A Day in Key West

Sothernmost Point

After spending yesterday in Islamorada, I decided to drive the 80 miles to the southernmost point in the United States and spend a day in Key West.

Key West is like a different world after spending hours driving down route one through various islands connected by bridges, you enter what is essentially a small city.

Key West is similar to the wild west, in that it has an anything goes atmosphere and you are never sure what you are going to see next.

I made my way down to Duvall Street along with the throngs of tourist to do the touristy things.

I rented a motor scooter and began to explore this eclectic island.

My island adventure led me to Fleming Street where I found the Help Yourself Cafe and decided to go in, sit down and see what it was about.

I immediately took to the Bohemian atmosphere and was even more pleased to find a Matcha Green Tea Latte on the menu.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with Matcha, it is a type of specially grown green tea that is loaded with antioxidants and has an earthy, grassy flavor.

The best guide to learning about Matcha that I have found is at MatchaConnection.com.

The Matcha Green Tea Latte was pretty good, maybe not the best I’ve had, but only because I make my own that I absolutely love.

I got back on the motor scooter with a jolt of new found energy from the Matcha Latte and made my way to the corner of Whitehead Street and South Street to find the southernmost point in the United States.

And wallah, here it is!

Sothernmost Point

 

From there I made my way back to Duvall Street where I went into the Famous Sloppy Joes Bar and had a mojito.

Yes, only one this time!

Sloppy Joes was a combination of tourists in flowered shirts and locals that looked they were attached to the bar stools for years.

Sloppy Joes

 

As the day was getting later, I made my way down to Mallory Square to catch the most famous show in Key West.

Mallory Square

The entertainment in Mallory Square takes the form of multiple street performers tackling everything from juggling to tightrope walking and more.

But those are not the most famous show in Mallory Square.

Yes there is a daily gathering to witness one of the most beautiful forces of nature.

Sunset…

key west sunset

Watching the sunset in Mallory Square is almost a spiritual experience and I got goosebumps when the large crowd erupted in applause as the sun disappeared.

Overall, I liked Key West, although I see why some call it Key Weird and I’m not sure that I would want a steady diet of it.

But it sure was fun to visit…

Shopping in Islamorada

Ocean Gardens

So I spent the afternoon shopping in Islamorada and I found a couple of really neat places that I wanted to share with you.

The first place is kind of an eclectic collection of artists and local craftspeople selling their wares and I really enjoyed shopping here.

The thing that got my attention and made me stop here is the giant sea creature that adorns the parking lot.

Apparently it is a spiny lobster and goes by the name Betty!

Giant Lobster Islamorada

The name of the store is the Rain Barrel and they carry all kinds of Keys gifts and memorabilia including awesome things from local artisans.

If you walk through the Rain Barrel, there is a whole another world out back with little shops and art galleries.

It is a very cool place to shop and one of my favorite places that I have found so far in South Florida.

Rain Barrel Islamorada

 

The pictures don’t really do it justice. You have to stop here to experience it.

You can’t miss it. It is right on route one in Islamorada and there is a giant lobster named Betty out front!

I made a few more stops, but most of them were your typical tourist traps that I would not recommend. There was one more however, that I absolutely loved.

It was called Ocean Gardens and like most other places in the Keys, it is right on US 1.

Ocean Gardens

Ocean Gardens is a little more high end than the Rain Barrel and I bumped into a few of the obnoxious Cheeca guests here, but I didn’t let it affect my awesome shopping experience.

I found shells from the local area and some really cool things from local artisans. The store has a nautical theme, which is appropriate as we are surrounded by water here in the keys.

I purchased this Lookdown Fish Metal Sculpture for my living room at home.

Steel Fish Art

I absolutely love it!

I would say that my day shopping in Islamorada was a success and I would recommend stopping at the Rain Barrel and at Ocean Gardens.

There are a lot of tourist traps to avoid and these two stores are worth stopping at.