I'm a Florida long-time resident and have visited Key West since the 1970s, long before they cleaned it up and made it a tourist mecca, arriving by car (often) as well as by cruiseline and this time by high speed ferry from Fort Myers Beach. This trip my wife and I were accompanied by a friend from "up North", and as we had only the best part of a day decided we'd finally try to do a so-called "hop on hop off" tour of Key West via the ubiquitous trams owned by this company. We'd originally signed up for the Trolley tour run by this company but after seeing several of them crammed to the gills on a very hot day decided to try to exchange our tickets for the Train, which was far less crowded. After 3 visits to their various centers, a complete runaround and some of the worst attitudes and service I've encountered in years we finally managed to obtain exchange of our tickets.
It was only after the tour began that we learned these hard truths--the tram does NOT allow you to hop on and hop off except at one of four locations, three of which are within a few blocks of each other, and the fourth of which is some blocks from the sites most tourists visit. We breezed past Hemingway's house twice, up and down the main residential streets without stopping or even slowing enough to appreciate the driver's droning comments, zipped past the southernmost point marker, tore past the cemetary, chugged past Sloppy Joe's and the bars and restaurants on Duval St. and were dumped back at the gift shop run by the company.
The tour was dreadful and much more a train wreck than a train ride, though at least the breeze was worthwhile. It is suitable for kids, those who have difficulty walking and those off cruise ships with just a few hours to spare. Apart from that I would suggest Key West is best appreciated on foot, by bicycle or by one of the rental electric cars found everywhere. If you are looking for a true tour with some stops along the way the Trolley makes many more stops, I'm told, but after my experience I doubt we'll make the attempt to find out.
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