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“Highlight of our vacation”
Review of Little French Key

Little French Key
Ranked #2 of 18 Nature & Parks in Roatan
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Welcome to our Private Island Retreat......Best Moments....Both eco friendly and mystical, this place is built with kindness to the environment and people in mind, Little French Key is where you get back to your essence. Roatan is an uncommon place to rejuvenate physically, mentally and spiritually. .Join us for some of the best moments of your life.....
Reviewed September 2, 2013

We booked our visit while we were on the Carnival Dream on Aug 21. The staff were wonderful from picking us up, giving us info about Roatan while taking us to Frenchy's. We had a very easy transfer over to the private island with a short tour and then the time was ours. Words do not express how blessed we feel to have been able to share the little slice of Heaven we found at Little French Key. The island is lovely and so is the staff. Beautiful water and beaches, great lunch. Our daughter who is 20 thoroughly enjoyed herself as well and the best for her was to be able to play with the jaguars. This is the best place we have ever booked on a cruise and would recommend it for anyone. We will definately visit again!

3  Thank Robin F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
littlefrenchkey, Owner at Little French Key, responded to this reviewResponded September 17, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post this great five star review. We are so glad to be the "Highlight of your vacation". We take all of your comments and positive criticism with an open heart and mind and will continue to streamline and improve our facilities to the best of the best it can possibly be and to insure our visiting guests that hold a dear and special place in our heart enjoy what we have to offer to the fullest extend possible....A Private Island Paradise!!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 1, 2013

My wife and I spent the day at Little French Key at the end of August. All we have to say is even of you don't like to high dive, kayak, scuba, snorkel, pet monkeys, jaguars, deer, see exotic birds, drink free drinks, eat great food, swim or sun; just the scenery makes this the best place to vacation. The staff seemed genuinely concerned about our happiness. This is a must! You won't be disappointed.

3  Thank Steve S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
littlefrenchkey, Owner at Little French Key, responded to this reviewResponded September 3, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post this great positive review........It is truly our dear visiting guests such as yourself that make everything we do worthwhile and encourage us to improve and grow:) God Bless you and yours. Management Team at Frenchy,s 44 and Little French Key

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2013

If you get a chance head out to Frenchy's 44 and take a boat over to Little French Key. It is a private island now open to the public. We were a group of four and there was maybe three other families there on our trip. We basically had our own private island. It is beautiful! There is a bar and restaurant and everyone is very accommodating. There is a zoo with rescue animals. Ask for Matthew...he is amazing and is quite knowledgeable of the animals and their story. We got to feed the monkeys and it was quite hilarious! There are two baby Jaguars, but it was feeding time so we didn't get to pet them. This is a fabulous experience for young and old. Don't miss it!

1  Thank Karcon1001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
littlefrenchkey, Owner at Little French Key, responded to this reviewResponded September 3, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post this great positive review........It is truly our dear visiting guests such as yourself that make everything we do worthwhile and encourage us to improve and grow:) God Bless you and yours. Management Team at Frenchy,s 44 and Little French Key

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2013

Background:
We just concluded our 3rd trip to Little French Key on August 21. We did our first visit in December 2012 (see my review dated December 25, 2012), and did our second visit in April 2013.

This time my wife and I brought our 3 boys, ages 14, 19, and 21. Our previous 3 cruises with the boys in tow were standard Carnival 5 day cruises to Progresso and Cozumel, and this time they really wanted to try something "better". Since I "work for a living" and have 4 kids (daughter couldn't make this cruise), nothing disappoints me more than spending "6X" to take the family somewhere and them not liking it.

So even though my wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our first 2 visits to LFK, the pressure was on
to see if our 3 boys who have widely varying interests would also enjoy the day at LFK.

In short, the boys loved it at LFK and I really felt like we got our money's worth!

Before I get into the details, I would like to acknowledge that the team at LFK has done an incredible job continuing to improve the island. In the 9 months or so since we first went to LFK, the level of capital improvements is amazing!

The zoo continues to expand, the addition of a new bar area is almost done, the hammock area continues to expand, and in general everything is bigger and even nicer than it was before!

One thing is very evident, the LFK team has been listening to their customers and is taking the time and money to incorporate that feedback into making their island better and better!

If you have the good fortune of being able to visit LFK, please feel free to share any thoughts, comments, suggestions etc. with the owners. They are there and actively interact with the guests. Say hi, and give them your feedback. I certainly have.

