State #32 Florida Stop 4 of ?

🎶We had it all
Just like Bogie and Bacall
Starring in our own late, late show
Sailing away to Key Largo

Here’s lookin at you kid
Missing all the things we did
We can find it once again, I know
Just like they did in Key Largo🎶

Those lyrics to Bertie Higgins 1981 hit Key Largo have been playing in my mind for over a week before we got here.

Our trip down the Florida Keys started in Key Largo. We stayed at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. Just FYI, site #5 is in front of a little water hole and the no-see-ums are eating us alive so we’re eating inside. I would not chose this site again because of that fact.

The boys have enjoyed snorkeling here. It’s been hot (which is crazy because it was snowing back home) but the breeze at the beach helps a ton.

The videos I have of Tuck walking in his fins are hilarious! The boys have seen jellyfish, barracudas, two nurse sharks, a spiny lobster, a few tarpins, cannons, a big anchor, grunts, and various other little fish.

We did the park tour of the aquarium exhibits. The “aquarium” is very small but I thought the tour was very informative. I had no idea how much the coral reefs and the mangroves help protect the island from hurricanes. They eliminate 95% of the wave energy produced by a hurricane.

These three are my favorite on the planet. I love them so very much.

Next up we drove over to Biscayne Bay National Park. It’s almost an hour from Key Largo.

This national park is unlike any we have been to. It is a marine park. Ninety-five percent of the park is water. That’s VERY important to know before you go. Because unless you book a boat or snorkel tour or have your own, there’s not much other than the visitors center to see and do. You have to be 8 and older for snorkel and 12 and over for paddle boards.

It was pretty choppy today so the snorkel trip was to the mangroves and not the coral reef.

The snorkel trip was also twice as much as Pennekamp and Tuck’s not 8 for two more months so we skipped the tour. Plus, it’s the same coral reef system so we are going to take our chances with Pennekamp when we hit it on the way back from Key West. Mason was able to complete his Jr Ranger program. Tuck just wanted to wear the hat; not do the program.

I guess you know by now the Key to where we’re headed next is West.

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