Key West Journals

Key West 2006; Set your Clock for Island Time!

A May 2006 trip to Key West by Dutchnatasja

Funny cars in Key West Photo, Key West, Florida More Photos
Quote: Come along in my Key West Experience, and I hope I can convince you to go to Key West at least once in your life.

Key West 2006; Set your Clock for Island Time!

Overview

Boats in the Harbor of Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Year after year we go to the Keys, especially Key West. Why? Well, that I can explain to you, but tell you about the feeling of Key West, the feeling that you want to stay in Key West forever, that is something you have to experience yourself. So, come along in my Key West Experience and I hope I can convince you to go to Key West, at least once in your life.May 14, 2006:We got up early. Normally I choose to stay a little bit longer in bed, but not that day. We were on our way to Key West. It was late when we arrived Saturday in Homestead, so we decided to stay there for the night. It’s a 4- to 5-hour our trip from Homestead to Key West. I don’t care that it’s a long drive. In my...Read More

Paradise Inn

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Hotel | "The Paradise Inn (2006)"

Paradise Inn Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
This is not the first time I write about the Paradise Inn. Because it's our favorite B&B in Key West, we decided to try the Paradise Inn first. (We never book our hotels/B&B on forehand in Florida.) The best time to go to Key West (without a reservation) is on Sunday. You can drive easily to Key West; the road isn’t that crowdie like on a Friday or Saturday. It’s also the best time to get a room in one of the popular B&B’s that Key West has to offer. The weekends are most of the time fully booked. We had a room for 5 nights in The Paradise Inn. Again it was our favorite room, number 105. This room has a porch with a table and chairs. It’s close to the pool. When you’re sitting ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 27, 2006

Paradise Inn
819 Simonton Street
Key West, Florida 33040
(305) 293-8007

El Siboney Restaurant

Restaurant | "El Siboney"

El Siboney Restaurant Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Cuban Cuisine:I did some homework before we left to Key West. We decided, after reading many positive reviews on the Internet, to have a late lunch at El Siboney, a Cuban restaurant. It was raining a whole day, so it was a perfect moment to sit inside. Normally I prefer to sit outside when dining, especially in the Keys. After we ordered, we did get a basket of delicious warm Cuban bread. We had Ropa Viejo with yellow or white rice (you can choose) and black beans in a separate bowl. The meal we had was good, but not very special in my opinion. I think we were expecting too much after reading the very positive reviews on the Internet. Maybe we had to order something...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 27, 2006

El Siboney Restaurant
900 Catherine St.
Key West, Florida 33040
(305) 296-4184

Blue Heaven Restaurant

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Restaurant

Blue Heaven Restaurant Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
The building where Blue Heaven is located used to be a space for gambling and boxing matches hosted by Hemingway. Today, Blue Heaven is a ‘laid back’ restaurant, where the chickens are walking around. The entrance is very invited; you just want to know what’s behind the entrance. This restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It’s a favorite by locals and tourists. What’s on the menu?Just to give you an idea:Breakfast: Lobster Benedict, Breakfast Tortilla, Breakfast Sandwiches (on a Fresh Kaiser Bun) Lunch: Jerk Chicken Plate, Locally Caught Fish, Key West Cheese Steak and much more.Dinner: Caribbean BBQ Shrimp, Yellowtail Snapper...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 7, 2006

Blue Heaven Restaurant
729 Thomas St
Key West, Florida 33040
(305) 296-8666

Grand Cafe Key West

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Restaurant | "The Grand"

Grand Cafe Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Still the same quality; The Grand CaféYear after year we’re going to the Grand for dinner or lunch. The food is really good, the wine is delicious, and the desserts… well, you have to try it yourself. The (international) staff are always very friendly and polite. The ambience hasn't changed over the years, and that’s good. We like it as it is. There is something else that didn’t change; the discount coupons. You’ll find the coupons at some B&B’s and at the visitor centre. When you have a entrée during dinner, you’ll get a free bottle of wine. They offer three wines you can choose from. If you want to have a wine off of the wine list, you’ll get a 50% discount. If you hav...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 7, 2006

Grand Cafe Key West
314 Duval Street
Key West, Florida 33040
(305) 292-4740

Hard Rock Cafe

Restaurant | "The Hard Rock Café"

Quote:
Almost every popular city has a Hard Rock Café. Key West is a popular city so a Hard Rock Café is no exception in this tropical town. The Hard Rock Café is housed in a restored two-story Victorian house on Duval Street. The story about this house goes that this Victorian house is haunted. I don’t know if this is true; the Hard Rock employees reported many stories and evidence in the past of this haunted house. The Hard Rock Café is one of the places the Haunted Ghost tour visits every night. Don’t be scary, they don’t bite… You can still eat here. We did and I didn’t notice any ghosts…The formula of the Hard Rock Café is the same everywhere. The restaurant is filled with rock 'n roll m...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 30, 2006

Hard Rock Cafe
313 Duval Street
Key West, Florida 33040
(305) 293-0230

Southernmost Point Key West

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Attraction | "Southernmost Point in the Nation"

Southernmost Point Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
One of the most photographed places in the city!Tourists, tourists everywhere. Standing in a line, just to get a picture of themselves in front of the Southernmost Point buoy. This must be the most photographed place in Key West. Aren’t these people aware of the fact that this isn’t the Southernmost Point of the continental USA at all? The real Southernmost Point (geographically) is on the property of the United States Navy and is of course not accessible to the public. That’s why the buoy is standing at the corner of South Street and Whitehead Street. Almost every company near the Southernmost Point has a fascination with the word ‘Southernmost’...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 29, 2006

Southernmost Point Key West
Whitehead And South Streets
Key West, Florida 33040

Funny Signs

Story/Tip

Typical Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
When you walk through the streets of Key West, you’ll see a lot of funny cars, sometimes funny people, and also funny signs. About the funny signs… look at the pictures below. Do I need to say more?

