on July 12, 2011
Every night in Key West there is a sunset celebration in Mallory Square. This is where Duval Street meets the Gulf of Mexico. It begins an hour or so before sunset and is a bit like a street carnival. There are vendors selling all sorts of things, food and fun performances. Be sure to bring your camera as there are great photo opportunites for some of the best sunsets ever.We went here every evening during our stay in Key West and never actually got tired of it.You need to arrive Mallory Square about an hour before sunset to catch the nightly celebration. Jugglers, fire-eaters, high wire artists and musicians do their thing. It really is the best show in town and the whole thing is free!Apparently the crowds can be overwhelming at peak holiday times. We found it was fine during our stay and never got too crowded at all. No matter what though, the festive atmosphere which ends with the magnificient sunset into the Gulf of Mexico, makes this a must-see. The sunset is different every night, the colours change depending on the clouds, so it becomes addictive as you want to see what you are going to get each evening.Vendors sell hand-made everything - from food to t-shirts to artwork - you can pick up some great souvenirs here. There was a man chopping the top off coconuts and selling these. The performances are also fantastic - we saw the most amazing escape artist, who proceeded to dislocate his shoulders and elbows in front of us to get out of his straightjacket; a banjo player whose dog went around the crowd and collected the tips; a fire eater whose finale involved his contortionist assistant folding herself into a box and then letting everyone in the crowd peek in at her; a unicyclist who juggled fire and a gymnast/acrobat who somersaulted through a tiny hoop which balanced on a lady's back while she leaned over a bicycle. It really is amazing!Half an hour or so before the actual sunset, get yourself to the edge of the deck so your children can get a good view of the sunset without being blocked by taller heads. Be sure to wear sunscreen as well - even this late in the day, you will need it.This is the perfect way to end the day in Key West - watching the wonderful street performers and then the grande finale - a spectacular sunset of fiery Caribbean pink that lights up the sky and then sinks into the water.
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