The Florida Keys were named Los Martires (The Martyrs) by the Spaniard De León as he thought that from a distance they looked like suffering men. “Key” comes from the Spanish word “cayo” that means “small island”. There are more than 1,700 small islands in the archipelago, very few of which are populated. 43 of these are connected via bridges. The total land area of Florida Keys is approximately 356 square kilometers or 137 square miles.
Things to do in the Upper Keys
Most of the park is offshore; however, there is still a lot to do at the landside headquarters of the park. To man-made beaches are there: Cannon Beach for snorkeling where a Spanish shipwreck lies about a hundred feet offshore; and Far Beach with relaxing palm trees where you can swim or simply relax and enjoy the sun.
The Wild Bird Rehabilitation Center started quite by accident when a woodcarver was asked to help a veterinarian out with some injured birds. The center was established to provide emergency and recuperative treatment for injured birds but has since evolved into a significant information point on the environment.
Robbie’s tarpon feeding started nearly three decades ago when an injured tarpon was rescued by a bay-side business owner. Today up to a hundred tarpon come to be fed bait-fish and stay for hours. Occasionally you will see a tarpon leap out of the water in a flash of silver and green to catch the fish being tossed into the water.
Take a trip to the Everglades to walk the Anhinga Trail and stop off at the Key Largo Coffee Shop afterwards. The location is exceptional surrounded by trees where you can spend a pleasant leisurely time.
Known for its great food, fun water sports, and spectacular vistas, Key West is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the US. The southernmost tip of the continental United States enjoys a privileged geographical location that has resulted in one of the most colorful and attractive spots a globetrotter could hope for.
The most important tourist strip in Key West is Duval Street and also the home to some of the most attractive tourist attractions in the region. Alongside the homes of some of history's most colorful characters, visitors will see restaurants, clothing stores and plenty more to touch taste and smell along the way.
The greatest attraction is at the Southernmost Point at the corner of Shite street and South. Street vendors choose this popular location to set up their shops and stalls offering all types of souvenirs, tastes, and attractions.
What used to be the busy warehouse district is now a lively location for sunset-watchers and all types of live entertainment. Tourists and visitors from all over the globe come from all over to see the jugglers, musicians, and vendors in the late afternoon and early evening.
The Dry Tortugas National Park is a series of islands located 65 miles from the downtown area of Key West. This area received this name from the multitude of sea turtles that the famed explorer Ponce de Leon found when he landed in the region. The “dry” part came from the fact that the entire archipelago was found to completely lack a fresh water supply that was important to early sailors.
One of the very first open-air aquariums to open in the US is featured here in Key West, although later a roof was added to increase the diversity of fish and control algae problems. Today there is an innumerable amount to be learned and observed from the fascinating fish and animal life found here. There are even “touch tanks” that allow visitors to get a feel for some creatures they might never be properly introduced to. Imagine petting a juvenile shark.