I’m lucky enough to have been able to go to Florida so many times that I know Haines City and Orlando really well. I can even almost give directions without getting people lost. It makes it feel like a second home. It is reassuring to be able to find Mountain Dew and Fruit Loops straight away at the local supermarket. As you can tell, I have an uber healthy staple diet when in America.
That said, it’s great to try something new every now and then. This time, we took a mini road trip to the keys, the selection of islands at the bottom of Florida. At the furthest point, it is closer to Cuba than it is to the closest Walmart. Ladies and Gentlemen, that is the kind of fact that I will probably remember until I am an old woman, at the expense of something far more important.
We stayed at a lush hotel in Key Largo. It backed right onto the ocean, where you can swim out to a tiny little platform or relax in a hammock. The place is pretty amazing. If you are looking for somewhere to be blissfully lazy with some stunning views (and real good food), I’d check it out. Pack a good book – I had Dr Faustus – and a pair of sunglasses and try to beat me in the tanning stakes.
A day trip to Key West, probably the most famous of the islands, was on the cards the next day. We didn’t really have a plan so hopped on one of the tourist trains so we could see all the main attractions and work out where we wanted to visit a little bit later on. We wandered through the main street, the harbour and even found a ‘Coyote Ugly’ bar. I’m not 21 so couldn’t go in but I did convince my parents that we really wanted to go to the Hard Rock Cafe because well, I’d never been and they look soooo cool. And yeah, my souvenir glass makes me smile when I see it. It’s the little things.
Personally, I found one of the best things about Key West was the Caribbean feel to it. There were chickens roaming around, street paintings and of course some of the best views I have ever seen.
We also found an ah-maz-ing tapas bar . I love tapas anyway, but this was one of the best I have had in a while. I had this beautiful halloumi dish that I would have quite happily eaten until I popped, as long as I could pair it with some patatas bravas. If you ever get the chance to eat there, take it. You’ll thank me later.
I could fill many a post singing the praises of Key West but I’ll stop now. Besides, I’m still hoping I can return there many many times yet and I’m sure I’ll be so excited I’ll have to share all over again.