Key West

Key West is a city that is located at the southernmost point of Florida. Key West, Florida is a city rich in history and in beauty. The Florida Keys have been a tourist destination for over a century and has attracted not only tourists from all over the world, but also many notable people and politicians, including several presidents from the mid-20th century.

Key West Weather



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Key West got its start as a Spanish territory, as Florida was discovered by Spain. The name Key West is a loose English translation that in Spanish literally means bone key. This is because the area was used as a place supposedly to deposit bones, sort of like a graveyard. Key West was also the location where an explosion happened that started the Spanish- American war. In the 1700s, England had conquered the keys briefly, but 20 years later the territory was transferred back to Spain. Key West was a stopping point between the U.S. and Cuba. The U.S. embargo against Cuba stopped transportation between the U.S. and Cuba, but before the 1959 revolution of Cuba, planes and ferries would take trips every day between Key West and Cuba.

Key West White House

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Truman Little White House

Again, Key West is an area that is rich in history. For example, it was known in the mid-20th century as the Winter White House. Many presidents have visited Key West including Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennedy. Kennedy stayed here after the infamous Cuban Missile Crisis. Since Key West is approximately 90 minutes away from the northernmost point of Cuba, Kennedy used the keys as a point of saying that the U.S. was only 90 minutes away from Cuba. There is actually a point that visitors can go to in downtown Key West that marks the U.S. as being the southernmost point of the US. Key West in fact does have a reputation of being the most southernmost city in the continental US. It lays so far down south, that is actually is several hours away from Miami, which might be commonly thought to be the southernmost city in the continental U.S.

Ernest Hemingway Key West

Key West is known for the writers that stayed there as well. Ernest Hemingway spent a considerable amount of time here, as did Tennessee Williams. As a matter of fact, out of all the homes that Tennessee Williams rented around the world, Key West was the only place in which he bought at home. There is a community center named after Tennessee Williams.

Key West conch fritters


Key West Conch fritters

If visitors are looking to come to Key West for its arts and balmy weather, they can certainly do so, and also visit its world-class restaurants. Key West is situated right in between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. It's being situated between these two major bodies of water plays a part in the culture as well. For example, if a person wanted to eat at a restaurant, they could enjoy the taste of the Caribbean and the Atlantic on the one hand, and they also would be able to taste the down-home Southern food that is known along the Gulf Coast. So it could be very easily said that Key West has something for everyone when it comes to its cuisine, and its culture. Key West is also well known for a very delicious dessert called the Key Lime Pie. It's common for tourists to come to Key West, and to find stores that sell key lime juice in order to make this delicious, tangy dessert.

Key West Fun Activities

Key West is certainly for families. There are many parts where families can go fishing, hiking along the beach, golfing, and enjoy water sports. The weather here is just right for many people. It's not too hot, and it never gets cold. It is also said that Key West does not incur the hurricanes that other cities further up the coast in Florida seems to capture. It's an extremely relaxing place, so much so, that the singer Jimmy buffet actually based the song "Margaritaville" on the city of Key West. That song of course became so popular, that it is still being played on radio stations today, and has spawned a chain of restaurants called Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville.

There are other famous restaurants there such a Sloppy Joe's. Everyone has heard of the Sloppy Joe's, but Sloppy Joe was an actual person who was an associate of Ernest Hemingway. Not only are there restaurants and venues for families, but there are lots of things to do for a couple looking for a quiet getaway. Unlike the more festive and youth oriented cities such as Miami, Key West is the place to go for people who want to enjoy the quiet warm breezes from the ocean. There are lots of bed and breakfasts, and there are activities such as bike rides through the old town.


Key West Cruise

Key West is also a wonderful port for cruise lines that are departing into the Caribbean. People can have a wonderful time in the city before boarding the ship, so that they can continue their trip into paradise.

The wonderful thing about Key West is that people can experience the tropics, and they can experience all the amenities that they would in a Caribbean island without having to leave the U.S. If a person doesn't have a passport, they don't have to worry when they visit Key West. Key West also has an airport, so it is accessible by any other airport around the country. It is marked not only by its quiet and slow lifestyle, but by beautiful pink and blue sunsets. If you are looking for a vacation spot to just take things very easy, enjoy great food and great company, then Key West is the place for you.