When you cruise down U.S. 1 through the Florida Keys, over the blue waters, islets, Keys, and reach Key West, Florida, you are entering another world, a 2 mile wide, 4 mile long, tropical island where the continent and all of its hustle-and-bustle disappear in the mind's eye. Nothing but blue in water and sky, deep scarlet sunsets, whimsical nights, lush gardens, white and gold sun in sand days, comfortable accommodations and lodging in vacation rentals (homes, villas, apartments, cabins, cottages and condos) await you in this beach resort as you arrive. Key West is one of the best vacation and beach resorts of Florida, but events happening all the time show it's a thriving community: Red Barn Theatre, Waterfront Playhouse at Mallory Square, and Tennessee Williams Theatre are putting on shows frequently. Orchestral ensembles, jazz festivals, Cabaret, the Robert Frost Poetry Festival, Hemingway festival, song writing festivals, book lectures, the World Sailfish Championship, swordfish tournaments, 5th Annual Mercury/IGFA Junior Angler World Championship Tournament, Marlin Tournament, 12th Annual Taste of Key West (for AIDs Help Inc.), gay pride festivals, Lobsterfest, the famous annual Fantasy Fest (different themes every year), and the Key West World Championship, described as the Indie 500 of powerboat racing. Art galleries are always exhibiting works you'll want to take home with you. Of course, the entire area has plenty of lodging and accommodation types, so the only issue is to choose the luxury level that you want enjoy! Whatever's going on when you reach the island, be sure to check out. You can't miss out. If dripping, buttery lobster, succulent scallops, Yellowfin tuna, escargot, conch, and luscious crabmeat, all fresh-smelling in the salty winds, sound good, then you have only sensed partly of the exquisite dining here on Key West, Florida. You must, of course, taste these, along with a myriad of local fruits, vegetables, and meats. When you vacation on an island such as Key West, Florida, you feast; and Key West has dozens of restaurants where you can feast, most of them not far away to vacation rentals like homes, villas, condos, apartments, cottages and cabins. Local restaurants have been around for decades or older, so there are a variety of places to satisfy your taste buds and bellies. It's advisable to check out where are located the best restaurants when you decide about your accommodations.
Once you step on Key West, Florida, you'll probably head straight to the beach, even before you will start to search lodging and accommodations! There are six main beach resorts: Fort Zachary Taylor, South Beach, Dog Beach, Higg's Beach, Rest Beach, and Smathers Beach. Each has its niche and the own accommodation facilities. Fort Zachary Taylor is an 87 acre state park with pre-Civil War namesake fort. It's a bit rocky, but has restrooms, chair rentals, picnic tables, food kiosks, and BBQ. At the end of Duval Street lies South Beach, where the locals like to hang. The clear waters are shallow and lap up against the white sands. Like the name says, Dog Beach is for dogs, but their lovable masters are most welcome. The beach is a bit slippery and rocky, but otherwise the cat's, or rather, the dog's pajamas. When you reach the end of Reynold's Street you come to a wooden pier. That's at Higg's Beach. The chalk-dust sand is wider here than others. There are restroom facilities, picnic tables, a restaurant, playground, chair rentals, rafts and watersports rentals. Over on White Street is Rest Beach, which has so soft sand and vegetation. You'll see many a fisherman on White Street pier; and you'll see many a yogis on the yoga deck. Restrooms are within a walk. On South Roosevelt Boulevard, is the half mile of man-made beach, known as Smathers Beach. There is action: oiled bodies, concession stands, bike paths, volleyball nets, watersports rentals, such as jet skiing, parasailing, windsurfing. Restrooms, ample parking, and picnic tables are in place, so you can make it somewhere in the shade. After you have found one of the many available vacation rentals such as homes, condos, villas, apartments, cabins and cottages which fit at best your needs and budget, now you have to get down to business with how extreme you want to go with Key West, probably the most famous beach resort of Florida. You'll find there a plenty of lodging facilities: vacation homes, condos, luxury villas, cottages, apartments and cabins. So, the accommodation type that you'll choose depends only on how close you want to be the beach and on the luxury level that you want to enjoy! How about swimming with dolphins? Snuba (not scuba)? Skydiving? Golf? Bar Crawl? There are choices to be made out of all the dozens upon dozens of things to do. If you don't want to swim with the dolphins, see them, coral reefs and other underwater life, through the glass bottom of a boat. Cruise into sunsets Key West are known for. Snuba dive, a cross between scuba and snorkeling, is safe and easy to learn. Snorkel and scuba dive. Kayak. Jet ski. Sky dive, or the next best thing, parasail. In this beach resorts of Florida you can fish day and night, night and day. If you are better than catching the boot and tire fare, you'll most likely catch some of the following species: Mutton Snapper, Yellowtail Snapper, Mangrove Snapper, Grouper, Cobia, Amberjack, Kingfish, Sharks, Barracudas, Mahi Mahi, Sailfish, Wahoo, and Tuna. That's just nearby. The deep calls for those who listen. Boats for rent aren't just for fishing. Catamarans, speed, sail, cruise, and other boats are a great way to joy ride, water ski, and party. Bar crawling is a great way to sight-see, with a margarita in one hand and salt in the other. And peel a seat from the beach, put on suntan lotion, numbered too high to count, as you relax and repeat these words to let it set in, "I'm in Key West, Florida".