Disclaimer:
In the name of full disclosure I need to note that while both my wife and I are Platinum cruisers with Carnival and have spent many days in ports all over the Caribbean, we have only visited LFK during our 3 visits to Roatan. Even though my wife prides herself on always trying something different,we have had such a great time at LFK compared to anywhere else we have been on any island, we keep coming back. So, this review isn't relative to other places on Roatan, but is relative to all other island options Carnival frequents.

General Review of LFK:
If you are looking for a place to spend a cruise day in Roatan, LFK is an excellent choice,
*Safe. I actually feel safer at LFK than I do on the cruise ship.

*Clean. The place is immaculate when you show up first thing in the morning and the staff does a great job keeping it clean all day. It is like where Disney meets Gilligan's island.

*Beautiful. The pictures speak for themselves. This place really is a post card setting. Hard to believe until you are there and realize it is real.

*Uncrowded. The 3 times I have visited, I always was able to snag kayaks, a picnic table for my snorkeling gear, and a lounge chair, as well as get some beach front real estate for me and my family. Plenty of space for me to spend time with my family while feeling like I am at a rich uncle's private island beach, not a public beach.

*Relaxing. The staff will bring you lunch, your drinks etc. I don't think you need to leave your lounge chair if you don't want to.

*Not too expensive. We have always done the $88 per person deal because my wife just loves the lunch and drinks. Getting a ride back and forth with Dave and Larry also seems to work out really well versus taking a taxi. However, since my kids aren't big lobster fans and don't drink, I might try a different price option for them next time we come since 5 x $88 is not bad for an awesome day at an island paradise, but is still a lot of money for dad to come up with after paying taxes. One of the previous reviews did note a $20 option that I will need to review more carefully next time I bring the whole gang.

*Fun stuff to do. If you want to stick with shorter duration activities, jumping off the 2nd story platform into the lagoon, kayaking around the lagoon, just hanging out in the water, enjoying some relaxing time with the family, visiting the zoo, trying to get into a hammock without falling out, etc. you will find that you have plenty to do and won't get bored. In fact, most people report back the time flies by. Even my ADHD boy was in no hurry to leave.

Who might not like LFK:
If you are looking for a rowdy party beach where you can drink yourself into oblivion and be surrounded by others doing the same, LFK might not be the place for you. From what I have seen, there isn't a lot of uncensored spring break type activity at LFK.

Active Snorkeling and Kayaking:
I personally like to keep somewhat physically active during my vacation and as I noted in my previous review, the snorkeling and kayaking at LFK allow me to be as active as I want. In preparation for this cruise we did some family practice kayaking at Lady Bird Lake in Austin to make sure everyone knew the basics to handling a kayak before I took the family out to the open ocean.

I noticed one of the recent reviews for LFK indicating the snorkeling wasn't all that compelling. My belief is that person must not have been at the right spot since we have found the best self serve snorkeling anywhere in the Caribbean within easy kayaking distance of LFK. If you want a Google earth satellite "map" marked to show how to kayak from LFK to the same spot many of the cruise ship snorkeling excursions go to, please contact me via Trip Advisor and I will forward to you.

My recommendation is to get to LFK first thing, grab your kayak, throw your gear in the kayak and get over to the reef. Mid morning is when the excursions do their snorkeling and their presence makes it much easier to locate the best spots and the buoys you can use to tie up your kayaks. Else, it can be a little harder to find the best spots if you aren't familiar with the area. It also doesn't hurt to have some others around you while you get yourself situated and familiarize yourself with your surroundings.

The best thing is that after about 20 minutes, the excursions will order their customers back on the boat and head back, leaving you and your party the reef as your own for as long as you want to stay and enjoy it!

If you are at the right spot, the snorkeling is excellent.

For my family, we grabbed 3 kayaks shortly after we arrived (2 2 person kayaks and a 1 person kayak), grabbed our gear, made sure it worked and did a practice run in the shelter of the lagoon to confirm everyone could get in and out of their kayaks in the water with their gear on before heading around the adjacent island to the reef with the best snorkeling. LFK has plenty of kayaks so we didn't have any problem grabbing ours and didn't have to feel bad that we were hogging their inventory.

The good swimmers had the most fun and spent the most time in the water. But even my youngest boy who isn't a strong swimmer really enjoyed himself though he was a little tentative about swimming in the ocean. Since we only have 2 sets of gear, we only had 2 people in the water at any time with the other 3 spotting from the kayaks.

After we did about 90 minutes of rotating snorkeling, we did the short kayak trip back to the LFK lagoon.

