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Key west

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Auburn, California
posts: 54
reviews: 36
Key west

Thinking about going, is it worth the drive? How many nights should we spend?



Key West
Destination Expert
for Key West
posts: 2,985
reviews: 8
11. Re: Key west

if this is your first time, I'd drive at least one way. There is so much to see, and the scenery is beautiful!!

Montreal, Canada
posts: 2
reviews: 2
12. Re: Key west

Just got back from 2 weeks in KW. We flew in. But honestly I would drive from the moon to get back there. A car is pretty useless in Key West and parking can be an issue. Like the song says "Get there fast and then take it slow". And stay as long as you can.

Montreal, Canada
posts: 2
reviews: 2
13. Re: Key west

Just got back from 2 weeks in KW. We flew in. But honestly I would drive from the moon to get back there. A car is pretty useless in Key West and parking can be an issue. Like the song says "Get there fast and then take it slow". And stay as long as you can.

Crown Point, Indiana
posts: 133
reviews: 5
14. Re: Key west

I think flying to MIA or FLL, renting a car and driving from there is the best way to go. Its usually cheaper than flying to EYW direct so you can use the money you saved on the car. Then you can enjoy the rest of the keys, 7 mile bridge, random stops along the way, etc.

New Jersey
Destination Expert
for Key West
posts: 29,282
reviews: 61
15. Re: Key west

How many ever nights you spend you will not have enough for 1) all of the places with live music, 2) all of the happy hours, 3) all of the dining possibilities, 4) great breakfasts, 5) various watersports, 6) museum-y type places. It's probably why people go back.


Seattle, Washington
posts: 409
reviews: 69
16. Re: Key west

Ditto to the fly into FLL or MIA and rent a car, but here are a few considerations:

1. A LOT depends on your time frame. If you're on a tight time budget, fly directly into KW, get a cab to your hotel, and spend the couple of days you have exploring the old town. If your stay is just two or three days, a rental car in KW may be more of a pain than it's worth.

2. If you have a week or more (preferably more), then fly into FLL (smaller airport, but a bit farther) or MIA (larger, more hassle getting in and out, but an hours drive closer to KW.)

3. IF YOUR PLANE LANDS EARLY IN THE DAY, then leave the airport and head due west to the freeways, then south to Homestead. From Homestead, you'll catch either U.S. 1 or Card Sound Road (my preference) and drive to Key Largo. With TWO exceptions (see below), you probably will have no reason to stop before Largo. Once in Largo, you will take a leisurly drive to KW -- plan a total of 5 hours or more at a minimum between MIA and KW, giving you time for lunch, etc.

4. In Homestead, there's a great Walmart with a liquor store. You can buy everything you want in KW, but this is the handiest one-stop for booze and sundries.

5. IF YOUR PLANE LANDS LATE IN THE DAY, then check into a hotel near the airport and drive the next morning. You really want to do the route into KW during the daylight hours to enjoy the scenery and avoid the drunks on the road.

6. If you take Card Sound Road, there is a $1 cash only toll booth. Right next to it is a fairly famous bar. You'll want to stop for a drink.

There's no place like KW in North America. It's not the ONLY place to visit in Florida, but it's definitely one of the most colorful.

Charlotte, NC
posts: 8
reviews: 11
17. Re: Key west

My husband and I just got back and would not necessary recommend the drive. We flew into Ft Lauderdale (2 hour flight) and rented a convertible. I do get the "getting there is half the fun" but I was really tired after the flight and drive, I was ready to be there! The drive can be pretty in parts but much of the scenery is covered by the local towns and trees on both sides of the road. Maybe we should have paid attention to the spots to stop and explore, we drove straight through. Plan ahead if you do plan to drive and know it will take a long time to get to Key West.

Seattle, Washington
posts: 409
reviews: 69
18. Re: Key west

Yes, Sweet-T20 has a point. Flying can be exhausting now-a-days, and she makes a good point about checking into a hotel in FLL or MIA the night before the KW drive. The drive is beautiful, but only if you're relaxed and can take your time.

Seattle, Washington
posts: 409
reviews: 69
19. Re: Key west

I hadn't noticed until now that you're flying in from California. If you fly directly into KW, OK. If you opt to fly to MIA or FLL and drive down, then you'll have a memorable drive, but you'll want to spend a night in normal-land (i.e. -- Florida Mainland) before starting the drive the next day.

The drive is a great sight-seeing adventure in itself.

League City, Texas
posts: 168
reviews: 4
20. Re: Key west

I would definitely say you should make the drive through the Keys at some point, but like JohnK said, flying in from Cali, then renting a car and making the drive will be exhausting. We did that our first trip down and I was fighting dozing off before we hit KW, and we had stopped at Alabama Jack's for fritters and a beverage. The 2nd time we made the drive with friends and my friend slept all the way to KW almost! It just makes for a long trip after a long flight and especially if your flight was early, like ours always are. Maybe consider flying into KW and then just renting a car for a day trip up to Marathon and Bahia Honda. Everyone should see the 7 Mile Bridge at least once! The other Keys do have a lot to offer but you need time to do it. Our first trip was certainly not long enough, we booked 3 nights in KW and 1 in Islamorada but we were wishing we had more time in both places... especially KW. We just booked our longest trip yet- 7 nights and I still don't think it will be long enough!