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Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

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Denver, Colorado
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Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

I'm SO EXCITED about this trip!!!!! We went to Islamorada for my birthday last year (and tripadvisor was SO helpfull) but this will be my 1st time in Key West!!!

RESTAURANTS: One of my favorite things to do is to eat at great restaurants. Casual, fancy, local...whatever is good! If you could, please tell me the best places to go for great local food. Good place for my birthday dinner? What things on the menu are a "must try" while I'm there?

Snorkel or SNUBA? I'm SCUBA certified, my boyfriend is not. Can we get him certified for a reasonable price? Where are the best places to go or companies to use for snorkeling? Should we SNUBA?

What is the best way to get around? We are staying on the far end of the island, should we take a cab or try to park near Duval?

Any advice, pointers, or helpful hints would be fantastic!!

Pjk
New Jersey
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1. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

You asked about suinset cruises on the other topic.There is a decent summary of cruises here which will get you started...

keywesttravelguide.com/key-west-cruises.html

...but they leave out some stuff.

Where are you staying? Driving is a drag 'cause you have to park, but taking a taxi will cost you a fortune.

It's a start.

Pjk

Key Colony Beach...
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2. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

You'll get 5 million suggestions for where to eat. I'll pass on that.

SCUBA. You can get certified in 20 days, but you have better get going. As you know there is class room and in water classes you need to take before you can even get your open water certification. After you get the OK to get the open water certification, the certfication is 4 dives over 2 days.

That being said there are places you can do what is called a "resort dive". This is where you get some classroom training, then some in pool training THEN you can dive that day with that instructor. I've done this with my boys in both Cncun and Key West. The best way to find out about this is to ask some of the SCUBA kiosks.

Best way to get around? Thats easy. When you get to the isand, park your car, and use a bike or taxi. You'll be glad you did.

Key West
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3. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

Check out Captain's Corner for diving. I have friends who won't dive with anyone else and they do offer the resort course. www.captainscorner.com Their booth is just in front of the Conch Republic Restaurant at the foot of Elizabeth Street.

Where are you staying and for how long? That will make a difference in how you get around, since walking isn't one of the options. If you are going to be drinking and staying out late, the taxi back to where you are staying is probably your best bet.

Kansas City
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4. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

Go to the "Overview" tab above or to the left and read all the "Inside Key West" articles. The topics cover a lot of what your asking about.

Denver, Colorado
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5. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

Thanks everyone!

We will be arriving mid-day (after an 8 hour drive) on Thursday and will have 2 full days, Friday & Saturday, then depart mid-day on Sunday.

Not a whole lot of time so we will skip things like the Dry Tortugas until a future trip.

I checked out Captin's Corner. Looks like we could do the "resort course" for about the same price as the SNUBA. I'll call them to find out how long the 2 shallow dives are that are included in the course.

Some good pointers, thanks!

I know their are tons of restaurants...anything that I absolutely just shouldn't miss?

THANKS!

Key West, FL
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6. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

Just fyi, The 2 reef dives that are included in resort courses each last about 30 mins.

I'm not sure why it would take anyone 20 days to get open water certified. You can do it in 4 here for an open water cert. All you need to have done prior is your book work.

A good option for out-of-towners is getting the classroom and pool time done at your local dive shop (you probably have one, even if you don't know it). Then, just come here for the dives. That saves you from spending time in a classroom/pool while you're on vacation.

Key West
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7. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

The Blue Heaven won the TA poll for a favorite restaurant that we had on here awhile back. Since most of the seating is outdoors, you need to check the weather before you go and sometimes there can be a wait.

If you like shrimp, Key West pinks are amazing. They have a little pink dot on their sides. I'm sure someone can tell you where the best shrimp can be found. Local seafood or Cuban food is what I would recommend for a Key West taste experience. Of course, Key Lime Pie, which is now the official state pie, is a must. Everyone has their own favorite, I like Kermit's. There are many choices for a birthday dinner, what kind of place are you looking for?

Key West, Florida
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8. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

So many restaurants...so little time.

I'm still trying to get to all of them after 18 years here.

Since you are from Orlando, I assume you are driving. There are some great restaurants on your end of the island and up the Keys.

MM25 = Square Grouper (inside dining - super good!) You can actually dress semi-up for this restaurant - or not (I wear my good jean shorts - LOL!) bring a sweater the A/C is usually cranking.

MM19 = Mangrove Mamma's (casual inside/outside dining)

MM11 & back in = Geiger Key Marina (very casual dining) good for lunch after kayaking (see www.kayakkeywest.com)

MM10 = Bobalu's (casual inside dining - Keys style)

Key West

N. Roosevelt Blvd = Meson de Pepe (casual Cuban dining without the crowd)

Duval (quiet end) = Carmines (Italian dining w/Key West flair = we eat upstairs)

Duval (right next to Carmines) = Banana Cafe (our favorite breakfast = we wait for the bar seats)

Pjk
New Jersey
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9. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

Since you will only be in Key West for two full days you might want to look into the Sebago Island T'ing which pretty much everyone who has taken it has enjoyed. It's an all-day trip with a snorkel stop, lunch, and then a kayak trip. You would only be able to go out on Friday and if it looks good you would want to pre-book on-line assuming the weather looks good.

Pjk

Denver, Colorado
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10. Re: Be there in 20 days for my B-Day! Help!

I looked up Sebago Island T'ing and couldn't find a website. Anyone know what it is? Sounds perfect!