at Anne's Beach, which is really lovely! During the evening, we fed the Tarpon at Robbie's and ate at the Hungry Tarpon. The setting and food were fabulous. We also did some gift shopping here. Great little spot!

The next day was filled with Theater of the Sea. This was a great first snorkel for my 6yo. Also, we are a fan of the shows and interactive programs. We did the Meet the Sea Lion and loved every minute with Wilbur and MiMi.

The next day, we went to Sombrero Beach, which was my favorite beach of the trip. We had lunch at the Keys Fisheries which was also fabulous setting with great food. We did the Dolphin Dip at the Dolphin Research Center with Merina. We all can't say enough about our wonderful experience there. Lastly, at sunset we took a short hike on the Bayside on the Layton Nature Trail, which was quite beautiful. My kids like letter boxing, so we found letterbox there.

Next day, we took a boat ride to Indian Key. As others have noted, there is not much to see snorkeling there, but the whole experience is fantastic. We packed our own lunch and explored the island. That evening, we had a fantastic meal at Hog Heaven. This place is in our top three favorites. We all loved it. On the way home, we explored the Islamorada Fish Co and Bass Pro Shop. Great spot to take in the sunset with the family.

On Easter Sunday, we went to Mass at San Pablo in Marathon. The priest was very upbeat and friendly, and the grounds/garden are just gorgeous. We spent the majority of the day at Bahia Honda, which was very busy. Snorkeled there a bit offshore, but then went to the Horseshoe which was FANTASTIC! Also, stopped by the Turtle Hospital, and ended the day with another great meal at the Wreck.

On our last day, we took a day trip to Key West and did some shore snorkeling at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, which was fantastic. We also did some shopping and went to the Southernmost Point, and stopped at Porky's in Marathon on the way home for some terrific BBQ. Great setting, service, and food.

On the way to FLL we discovered the "Big Foot" Deli right by the airport on 818. Really great food and value!

Overall, it was a fantastic trip and we loved the Keys.

It was a bit windy for the week. We wish we could have made it out to the reefs. That was our only regret.

Edited: 01 May 2011, 19:43
Syracuse NY
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2. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

What a great vacation! You definitely did a lot of interesting and varied things. So glad you enjoyed it.

Thanks for sharing!

San Diego, Ca.
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3. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

Do you have a hotel/Inn to recommend? Thanks

San Diego, Ca.
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4. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

Do you have a hotel/Inn to recommend? Thanks

Saratoga Springs...
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5. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

Later-

The link to our condo is above. If you are interested in smaller units, there is more info about renting here:

http://www.oceansideisle.com/

We really enjoyed the space and privacy, but it is very secluded and I know that may not be a great fit for everyone. Have fun planning your trip!

6. Re: Family trip report- Middle Keys April 2011

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