Big Pine Key Fishing Lodge
MM 33 OS, 33000 Overseas Hwy., Big Pine Key, Florida 33043, USA
So many choices, for so little money. From tent camping and RV-ing, to various lodging accommodations, you simply can’t go wrong at this laid-back, family-owned and family friendly property.
Make reservations early; it’s a bargain for the Keys.
Canal front rooms are basic but efficient. Some may put up their noses at the dated furnishings and formica, but they’re super clean. Your stocked kitchenette with mini fridge and small appliances will come in handy, and there’s a table and chairs for your dining pleasure. What? You want a welcome gift? You got it! Your keepsake bag includes bottles of water, some type of candy (think chocolate bar or coconut patties), and postcards.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The windows and door are jalousie-style, and although the glass slats are coated to provide privacy and block light, highway noise and light seep in.
Old school gray and blue tile, terrazzo floors (which we love!), newer single-sink vanities… it’s small but certainly serves its purpose. They supply towels, soap, and a hair dryer--and decent water pressure (always appreciated!).
If you're exploring the property and nature calls, duck into the restrooms at the campsite or RV area--they're spotless.
Check in/check out happens in the on-site store at the entrance of the property. Walk in and you can’t miss the signage from the ceiling stating where to go. Pick up every supply you can think of while here, from canned goods to nice jewelry.
Free, self-serve coffee is available for guests.
You won't find many rooftop pools in the Keys, but this is one of them. It's on the second floor across from the lodge. Stay in a lodge room and you can walk right over the bridge to it, with ease. It’s just a big oval but it’s pretty big, and the adjacent deck offers plenty of plastic loungers, shady spaces, and even a shaded hot tub.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Pool towels are not provided so bring your own (or use your room towel).
No dining on-site (unless you’re cooking yourself).
Glenn's Nature Trail is a one-mile boardwalk that takes you through the habitat of the endangered Key deer and along the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. The trail is marked and labeled with educational info and you can see Key deer, birds, and butterflies (maybe snakes and spiders, too). The trail begins in rustic camping.
Wear sunscreen and bring water, a hat, and bug spray.
The staff puts on all kinds of activities every day, usually in the recreation room. Some are free, some cost a small fee. Paint your own nautical bouy, make a shark tooth necklace, learn to play bridge, take a water aerobics class, and that's the short list! Make-your-own banana split is a sweet way to end your day.
You can’t walk to anything from the Lodge, and busy US1 makes biking anywhere not the best idea. Drive your own car or call an Uber.
Kiki’s Sandbar (8-minute drive) is waterfront with subdued dining upstairs or lively dining downstairs. No Name Pub (10-minute drive) is a lower Keys institution, serving pizza and pub food. Visitors love the dollar bills covering every inch of space. For a real treat, try the Bucktooth Rooster (6-miute drive). Blackened grouper, big shrimp, juicy burgers--the menu is enormous. Need a healthy meal? Head to Good Food Conspiracy (4-minute drive), a natural food store with a breakfast/lunch counter and a backyard patio.
Looe Key Tiki Bar & Grill (11-minutes) has live entertainment, friendly locals, and cheap beer. Boondocks Grille & Draft House (9-minutes) is a giant Tiki hut right on US1, with live music, good drinks, and mini golf. For a nice selection of beers on tab, visit Springer’s Bar & Grill (4-minutes).
WHY WE LIKE IT
This is more than just a lodge and campground, it’s a community, and its "residents" are mostly repeat guests and long-term visitors. You’ll feel welcomed. And safe. It’s also a pretty cool place for wildlife with Key deer wandering the grounds, and manatees hanging around the dock (not to mention the birds and iguanas). For families, this place is awesome. Between the pool, game room, playground, and planned activities, the kids will never be bored (and neither will you). Evenings at the beach offer music and the nightly fire pit will warm your soul to the core. We bet you’ll find your happy place here, especially if you bring your own camp chair.
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