Located an easy walk or bike ride from downtown at the corner of South and Whitehead, a gigantic red, black, and yellow buoy proudly marks the southernmost point of the continental United States stating under the playful banner of the ‘Conch Republic’ that you are now only 90 miles from the Cuban shoreline (closer than you are to Miami!).
This claim is somewhat controversial with Key West being an island and therefore not strictly part of the continent. The fact that it is attached to the continent by over a hundred miles of road, seems a slight bending of the truth, though you can take comfort from the fact that if you drove to get here, you would have passed the southernmost point of Florida. Either way, the ‘point’ of all this is that it is as far south as you can drive from continental US and as the car is king in the US, that has to account for something!
If you pick the right time, especially in February when we came, it is possible to enjoy the point in a fair amount of peace and gaze out across the Caribbean towards the horizon to realise just how close Cuba really is. There is also a plaque next to the buoy that explains about an undersea cable that once supplied power all the way out to Cuba.
Sure, it is a fairly hokey tourist attraction, but I was still glad that I had politely taken my turn in the orderly queue to take my souvenir picture! If you’re on your own, there’s bound to be someone else in the same boat eager to lend a helping hand for a return of the favour--a natural ice-breaker if ever there was one!
The easiest way to reach Southpoint is to walk straight down Duval St until you hit South St and turn right for just one block.
For the curious, ''South Point’ in Hawai''i is the southernmost point of all the USA.