Key West or Largo?

Sep 30th, 2002, 06:50 PM
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Key West or Largo?

We're planning a trip down to the Keys for a few nights in late October. I always thought Key West had wonderful tropical I hear it's not so. Not sure if it's worth moving around from Key Largo to Key West if we only have 3 nights-we need to pick one to visit. So does anyone have a recommendation? We were hoping to stay somewhere moderately priced on the beach. Are the beaches really that bad there??
Sep 30th, 2002, 07:15 PM
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Do a search on this board for info about Keys and/or Key West beaches. The Keys are about ambiance, lifestyle and attitude--not beaches. It's a great place to go and unwind--but not if you're a dedicated beach bunny.
Sep 30th, 2002, 08:19 PM
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It depends what you are looking for. Lounge chairs on the sand by the ocean. You'll find that. Long stretches of beach for roaming, you won't. Water sports, jet skiis, parasailing, etc. both Key West and Key Largo have. For 3 nights I would stay in Key West, unless you are snorkelers, then Key Largo.
Oct 1st, 2002, 03:17 AM
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My wife an I returned from Key West about 2 weeks ago. When I originaly started looking for a get-a-way, I assumed Key West would have great beaches as well. As it turns out they do not. We walked to the Atlantic end of Duval Street and found the water to be too condiminated for swimming. Most of the beaches we saw on the gulf side were reserved for Hotel Guests. There could have been other beaches we did not see. HOWEVER, I would urge you to see Ket West anyway. We had a wonderful time! We stayed at the Marquesa, soaked up the sun, ate like pigs, drank lots of fruity drinks, listened to GREAT music and had a very relaxing vacation. The Hemmingway tour was fun and we took a sunset sail that was great. Like the previous post says, if you are set on beaches, Key West is not the ticket but in my opinion the many other attributes more than make up for the poor or nonexistant beaches. I would be glad to share any other information about our trip if you wish. Good luck and have fun !!
Oct 1st, 2002, 04:23 AM
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Fantasy Fest in Key West is October 18th through October 27th and accommodations book months in advance, so if you plan on going during that time you should consider staying in one of the other keys.
Oct 1st, 2002, 08:57 AM
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If you're looking for beaches, I would go to another part of Florida - maybe Sannibal Island, Marco Island, Naples, Boca, Ft Lauderdale - actually, pretty much any other ocean town.... There are gorgeous beaches in Florida - just not really on the Keys. I've stayed in both Key West and on Key Largo. I liked them both - but was really only there to relax - and we spent alot of time at the pools. From Key Largo, we spent one day and drove down to Key West and it was a really nice day.... Don't feel bad, though - when I went to Key West - I had made the assumption that the beaches there would be like the rest of Florida - probably better. It was not a good surprise - but Key West has some neat places to go - and the people watching alone is entertainment enough. You should also look at Panama City - they have some nice beaches, too....
Oct 1st, 2002, 11:37 AM
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We just returned from Key West. We had read that Key Biscayne isn't considered part of the Keys, well Key West shouldn't be either. The tropical setting may make you think you're going to be in beautiful surroundings, but the truth is that it is more like a jersey shore boardwalk than Paradise.

I don't mean to say that I didn't enjoy myself, but the "natural beauty" observed in Key West was pretty much limited to a rather well endowed man being painted at the Garden of Eden.

The drive down the Keys relaxes you with absolutely gorgeous scenery, then Key West springs a never ending party on you.

Beaches are available along the Keys, but don't waste your time in Key West. Enjoy it for what it is.
Oct 1st, 2002, 11:39 AM
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You obviously didn't leave Duval Street or go on a nature tour through the Mangroves.
Oct 1st, 2002, 11:43 AM
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Did you not notice you were on an island??!! Key West and the Keys are full of nature and beauty.
Oct 1st, 2002, 11:51 AM
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I love love Key West! No beaches are not the best but who cares! Unless you are a total beach nut go to Key West and try to stay at the Hilton or Hyatt location is super! Have a blast can't wait to go back. Maybe you could take me?
Oct 4th, 2002, 08:42 PM
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As a matter of fact, we did leave Duval. We went to the Southernmost Point to see bums and trash; Roosevelt Blvd. for a great view of Stock Island; played "avoid the mugger", a game of chance in Bahama Village; and took a tour of "the meadows" with a direction challenged cab driver.