Keep your eyes open!

Chickens Everywhere!

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Story/Tip

Chickens relax in Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Chickens and Key West; they belong together. If you spend some time in Key West, you notice that there are a lot of chickens walking everywhere. They are living, for generations, on the streets of Key West. I’ve been told that there are roughly 2000 to 3000 chickens living in Key West. This year we saw many chicken families. Those little ones are so cute. Residents have had enough with the chickens. They hired a chicken catcher. You can imagine that there is a ‘war’ between the chicken-lovers and chicken-haters. There is even a real Chicken store in Key West. It’s located on Duval Street. The store has a ‘Rooster Rescue Team’. They help sick or wounded chickens and sell products that a...Read More
Quote:
Live music everywhere!

There are many things that I like about Key West. One of the things is the music you hear all day. In many bars you’ll hear live music. Some sing better than the other, but they always try to create a great atmosphere. It doesn’t matter if it’s day or night; there are performers everywhere. So stroll along the bars, restaurants, and when you feel like it sing along!
Cruise ships come and go in Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
The first cruise ship arrived at the port of Key West was the Sunward in 1969. This was at the Navy's pier in the Truman Annex. In 1984 the city opened a pier right on Mallory Square. Nowadays cruise ships dock at all three piers. As you see in the picture, this was during the day. You think you have found a quiet spot to relax for a while... well NOT! They are enormous. It didn't bother me; it was just funny to see. Sometimes a ship is blocking the entire scene of the sunset. Why not reprimanding these huge ships out of ...Read More

Are You Ready for Key West?

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Story/Tip

Beautiful and colorful flowers Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
When I show my photos of Key West to my friends and family, they always ask me were I took these pictures. When I tell them I took them in Key West they are really surprised. They like what they see. But what is not to like about Key West? The island is really beautiful. But that’s the easy part. Explaining the atmosphere of Key West is more difficult because this is something you can’t take pictures of. It’s something you have to experience yourself. I like the ‘laid back’ lifestyle, but I can also understand that not everybody likes Key West. Let me tell you about the way I see Key West; not to convince you, but just to give you a look at Key West. The People of Key West...Read More

Let's Talk About Food!

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Story/Tip

Conch Fritters Stand at Mallory Square Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Let's talk about food; the most famous local food of Key West.KEY LIME PIEIt is the official dessert of Florida Keys and Key West. Traditionally, this pie is made from the juice of the Key lime. This lime will give the pie a yellow color. It must never be pastel green, if it is, you can be sure it isn’t a real Key Lime Pie. Limes are related to lemons and are hard to come by, even in the Keys. I love the Key Lime Pie. It’s delicious, fresh, it’s just a perfect pie. It’s hard to make this pie at home, because in The Netherlands we haven’t the right ingredients. That’s why we order this pie several times during our holiday in Florida. You can’t leave Key West before you’v...Read More

The Beaches of Key West

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Story/Tip

Duval Beach, also called South Beach Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
THE BEACHES OF KEY WESTThe beaches are not spectacular and Key West does not have a large number of beaches. They are small and the island rumor tells us that the sand is brought in from the Bahamas, just pleasure of the visitors. Hurricanes have a habit of sweeping the sand away, and nearly every other year the city has to rebuild the beach. The down-side of our Florida Keys beaches is the sea-grass that piles up along the shoreline when the wind is right, because of this you can smell an odor you’re not going to like.There are a few beaches worth a visit: Smathers Beach: This is Key West largest beach. It’s along the southern shore for abou...Read More
Quote:
Shop till you drop…I’m not the person who buy typical souvenirs, but it is fun to watch the kitschy stuff. From seashells, nautical toilet paper (!?), t-shirts to photo’s and art, this is what you can find in Key West. Most of the shops you’ll find in the Mallory Square Area and Duval Street. The stores do whatever they can to get your attention. Some have loud music, others have signs at the store or people who talk you into their store. One shop had a very funny sign in the window, it said: "Your Husband called : he said you can buy anything you want". I should have take a picture of this sign, but I didn’t brought my camera with me. Those things make me laugh. Abou...Read More

The best transportation in Key West

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Story/Tip

Funny cars in Key West Photo, Key West, Florida
Quote:
Key West is a small island. The most important attractions lay within walking distance, therefore Key West is very walkable. I prefer walking. You'll see a lot more and you don’t have to pay attention to others in traffic. For those who'd rather not walk, there are other options to explore Key West. Let’s begin with the first time traveler to Key West.The Conch TrainIf this is your first visit to Key West, the the Conch Train is a good way to get an impression of the city. It’s an open-air train which departs every 30 minutes. We did take this tour at our first visit to Key West, 13 years ago. It was nice, but sometimes I had a bad view, because I was sitting at the wrong side...Read More