My 19 year old son and I then set out to do a longer kayaking trip along the coast/reef (please contact me via Trip Advisor if you want a marked up Google Satellite "map" of the route we took). We stayed on the inside of the reef heading east into the prevailing winds to get into our groove in our 2 person ocean going kayak. We cut through a small canal into a small bay, then went out around the reef and onto the open ocean side of the reef. Coming back was a blast! The waves were 3-4 feet, just enough to be fun and get wet without feeling like we had made a mistake in judgment. With the wind basically at our backs, we were able to make good progress and do 2-3 miles of kayaking and get back in time for lunch.

Time to Relax and Eat Some Lunch:
After we got back, the staff was in the process of providing lunch to the guests. A great thing about LFK is that they freshly prepare lunch over what seems to be a few hours. They make it so you can eat when you want, and the food is hot off the grill. By the time we got back it was mid lunch (Roatan doesn't do daylight savings time so LFK starts doing lunch about 10 AM local time until about 1 PM) so the next time the staff asked us if they could get us lunch, we said yes and they had it to us in about 5 minutes. My wife loves the lobster so she ate her lunch in one of the earlier waves and then came by to grab the lobster my son didn't want. I don't know what the official policy is, but it seemed to me like my wife had more than 1 lunch before all was said and done.

Note: LFK doesn't seem to have "kids meals" per se. Their lunch during our visit was chicken, beef, lobster tails, calamari, and rice/beans. It is great fresh food and they are willing to focus the food on your personal tastes if you ask them. However, if your kids are super picky eaters (2 of my boys meet this criteria), it is best to bring some snacks they will like. No use paying for the full family to come and then having to leave early when the kids get hungry and their isn't a McDonalds near by.

After lunch, it was relaxing time. One of my boys alternated between jumping off the 2nd story platform into the lagoon and reading his book under the shade of one of the tiki huts,while the other 2 swam around in the lagoon with my wife. I checked out the zoo, tried my luck at climbing in a hammock, walked around checking out the latest LFK improvements and then struck up a conversation with the owner.

Drinks on the House:
During our discussion, it came up that this was our 3rd trip in 9 months to LFK. I was immediately offered a drink on the house, However, since we had 10 drink coupons (each person received 2 drink tickets) and only 1 drinker, I politely declined the free drink since we already didn't know how to use up our existing allocation (and these guys don't water down their drinks either).

As was the case during our previous two trips, the time flew by and it was time to leave. We were literally the last guests off the island but Larry made sure we reached our cruise ship 15 minutes before the recommended final boarding time.

The boys were physically exhausted but had a blast and want to return when we do our cruise next summer.

I just hope our late August weather luck continues to hold out!

Safety Note:
Kayaking on your own in the open ocean in a foreign country (where many American's cell phones don't work) can be dangerous. Alert the staff at LFK to what you are doing and stay within what your abilities are. Conditions can change quickly in the tropics and a few big wind gusts can push you the wrong way in a hurry!

Unsolicited Advice for LFK Management:
My wife and I did some stand up paddle boarding at our later cruise stop in Cozumel and had a great time. If not in the plans already, SUP at LFK would be an awesome addition to the available activities. The ability learn to do SUP in the shelter of the lagoon would be awesome, and the ability to stay on the inside of the reef to do some long range SUP practices on relatively flat water is a great place to hone skills. For those more advanced, taking their SUP to the open ocean side of the reef would provide the opportunity to do intermediate and advanced SUP.

7  Thank Bill K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
littlefrenchkey, Owner at Little French Key, responded to this reviewResponded September 3, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post this great positive review......You as a third time visitor hold a very special place in our heart......It is truly our dear visiting guests such as yourself that make everything we do worthwhile and encourage us to improve and grow:) God Bless you and yours. Management Team at Frenchy,s 44 and Little French Key

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 30, 2013

Me, my husband, father, mother, aunt, uncle and cousin visited little French key on August 21, 2013. We were on a seven day carnival cruise that stopped at mahogany bay. This private island is amazing. It's paradise for sure. The enviroment was incredible, and the people were very friendly and accomadating. The water was crystal clear, the snorkeling was the best we have ever done. We have been all over the Caribbean and this island was undoubtably the best place we have ever been. We would give it a 10/10!!!! We will definitely visit again and we would recommend this beautiful island to any couple or family.

1  Thank Michelle R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
littlefrenchkey, Owner at Little French Key, responded to this reviewResponded September 3, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post this great positive review......It is truly our dear visiting guests such as yourself that make everything we do worthwhile and encourage us to improve and grow:) God Bless you and yours. Management Team at Frenchy,s 44 and Little French Key

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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