Will you people lighten up?? All I said was that Key West is different than the other Keys, and should be enjoyed for what it is. Natural beauty is more abundant elsewhere. It is also just about the only thing to do on some Keys.

BTW, this is one of the first times I've ever seen a reference to a nature tour of the mangroves in Key West. Is there liquor on the boat? lol
Oct 5th, 2002, 03:27 AM
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Key Largo reminds me of the John Denver song about Toledo Ohio. I spent a week there one night. It is a good place to stay only if you are going to dive or snorkel at the national park. Otherwise a little tacky.

Key West revels in its tackiness. Fast Buck Freddies (did I remember that right) is the poster boy for this. Lots to do walking around but the beaches are quite small but if you are having fun, who cares? Drinking probably needs to be high on your agenda if staying in Key West or a tolerance for public drunkeness if you are indifferent to booze.

Fantasy Fest is very crowded and very gay oriented. Depending on your point of view, this can be fabulous or horrific. We were staying in Marathon (for fishing) and stumbled into Fantasy Fest quite by accident and thought it hilarious. The parades are tooooooomuch.
Oct 6th, 2002, 06:22 AM
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Hello, we are also planning a trip to Key West in a few days, we went there last summer and even though there is not much swimming in Key West itself, you can drive about 30 min to Bahia? sp? beach for swimming.
Oct 7th, 2002, 07:02 AM
Li Yin
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Max...Sorry to say, but you're wrong. There is crime all over Key West. We were attacked one night outside of the Galleon, and witnessed another case of people getting robbed down the street from the Bull a year later.

People going there and forgetting caution are just asking for trouble. Sometimes you're better off sitting at work reading posts and making up details of trips. That way you never have to face any realities.
Oct 7th, 2002, 10:44 AM
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Crime all over? Hmmm. Been going there every winter for the last decade and never seen any crime. Yes, the Bull does have a bad singer occasionally, but I'm not sure that's in the crime category....

There is a crime report in the Citizen every day or so. It's a great read. But it's generally domestic problems or low-lifes doing a number on each other.

Sheesh--every town should have Key West's crime problems....
Oct 7th, 2002, 11:46 AM
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I agree with George. I've been spending 4 weeks a year in Key West for a number of years and have only heard of one real problem, and that involved someone bicycling through Bahama Village at 3 o'clock in the morning. Reading the so-called "crime report" in the Citizen is a hoot. As George says, it's primarily people who've gotten drunk and lost their way home or who've made a scene at a bar.

We stay at the Galleon and I've never seen any hint of trouble in or around it.
Oct 8th, 2002, 02:01 PM
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I agree with George and Susan. We have been going down for years and feel it is one of the safest cities we have been in.
Oct 9th, 2002, 06:26 AM
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Kinda agree with Li Yin. There is a lot of crime in Key West. The police don't aways report it because of the money involved and the politics. I just recommend you be careful and watch your back in the evening if you are off Duval St or early morning hours coming from the bars. They are out there waitng on you and you know why.
Oct 11th, 2002, 08:30 PM
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I've been going to the Keys since I was a kid. I've lived in South Florida for over 29 years and my family always enjoyed bridge/pier fishing and that was (and still is) one of my favorite pasttimes. Key West is a relaxing kind of fun. A place to unwind - no makeup, no hair-do's. Just be yourself, have some tropical drinks, seafood, people watch, listen to live music, and feel the breeze! FANTASY FEST is a ball. I loved the parade (although it can get corny at times) But it does get really crowded! Key Largo - I have 2 aunts that live there and I go almost every other weekend - is more "retired" "small town". There is nothing to do in Key Largo. Maybe go to John Pennekamp and go snorkeling or diving. Go deep sea fishing. But, other than that, nothing. I love Key Largo b/c of the fond family memories. I love ALL of the Keys b/c all the memories I have of being there have been of me and my family always smiling. pssst...the beached suck.
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