Key West

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Posted by Eric Frasco on May 28, 2003 at 00:30:46:

In Reply to: Re: Help Planning Trip posted by Tim on May 27, 2003 at 19:26:57:


I don't know if you've ever driven out to Key West, but it is about 120 miles from Miami. A lot of it is single lane, 30 mph. So it takes 3 - 4 hours (if traffic is good) to get all the way out to Key West. I don't know if there is any construction going on right now, but that would just make the drive worse.

I really like diving at Looe Key Park. I've done three trips with "Underseas" based out of Big Pine Key, which is about 20 miles shy of Key West. But I wouldn't drive out there unless you were going to do more than three days of diving.

I recommend that you try a half day boat doing drift diving off of Palm Beach/Ft. Lauderdale area the first day, drive to Key Largo that afternoon, get a hotel and do another half day boat at Key Largo or Islamorada the next morning. From there you can either go back to Miami/Ft. Lauderdale, or try another one of the Keys. But driving all the way to Key West is a long drive. You will spend more time driving than you will diving for a three day trip. There are some fun dives and some good shops on each Key. I'd call a few of them and ask how many people they put on each boat. Get a feeling for what would be interesting for you. Pennekamp in Key Largo is a big tourist draw, but Christ of the Abyss is a beautiful statue.

When asking about boats, avoid anything that takes more than twelve divers, unless your talk with them gives you a good feeling. Also ask if they take snorklers, and how many. There may only be a few divers on each boat, but a lot of snorklers. Take your own BCD, reg, and a shorty or a 3/2 surf suit. Tanks and weights are either included or available for a small fee, just ask.

Hope that helps.


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