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Miami and Florida Keys

(21 Posts)
Charliebean Fri 03-May-19 12:36:15

We are spending a week in Miami and Florida Keys in July. We are not sure whether to do 5 nights keys and 2 nights Miami or 4 nights keys and 3 nights Miami. Any thoughts would be great. Also can anyone recommend a nice place to stay mid point in the keys. We are looking at Islamorada, Marathon or Duck Key ? Thank you

OP’s posts: |
AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 03-May-19 16:11:48

Bear in mind whatever you decide that the journey time between Miami and the Keys can take a couple of hours. The road along the keys is single lane in each direction, the road to Key West becomes narrower the further along it you travel.

Islamorada is about 76 miles from Miami whilst Marathon is 111. Marathon is more mid point in the Keys.

RusholmeRuffian Sat 04-May-19 11:40:00

Personally I would do the extra night in the keys. We stayed at the Hyatt Place in Marathon and would stay there again.

Tiredemma Sat 04-May-19 19:04:14

We spent 4 nights in the Hawks Cay resort on Duck Key. Loved it. Would recommend

Jemimapuddleduk Sat 04-May-19 19:10:03

We did similar and I much preferred the keys to Miami. Key west is my favourite place in the world, it’s absolutely fabulous! We did Naples then key lago, key west and then Miami. I would highly recommend Naples too.

ihatethecold Mon 06-May-19 17:25:06

We also stayed at Hawks key in Duck key in 2017 just before the hurricane.
It’s been renovated now.
The sunset villas are lovely.
We ate off site at roadside places that were 5 mins away in Marathon. Absolutely fantastic food.

Nowisthemonthofmaying Mon 06-May-19 17:27:43

Placemarking as we're doing the same in November!

Has anyone built an everglades visit into their trip? Would like to go and see the alligators etc but don't know if it's worth spending the night there or just visiting on the way down to the keys...

Tiredemma Mon 06-May-19 17:42:11

@ihatethecold did you eat at Sparkeys Landing? Loved it there

ihatethecold Mon 06-May-19 18:52:39


We ate at Grassy key outpost which is 2 mins from hawks key, great food in the evening, very informal.
for breakfast we went to a place that had the word "pig" in it on Marathon. We would sit in the shaded back garden and have huge breakfasts

dreichuplands Mon 06-May-19 18:56:46

We stayed in the Keys during Feb half term at Tranquility Bay Resort in Marathon. Marathon itself isn't super scenic but dc loved the turtle hospital and it has a decent range of places to eat. Tranquility is mostly holiday cottages, 2up 2down which worked well for us as we could have our breakfast and simple dinner after eating out at lunch. It also had a great pool but isn't a party place more kids and older people.
Whether you want to spend longer in the Keys or Miami kind of depends what you like best, really cool quite young nightlife based people, into art, architecture and good food I'd stay longer in Miami. It also has a great latin vibe, l had to help a fellow Brit buy water there because the vendor couldn't understand their accent and the Brit spoke no Spanish.
The Keys has much more wildlife, kayaking, Hemingway's house. It was less party oriented when we were there.

dreichuplands Mon 06-May-19 18:58:34

We went out for the day from Miami to the Everglades on another trip. I didn't wish we had stayed out there. We had plenty of time for alligators, boat rides, catfish etc.

Charliebean Sat 11-May-19 17:58:43

Thank you for the great suggestions. I have written them all down and I will have a look at them all. Could anyone recommend a good central place to stay in Miami. We really haven't got a clue. We were thinking of a day doing the touristy things maybe like the stars home tour or HOHO bus and then the second day we were thinking of going to South Beach/muscle beach. We are only there for a couple of days so a decent hotel that's quite central would be good. Thanks again

OP’s posts: |
AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 11-May-19 18:28:29

I would consider staying in Downtown Miami. You may like somewhere like the Marriott or the Kimpton EPIC hotels for example.

Would suggest you go to South Beach via Uber or taxi from Downtown Miami. Do not use the HOHO bus that runs from Bayside as its pretty much crap these days. The Thriller speedboat that runs from Bayside goes past Star Island and you will see some of the stars homes that way. If sea conditions are ideal they also drive the speedboat out to South Beach too.

Some of the South Beach areas are pleasant to walk around, particularly the southern end but Ocean Drive between 10th and 14th st can be a bit noisy even in the mid afternoon. Would not suggest you stay along Ocean Drive but the Art Deco hotels along there are nice to see. The Lincoln Road area a few blocks inland is pedestrianised and therefore also nice to spend some time in. It has lots of restaurants and shops.

HTH, I like Miami very much.

Charliebean Sun 12-May-19 11:21:50

Thanks Attila. Could I just ask if we stayed in Downtown Miami and we had a hire car could we drive to South Beach for the day on our second day ? We are thinking of the following - Leaving the keys in the morning (maybe Islamorada) and driving to Downtown Miami. We assume that we will get there about lunchtime. Staying there for 2 nights. We were then going to spend the rest of the first day exploring Downtown and then driving to South Beach and back the second day. Do you think this would work ? Thank you

OP’s posts: |
ShushhhandPat Sun 12-May-19 11:28:43

I second (3rd? 9th?) more time in the Keys, and found one day enough at the Everglades. The Intercontinental in Downtown Miami is in a good location and easy to get to from the airport on public transport. It is also a nice walk from a marina place with restaurants and shops. We booked tours to get around, didn't hire a car. TBF parking/driving might be a bit of a pain, it might be easier to book a taxi to South Beach and back. Very jealous, I'd love to go back!

dreichuplands Sun 12-May-19 13:50:35

I have stayed in the Ritz-Carlton in South beach and Loews Miami Beach, they are both pleasant and central.
If you stay downtown you might find Uber easier to move around.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 12-May-19 16:39:29

"Thanks Attila. Could I just ask if we stayed in Downtown Miami and we had a hire car could we drive to South Beach for the day on our second day? "

You could but I would not advise doing so. Parking in the whole South Beach area is very limited, expensive ($4 an hour for anywhere south of 23rd st) and the standard of driving in Miami is not good at all!!!. You would be better off using a taxi or uber to travel to the South Beach area from downtown and these are readily available.

dudsville Sun 12-May-19 16:43:57

This has always been a dream trip for me. Those who've been, what were the prices like?

Toorahtoorahaye Mon 13-May-19 08:42:11

Just looking at the Keyes, are they really that nice? I’ve been a bit disappointed looking at pics and Satellite images etc. Worried I’m going to be disappointed. Previously stayed at Siesta Key and St Augustine which were lovely.

Nowisthemonthofmaying Mon 13-May-19 11:34:21

Yep, no point in driving around Miami! They have Uber there so I used that last time, plus they have free tourist buses around downtown and South Beach.

Toorah I'd like to know the same - I'm doing a road trip from Miami to Key West and back and thinking about staying somewhere in the middle for a few days, but everywhere seems super expensive.

ihatethecold Mon 13-May-19 16:45:55

I have been looking at Miami for a week in august ( yes I know its hot) and its the same price as Europe ( naice hotel)

It doesn't make sense to me that I can go there for the same price.

When we stayed in the keys in 2017 and drove back to Miami for the flight home I wished we had gone up a few days earlier and stayed there.
it took us way over 2 hours to drive to the airport from about halfway down the keys.
beautiful drive but it takes much longer than you will anticipate.

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